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1521 95126 12/01/95 Copyright J. M. Cox 1995 /tw
There was once a pond with no sediment on the bottom —
hence, it was no pond.
Then it got some sediment, and became a real, live pond.
Now it wants to be rid of the sediment, and become a “god-knows-what.”
There is a tale that lingers about another world on which
life once allowed local conditions to try and speed up the collective rate
of awareness for the thinking creatures there by informing them that
they each knew, by their first two decades,
all that they were ever going to know.
As far as this proving a successful experiment: can you spell “not.”
A crowd asked a speaker:
“What’s the worst thing about thinking?”
And he replied:
“You mean besides it never getting anywhere?”
And they said:
“You wanna trade places?”
And he replied:
“Ask me again.”
So they said:
“You wanna trade places?”
And he said:
“Ask me again.”
And they said:
“YOU WANNA TRADE PLACES AGAIN?”
And they all retired for lemonade on some poor guy’s front porch.
…(I understand that my inclusion of the word “poor” as a modifier to
the noun “guy” smacks of editorial comment…
but I couldn’t help myself.)
Complaints have a life of their own —
complain about one thing and you’ll complain about another.
The simple need rules to live by,
the sophisticated, a philosophy,
while the few require understanding to make it through.
Viewed from both ends of routine perception,
you can see why those engaged in The Quest
have been historically described as being both simpletons and idiots,
and also wise, insightful men.
Planes on autopilot have trouble comprehending why
anyone would want to take control of the stick;
“Just look at the birds!” say they when to their advantage;
“Just look at the crashes caused by human error,” note they in the
The simple need rules to live by,
and, at the outset, even so those on The Quest,
but will come the time when mechanical guidance systems will begin to fail
— pray that you will be sufficiently alert to recognize that day
for it indeed opens up a new level in the adventure.
and traffic goes,
but porches seem to be forever…dammit!
Every morning, one man who lived upstairs
would shout to his neighbor who lived down below:
“How are we feeling today?”
And, contrary to what you’d probably first think,
he did not use “we” in his question as a synonym for “you,”
but rather as an inclusive term for them both.
“Ah, a tricky thing is language,” said Mr. Merriam to Mr. Webster.
“But, ah!” responded Mr. Webster, “not near as tricky as being a human.”
“Touche, ah!” returned Mr. Merriam.
The notion of “changing one’s self”
is completely alien and incomprehensible to
everything but the human mind.
A Certain Old Adage Updated In A Mystical Context
Those who can’t — recruit.
A speaker addressed a crowd:
“Feigned enthusiasm and dramatic displays of conviction
can make up for a lot.” And someone asked:
“Even for not knowing The Secret?” And the speaker replied:
“Well…some sure give it a good shot.”
Watching mere traffic
is a terrible thing on which
to waste a perfectly good front porch.
A more alert man could describe the routine thinking operations thusly,
“Being entertained by another is like letting someone else do
the dirty work for you.” — Or,
“I don’t need no ramblin’, redundant, whining, annoying radio, TV,
or Internet hookup! — not so long as I’ve got my own…my own…
own,” and pointing feverishly to his head said, “you know what I mean.”
Before he could get into that special class,
one man was first required to answer the following question:
“Which do you hate worse: The Laws Of Physics, or The Laws Of Chemistry?”
And he thought on it for a while, then asked:
“Okay, which of ’em is it that mostly makes me fall down and burn myself?”
And based solely on the length of time that passed before he made any
response, his fate was decided.
One man called his mind Buzz,
“‘Cause,” said he,
“that’s what it mostly does.”
As they got out the vacuum cleaner and dust cloths, a father told his son,
“Remember: you can’t keep the world clean — only your little part of it.”
And the lad replied, “But you can’t even do that.” And the elder said,
“I know, but you can try!…plus, a father’s got to tell a son something.”
…(I believe the larger moral in this story is plain enough
without additional comment from me.)
A hippo swallowed a hyena,
the hyena swallowed a blue jay,
and they all went and sat on a man’s front porch.
And from our Health Desk: Today’s Nutritional Tip
Everyone worries about being “understood” —
everyone, that is, except those who know what’s going on.
So you could ask yourself: “Why’s that, you reckon?” (If you wanted to.)
If you don’t resist — there aren’t any.
* * *
To indicate how, at the stratum of expanded awareness,
normally perceived sequence fails,
a father so told his son:
“Even those passengers who’ve
ridden The Mystical Express
faithfully and alertly for many a year
can still be rendered distracted and floundering by
letting their attention be too long held by the passing views
outside their window seat.
“All told, my boy,
dizziness and distraction are no respecter of age or experience —
which is why, for a real warrior, there is no
what may happen,
what I’ve done —
only the constant, silent awareness of that extraordinary aim,
and the difficult-to-explain effort it makes possible.”
Update of an earlier item:
Thoughts have a life of their own —
think one, and you’ll think another.
The Super-Reality Of Belonging — And Anti-Belonging
In the more conscious herd,
if you’re not “one of a kind,”
you’re none of a kind.
* * *
Apparently taking its cue from something another man said
in a story covered earlier this week,
one man’s mind is now trying to get him to name his emotions “Yeah, yeah,”
though the man is hard-pressed to see what’s to be accomplished thereby…
“Unless of course,” he adds, “that it’d actually work.”
Later, a neighbor noted,
“When it comes to the matter of ‘vested interests,’
there ain’t no bigger champion thereof than the…the…”
and pointed peevishly to his head said, “ah, you know what I mean.”
One guy yells to another:
“Hey, come over here and look — I’ve got a great vantage point.”
And second guy hollers back:
And first guy yells:
“My front porch.”
And second guy mutters: “Get real.”
Now for tonight’s chapter in our series entitled: What Can You Say?
What can you say about people who continually stick their fingers into
live electrical outlets and then whine over their frazzled hairdos?
Scrawled on the men’s room wall
in a kinda secluded, mountaintop kinda place:
“A mystic is one who could have no interest in
explaining anything he might say…if he ever said anything.”
One apparent popular music aficionado defines “ordinary thinking” as
“everyone’s own personal Top Ten.”
When life decided that it wanted to be rid of the local reality on one
world, instead of raining down thunderbolts or atomic missiles, it sent a
constant, subtle barrage of metaphors and other verbal misdirections.
Hey — destruction through such a method — who’d ever notice?
A man wrote The “Out-And-About” Doctor and asked:
“Is the adhesive on the porch, or on our feet?”
…(Just try asking your mind something like that about thinking.)
Mystic’s Insta-Guide To Spotting Boring Subjects:
Whatever’s currently of interest to everyone else.
A mother told her daughter one night as she was tucking the little nipper
“If you look real quick —
just as you’re falling asleep —
you can get a quick glimpse of just how dumb you are.”
…As Grimm said to his brother,
as they were removing their clothes to engage in some sort of
strange mental act
(albeit one permitted at the time under Danish law),
“The most rewarding thing about fairy tales is what they can do to your…
your…” and, pointing irritable to his head, said,
“you know what I mean.”
One man says he now likes to refer to his normal thinking activities as
“taylor made” for two reasons, he says:
one is that his name is not Taylor,
and the other is that as far as he can tell
he has almost nothing to do with the production of the thoughts that
occupy his mind.
A man who publicly addressed matters such as this
was one day approached by someone who’d heard him speak, who said to him:
“It seems strange to hear someone talk about the mystical
without bringing in the subject of God and the spiritual.”
And the man nodded with a certain facial gesture
indicating he understood what was said.
A man wrote to the
“I’ll-Bet-You’re-The-Kind-Of-Doctor-Who’ll-Level-With-Me” Doctor and asked:
“Is anything you say about a higher condition of awareness a lie?”
And indeed the doctor did level with him by not replying
…for all the good it did.
But “what the hey!” —
it’s only mortal mental stuff we’re dealin’ with here.
Spurred apparently by another chap’s comment earlier this evening
regarding neural activity and The Top Ten,
another music fan offers his spin on it:
he says that most people’s normal thinking activity is
“repetition brought to the point of popularity.”
A man wrote to The Blazing Eyebrows Doctor and rhetorically inquired:
“What is more popular in the life of man than redundancy?”
And the doctor replied:
“Not just in the life of man, good sir! —
it’s only notable in his since he’s given to denying the fact.”
One man declared:
“The mind plays a good ‘captain-of-the-ship’ game,
but let’s see the son of a bitch grab a paddle and row for a while.”
It might be noted in life that the mind doesn’t really seem to object
very much to hotheaded outbursts directed to it — I mean, like,
who’s the granddaddy grand-master of such things?
While waiting for his train to come in,
one man was run over by his own front porch.
After being complemented on the tidiness of his place, a man said: “Yes,
well, I have someone who comes in and cleans for me — me!”
And the other person said:
“And I suppose the same holds true for your thinking as well?”
To which the man replied: “Yes…dammit! — yes, dammit!”
The further you originally stray from Eden,
the trickier it is later to ever get anywhere new resembling it.
We’ll Take Our Adages Updated — Not Shaken
You can lead a horse to water,
but not a front-porch observer to an understanding of traffic.
One day one man said to his mind:
“You know, we really are extraordinarily compatible…
or else we sure are fakin’ it real good.” And his mind demurely replied:
“Ahhh, I bet you say that to all the whores…I mean girls you sleep with.”
And the man thought: “You had it right the first time.” And his mind said:
“I heard that!”
The Rock & Roll In Yo Head
After he’d crawl under the covers,
and was ready to turn off the light for the night,
one man would often say to the stuffed animals and thoughts
lined up around his bed:
“You might as well go on — awareness has left the building.”
* * *
Today’s definition of A More Conscious Man:
Someone to whom no news can be broken.
From a wider view:
The journey doesn’t actually begin until you stop looking for directions —
which is when you stop needing directions.
…Does no one find it curiously coincidental that the words
“secret” and “simple” start with the same letter?…Sure you do.
One man defines “thinking” thusly:
“The endless weaving of a net
whose purpose it is to catch fish
of a type only imagined by the strands of the net.”
“The neat thing about being a mystic,”
thought one mystic, at those odd moments when he thought about such things,
“is that no matter where you sleep, you can
go to bed with a mystic — and, if you’re not careful —
not wake up with one.”
…Which (I suppose) is why men are not issued an owner’s manual along with
If you look for the reason things happen,
you’ll never understand why things happen.
Just because you don’t know where you started
doesn’t mean you can’t go somewhere.
More Regarding Costs
A mystic always pays less.
* * *
“One man could make himself sick just by thinking about it.”
“Yes — that.”
One advantage that the everyday Milk Run Train
has over the Mystical Express is that
all it takes to keep the former going is the agitation of the passengers.
…”Talk about your ‘conservation of energy’!”
“That’s not what I was talking about.”
…Yeah…but from the view of those on the Milk Run,
there’s little more of greater importance.
“Okay,” said a man, “I’ll bite and write to one of your dammed old doctors:
Dear Doctor, then what would be a truly significant example of the
‘conservation of energy’?” And the doctor replied:
“Think of a pond in which no sediment could be stirred,
or of a porch on which a man’s feet would not stick.
There are some examples.”
A man with one mind can handle a man with many minds.
This in one of the secrets to the thing.
The professor asked the class:
“How is it then that we can explain the succession of one thought logically
following another?” And a lad in the third row replied:
“Same as how we reasonable expect a Ford to be right behind a Honda.”
And, from the back, someone was heard to mutter:
“Is this Psych 101 or Urban Planning?”
– – –
A man wrote to Doctor Infinity:
“Dear Doctor, is there–” And the doctor interrupted him,
“Yeah, I know, ‘Is there no end to this?'”
* * *
On this one planet, you can spot the really, really dumb by the fact that
they haven’t the faintest idea of just how dumb they are.
…God! it’s good to be a Venusian, eh what?
After he’d developed a good understanding of his porch’s construction,
one man came to the conclusion: you stay at home too much.
Even if you did (just as one random example) describe a mystic as
“a man with an undisturbed mind,”
by so doin’, you’d’a disturbed him.
Ill-equipped seekers of the prize, not finding same,
are given to questioning its existence —
but what could be more real and apparent than
the breath you take,
the food you eat,
the life you live?
It is the youthful, inexperienced knights who charge off afar,
confident in their excitement that the prize is always
“somewhere out there — somewhere up ahead.”
It be no wonder at all that The Grail seems so elusive,
The Secret so well hidden;
they are much too close to normal perception
to be so easily seen.
There was once a mystical order which taught the following:
first you live,
then you search,
then you live once again.