Approaching the blank page is just like approaching the barre. Just like it! Delightful and intimidating. So, here goes, 5-6-7-8.
We perceive time as a continuity. But it is not. Rather, we blink on and off in increments so rapid as to be imperceptible to our normal waking consciousness.
“How do you know that?” asks Mr. Octopus.
“How do you know you have a pancreas? Have you ever seen it?”
“No, but my doctor has.”
“Well, I can’t get into how I came to understand this, given our culture’s prejudice against certain ways of knowing.”
“Meaning you were high.”
“I will just say here that I had the experience of perceiving these breaks, these moments when I switched off. It was sort of like time slowing down just enough for me to feel it. Later, I read about this very phenomenon in an esoteric spiritual text. I think it was somewhere in the Seth material, channelled by Jane Roberts.”
“Well, that’s credible enough for me. I’ll alert NASA.”
“Whatever. Science is for amateurs.”
“Don’t knock what you don’t understand.”
“Well, you don’t knock what you don’t understand. It works both ways.”
“You have a point. Tea?”
“If one is quiet enough and focuses steadily on the thread of their consciousness, a subtle bump, a hiccup in the thread may be perceived. It is easier to perceive this in quiet and in nature. I suppose this is because the on and off has a rhythm that is tied into the rhythms of our bodies, our blood pulsing through our veins, and the rhythms of all of nature.”
“You have way too much frrree time on your hands.”
“When I had the experience of clicking on and off, I couldn’t remember where I was when I was off, but suspect that it was the place we all go to in deep sleep. The place we go to renew life-force.”
“And why are you bothering me with this now? I do have so many socks to wash.”
“Because I’m worried about us humans and especially about the young people. I worry that machines, the technology that we are constantly plugged into adversely affects this most basic and essential on/off rhythm. I’m just going on intuition here but the cell phones, the iPods, the computers, the constant hum affects the off phase. In other words, when we are plugged into technology, we are not allowing ourselves to click off completely in those rapid, imperceptible instances.
Imagine our consciousness as fluid being pumped through a tube. When we are plugged into the machine, it is like there is a leak of energy through the tube. A leak of life-force energy. Or, to use another metaphor, imagine a group of people setting up camp to go to sleep for the night. The people hear a noise in the darkness and fear danger so they take turns during the night to keep watch. At some point during the night, the person whose turn it is to keep watch will have their sleep interrupted.
Well, when we are plugged into the machine, there is a part of us that has to keep watch against danger, against this intruder, the machine. The machine has a rhythm that is not organic. It goes against our natural on/off rhythm. So we do not completely blink off. It is like a leak. Some part of us keeping watch. The experts say that a little microwave here, a little cell phone there is not enough to hurt us, but I’m not so sure. I am not a scientist, but I’m not a dope either. This shit ain’t right.”
“Ok. What if I agree that technology is adversely affecting us. Even if that’s true, there’s nothing to be done about it. It’s evolution.”
“That’s a cop-out. Evolution, as it’s called is a way of telling a story. Funny, so many Christian fundamentalists oppose evolution, but the story of evolution, in a way, is just like the stories in the bible! Evolution as we understand it will one day be obsolete. It will be read as something that arose in a certain context, like a myth, and which no longer applies.”
“Are you saying that we didn’t grow out of the ape family?”
“Not exactly. I’m saying that evolution is simply one way of telling the story of humanity. I think if you ask the millions of people around the world whose ancestors were slaughtered, whose civilizations were wiped out to feed our modern way of life, they wouldn’t call where we’re at evolution. We used to hide behind religion to do our evil deeds, but now we use science. We call it progress. We call it evolution. But who gets to evolve? The most greedy and violent culture, that’s who. I don’t see that as evolution.”
“But you have to consider that if human beings are a part of nature, then what is happening with technology is part of nature too.”
“I have. I’ve also considered the irony, or maybe the hypocrisy, of writing a blog that is critical of technology. Look, you can be awake inside the Matrix or not. All I’m saying is that we have a choice here.”
“Well, how do you know that choice, as you call it, is not part of the illusion, part of the Matrix?”
“Why would the illusion give me a choice to see outside of it?”
“Maybe because it loves you. Haha. Or maybe it is simply the nature of the illusion to give you a choice. And maybe you are just as much of an illusion as the rest.”
“More tea?” asks Mr. Octopus.
“Why do try so harrrd to figurrre this stuff out?”
“Maybe it’s just my nature.”
“Trying to know the mind of God, arrre we?”
“God. God is a process.”
“Maybe God is evolving.”
“Could be bunny rabbit, could be.”