Reading the Pheasant Cap Master material reminds me how useful a change of context can be. When I read about using the present to grasp the ancient, about using the near to hand to grasp the distant, I am reminded how important the visceral substrate of human experience is to me and to my understanding of the work. It puts me in mind of the structuralist awareness of using sensory experience to generate symbols and of using symbols to generate a framework within which ethical values acquire great force.
It also helps me to appreciate the sensory and directional elements of the Kabbalistic and Gnostic materials. The categories established within these systems do create significant divisions, but those divisions also link the divided. Affinities and antipathies manifest and these can be manipulated to intensify or mollify each other. If the mix goes awry, you can throw it out and start over from the core values, build again. Not always easy, but the strongest foundation remains even after the tower has been rent and blasted to the ground.
That foundation is your being in the world, the specific way you lay open creation. It is an orientation within time and space, an expanse through which you connect to the rest of creation. It is a point of resonance. It isn’t exactly your body, but it is hard to divorce from it. I’m not sure if we endure past this life, but the more fully we cultivate this life, the more fully it resonates and endures within the eternal, a tune that can carry to every moment and point, a tune that takes up and encompasses our kith and kin.
Which, I imagine, is close enough to immortality.
But what is it to which we return? North, South, East, West, Up, Down, Virtuous, Wicked, Past, Future. It is into this that the divine becomes visible and attentive. If matters go wildly awry, if you get lost, abandon the operation and return the works to the dust. Build and rebuild, but start from this place that you are, let it anchor and call out to what should come.
This isn’t quite right, but it is en route and my fingers are restless.