Wednesday, November 17, 2010

We Are Gnarls in the Flow of Time

If you were to touch the barren tree, and call forth its fruit in the touching, your hand would have to know the whole history of the tree and its speciation, for history is the process of manifestation and materialization. In the material world, things materialize through time, and therefore to understand them is to understand their process. To bring out potential, one must bring out potential through the very real struggle of the thing's history. In order to work magic, you must understand the struggles that live at the very heart of that which you would transform, and find a creative way to meet those challenges which existentially face that which is to be transformed.

To know something, you must know its development. You must know its process of genesis. You must know its history of tangles, and that with which it is interwoven, and that through which it has interstrewn. You must know its knots, the contradictions that it has laid and that it has had laid upon it, and which it is struggling to work through, even as it creates new contradictions.

Reality is history. This does not mean the dead past ; it means the living past, the past which refuses to die and wraps itself around and forms the integument and structure of every manifest thing in the world. It includes the living, green pith as well as the encrustations, and all of these combined are that which we confront when we look upon a thing in the world. Everything is a battle which is striving through active combat towards victory. And thus, because every thing is its own history of struggle, knowledge is not smooth. It is textured, it is difficult, it is hard-won, and change is not easy, for it must contend with the entire history of forces that are inherent in that which one is attempting to change. The forces resist us, and resist change, at the same time as they tend towards their own kinds of changes and processes. Thus, the world is beautifully, thickly, enmeshedly difficult, and because of this very difficulty, it is real, it is complex, it is intriguing, it is sinewed and fibred and grounded, it outlasts us, and therefore provides an environment in which all of our own struggles may take place and have meaning.

That our thoughts do not modify everything is the greatest blessing. If there were nothing to resist us, what a nightmare world we would live in, as our own untamed souls, souls that have not yet come into their own flourishment and order -- that vital order which a soul must find in order to become whole -- this disordered soul of ours would manifest nightmare, and all the world would be nightmare such as we cannot imagine. But for the world resists us, we must learn it, and through that process of learning, in the very midst of the difficulty, and grappling and engaging with the hindrances, our soul finds that order which is inherent in it. The encounter between the world of difficulty and the yearning soul draws out the order within that soul, that lies pregnant within it.

That is the often unrealized genius of the prima materia, this monstrous matter that much of the time confronts us as dull, purposeless, opaque, adverse, dumb, even ferocious in its grossness and enormity. But the sagacity and ingenuity of the Gods is to be able to see into that which seems useless and find its use. They are able to take even that which does not fit and find a way for it to fit, thus making it good. And so the world is in a process of being made good. An enormous lump of this stuff, this writhing, protean, chaotic, monstrous matter, which they tore apart from the raging monstrous beast Ymir, they impregnated with patterned life, that through the process of evolution has an opportunity to find its own order through time. Because of the scaled levels of resistence that the world presents us with, this world becomes an arena of challenges, and thus, a nursery of heroes.

We are still in the primordial process of creation, which was interrupted by strife. The final fruition of this prima materia has not been reached. Only through the long work of that spirit which has been impregnated into matter can the world finally, over long stretches of time, reach its fruition. And in that stage of time in which each of us are assigned, and ensnarled, each of us are gnarls, and we gnarl our way towards our defining destination.


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