likelihood, because the ancients wished both to communicate
certain truths only to the initiated and, perhaps, because
they had few means of analogy in order to state certain indescribable
truths in plain words. Secondly, the symbol itself is a means
of psychical integration of the personality, integration taking
place when a rational meaning can be given to the symbol so
that it can be commonly accepted in a given culture; diversely
the symbol may act as a mean for the disintegration of the
personality, that is to say that the person under the influence
of a symbol accepts it in a way uncongenial to the culture
to which he belongs and then he finds himself at odds with
his fellow beings or with his own self and therefore is considered
as mentally sick; "The criteria for folk diagnosis and insanity
are not clear-cut ... the general criteria for the diagnosis
of insanity include essentially aggressiveness (whether directed
toward oneself or others), instability, and nonconformity
(as opposed to the passivity, stability, and changelessness
of the constricted self)" 13
and treated as such or, in those cases where a taboo is emplaced
on a symbol for the safeguard of communitarian or social interests
the individual not respecting it may even be subjected to
the most harsh punishments - and from our 'opaque, inert and
perhaps we are somehow doing the same with our forefathers
branding then as schizophrenics or addicts. But we ought to
keep present that that is our inheritance! and at
the same time we must also keep present that the unhappy ones,
from the standpoint of the man who lives in symbolic and symbiotic
communion with his higher self, are the veiled ones, those
who live in a cosmos opaque, mute and inert "for a symbol
speaks to the whole human being and not only to the intelligence
... it is through symbols
that the world becomes transparent, is able to show the transcendent".
On a different level, symbols appear and
act upon us through our oneiric life, symbols or images appearing
in our dream states are supposedly the contents of the unconscious
and the science of psychoanalysis draws broadly on the dream-state
symbols to bring about the reintegration of the personality
in certain types of psychosis or neurosis; however, faith
and belief of the patient in these psychoanalytical practices
are essential - indeed collaboration with the psychoanalyst
- so much so that such symbols may be beneficial to the extent
that the oneiric symbols are taken for granted to be what
the psychoanalyst assumes them to be, which surely is not
always the case as symbols are in most cases strictly related
to our experience and as such strictly subjective, that is,
the same symbol assumes different meanings in different percipients
and per se the conditioning effect of the oneiric
symbol can just be a by-product of being conditioned by a
third person, the psychoanalyst. Even so, the simple fact
that oneiric symbols are used for therapeutic purposes by
third parties acting on the person under treatment will tell
us that oneiric symbols are not at complete variance, even
if diversely masked, from the mythical symbols which have
been labeled and recognized as the common symbolic heritage
of man, the collective unconscious even if the different
garment, or mask, of a basic atavistic symbol may lead to
differences and errors in its interpretation.
Symbols - though not strictly of the archetypal
character or necessarily so - appearing in the oneiric life
of the individual are employed in preventive medical diagnosis
in several clinics in the Soviet Union and it seems quite
reasonable to say, according to the accumulated evidence,
that the kind, recurrence and psychic pattern of certain symbols
or scenes appearing in the dream state antedate certain pathological
conditions of the organism not yet evident or discernible
on a physical or psychical analysis in the symptomatic plane.
"We in this country have already saved many lives by using
this method of dream interpretation. It can result in the
diagnosis and treatment of serious illnesses long before they
would be diagnosed in any other manner ... such dream ‘early
warning’ signals can occur as early as two weeks before a
heart attack, up to a year or more before mental illness ...
most ‘repeat dreams’ start a month or more before the patient
begins to feel symptoms". 15
Diagnosis of incipient illness based on dream interpretations
include illnesses such as malignant tumors (brain, spinal,
lung, stomach or intestinal cancer); tuberculosis; ophthalmic
problems; liver, kidney, heart, stomach and other numerous
ailments including serious psychic disturbances; all this
well in advance of the actual manifestation of the physical
symptoms or related pathology.
Symbolic displays may manifest to us in different
ways - visual, auditory, or even tactile – seldom olfactory
- also in moments far removed from the dream state or the
contemplative mood; they may manifest themselves without premonition
and in instances far removed from any state which would better
favor their manifestation and these symbols are still much
more difficult to interpret and usually are labeled as hallucinations.
Interesting symbolic displays are also recorded
from those mysterious experiences reported from the after-death
state, that is, from individuals revived thanks to our astounding
medical technology after their physical death had been apparent.
What presumably happens in these cases, is that when the brain
is completely relieved of its burden (the task of controlling
all the physiological functions of its puppet) it finds itself
in a state not very different from those states achieved in
deep meditation exercises, a state of utter freedom where
it can travel wide expanses until, if not revived before it
starves off for lack of nutrients, it shuts down for good
(often preceded by some short, and even violent, electrical
spikes in the brain) and returns to the dust.
We read reports of people meeting relatives
or friends welcoming them in the other world, people traveling
through multicolored tunnels, people having dreadful experiences
and other very interesting symbolic displays - but no reports
of Saint Peter opening the gates of paradise for them or of
the devil pushing them deep into hell fire or boiling oil
with his piercing trident.
From the most archaic times we have evidence
of symbols of a very definite pattern which act on the human
mind, those symbols making up that which Dr. C. J. Jung labeled
as 'the collective unconscious', "the outcome of countless
generations of man and his forebears, in which life still
and which are a common heritage as well as part and parcel
of our psychic life. "The world of the archetypes of Jung
is like a Platonic world of ideas, in that the archetypes
are impersonal and do not participate in the historical Time
of the individual life, but in the Time of the species - even
of organic Life itself." 17
To quote just a few common (archetypical) symbols: the cave,
the tunnel, the ladder, the lake, the dragon, the snake, the
egg, appear in all cultures at all times. Symbols appear in
the same garment and are described approximately with the
same words in cultures well apart both physically and in time,
hence, are we using our mind or is a greater Mind
– that which has been referred above as the mind's domain
- using us? Is the mind something that we are empowered to
use the more, the more we use it? Evidence clearly suggests
that this might be the case.
There ought to be no doubt that there is
a common mental - or better, psychical - substratum which
so far we have not yet been able to fathom, something that
is encoded at the very root of our being and that appears
to be an unconditional necessity for the psychical evolution
of what we label as Homo Sapiens Sapiens and that
is why I used the words "is a greater Mind using
us?" We have discovered, with little reason for doubt, the
existence of this common substratum which puts all men whatever
their culture or ethnic group on the same level; how this
common substratum is encoded into the human being and its
mode of action are two questions which perhaps we will never
completely solve thus forcing man to rely on the transcendental
question, the "is a greater Mind using us?" The only
difference is that this transcendental question is deep within
the core of our being while a good lot of people are searching
it - and its answer - in the world without, in worlds often
utterly alien to the base and core of their real being and
this happens, increasingly, also with what was above mentioned
as all sorts of neurological paraphernalia.
While myths have always being a driving force
for man, we have now reached a maturity that has empowered
us to rely on our own symbolic emergence - and more often
than not a symbol is the irrational pedestal supporting the
rational - if we only take the trouble to bring it to the
surface and confront it. The means for such a task are to
be found everywhere in art, religion, literature and science
- this is a truly great evolutionary feat but the state of
the industrialized societies appears to be the greatest hindrance
for this evolutionary step, "The high development of rational
intelligence in Homo Sapiens has led to a serious
and regrettable impoverishment of his powers of intuition,
a lost treasure which we today must strive to recover" 18
as well as the greatest menace, a menace brought about by
the very refusal to pursue and understand these symbolic manifestations
of the human mind; the refusal of a humanistic evolution sacrificed
in a frenetic pursue of materialism, sacrificed in the wild,
egoistic pursuit of the utmost material well-being and commodities
- the satisfaction of the ego to the exclusion of everything
else. This means a refusal as well as a corruption of
our symbolic life and its understanding, a refusal of spiritual
evolution and as such a corruption of our discernment of the
primordial and primal shaping forces within the temple of
We are confronted also with some deeply ingrained
psychological problems: the problem of giving meaning to our
life, the problem of our real origin and the problem of our
ultimate destiny, problems which from time immemorial find
an outlet in assuming the existence of some sort of undefined
but omnipotent being to which we ascribe the responsibility
for our creation and as such to whom we owe love and obedience,
a being which the most celebrated philosopher of the Islamic
World, Avicenna (Ibn Sina), called "the Necessary Existent"
and I have a tendency to believe that deeply engraved within
the temple of the human being there is a Root-Symbol around
which the psyche revolves but which none the less it cannot
grasp or understand - as of yet. This incapacity of the psyche
for the understanding of this Root-Symbol and the psyche’s
need for exteriorization is the basis of the primordial symbolism
common to humanity, the symbolism of a higher being on whom
we are dependent and that we commonly call God, Avicenna’s
Necessary Existent. While presently not all of us
are venturing so far as to state that this is the Cosmic Creator
we may safely state that this is the god within,
part and parcel of our life to the point that even the most
ungodly of unbelievers cannot do without it even if he strives
in one way or another to reject it.
"When we return to the Root we gain the meaning;
When we pursue external objects we loose the reason" 20
This Root-Symbol is the heritage of being human - in other
words it is something which could not exist unless evolutionarily
the brain be so developed as to be the basis for intellectual
faculties such as reasoning power and analytical discernment
and if the Root-Symbol is so hard to describe or to get in
touch with so much so that even the profoundest mystic experience
cannot rationally bring it to the surface, still more difficult
for comprehension must be the seed from which the root originated.
Incidentally it must not be casual that in every age and culture,
in one form or another, a tree of life is met with, it being
one of the profoundest symbols in the spiritual quest of man.
In the Hindu tradition, the tree of life
is laden with fruits which contain the ambrosia of the gods,
the amrita: "" ... and from the excreta which, thus
being purified, fell into the Ocean, there at once rose a
precious sandal tree, which was a wish granting tree. This
tree stuck its roots in the nether world of the Serpent-Spirits,
spread its foliage in the Asuralokas, and brought its fruits
in the Deva-lokas. And the fruits were named Amrta (the essence
of elixir and life)." 21
And, if by some sort of unexplainable miracle
we were born in a deserted planet, a primordial Eden, we could
not refrain from grabbing this fruit and eat it, thus falling
in the realm of gnosis and that is the most important fall
which befell man and which can be experienced as the search
for the origins has been the major driving power in the quest
of knowledge and as such the basis of the unfoldment of our
mental and spiritual evolution: "The most beautiful thing
we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all
true art and science. Him to whom this emotion is a stranger,
who can no longer pause to wander and stand rapt in awe, is
as good as dead: his eyes are closed. The insight into the
mystery of life, coupled though it be with fear, has also
given rise to religion. To know that what is impenetrable
to us really exists, manifesting itself as the highest wisdom
and the most radiant beauty which our dull faculties can comprehend
only in their most primitive forms - this knowledge, this
feeling, is at the center of true religiousness."
It is important to notice that to get once
more in touch with our real self, to get the experience of
the root, the complete self effacement is deemed to be necessary
by all religious and mystic traditions; that only - self effacement
- will allow us to again taste the amrita and give
us the essence of the Root Symbol but not of the seed beyond:
"Thus far and no farther."
The seed, speculatively, might belong to
the Kingdom of Revelation, to the rare beings who in different
epochs arise to proclaim the Laws of the Lord to humankind
labeling themselves as Prophet, Son, or Messenger of God and
proclaiming "A Revelation Whose Revealer will be He Who revealed
But we may leave this to theologists and metaphysical addicts!
Like all other forms of biological life we
are subject to environmental constraints, that is, food, shelter
and procreation but being freed from the four-paws constriction
we have been empowered to alter the environment around us
in extremely sophisticated and technological ways. The emergence
of reason, along this long evolutionary path, has enabled
us to evolve rich languages, to observe the cosmos, to discover
some of its fundamental laws and to invent science; to study
those deep processes taking place within our brain and the
human mind but the truth is that we have no yardstick - no
method of comparison - that can tell us that we are really
evolved creatures or, within our method of comparison and
our presumption, the culmination of creation. The
plain truth at the present stage is that we are overtly noxious
to the environment and apparently fostering our own extinction,
hence something must be wrong with our presumed high intelligence
and brilliant intellective powers. Presently we are playing
with the delicate chemical balance of the brain's environment,
pushing electrodes into brains, analyzing them with all sorts
of technological equipment, dissecting them but we have little,
if any, reliable answer to those questions faced above and,
overall, to the main interrogatives: who - or what - are
we? And why,? that is, what is the motive power
behind life? And here we had no escape but to invent gods,
an incredible number of creators and their entourage
within mythological and historical times and most humans cannot
do without their personal god without feeling lost, insecure,
mentally dismembered. Mentally dismembered!
Here it is that we meet the plain truth: due to this paramount
insecurity which has it roots in the mystery of life, all
in all of our life, we are still unable to stand on our feet.
But, as well, this is the great evolutionary force which pushes
us along some mysterious goal which acts deep within ourselves.
So, going back to the question 'what is the motive power behind
life', behind these sensual perceptions which manifest it,
we come to a standstill on the verge of that immense and obscure
cliff which will decree its demise. We have little if any
doubt that we are living our life but the plain truth is that
we do not know “who is living it”. We cannot cross
walls without pulling them down and that is what we did to
uncountable gods in the history of religion; the earth is
full of shattered temples, ruins and bones - human bones -
which attest it and, but for their unending battle against
each other for supremacy, religions are dwindling nor can
it be otherwise because we have left behind a childish consciousness
even if, unable to find a middle way, we have became monsters,
behemoths who brought to naught the potency of the gods.
Perhaps, more temples will tumble, more ruins will appear,
more heads will fall. Religion had its inception out of fear
and ignorance. It was subsequently fed with incredible tales
- that is, falsified - by shrewd minds which were rewarded
with power and dominion at the expense of the ignorant and
week minded. Would you - unless blind to what is most evident
- deny that this is not still going on presently? No, you
are not blind to this reality but the grip of the claws behind
it is still too strong; the conubium between the
good pastor and the politician cannot be infracted: bow to
it or vanish!
The present writer is an iconoclast, a destroyer
of idols, a killer of gods, free from the need of nonsensical
human intercession for salvation, free from the need
of liberation, terrified by the concept of an eternal
beatitude at the right side of the Lord, not needing
a 'nirvanic' end of suffering at the end of a karmic
cycle and fully aware (sigh!) that that wonderful paradise
where rivers with crystal-clear waters, with beautiful damsels
with dark-black almond-shaped eyes, flow in the shadows of
palm trees is not for me. However, it must be fully realized
that this real - or pretended - utmost freedom can be
a deadly trap. It does not come gratuitously, it is a
life-long search but then, when you feel a certain sense of
power - because freedom is power - it calls for watchfulness
and, above all restraint. It turns into a battlefield where
opposite tendencies, those uncountable tendencies
which make us human beings, fight for supremacy. It acts deeply
on that dark, bottomless well which is the human psyche and
the human psyche is like a fragile toy that can be shattered
or go awry without premonition. It is in the feeling of being
your own god that we do get a sense of what 'paradise' and
'hell' can be and where they really are! Let me add
that within this freedom we cannot untie the knots
with our environment; the paradox is that this power
makes us powerless or we must succumb. Not only we do not
join the ranks of the classical Chinese Immortals
but we get the full taste of our mortality, albeit with a
It goes without saying that to be an iconoclast
does not mean, in the least, to throw behind your back those
sane and good precepts that regulate an healthy relation with
your social environment, your species and the time allotted
to your existence. To be an iconoclast means to cleanse our
mind from outdated and unsustainable fantasies; it means going
beyond the necessity of mind-blocking divine laws, to depend
on our own strength and not on nebulous and unattainable goals
and that makes us divine. Our mind is an incredible powerhouse
with unimaginable and unsuspected resources but for anyone,
with almost no exception, it needs a cleansing and purifying
job that that it might become transparent - transparent
- to what is really divine: you yourself, if you can get to
terms with that 'you'!
I will not enter the temple of my being in a “Nietzcherian”
frenzy and with his character's remorse,
25 for me there are no gods
to kill. The mystery remains and it cannot but be otherwise,
ignorance is not overcame and so it must be because the ladder
to knowledge knows no end, but the present pillar, the concept
that “life is not our experience but we are an experience
of Life”, right or wrong as it may appear is however
reasonable. "The unreal never is: the Real never is not."
We cannot imagine what would happen if that great illusionist,
time, were to stop on its way and this is where the “Thus
far and no further” 23
which I quoted above, a statement which to a good (brainwashing)
purpose is more or less overtly embedded in many religious
takes hold. But time will stop, for each of us, inexorably.
Last but not least, I do not take anything of that which I
wrote afore for granted since I live in a phenomenal universe
which we cannot interpret.
The greatest and shortest doctrine ever,
came in a single word from the Buddha: "Doubt!"
The cosmos teems with life nor can we think
otherwise because we are a construct of cosmic matter, inert
matter enlivened by some mysterious process. The cosmos is
life itself and this fact alone tells that while, yes, we
have an individual life, this is nothing but an experience
of the cosmos or, to state it otherwise: “life is not our
experience but we are an experience of Life”. As
well, this is in harmony with what we read above concerning
“mind' and “Mind”.
This essay might very well belong to all
that junk that we see out there and as such be useless trash.
One of the prerequisites that is required when someone writes
something is that it must satisfy his ego prior to making
it public; although as yet, in this essay this has not been
entirely achieved, it does have, however, a demanding purpose
and that is why I feed it into the Internet. It is meant to
have the reader – if he went so far as to read it to this
point – ask himself a few critical questions.
~ Why do we still feed brainwashing leeches under
ornate domes instead of trustworthy tutors?
~ Has our reckoning of time, after landing on the moon and
being ready for greater steps, remained millennia behind so
long as it pertains to the development of our intrinsic inner
faculties and values?
~ Why, as soon as our children open their eyes do we commit
most heinous of all crimes – namely –
brainwashing them with absurd tales and fantasies which will
become the rotten pillars of their lives so hard to demolish?
~ Are we still unaware of the abominable effects of imprinting
tender minds and feed them all sort of that foolishness
which has been our heritage?
~ What right do we have, if any, to impose on our progeny
a system of beliefs made up of dubious tenets and not leave
them have their choice when they feel ripe for it?
~ Is that not what brought us to our present frame
of mind, so much so that we might fully recognize it but nonetheless
be unable to free ourselves from some sort of chaining mental
slavery or inculcated foolishness, to be done away
~ Are we humans in the sense (superior intelligence
- 'sapiens sapiens' - appalling anthropomorphic
cretins still kissing
printed images and carved stones) that we attach to the word?
Man lives of that which he perceives
around himself: these are the shadows of existence. Albeit
he was born to discover what is hidden within himself: that
is the light of existence.
– In the Analytical Concordance to the Holy Bible by Robert
Young, LL. D. (Eight Edition, thoroughly revised - United
Society for Christian Literature – Lutterworth Press – London)
the word “brain” does not appear, although the Biblical Jews
had all the other organs: heart, stomach, liver, kidneys and
even a mind! The earliest reference to the brain anywhere
in human records dates back to the Seventeenth Century B.C.
in columns II and IV of the Edwin Smith Surgical Papyrus.
But it was not until thirteen centuries later that
Hippocrates had this great intuition: "Some people say that
the heart is an organ with which we think and that it feels
pain and anxiety. But it is not so. Men ought to know that
from the brain only arise our pleasures, joys, laughter and
tears. Through it, in particular, we think, see, ear, and
distinguish the ugly from the beautiful, the bad from the
good, the pleasant from the unpleasant ... To consciousness
the brain is messenger ... The brain is the interpreter of
consciousness". (Wilder Penfield. The Mystery of the Mind.
pp. 7/8. Princeton, NJ. Princeton University Press. 1978.)
My discovery that, at least according to Young's “Concordance”
there is no “brain” in the Bible is made present as a curiosity
and here used as a paronomasia.
2- We may discount
here those theories concerning the birth of our universe.
For all that we know there might be universes as the stars
we see in the sky, and a self-generating process like the
big bang is tenable only for the fact that our universe is
expanding but not necessarily true. "Spontaneous creation
is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why
the universe exists, why we exist. It is not necessary to
invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the Universe
going.” Stephen Hawking: God Has No Role in Universe.
3 - All our
sense organs and appendages are but tools for the brain's
survival. There is, nor it can be otherwise, always a time-gap
between the intent-to-action and the action. That is how we
are puppets of the brain; the directives come from the subconscious
before we realize it. To render the idea: all of us have had
the experience of carrying out an action and while performing
it realizing in full awareness, although too late as we are
not given time to retrace it, that we did not really consciously
intend to do it. The orchestrator is deep within; we read
his musical score and abide by the symphony of life: this
is our consciousness.
4 - "... the
brain's electric field is not a by-product; it is a feedback
loop." Scientific American Mind
- November/December 210 - p. 10. It is strange that the scientific
community realized such fact at such late date (clearly science
needs experimental evidence, and this is the case here).
Ibid. "We knew that weak electrical fields could impact brain
activity, but what no one had really tested before was whether
electric fields produced by the brain itself could influence
its own activity".
~ A personal note: We have been
able to translate electricity into mechanical force, then
into voice, afterwards as a carrier for both voice and images.
In all these transformations there has always been a key component:
a length of twisted wire, a coil; we also discovered that
adding another component - a condenser - we could alter at
will the frequency of oscillation of the generated electrical
field so as to achieve desired results. The two components
mentioned above, condensers and coils, have an equivalence
in our brain, (if we reflect about the plethora of artifacts
that we see around us we will discover that most mechanism
are inspired by natural mechanisms) where the circuits between
cells (condensers) and dendrites (coils) form resonant circuits
besides driving the brain's biochemical processes. Hence,
here and once more we just brought into the open - by that
process that we call invention - what is inside ourselves.
And the undisclosed mechanism which creates the interaction
between brain and mind cannot but be in the interaction
of some sort of electromagnetic field so as it is for the
universe at large. All universal interactions - to our knowledge
- depend on electromagnetism. By now we know far too well
how to alter the functions of the brain with modulated (that
is, with other superimposed signals) electromagnetic waves,
both for good (the simplest example is music) or for bad (mind
conditioning). Here is ample proof that by altering the functions
of the brain we alter, as well, the response of the human
mind. This, in itself, is the other face of the coin where
on one side we can use psychoactive substances to act upon
the chemistry of the brain while on the other side we have
electrical fields which alter the oscillatory and hence chemo-electrical
response of the same. That which we cannot get to terms with
is what is the channel of communication, or the route of exchange
between the brain and the human mind, if we give for granted
that brain and mind are two different entities.
5- Mircea Eliade.
The Sacred & the Profane - The Nature of Religion. p.
178. New York and London. A Harvest HBJ Book. 1959.
6 - Julian Jaynes.
The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral
Mind. Boston. Houghton Miffin Company paperback. 1982.
7 - Mircea Eliade.
Shamanisn. P. 400-401. Bollingen Series LXXVI. Princeton University
8 - Robert Graves.
The Greek Myths. Aylesbry, Bucks. Penguin Books. 1983.
9 - The yantra
is a complex pattern of intertwined - or interlaced – triangles;
practically a mandala used as a representation of the chakras
- psychical centers, or planes - in man. "Such is the power
of the form-pattern which manifests the embodied deity, that
it is called yantra. Yantra is an instrument, a machine, a
store house of power. Rather it contains in itself a controlled
form of the uncontrollable power of the deity." S. Sankaranarayanan.
Sri Chakra. p. 9. Pondicherry. Dipti Publications. 1973. See
also Sir John Woodroffe’s Tantraraja Tantra and Kama-Kala
Vilasa. Madras. Ganesh & Co. Private Ltd. 1971.
10 - Alexandra
David-Neel. Magic and Mystery in Tibet. p. 141. London. Golgi
11 - See “The
Canvas of the Brain”
12 - Carl G.
Jung and M. L. von Franz, Joseph L. Henderson, Jolande Jacobi,
Aniela Jaffe. Man and his Symbols. p. 254 - London. Aldus
13 - Orham M.
Otzurk and Fuat A. Goskel, M. D. Magic, Faith and Healing.
p. 349. Edited by Eri Kiev, M.D. London. Collier Macmillan
14 - Mircea
Eliade. op. cit. p. 129-130.
15 - Henry Gris
and William Dick. The New Soviet Psychic Discoveries. pp.
312-313. N.Y. Warner Books. 1978.
16 - Mircea
Eliade. Myths, Dreams and Mysteries. p. 181. London. Collins,
the Fontana Library of Theology and Philosophy. 1974.
17 - P. W. Martin.
Experiment in Depth - A Study of the Work of Jung, Eliot and
Toynbee. p. 54. London. Routlege and Kegan Paul. 1967.
18 - Jacques
Monod. Chance and Necessity. p. 35. Glasgow. Collins, Fontana
19 - Parwiz
Morewedge. The Metaphysica of Avicenna (Ibn Sina). London.
Routlege & Kegan Paul Ltd., 1973.
20 - The Third
Patriarch of Zen: "On Trust in the Heart"; quoted in "The
Sailor, the Ship and the Sea" by D. E. Harding. The Middle
Way - Journal of the Buddhist Society. November 1976. p. 120.
21 - See Sir
John Woodroffe. Sakti and Sakta. Chapter XXVII "Matram Ruta"
pp. 426-427. Madras. Ganesh and Co. Private Ltd. 1969.
22 - Albert
Einstein in: I Believe. Nineteen personal Philosophies. p.
28. London. Unwin Books. George Allen & Unwin Ltd. 1969.
23 - Baha’u’llah.
The Hidden Words. # 77, Persian. London. Baha’i Publishing
24 - Baha’u’llah.
Epistle to the Son of the Wolf. p. 42. Wilmette. Baha’i Publishing
Trust. 1971. ~ The phrase is attributed from Baha’u’llah to
Husayn, the son of the Iman Ali; the Iman Ali was the cousin
and the second person to believe in the revelation of the
as well as His successor.
25 - The Portable
Nietzche. Selected and translated by Walter Kaufman. pp. 95-96,
sic. New York. The Viking Press. 1964 - : "THE MADMAN" - Have
you not heard of that madman who lit a lantern in the bright
morning hours, ran to the market place, and cried incessantly,
"I seek God! I seek God!" As many of those who do not believe
in God were standing around just then, he provoked much laughter.
Why, did he get lost? said one. Did he loose his way like
a child? said another. Or is he hiding? Is he afraid of us?
Has he gone on a voyage? or emigrated? Thus they yelled and
laughed. The madman jumped into their midst and pierced them
with his glances.
Whither is God" he cried " I shall tell you. We have killed
him - you and I. All of us are his murderers. But how have
we done this? How were we able to drink up the sea? Who gave
us the sponge to wipe away the entire horizon? What did we
do when we unchained this earth from the sun? Wither is it
moving now? Whither are we moving now? Away from all suns?
Are we not plunging continually? Backward, sideward, forward,
in all directions? Is there any up or down left? Are we not
straying as through an infinite nothing? Do we not feel the
breath of empty space? Has it not become colder? Is not night
and more night coming on all the while? Must not lanterns
be lit in the morning? Do we not hear anything yet of the
noise of the gravediggers who are burying God? Do we not smell
anything yet of God’s decomposition? Gods too decompose. God
is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall
we, the murderers of all murderers, comfort ourselves? What
was holiest and most powerful of all that the world has yet
owned has bled to death under our knives. Who will wipe this
blood from us? What water is there for us to clean ourselves?
What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we have
to invent? Is not the greatness of this deed too great for
us? Must not we ourselves become gods simply to seem worthy
of it? There has never been a greater deed; and whoever
will be born after us - for the sake of this deed he will
be part of a higher history than all history hitherto."
Here the madman fell silent and looked again at his listeners,
and they too were silent and stared at him in astonishment.
At last he threw his lantern on the ground, and it broke and
went out. "I come too early," he said then; "my time has not
come yet. This tremendous event is still on its way, still
wandering - it has not yet reached the ears of man. Lightning
and thunder require time, the light of the stars requires
time, deeds require time even after they are done, before
they can be seen or heard. This deed is still more distant
from them than the most distant stars - and yet they have
done it themselves."
It has been related further that on the same day the madman
entered diverse churches and there sang his requiem aeternam
deo. Led out and called to account, he is said to have replied
each time, "What are these churches now if they are not the
tombs and sepulchers of God?"
The Bhagavad Gita - 2:16
27 - A doctrine
or code of beliefs which is - just like the “Thus far and
no further” 23
- sets a final, un-trespassable truth, the dogma to which
the faithful adheres blindly and which has had such a heavy
import in the history of religions.
28 - "… just
as the human body shows a common anatomy over and above all
racial differences, so, too, the psyche possesses a common
substratum transcending all differences in culture and consciousness.
I have called this substratum the collective unconscious.
This unconscious psyche, common to all mankind, does not consist
merely of contents capable of becoming conscious, but of latent
dispositions towards certain identical reactions. Thus the
fact of the collective unconscious is simply the psychic expression
of the identity of brain-structure irrespective of all racial
differences. This explains the analogy, sometimes even identity,
between various myths-motifs, and symbols, and the possibility
of human beings making themselves mutually understood. The
various lines of psychical development start from one common
stock whose roots reach back into all the strata of the past.”
C. G. Jung, in the commentary to “The Secret of the Golden
Flower” by Richard Wilhelm - p. 87 – Routlege & Kegan
Paul – 1969 – London.
29 - In this
context the reptilian brain and the threshold with its more
evolved structures is taken into consideration because we
cannot control the emergence of some symbols (the collective
unconscious) so much so as we cannot control those functions
regulated by the autonomic nervous system which depends on
the most ancient part of the brain, namely, the reptilian
brain (limbic system).
30 - The two
aliens - or brutes - the one above with a somewhat human figure
in a sort of spacesuit hanging from his cheeks, under his
chin, did not come out from a nightmare or an exercise of
deep meditation; they are not archetypical symbols. I took
a small section from the picture of a lava field in the Ertale
volcano, reversed it horizontally and attached it to the
first one; subsequently I did the same vertically and that
is it. Whichever way you reverse it you get exactly the same
visual effect. Only later I realized something else : that
the picture in itself is a kind of double Rorschach image,
those used by psychologists in the projection test (ink-blot
test). But, more important, how it may happen that we
are puppets of our brain 3
as I did not do that work with any particular purpose in mind
since I was just relaxing in some lazy moments and, secondly,
how casualty may transform itself into causality.
We might call this destiny, the negation of free-will...
leave this to the philosophers!
31 - Clearly,
the experience with hallucinogens is by no means restricted
to addicts; many great minds, those minds principally responsible
for the American revival of the sixties resorted to it for
research and scientific study, to cite just a few well known
names: Aldous Huxley, Timothy Leary, Terence McKenna, Robert
Anton Wilson, John Lilly and many, many more. The point is,
however, that whatever insights they might have gained from
their personal experiences, the go through with psychoactive
substances will present a deformed reality – an hallucinogenic
reality - hence it cannot be taken as an example to move well
poised on hard soil on a clear path even if their achieved
states of transcendence, of super-consciousness, of unity
with the infinite indeed had its own (mental) reality and
undeniably brought a positive contribute to both science and