It makes sense... to try to make sense out of what makes sense. But if something is senseless, trying to make sense out of it is... (drumroll, please) senseless.
Such is the mystery of life. Such is the mystery of the cosmos. Such is the mystery of ourselves. To be wondered, not made sense of.
Jack Haas is a guy who loves wonder, mystery, senselessness. So do I. I've blogged about Haas and his stimulating books here and here. And... here I go again.
Recently I got Haas' book, The Dream of Being -- aphorisms, ideograms, and aislings. (An aisling is a vision poem; who knew?) Here's some aislings that struck me as well worth sharing. Enjoy. I've added some paragraph breaks in this one to make the writing stream easier to flow with.
You were trying to complete a puzzle without having first collected all the pieces. You wanted to make sense of what is senseless. You wanted to finish what you forgot you had not started. You sought to reduce yourself towards an irreducibility, to be conscious of vacant ecstasies. You strove to dissipate and to occur, to hope without needing, and to run without fear.
You imagined you were living in two worlds, when actually you were dying in both. You wanted to return to where you never had been. You sought freedom from seeking. You were earnest to be still. You wanted to be. You wanted to not-be. You wanted to detach from detachment, to cling to not-clinging, and to heroically surrender.
You were trying to fall down gracefully. You thought you could be full of emptiness. You wanted to unknow the known and to know the unknown. You sought an intelligent, lucid ignorance. You wanted the reconciliation of the inner with the outer to be a comfortable, sane madness. You were trying to tread water, while still standing on the shore.
You wanted to die in life, and to live in death. You wanted to attend your own absence. You wanted old answers, not new questions. You wanted nothingness to have context, but then it would be something, would it not? You wanted the spirit to contort into a recognizable form, but then it would not be spirit.
You wanted separateness to be uncategorizable. You wanted directions to the hidden treasure, but then it would not be hidden. You wanted only petty, swallowable, meaningless understandings, so you could continue in the world despite your inability to continue in it.
And a bird, with both feet held fast to a branch, flaps and flaps, curses and screams, and then forever assumes it can't fly.
Great stuff. Haas knows what's been inside my own head. And still is, to an extent I'm unaware of, along with so much else. Here's another sharing...
There are naught but mirrors. And a mirror facing a mirror sees the nothing that everything is; sees itself not seeing itself. A reflection reflecting reflection: 'what isn't' facing 'what isn't'. Reflections are reflections.
Just as the individual is not divided, but is only a specific point of reflection to all else. A mirror mirrors that which it is not; it becomes by not being. In order to be it must not be. If it was something it would not be itself. It it was, it would not be.
Life is a stand-off between two men who have guns but not bullets, though neither knows of the other's true poverty. Bluff versus bluff is the battle. No one dies, and everyone's a killer.
A demon is the debelief in itself; you need only accept that it 'is'... and it ceases to be.
A dog unwillingly chases its tail. The tail, however, sees only a great, ferocious beast frantically pursuing it. And even if the tail was informed of the continuum -- that the beast is itself, confused -- still it could not help but be terrified.
We need god because we do not need god.
That is, because of the terror of the internal mystery, we authorize an enigmatic omnipotence to alleviate our own debilitating occurrence; god is the invention of our denials; we deny the incomprehensible within ourselves, forcing the mystery away, onto another, for 'to be' and to be a mystery to ourselves, that is too much for us; we transfer our unknowing, contriving an unknowable omniscience so as to conclude ourselves known; we invent a grandiose not-known to avoid the discomfort of our own ignorance; we point away from ourselves and comfortably gape, until mystery points back at us, and we realize that, all along, we have been captivated and looking at mirrors.