Jan Cox Talk 1504

Explanations Always Trail


Stream from the bar / Download from the dots

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#1504 – 10/23/95:
Notes by TK

The mystic’s “feeling of loss”—note that man is the only creature who has gained anything (the mind) to lose, yet feels a sense of loss. It’s an example of the ultimately tenuous connection between mind product and trailing explanation: ANYTHING man thinks about life vs. actual living of life.

The News

1504 95109 10/23/95 Copyright J. M. Cox 1995 /tw


Every separate reality (known locally as “universes”)
is made up of an all-inclusive, genetic web,
sometimes with a loose thread in one reality getting connected to an
adjoining reality.

…(What do you think accounts for some of what goes on around here when
you’re not watching too closely?)


There was once a man who undertook a survey of the mystical schools of his
time and found first those primarily interested in learning to
control their instincts,
and as he traveled on, discovered those who were most concerned with
bringing their minds to task;
he in fact eventually came in contact with a few who were attempting both.
At the conclusion of his effort, he sat down and thought: “Wow…hummmm?”


In the midst of their problems,
the simple seem relieved — if not downright pleased —
to be told that they’re “not alone” therein.


There was once a man born in the Land Of One,
and as he grew, he was moved to the higher Land Of Two
(wherein most of his kind lived out their days),
but this particular man — through certain efforts he developed —
managed to get himself to the unusual Land Of Three
(wherein he spent many enjoyable years).

But then he eventually tired of it,
and through some even more extraordinary exertions,
broke through into the totally new Land Of Four —
which, as it turned out,
contained characteristics that were similar to all of the aspects of
the previous three.

Upon hearing this tale, a boy asked his father:
“Do you realize what this means?”
And the elder replied: “Well — no….”

* * *


There are two kinds of individuality (or personality): instinctive, &
mental. And the former (displayed by most sentient creatures)
seems scarcely open to alteration,
while those possessing the latter feel otherwise regarding theirs.

On a world faraway
was held a race between a four-legged cheetah and a one-legged philosopher
— and the philosopher won. …’Cause he could think about winning.

As you move up from simpler to more complex levels,
the reality of “justice” shifts and expands.

* * *


The extent of most men’s communication with life
amounts to the latter telling the former: “Don’t call me here.”

To get the full use of a phone you must
know who you’re calling,
know their number,
and know how to place the call.
…Seems simple enough, but….


After leaving the original instinctive Eden,
man began to remember it as being a safe, peaceful paradise that it never

– – –

The way a man looks at the past
reveals the nature of his sight.

* * *


A certain knight once sat with his maps and directions, and pondered,
“If The Grail is not an actual object,
then in which area would I most profitable apply my efforts:
in the world out there, of body, action, and public intercourse;
or the world inside of me,
the one of mind, reflection, and individual privacy?”

A man with two horses has a problem knowing which one to ride,
but not as much of a problem as those in the same situation who don’t know
that they have two mounts.

* * *


Men delight in giving one another meaningless mental tests inasmuch as
they’re not quite sure how else to take a measure of this unique capacity.


Those who do not know instinctively how to live
are only minimally helped by being told how to.


The Dynamics Of Human Discourse

The simple normally expect a response to what they say.

…(Not very dynamic, is it,
but the lame hate the idea of the dance ever ending.)

* * *


Men who believe that the lions leading prides have a “philosophy”
have more to learn than one lifetime will probably provide.


Lurking around his house seemed to be two creatures stalking a certain man:
One of them would bite without making any sound,
while the other would attack, using only its noise.

The man says that he’s “been through a lot” in life,
but never anything to match this.

* * *

There was once a knight whose journey seemed to have progressed through
several distinct stages:
In the beginning he felt himself subject to assault by forces from without,
then later began to feel that he was the sole source of any aggression
toward himself, which for a number of years seemed to be
the definitive statement on the matter.

But this particular warrior, however,
ultimately passed beyond this point,
and found his travels thereafter less impeded by certain irrelevancies.

There was once a man who attempted to take himself into his
“closest confidence” —
but discovered that is was a total waste of good time as things presently

* * *

One lad asked his dad:
“Is it simpler to just be happy,
or happier just to be simple?”
And his father replied: “Duh…well….”

* * *


There was once a land of clocks
wherein six a.m. seemed to be in charge,
since that was as far as time there had progressed.

Yet (and you’ll have to work this out for yourself)
this advanced hour was still beholding to midnight.

* * *

Another distinction between knights who’re just wandering about
and those with some solid notion of where they’re headed,
is that the latter —
regardless of the fact that they’re bare-wristed & without watch pockets —
still always “know what time it is”
in a peculiar, internal manner of speaking.

* * *


One man asked himself:
“Which wearies me the most,
thinking about things I’ve already done,
or thinking about things I’ve already thought?”

Is it curious after all
how seldom the enlightened bother to speak of the past?


The mind can attempt to explain two worlds,
the instinctive and its own mental one,
but its only even partially satisfying output regards the former.

A pig farmer can describe swine, mud, and slop,
but not what it is internally to be a pig farmer.


Life: the only goods or service that doesn’t have to advertise or promote

“Papa, is that why men say that ‘the best things in life are free”?
“Well, son, like most of the time,
they got it damn-near half right…in a funny sort of way.”


The Mystery In Life

There are two types of mystery, pseudo and real, and only the pseudo exists.

* * *

One man kept all his apparently important stuff in the front of his house,
and relegated all that wasn’t to the rear.
He’s now undertaken to try and keep himself out altogether.

* * *


The simple worry about biological health,
and the more sophisticated, over psychological health,
yet neither one knows what the hell health really is.

…(And a dead man of quite average intelligence says: “Well, I do!”
…[and based on that little incident, I suspect it’s a good thing that
we’re not exposed to more comments & observations from those who’ve
flunked out of mystical schools than we are now].)


Creatures running by instinct can trip
but only those thinking can be clumsy.


One man’s private motto was “bite my ass,”
in conjunction with the act of always backing up on himself.

– – –

Then there was this other chap who said, in regard to his mind, that he:
“Always kept it on its toes.”
‘Til someone pointed out to him that minds don’t have toes, and he replied:
“I know — that’s why you have to stay on top of them!”

* * *

During his studies of things apparently transcendental,
one man had to pause as he encountered reports of certain activities
and ask himself:
“How comes it that we find men attempting to expand their
normal state of constricted consciousness
by pursuing even more confining ones of a trance-like nature?”

And the Durango Buddha barked out his orders to the trail hands
as they began to surround the neural herd:
“Okay, either ‘get ’em on their toes’ or ‘move ’em out’!”

* * *


Tonight’s Big Question:

Is knowing the secret (you reckon) the “supreme seriousness” or
the ultimate liberation from what has heretofore passed for seriousness?

* * *


One guy wondered:
“How comes it that instinct runs my face, but intellect, my tongue?”

The reason you should never try to look a leopard in the mouth is that
it will not tell you not to do it.


Men have frequently said that
“the bad among us are more active than the good among us” — well…yes,
in that the norm doesn’t have to be as constantly active
since it is in control.

Similar situation in an individual’s mental structure:
Peripheral ideas are often the most active and noticed,
while those faithful to the collective majority still domineer.


One man said: “People who have ‘a point to make’ make me uneasy —
maybe that’s why I like mystics.”


The Sound Of Instinct & The Voice Of Otherwise

The more you speak from the mind,
the more you tend to whine.

…(“Why is that, Dad-deee?”)

* * *


When one man heard the civil reproof that “gossip produces more gossip,”
he said: “Big deal, even the wellspring of all things civilized —
thought itself —
produces even more thought.”

* * *

As the wounded man looked up into the doctor’s covered face above him,
he said: “I may be dead, but I’m not that dead.”

* * *


Additional Rounds In The Sport Of “Another Way To Tell”:

Another way to tell the difference between a real mystic
and the arm-chair variety is that the latter always have heroes
and models from the past to whom they can compare themselves,
always managing to come up short —
but the active warrior-who-knows
has no concept of anyone before him
having achieved that which he now sees within his grasp.

It would be sad,
the number of those claiming to want to see Istanbul
who’ve been placated instead by being shown brochures supposedly of the
city, were it not for the fact that it was possible to so placate them.

* * *


A lack of certain B vitamins
and too much attention to the past
can both cause the tips of your fingers to swell up.


Further Excursions Into The Game Of “If”:

If the secret were described in plain, direct words,
the simple would find it to be too complex,
while the more sophisticated would think it too simple.
So! —
that being the case:
Who might those who know it tell it to?

* * *


Ever since man left the world of only instinct
and gained the additional one of thought,
he’s still felt that he has “lost something” —
how curious that he has gained something
yet simultaneously feels that he has lost something.

Who else but a creature who can think could pull off such a miraculous


Intelligence is not a prerequisite for leading a pack,
whether speaking of wolves or of men.


A certain man one day stopped along the way, leaned against a tree &
thought: “If the way you know for sure that someone doesn’t know what
they’re talking about is the fact that they’ll talk to you about what they
know, then where the hell are you gonna for any real info?”
The longer he stood there reflecting on what he’d just asked himself,
the more grateful he was for the presence of the tree.

And now for a Pop Quiz:
How can you discourage a real mystic?
…”Ah-h-h…you mean besides killing him?…”
(Perhaps I sprang that one on you too fast.)

* * *


There was once a planet ruled by two powers:
The Ice Queen, and The Coleman Lantern.

Everyone exists in a power grid,
and to ever see it requires you short-circuit your immediate connections.

One of the underappreciated pleasures of being sick is that
it helps focus a man’s attention on a single spot.


Another chapter in “There’s No Such Thing”:

There is no such thing as a comprehensive mental model of anything —
especially of life or man.

…(This is why, even outside the world of gaming,
men repeat the adage: “Read ’em and weep.”
An ordinary mind is never fully satisfied with what it’s done.

* * *


Inside of every person is two persons, a silent one and a verbal one,
and even though one of them can speak,
communication between the two is almost nonexistent.

– – –

Many of the great, mythical castles (from an outsider’s position)
seem to stand silent —
but this is not necessarily the final word on the matter.

* * *

Just as only rabid racoons come out in the daytime,
only mad knights make much of a public commotion.

* * *


If instinct equates to being alive, then what does thinking amount to?


Conversation Overheard Just Outside A Certain Mountain Range

“I bet nobody knows what goes on inside the mind of a mystic.”
“Well, nobody knows what goes on inside anybody’s mind!”
“Yeah, but I bet even more so with a mystic.”

* * *


Some things normally found in the survival kits of the simple:
modifiers, conditions, exceptions, binary calculators,
complaints, and love of crowds.

* * *

A wolf pup asked its father: “What does it take to be happy?”
And his elder replied: “Above all, don’t think.”
And in their instance, it works.
— How about in yours?

* * *


Though unknown to the listening public,
most of the mythical, chivalrous tales they hear
originated with knights who lost their mounts.

And a man asked:
“Well, if we cannot trust what we hear —
especially from mystical sources —
then what are we to trust?”
Precisely, my good man — per-zackly!


Intelligence, like everything else unique to man’s world,
can be discussed but never comprehensively described.

…(Another reason people prefer seeing elephants on display at the zoo
rather than mathematicians.)


Further Observations Regarding The Relative Voices Of Instinct & The Mind

Biology forcefully shouts — psychology attempts to.

* * *


If life makes itself up as it goes along,
then a mystic is one who can give the best description
and running commentary of the events as they unfold.


The simple straining to be creative is like a pig trying to shit a statue.

as evidence that “Justice Continues To Prevail,”
the Swine Lobby, in response, contacted us to say: “Oink.”


For his birthday,
one man gave himself what he’d been so dearly wanting — he shut up!


In the middle of his great adventure,
a certain knight found himself under attack from a horrid, multi-headed
dragon, and for some time dealt with it by alternately turning his attention
to one head, then another, then another,
continually repeating the process.
Increasing in understanding,
the day came when he pulled out his pistol
and shot the beast in its single, common heart.