Follow Me to the Moon

I begin to miss my parents and their living years all over again as I stabilize. I sort of recall who I was as a 25yo: I was a Lawrentian, I believed. In summer 1993 I read Women in Love, the sequel to The Rainbow. For some reason I grouped Lawrence with Romanticism and Eastern philosophy. It was all “irrationalism” to me – H. James, too. Reading Joyce gave me a taste of Byronic passion, so all along, the epitome of my thinking was Lord Byron. Now I know. But he was an alcoholic pig of a husband. I proofread a lot of Lady Byron Vindicated by Harriet Beecher Stowe in 2013. She detailed Byron’s monstrous behavior toward his wife. So that, even tho I drank excessively myself, in principle I was persuaded that Byron was a bad man. The way I feel now, I can rearrange my past a bit. I see the influence of George Gordon on H. James and on Joyce both. If Lawrence wasn’t Byronic, he was at least the son of an alcoholic. I still would categorize Lawrence with Byron and Nietzsche. Ezra Pound evokes Dionysus and Aphrodite in the first two Cantos, hence again I see passion and desire. Tennessee Williams relights the Dionysian torch in Streetcar and Hot Tin Roof. He even makes Lawrence a character in one short play. Behind all of these writers was the essence of Dionysus, of Bacchus, the ancient Greek god of wine and intoxication, of mad passion and brutality that arise from ALCOHOL. The question now is, why? How could alcohol, the essence of the earth god Dionysus, presume to exist as a real, live entity? Is he rather a gene on a chromosome we carry, “we” meaning I? Therefore, might I be wiser, expressing this genetic defect, to embrace the Ideal, the Absolute, the One? I want to learn to transcend with Plotinus, Shelley, Emerson, and the zen masters. To no more consort with the Bacchants who crushed grapes. I want to be a mystic with my head in the clouds; to answer a higher call to adventure; and, to bring back a moon rock for the museum.

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I have only light knowledge of the western literary canon. I had no idea such things were hiding in there. Well, maybe a little. I always had the feeling that Don Quixote was something like a santero or converso. His tilting at windmills was then justified in my mind, as he was engaging in “the way of the Saints”. I get the feeling that they don’t call it a canon for nothing. My library is quite small. I have gone over the writings that I do have in microscopic detail. Subtlety, serendipity and coincidence are the inhabitants of the mystical realm, so… “if you do doubt your courage or your strength, come ne further, for death awaits you all with nasty, big, pointy teeth!” Seriously, be careful if you go there.

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I hear you saying that mysticism could be a trigger for psychosis, yes? I do fear, a bit, losing my ego in it, the old me I know and love. I wouldn’t want to be devoid of self and desire, even the need for simple things like Rocky Road ice cream. “The only emperor is the emperor of ice cream” (Wallace Stevens). If aesthetic existence is all, then I ought to be happy with that. Thanks for the reminder. The Quixote is complex. He wanted a revival of chivalry, of traditional values that, as he saw it, had decayed and fallen away. It’s sad to ponder… I need to rethink what I’ve been doing. Mostly I just want to safeguard against drinking again. I am in recovery, sober 8 months today, but not a day goes by without contemplating going back to it. Alcoholism is a scary beast, but so is schizophrenia. Traditional treatment for alcoholism has been spiritual, but when one also has psychosis, one must avoid spirituality. So which way do I turn? Does anyone have the answer? Is @anon9798425 around today?

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Absolutely a trigger. The loss of ego, in my experience, is a necessity to progress in this field of study. It is possible to observe these places without being caught in the mosh, but discoveries one after another can affect the most analytical thinking. Balance is key.

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Thank you. I do worry that my posts may be shut down for reasons of the no-religion policy. That’s another tricky one. It’s either watch my p’s and q’s or just shut up – or PM with users.

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Congrats on the anniversary man!

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Thank you! And many more unbroken ones, I hope. I feel terrible this morning, but I still appreciate the good things.

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Just FYI, to both of you, this is not the place to discuss mysticism of any kind. As for spirituality as a part of the treatment for alcoholism, I think @velociraptor would be of more use here. Personally, I see spirituality in addiction treatment as completely redundant and a technique religious people use to convert people who are highly suggestible.

The 12 Steps work for athiests. I replace God with:

Good
Orderly
Direction

It has kept me sober for 26 years and counting.

:blush:

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I agree about this not being the proper setting to discuss such things. As the timeline shows, Borath and myself acknowledged this and the matter was dropped. Thank you for your reminder.

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