I wonder about the ideal all too often. I wonder if we were ever, as a species, supposed to attain something even close to an ideal. But that doesn’t stop me from wool-gathering, looking at clouds, staring at the darkness in my coffee cup, etc. That doesn’t stop me from questioning, endlessly, the way things are.
How should we raise our kids and ourselves? Because, of course, all the while we think we’re raising them, they’re raising us in a sense, too, and all the things surrounding us shape what we do, and are sometimes shaped by what we do, and so it goes, on and on and on. There is no No-Spot from which we can become who we really are, minus them, minus the environment, minus all that has ever arisen before we reached this place and time. And in the so-called Modern Era, it’s harder than ever before to separate the Dancer from the Dance, as Yeats showed us, and he never had to deal with Smart Phones, Texting and whatever will follow all of that.
To individuate in a crowd. To individuate in a crowded room, house, state, world, not of our own choosing. To form a self amidst all the noise, the competing cries of Look at me!! The competing scramble for clean water, air and land. The soon to be competing rush, onslaught, tsunami of eyes, ears, voices and bodies, seeking dry land, seeking fire-free zones, seeking, in short, habitability.
It may boil down to the old stand-by: it’s complicated. But I don’t want it to. I don’t want to hang my hat on that potential cop-out. I want to find the impossible, and in more than just Art. In life itself. The impossible in life. Because Art without life is like life without Art to me. They need integration too. And more. Much more. They need a kind of — to risk a cliche for a moment or three or seven — nurturing that abides, that lasts, that is sustainable for the longest term. They need a natural synchronicity that becomes second nature for all inputs, for the teachers and students who switch back and forth between the two, forever.
The other switch is, of course, creation and reception, creator and audience. Can there be a human that only inhabits one or the other? Not likely. No one is so lofty, indifferent, or isolate. No one is so passive or parasitical. Unless. Unless damaged. And that damage generally comes about in course of, in the realm of, in the range of integration with the all.
And there’s the quandary of quandaries. The endless push/pull of Alone or Come with. The endless stream of fighting it or riding the storm. And all things in between. Perhaps the answer is there, at least part of it. Not in “the middle,” per se, which only exists in the abstract, within the frame, relatively speaking. The middle as in, what we see, all of what we see, our view of things, as we think they are.
A sad voice in my head, one among so many, shouts (with obvious impatience), “Integrate that!! Individuate that!!”
On the day after. On the day after!!