Language and Meaning                    12-Dec                                                                        

  Good people, bear with me a while  .  .  .   Please understand, there are some basic premises in how I see myself, how I am, how I think, what I write.  Amongst them are these : 

  • That we humans have a higher level of Consciousness than any other species
  • That we humans are a mix of Human/animal being, and Human/Spiritual being.  It might be easier to think of us simply as being both Human and Spiritual beings
  • That the Human in us leads to pondering, to study, to make what we imagine to be the best decisions we can at any time, to dance, to play, to love, and to make love
  • That the Spiritual in us is, as it were, our ‘divine inheritance’ from the Universe.  We call that specialness Soul, and, in having Life for a spell, we share all of it with all of everything, understanding Soul to be the shared generative factor of Universal Intelligence, of the Cosmic Consciousness that lives in every cell of each of us, in the air and in everything; being as awakened as we individually allow.  It becomes us to Listen to that Universal Soul insofar we are able, insofar we have progressed our spirituality 
  • That the Opening of our Mind early in life to common human dilemmas and rarified [1] spiritual essentials creates, along with the impositions of childhood-through-young-adulthood, what we may think of as our Psyche, (which can find itself at odds with our Ego)
  • That Mind is some sort of free, intelligent crucible, welcoming input from all our senses, and from every cell in everything in our ambit [2], very much in tune with Soul, (see above), if we can only listen, and welcome that.  Interpreter of Soul and musecoachman to Brain [3], mediator between internal nexuses and differing cerebral drivers; ultimately, the Real Us  
  • That Psyche (cerebral collective) can be understood as individual formatting from childhood-through-young-adulthood, particularly of positive inputs and encouragement, and from the imprint of confusions and traumas, and emotions, and how we deal with them for our sanity, such that (generally) from around our late-twenties, Psyche governs our everyday Humandimension, (not Spiritual); the everyday mental ‘framework’ for our thoughts and actions; in part the pattern of our nature, and who we may appear to be
  • That Ego (limbic-system based) is essentially our Teacher – in infancy for survival; in childhood as our young ‘personality’; in teenage-hood for finding our way, for better or worse amidst surrounding chaos; in young-adulthood for seeking Who We May Be; in adulthood for coming to terms with a range of temptations.  Ego can become confused emotionally, and disastrously play-act, (persona), which generally serves to damage both oneself and others 
  • That we have but one Right, the Right to Life, which means also to be Free; and in the understanding of this right alone, we may be seen as equals
  • That the ultimate Human Purpose may be to become an Enlightened Species.

  Language is labels, a series of word-labels, and their spelling as in written vocab, and as in the spell a word may cast.  For struggling grey brains, labels will likely lead to convenient ‘definitions’, always limited, shrunken and impossible; a road mistaken, a road to doom !  For more open and creative Minds, ‘labels’ can lead to descriptive poetry that sings to us, opens us to love, truth, beauty, and so on.  This latter path is entirely preferable to the former, as it inspires colours in a pulsing breast, a taste for life, of the real; a path to hope and a positive future. 

  And yet, in seeking to explain in language-words alone, one may need to describe how one uses a word-label : not so much as definition, more as feeling : challenging for those who may have dedicated their Psyche to the mistaken path of grey definition : a daunting, massive chasm can open before them between continuing the panacea of prescribed claptrap, and feeling, and accepting their true nature, which in crisis may seem alien; but it is their earlier adopted ‘nature’ that is likely to be skewed from common-sense, possibly originating in childhood confusions; which challenge may very likely lead to psycho-emotional breakdown; which impending shadow (psychosis) they may feel bound to internally combat, as if for their very lives, until, one early morning, they find the courage to bring themselves to begin to accept the Real. [4]  

  So many words, so many labels; so many used quasi-descriptively, possibly without the speaker or listener quite knowing what is intended to be meant by them, and guessing, or trying-it-on [5].  So many word-labels are used for convenience by so many disaffected folk, leading to disagreements, conflict, compromise.  Confusion upon confusion : the state of humankind.  Future wise-folk may look back on the last c. 300 years as a passing stage in the development of Unreason, an era of extravagant error, and, possibly, a necessary wrong path ? [6]

  Sigismund, known as the father of psychoanalysis, was something of a case himself, indulging in doubtful stimulants and questionable relationships, described in many of his works.  Both he and Carl Gustav [7] used key words differently.  For example, Sigismund describes the Psyche as ‘all parts of the Mind that make up personality’; that the Ego be our sense of self, mediator between the ‘Id’, (desire, sex, etc – more pleasure, less pain), and the ‘Super-ego’, (morality, conscience, being a socially-acceptable ‘good person’); which, in strictly Human-being terms only, can be seen as ‘not that far off’; but he replaced the notion of Spiritual-being with his version of ‘super-ego’, (he was a Jew).  Carl Gustav, father of analytical psychology, saw the Psyche – conscious and unconscious psychic process – differently, but also in three notional key parts, not confined by time and space, being in his terms the Ego, (Conscious Mind); the Personal Unconscious, (memories, dreams, et al); and the Collective Unconscious, (all specie knowledge and experience, leading to synchronous connections).  He saw Soul as ‘a clearly demarcated functional complex best described as partial personality’ [8], (he was raised a Swiss-reformed Christian); and God as “universal, metaphysical being, and superior will” [9].  The point is, these titans used key words differently, as do others, as do I : potential stumbling blocks in communication. 

  The notion of Identity may follow that of Psyche, individually or collectively, but we might wonder if one perceives one’s own psyche as others do; whether a nation perceives its national psyche as other nations perceive it; indeed, whether the pronouncements of one nation can really be understood by another, their cultures and understandings being so variably different [10].  

  Confusion between peoples, businesses, churches, governments, cultures, as to what they understand by word-labels, can easily follow, unless they can agree on certain meanings and background references in common, and on positive intent.  Without that, whether or no there be negative intent, no relationship can survive.

  Historically, we may observe any number of ‘breakdowns’.  With hindsight, we can see that most have concerned some political will in conflict with freedoms and philosophies, or in avarice imposed by governments on their peoples, and by one nation state on another.  Where then were the essentials of Human Being, of Spiritual Being ?  What happened to the fundamental tenet of every religion [11] ?

  Through the centuries, we humans were still reaching out for understanding in a right direction, seeking inner-learning, up until quite recently.  The catastrophe that is War – breakdowns in human integrity and communication, coupled with insane development of ever more terrible killing weapons and machines, promoted by shallow politicians the world over, their political ambition, dishonesty, materialism and commercialism, destroys Life, women and children, homes and hospitals, safety and sanity.  One might wonder how potentially brilliant human beings could ever get into such a state; but it continues ever more terribly even to this day; an exponentially spreading Grand Failure [12].  And we know why : such madness depends on the deflection of one’s ‘better self’, of our Spiritual Being, of our inner-learning, and of right communication by those who seek quasi-authority and power.  Both of these latter can be seen to be hideously Wrong Paths.

  Inner-learning is to be found in Mind, (assisted by Brain), as Mind is our only real arbiter of what is Right, Good, Beautiful and True, (not Brain).  It is with Right Mind that all resolutions are found.  Unfortunately, promoted religions, (notably the Ibrahamic religions [13]), got in the way of human inner-learning and knowing, deliberately preventing our progress, hijacking devotion and our finer instincts; corrupting humans and human progress by insisting on a ‘package-deal’ of their wretchedly promoted belief-systems, fuelled by a desire for crazy power.

  To realise inner-learning, it is necessary to do all the work ourselves for ourselves.  A good teacher can be helpful in the early and ‘medium’ stages.  By ‘good’ is implied honest and open, advanced inner-knowledge, experienced, expressive, empathetic, ‘alive’, caring, good story-teller, and so on.  And it is helpful to be part of a Listening and Learning Circle, and a Satsang and Meditation group.   

  While throughout time, there have been thoughtful people promoting essential values, who too often have been ignored or ‘shot down’ [14], it’s not so hard to weigh the balances of what happened to this species : the endless failures of religions, of politics, of ‘education’, of ‘money’, of justice, of communication, of Soul.  It is surely such very Soul that we need to realise in ourselves, and to  nurture and encourage in others.

  Who nowadays can be seen as an honest intermediary to help lost souls on both sides of any disagreement ?  Who, amongst the dreadful protagonists playing out the many crises confronting our world ?  Must our children and grand-children really endure extreme horrors like the children in Gaza ?  Is that what they have to look forward to ?

  Or the frightful effects of Climate Change escalation ?

  Or another pollution-based, worldwide pandemic ? 

  Or the intrusion into our lives of automated machines and bureaucracies ?

  Is there any chance we humans will ever Stop the Madness, and Get Real ?      

  Hullo  .  .  .   ?

  Is there anyone real out there ?

[1]  Rarified in this day and age because of the accumulated avoidance and poverty of profound address that has characterised human ‘civilization’.

[2]  One’s ‘ambit’ increases as one’s intelligence and openness increase.  [Can be confused with ‘auras’.]

[3]  For ‘Brain’, see ‘Snapshots & Mirrors’, Reflection no. 4.

[4]  We find many variations on this theme, some as graduates and ‘suits’ posturing an entirely mistaken ‘high-view’; and many as mental-health issues.

[5]  If we adopt someone-else’s definition, we may be seeking to parrot and ‘piggy-back’ off them without using our own inner-knowledge, as far as it may have got; thus we would be as ‘dead fish going with the flow’ – of little real ‘use’. 

[6]  Necessary, possibly, because maybe humankind had to go through the ‘valley of the shadow’, and leave it behind, on the way to ‘enlightenment’ ?

[7]  The name given bizarrely to an early (and hopeless) anti-tank guided-missile issued to British infantry in c.1964.

[8]  See also his ‘Anima’, (feminine), ‘soul-life’; and ‘Animus’, (masculine), hostility and violence; both mainly unconscious inner-personality traits found in both genders.

[9]  Interestingly, when asked if he believed in God, Carl Gustav replied, “I don’t need to believe, I know !”  See his 1959 interview with John Freeman of the BBC.

[10]  It is generally accepted that a nation’s culture will largely be founded on that nation’s religion and history; and that religions have invariably adapted to their natural environment.   

[11]  ‘One should never do something to others that one would regard as an injury to one’s own self.  In brief, this is dharma.  Anything else is succumbing to desire.’  Mahābhārata, c. 350BCE.   [‘Dharma’ being synonymous with ‘Tao’, The Way.]

[12]  Grand Failure of all religions, thus cultures, politics, education, etc.

[13]  See ‘Procession of Time’, Reflection no. 2.

[14]  See Jean-Jaques Rousseau’s treatise ‘On Education’, 1762, with reference to children, psychology, philosophy, and politics, which was banned in Paris and Geneva, (his home countries); and his ‘Social Contract’, discussing essential freedoms in relation to ‘the state’, similarly banned, and burned publicly in Geneva.