The Wisdom in ‘Pirates of the Caribbean III’

“For certain you have to be lost to find the places that cannot be found.”
Captain Barbossa

“It’s not getting to the land of the dead that’s the problem, it’s getting back.”
Captain Barbossa

“For what we want most, there’s a cost must be paid in the end.”
Calypso

Affliction vs Addiction

Here is the foundation of addiction –
that it has no foundation,
that it is rupture,
co-rupture,
corruption.

You get into an addiction, a habit, because it balances something.
There is a kind of existence that feels ‘centred’, and something about you, or your existence, an affliction, is pulling you off that centre, and the addiction is what you use to rebalance the affliction.
So you set up a system:
on the one side the ingrained behaviour, the affliction, which pulls you off centre;
and on the other the addiction, the outgrained behaviour, which makes you feel better.

And it more or less works.

The problem is that the existence that you called ‘centred’ becomes the fault line of two warring continents:
‘The Affliction’ –
your genetic predisposition, your karma, the deep embed of your psyche, your grief, your pain;
vs
‘The Addiction’ –
that which has the power, temporarily, to redress the balance,
relieve the stress of the ‘Affliction’, to make you feel a little better for a while.

Nothing is gravitating to the centre.
The extremes are pushing their weights farther and farther out to keep the balance;
a tightrope walkers pole, weighted on either end, growing longer and longer.
Simultaneously the two extremes come to need one another more and more –
take away either extreme and there is a terrible fall.

The situation is,
inevitably,
increasingly tenuous.

debt

Debt:

it’s what we all got,
I owed  it to myself,
I went out and bought,
I just thought I ought,
to own,
to own,
to own,
to owe.

‘Forebearance’ and Usury

The hunger for quick gratification or relief is the prime generator of wealth based on lending and debt. Contemporary western culture takes debt for granted, and the wealthiest institutions in the world are based on profiting from that debt. Debt, and the burdens associated with the logarythms of interest, are a perfect paradigm of addictive behaviour. Our society is, quite literally, fueled by addiction.

We seem incapable of ‘forebearance’ : we cannot imagine working towards a project which we will not profit from in our own lifetimes, let alone two or three generations hence. The mindset of those who conceived and constructed the pyramids, or the great cathedrals of Europe, are completely foreign to us. Is it any wonder that we are unwilling to pay a price for the environment, for future generations: we’ve become hardwired for profit, now.

The power to delay, or, as Pema Chodron puts it, to ‘refrain’ from gratifying the habit.
That, at least, expresses our power of choice, that it still exists, that one can create a space in which to live outside the tyranny of addiction.
This ‘refraining’ has some relationship with one’s attitude towards time; the capacity to put off immediate satisfaction, to delay gratification. ‘Forbearance’; the ability to ‘bear’ something now with the intention of improving life in the future, in the ‘forward’, the fore.

‘Refraining’, or maybe a better word is ‘suspension, is like a wedge for consciousness, choice, awareness. ‘Suspending’ the gratification, the relief-release of the habit, creates a space, an opening, whose possibility is consciousness itself; literally, the cutting edge of evolution.

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Hook 2

The hook will reel you in,
or rip your skin.

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The Paradox of Acceptance

The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change.
Carl Rogers

Reflecting on the paradox of acceptance in addiction, or any other behaviour which one finds abhorrent in oneself (or in others, for that matter):

There is, in ‘Christianese’, a saying; “love the sinner, but not the sin”. To my mind this is a kind of crap out, as if you can divide a person up, separating the good parts from the bad, and accepting only the good. Its a bit like a cherry picking of the soul. There is no sin without the sinner. The sin and the sinner are one, we’re all filled with devils and angels. Take away the shadow and all you have is two-dimensions. People without shadows, insubstantial, are not to be trusted. Forgiveness, implying, as it does, the ‘original sin’ which Christian ethics takes as its starting point, is another well-worn Christian term which can also come out distorted unless a radical interpretation is applied to it.

In ‘Buddhistani’, ‘basic goodness’ is the starting point, and this is actually paralleled by another Christian ethos that ‘we are made in God’s image”. So, if we are ‘basically good’, and ‘made in God’s image’, then it’s easy enough to accept ourselves as we are. But evidently we are no longer either ‘basic’, nor have we stayed the way that we were ‘made’. Something happened since we were children and we’re all bent out of shape, and we live and breathe in a world all bent out of shape.

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Addiction is a sick psychle

Psychically we grow cyclically.
Addiction is a sick psychle.

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Hook

We’re all fish,
we bit at birth
the hook’s in.
There’s this desire,
the will to win,
the will to fight,
hooked in
to the insatiable mouth
addiction.
Ambition – left or right – i wanna win
is the hook in.

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Consciousness is disembedded being.

Consciousness is a disembedded being
dwelling in a bellicose comatose disenchanted world.

Being disembedded:
out of the nest,
out of the bed,
restless, unfinished, incomplete,
no place to rest his head.
Now a doddering nodder
thinker round and rounder,
wanderer round arounder,
love lost and squandered.

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Groove and Consciousness

Getting into a groove is getting out of consciousness.

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