“We do not, as children, first enter into language by consciously studying the formalities of syntax and grammar or by memorizing the dictionary definition of words, but rather by actively making sounds – by crying in pain and laughing in joy, by squealing and babbling and playfully mimicking the surrounding soundscape, gradually entering through such mimicry into specific melodies of the local language, our resonant bodies slowly coming to echo the inflections and accents common to our locale and community.

“We thus learn out native language not mentally but bodily. We appropriate new words and phrases first through their expressive tonality and texture, through the way they feel in the mouth or roll of the tongue, and it is this direct, felt significance – the taste of a word or phrase, the way it influences or modulates the body – that provides the fertile, polyvalent source for all the more refined and rarefied meanings which that term may come to have for us.” David Abram, The Spell of the Sensuous

Learning and creating languages is an interesting intellectual pursuit, but I think there’s more depth to it than that, something I’ve discovered in my exposure to other languages. The idea being that language goes back to our primal roots, through cries, grunts, murmurs, screams. The calls of animals we hear in the wild places are the primal matrix from which languages evolved, like the first light sensitive cell on a microorganism that eventually became an eye.

Our first experience of language acquisition is instinctive, not intellectual; it is something experienced by the body, and from there our learning of language is built up. Looking through a dictionary we might be mistaken that language is a purely intellectual pursuit, something “raised above” our instincts, and that translation between languages is just a logical pursuit of matching meanings of the words and/or parallel grammatical approaches.

Perhaps this is the reason I never learnt French in school (despite 6 years of learning), because the formal approach in a school doesn’t resonate emotionally or instinctively with us; it doesn’t access the roots of language. It’s well known that emersion in a language is the best way to learn, and that’s certainly the case with me: I’ve learnt more French and Spanish since living with them.

Sometimes I say something in Spanish, not because I know intellectually that it is correct, but because I have a gut feeling that some words or phrases are correct. I think even if I make mistakes in another language (or my own even) it is understood because I am learning to speak from a “gut feeling” level and am understood at the same level. The flow of the words (or even their non-flow) can communicate more than the words themselves.

I think even the written word, though supposedly abstracted from our bodies, can have an effect on us. Going back to gut instinct, we can get a feeling for the words on a page, not just their dictionary meanings. So much has been done so that our experience of the body is distrusted, and I think that use of language has a lot to do with it. If we trust the sensations of the body through our languages a whole new level of communication is accessible.

“It is a common delusion that you make things better by talking about them.” Rose MacAulay

A little while ago someone said to me “Psychology doesn’t work.” I felt a bit defensive about this, since I am studying psychology (with Psychosynthesis and Ecopsychology) and find it a valuable and useful tool in my work. But it soon occurred to me that they were right! Psychology doesn’t work at all. It’s just a bunch of theories and methods for knowing and working with the human mind. Just tools.

People work, not psychology. People make psychology work.

If you are not willing to look within yourself and understand yourself using psychology then of course it doesn’t work! People go to therapy or counselling hoping that some “magic wand” (or pill) will help them get better, that somehow you just turn up and They; the therapists, psychiatrists and counsellors will do something. They don’t. They can only share their understanding and help facillitate your inner work. Maybe they can help start the process of inner healing with their knowledge and understanding but it’s not them that will have to follow through and accomplish the work (though sometimes these psychological facillitators may not always be competent, as I’ve found out, further undermining the value of psychology). Will power is a very important part of the process; the willingness to look at yourself and do the necessary work.

It’s a common delusion that someone else can work on your own psychological processes. That’s the delusion. There’s no one else in that mind except you and yourself. You will have to face Yourself someday, in the end. Know thyself (and what a journey that’s been, and will continue to be!).

To reflect on the quote above; of course talking doesn’t make “things” better. It’s not “things” that understand words but people. People understand words, they understand their significance, and words can help affect changes within. To give one example they can work like a release valve, releasing some of the pressure within (“A problem shared is a problem halved,” as they say).

And sometimes you don’t even need another person to hear them, sometimes it’s just worthwhile to put your inner thoughts and feelings into words that can help clarify and reflect on what’s going on (for years I’ve found this release mostly through poetry. In fact any art will do). But communication of inner thoughts and feelings also stops people from becoming isolated within themselves, proper communication, not just talking for the sake of talking. Talking for the sake of creating understanding.

Psychology doesn’t work, people do.

“A gentleman never offends unintentionally.” Oscar Wilde

“It’s discouraging to think how many people are shocked by honesty and how few by deceit.” Noël Coward

I had a dream that I was trying to provoke someone I know into showing some authentic emotion, because he’s always too nice to be real. I think I tried to smash up some of his stuff but to no avail, he just wasn’t getting the hint. In the end it was “me” that had the problem with anger and he was “so glad to have been able to help”, as if I was the one needing therapy! So patronising! So frustrating! And in my own dream too!

That reminds me of a discussion I had on a message board I was involved with, talking about how rubbish the state of the world is. People were leaving positive yet realistic comments saying “It’s bad but we’re trying to do something about it.” I felt positive, it felt like it was going somewhere, and then someone said something that just deflated the whole thing, something that finished off the conversation like a soggy balloon. It’s like a seed had just started to grow but was quickly crushed underfoot by someone that didn’t see it (from henceforth I shall call them BigBlindFoot).

So I got angry (on purpose), making a very sarcastic comment in response, which was invariably misunderstood by others as something unreasonable and even insulting. I even got a mild warning from the moderator (I have a little celebration when I get one of those, it means I’ve got somewhere near to the truth! hehehe) I wasn’t trying to start a flaming war, honest! My intention wasn’t a random explosion of anger but a conscious attempt to provoke some intense, yet constructive, discussion; anger that blows away cobwebs and brings focus to an otherwise random or deflated mess.

On the Internet? You must be joking! BigBlindFoot didn’t even respond, either they were intimidated by what I said (unlikely as they consider themselves a Warrior! RAAAH!!!), or they were hiding behind the shield of misunderstanding that others had created for them, or their comment was a Hit and Run comment, which they just left there for others to pick up the pieces. After my “explosion” I went into reasonable diplomat mode, which neutralised my earlier comment as I saw I was going nowhere except into a deeper hole.

I hate it when I make an impassioned comment and it doesn’t get answered (grrr anger grrr). I’ve noticed that when I write a response that is particularly clear and strong in meaning and feeling, people somehow “lose” the energy to respond, so they don’t respond. I get the feeling that sometimes what I’ve said is so accurate and to-the-point (on no! But I can’t say that, that’s conceited *gasp* shock-horror!) that people can’t find any way to disagree and yet they don’t want to agree, so they “conveniently” stay silent on the subject. Or if they do respond it’s a flippant joke used to deflate any potential seriousness and if I (rightly) get angry at that it’s because I “lack a sense of humour.” The Internet is a rabbit warren that houses some slippery inhabitants, I warn thee!

And then of course discussions are usually “played” like a round of opinion-tennis, comments go backwards and forwards but no one gets anywhere. It gets going and then ends when the balls drops because all people are trying to do is get points for being “right” or “wrong.” That’s how I perceive the nature of most (but not all!!!) message board discussions, where casual comments are preferred over sustained dialogue. But that’s only to be expected in large group settings where dialogue intent is often diluted. (Sometimes it’s funny (haha grr haha, oh I’m laughing, grr) to get a comment that is COMPLETELY out of context, because someone that doesn’t “get” what I’m talking about and instead picks on one little irrelevent detail).

One-on-one, now that’s usually interesting and it often goes somewhere! There’s a feeling of something being built, of a relationship growing from it (like the seed metaphor from earlier). The discussion’s energy is focussed, its evolution is clear yet organic, and usually not a random mess. Honest anger is not misunderstood or taken out of context but fuels the conversation in a positive way, if properly focussed.

Still, the chaos of some message boards is entertaining and educational. It’s a place to experiment, to learn how people tick and how many different ways I can be angry without breaching too many limits (oh what sport!). But wouldn’t it be nice if dialogues could grow, flower and fruit instead of just appearing and disappearing. I’m sure it must happen… somewhere…

So what now? These wise words were spoken to me once; light the blue touch paper and stand well back!

“Might there be levels of truth of reality that are missed by the science-orientated, common-sense consciousness we use to navigate our way through traffic jams, supermarkets and e-mails?” Jonathan Black, The Secret History of the World

“Not all meanings are meant to be clear at once. Some ideas take time. Some words are designed to lead us on inner journeys, with truth hidden deep inside them.” Brian Froud

I consider myself to be a materialist, although a very spiritually inclined materialist. And also I consider myself a rationalist with the concession that, as a human being, I must admit to non-rational dimensions to life (you ever read anything on quantum physics? That’s the land of Faery right there). Because of this, and for the sake of my “irrational” health and sanity, I have suspended disbelief to embrace another mode of thought in order to touch depths within myself not open to rational or common sense thinking. My vision of the universe has become transformed, unlocked by symbols that act as keys upon my soul. Perhaps this story is a mere tapestry of fantasy, but look carefully for the element of truth, a single thread, which can lead you back to its source, perhaps the Source.

Long ago, Heaven and Earth were one, there was no separation, no duality. But then a shadow appeared, and began a long process of separating the spiritual and the material. The many great and magical beings disappeared from the material world leaving no trace of their existence. And the many beings of Earth grew quiet and isolated from one another, unable to communicate any more, for all creatures of mineral, plant and animal were once friends and companions, forming a great company with one another and with the magical and divine beings. Yet despite this they still resonated with the rest of the cosmos, albeit faintly and unconsciously.

In only a few creatures of the Earth did the higher spiritual nature of Heaven remain, reflecting itself through spiritual vision, reason and imagination. One such creature were the humans, beings with a great capacity to understand and transform the world around them. In humanity the gods invested their Wisdom in order that when spiritual and material became divorced by the Shadow of Separation, there remained a seed of spirituality in a material world to preserve a guiding light in this despiritualised world.

Finally the Shadow of Separation grew so strong that even humanity lost contact, becoming mired in a materialistic delusion, now closed to Cosmic Inspiration and interested only in material gain. Despite this some people have worked secretly to keep the truth of our spiritual source aflame within us, protecting it from forces that look to steal or destroy it.  But this is inevitable and even necessary.

Do not think that the Shadow of Separation is not without a useful role in this for it is just an initiator of a new process necessary for the independent evolutions of Heaven and Earth. For each must grow in its own way before reuniting. That is why humans are not aware of Heaven, for we must find it for ourselves. This has been entrusted to us by Heaven; that we learn the secret teachings past down to us through the Ancients by the gods and overcoming the glamour of the material in order to spiritualise it.

Can you feel it? Come out from the material light of the City and open to the spiritual light of the Cosmos. Go to the woods where only moonlight and starlight shine, sharing their presence, if little else. They look at you and you look at them. They await you to return to them.

Can you feel it? The whole Cosmos seems to be waiting for humanity to take the long climb back up to Heaven taking the material world with it.

Can you feel it? All beings of animal, plant and mineral resonate with their connection to the Cosmos, though even they do not know it, and you were ignorant of it until now. Though unconscious of it, they too await us to fulfil our duty so that they can reawaken to the unity of Heaven and Earth.

It is in all life to reawaken to this. our very beings are made from the very stuff of the Cosmos. We are Stardust, it is in our nature, it is our destiny. Can you feel it?

“A person cannot approach the divine by reaching beyond the human. To become human, is what this individual person, has been created for.” Martin Buber

 

Version of the Druid’s Prayer that I first learn;

Grant Oh God and Goddess protection,
And in protection, strength,
And in strength, understanding,
Amd in understanding, knowledge,
And in knowledge, the knowledge of justice,
And in the knowledge of justice, the love of it,
And in the love of it, the love of all existences,
And in the love of all existences, the love of God, Goddess and all goodness.

 

There is a serious problem with the Druid’s prayer. I discovered it when looking through other prayers and then examined the Druid’s Prayer, I found something lacking in it. I’ll give you a few examples;

 

From the Lord’s Prayer: Thy will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven.

 

From the Great Invocation (adapted version): From the point of Light within the mind of God
Let light stream forth into human minds
Let Light descend on Earth.

 

Druidic Chant: Awen
Described to me as “Ah”; drawing energy from the cosmos, “oo”; as drawing energy from the Earth, and “en”; combining these energies and sending them into ritual space and/or the world.

 

From Buddhism: Om Mani Padme Hum.

Now this one can be translated and interpreted in many different ways, but one specifically comes to mind in the context of this message is described here; “On the relative plane, this mantra is a way of drawing blessings from the Infinite [Om], processing (as it were) through the human heart [Mani Padme], and sending them out to the world [Hum].” Jim Pym, You Don’t Have To Sit On The Floor

 

The Druid’s Prayer lacks this manifestation or incarnation aspect. We invoke all of these qualities; protection, strength, understanding, knowledge, justice, love, goodness etc but there’s nothing explicitly grounding about it. They can remain abstract, working on only one level of being. All of that energy is being invoked in the “astral” but it’s going round in circles because it has no way to be channeled into more concrete experience. At least it’s not mentioned explicitly anyway. If the Lord’s Prayer did not include “Thy Will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven”, Heaven would remain a dream because it needs Earth to express itself fully.

 

When The Druid’s Prayer was written, it was relevant to the times, but now I think that some adjustments should be made to it. It is not “A Druid’s Prayer” but is called “The Druid’s Prayer,” and with such emphasis it becomes the underpinning basis for what Druidry is, in a way that Om Mani Padme Hum underpins Buddhism and The Lord’s Prayer underpins Christianity.

 

My spirituality is about incarnation, not disincarnation, so if I use this prayer in any way, I’d have to end it with something like this; “And for all of these qualities to be manifest in Life and the World.”

“It is a common delusion that you make things better by talking about them.” Rose Macaulay

I bought a book of quotes from various British celebrities, thinking maybe it’ll be amusing, and I can get a bit of insight and inspiration from my fellow Brits. Yes it has been but there are some quotes that I think “fuck you very much. If that’s British then I’m not,” like the quote above.

The truth, or even Truth, cannot be left unexpressed, to fester in the soul of a human. Some problems cannot be psychologically digested alone, they need other people to add different dimensions and solutions that one solitary soul cannot come up with on its own. And if a soul cannot connect with a soul by communicating and expressing itself, then it’s lost an essential quality that makes it a soul. It can become introverted and cut off from the opportunities in the world around it. It can waste away.
I’m in despair; I need another quote, one that speaks sense and Truth…
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” Martin Luther King Jr
Aaah, yes, much better. 🙂
Jolly good show that man. Just what one needs after seeing something that’s just not cricket, what what! (British? Well, just a tad lol)