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Thursday, December 6, 2012

The fruits of Narcissism

A tricky combo: Dali and Narcissus

It's an oddly Narcissistic thing I have to admit to, with no right. I have a reason to visit an older page in my blog, and I start reading. Then I look down the other postings for that month, and wonder, what the hell was that about?

   So I start reading. Another, then another. I discover that some things I thought to write on in the future that I already have, some in detail. They're not bad either, for the most part, but it's disconcerting.

   So it was that I stumbled across this one from August 2011, which, in my defence, I did know I had written about.  But on reading the comments, I saw, as happens all to often, that someone has made a comment that I've missed, or given scant attention to.

   And I rediscovered this gem of a comment, from Joan. it's worthy of its own posting, and perhaps I can assuage my guilt at not acknowledging it properly first time around by reproducing it here. It's so relevant.

   Over to you, Joan. Maybe it was that it simply needed no comment!

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Here's something from Ram Dass about memory. Painfully true, but at the same time, you have to laugh or you're finished.
Just a line to say I’m living,
that I’m not among the dead.
Though I’m getting more forgetful
and more mixed up in the head.
For sometimes I can’t remember,
when I stand at the foot of the stair,
If I must go up for something,
or I’ve just come down from there.
And before the fridge, so often,
my poor mind is full of doubt.
Have I just put food away,
or have I come to take some out?
And there are times when it is dark out,
with my nightcap on my head,
I don’t know if I’m retiring
or I’m getting out of bed.

If it’s my turn to write you,
there’s no need for getting sore.
I may think that I have written
and don’t want to be a bore.
Remember, I do love you
and I wish you were here.
It’s nearly mail time,
so I’ll say goodbye, dear.
There I stood beside the mailbox
with my face so very red.
Instead of mailing you my letter,
I have opened it instead.
I love my new bifocals.
My dentures fit me fine.
My hearing aid is perfect,
But, O Lord, I miss my mind.

I laughed and cried when I heard him recite this. We're all headed in this direction, some of us faster than others. I take refuge in the Yoga Sutras which say,
Drashtri drishyayoh samyogo heya hetuh.
If you can say that, you're okay :).

What it means is "The cause of pain is the union of the seer with the seen." Meaning, basically that we think we are the body, but our true identity is the consciousness which observes the body. If we can identify with the consciousness rather than the body, then the suffering of the body can be avoided (or at least mitigated). A big ask, and much easier said than done, but worth a try. There has to be some truth in all these ancient books, otherwise how did they survive?

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  1. A very big ask indeed (and, incidentally, what became of night caps?)

  2. I know for sure why they had them. When radiotherapy and chemotherapy removed 95% of my hair two years ago, my head froze every time I accidentally got under an air-conditioning duct at a shopping centre, and was awful chilly round the ears in winter in bed at night. I could have done with a nightcap then. It was all about balding old men who wore wigs most of the day and needed something on top at night. Of their heads. Please.

    When Tracey performed in the two-hander I Do! I Do! set in the 50s, her stage husband had to wear a nightcap for one of the scenes. So there must have been one or two of them still about.

    There's your answer. They look ridiculous! It is definitely not a Victor's Secret type accessory for men.

  3. I very much liked Joan's posting - all so true. I spent ages looking for my reading glasses the other day (by no means an unusual activity for me these days) and finally found them in the 'frig!

  4. Hey Denis, lovely post and very amusing! Was great to 'talk' on twitter. Hope all is well. Take care...


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