Sunday, November 11, 2012

Work, Life, Contemplation and Change

Winter arrives tonight here in Minnesota, in a hard way. Temperatures are expected to fall throughout the day, below freezing, with temperatures remaining below freezing through tomorrow, as low as 18 degrees. That will be a test of how well my oil filled electric radiators heat the house. I have two, one in the kitchen and another in the bathroom, heating the bedroom also, which is less than half the house. My furnace is broken and I have neither the money nor the inclination to fix it. I would certainly like to rip out all those forced-air steel vents in the basement, I've hit my head on a hundred times. I could buy a nice woodstove from a friend for $200, and install it myself for about $250-300, but the stove is not catalytic, which means it isn't designed to burn off most of the particulate, which is not a solution in the city; also as I do not have access to a wood lot. Though I could arrange with a tree trimming crew, to have more than enough wood dropped in my driveway, for free. A catalytic wood heater connected to a radiant water system which I would rarely use because the house itself would be solar radiant, would be ideal.

Back into the 40's and 50's next week, so no worries. Heating half the house with two oil heaters, cost about $40 last month. If I tried to heat the whole house, which is in mid-repair and a heat sieve, it would cost me $200+.  Assuming winter comes, even the climate being uncertain. My neighbor across the alley, a good Christian who I have never known to question authority in any meaningful way, remarked to me about it yesterday, unprovoked, in evident concern, while I was working on my new driveway. Much of the aggressiveness I have endured from the city, the last several years, about my garden, I suspect has arisen from complaints from him. The lack of attention I have received from the city in the last year, has coincided with his evolution in thinking about my garden, in part as a direct result of his awareness of radical changes in weather patterns. He is a hunter, fisherman and gardener.

My new driveway is made of antique Purrington pavers, 9 lbs each, originally, likely, paving stones for a road, here in Minneapolis, which were removed at some point to my sisters driveway, before it was hers. She has never parked on the driveway, which she has only ever used to grow soil on, by neglect. You couldn't see them; there was an inch of soil and weeds covering them. I asked her if I could buy them; she gave them to me. I stacked them up, rented a truck and paid my friend Jamie, a musician who lives in a rundown trailer you couldn't move if you wanted to, $80, to help me transport the 5 tons. He only wanted $40. I bought him a snack and dinner too. I'll have six cubic yards of class five crushed limestone dropped on my sisters driveway this week. She can grow weeds on that just as well. My father is furious, but he hasn't been proud of anything I've done, since I was MVP of my high school baseball team. Except that time I shot that eight point buck. He doesn't know either that I've painted my upper body green, put on faux animal pants, and danced with those horns publicly. Perhaps he will reconsider about the pavers, when he sees the driveway, the patio, and the front sidewalk to the street.

 The white pine table for the patio, three feet across.

Otherwise, since I started the work on the hoop house, greenhouse, with the white pine dropped in my driveway and the work on the driveway and patio, more of my neighbors have stopped by and spoken with me in a friendly way than ever before. :)

My father is happy to have me working at big bank. I am happy too, insofar as the work I've been doing here at the house would not have happened, if not for that job. I am also astounded, at how many people in the department I work in, are eager for overtime. It is the debt they hold, I suppose. I value my time more than money. The department head, in advocating for people to work overtime so that it would not have to be imposed, said approximately, "What are you going to do otherwise? I'm just going to go home and sit in front of the television," and many and maybe most nodded in agreement. No one seems much perturbed that we are foreclosing on houses.

I sit in my awkward corner at big bank, dancing sometimes to the global sounds on my iPod, wanting to sing, most days listening to Terence Mckenna on youtube, contemplating TEOTWAWKI. The election was encouraging to me, insofar as I was anticipating a potential hard Right turn. When you write things like the Benghazi incident is likely related to covert CIA operations having to do with Syria and al Qaida, and that Broadwell is CIA if I ever saw one, and not a bad way at all to excuse yourself from the drug money gorged, para-military, al Qaida affiliated cesspool the CIA has become, General; well, I have the sense that the GOP LOVES government when it comes to cracking down on alternative media, mindful as I am that the Obama administration has been ruthless in regard to whisleblowers, among many other things. I hadn't anticipated a repudiation of the Republican message, with the election, such as that message has become. (The reader might be advised to not take my prognostications TOO seriously.)

Thinking such things about the world as I do, I tend to keep to myself at big bank. The work encourages it. Besides, I'm a minority white guy, and bald besides. And I'm shy. People don't engage me much either. I'd much prefer to wear a hat and bandana, but that is against the rules. It get's cold where I sit, and it would soften the bald nearing middle-age white guy thing. I intended to wear the orange afro and the wacky jacket, Halloween, but when I woke that day it barely occurred to me, and I couldn't have cared less at the time, really. Though I did puff before I left the house, and closed my eyes and let go into the music on the bus. Peace pirate, Sir Vis, yet.

TEOTWAWKI. Terence Mckenna was much responsible for the mythology around Dec 21, 2012, having come to the conclusion through work with the Chinese I Ching, and a mathematical computer program he devised, that the end of time would occur that day, coming to this conclusion separate from any knowledge of the Mayan prediction. He wavered on his prediction, suggesting it could mean anything, from the destruction of the entire planet; the transformation of the entire universe; transforming ourselves somehow technologically, such that we would expand into hyperspace; to the invention of time travel; to his death merely, and we could all laugh that we believed him. Like Moses he would not see the promised land, as he died in 2000, from a deadly tumor in his brain, in the frontal cortex associated with the "third" eye. A curious end, for a mystic, particularly one so loved. In a cruel irony, his entire collection of rare books and manuscripts, and personal notes, were lost in a fire. The organization entrusted with them, Esalen, had seen fit to store them in an otherwise unoccupied office, off-site, next to a Quiznos, where the fire started - seven years after his death. 

It's interesting to me, how little I hear anymore about the Dec 21, 2012 Apocalypse meme. I had expected it to be more prominent a part of the dialogue, but it is not much at all, after all the hubub years ago. This, even as uncertainty has ramped up exponentially, with the economy, the fiscal cliff, Sandy, Benghazi, Syria, Iran, $100 barrels of oil, Fukushima, drought in the crop lands, and clear evidence for anyone who is conscious of the weather that a cycle has been broken. Even the most sanguine supporter of all things AMERICA, believes CHANGE is upon us, though notions of the how and the why are as diverse as there are people.

Terence imagined much more of a spiralling effect than we have seen. He imagined a kind of exponential condensing of Time, at which end-point we would emerge into a kind of psychedelic hyper-dimensional awareness. The kind of technological progress he imagined though doesn't seem to have come to pass; more it seems to me, we are seeing the global industrial machine grinding to a halt, and many of our techno-dreams with it, because of oil constraints, weather, population growth and too much debt. I don't think Terence was wrong, necessarily, and his psychedelic research and reporting on it has been invaluable to me, to sort things out; I just think maybe his psychedelic dimensional travels caused him to underestimate the staying power of the material universe, maybe.

I do however believe the Mayans were about dead on with their long count calender, which 5,126 year cycle happens to coincide with the rise of the written Word, the Logos transcribed; and the rise of agriculture about 5,126 year before that. Those two, ag and the written word, are without peer in their effect on Homo sapien. The Logos written, the Word, leading to a paradigm of control, which now seems to be both aggravated in it's desire, and slipping out of possible.

Notice that the definition of apocalypse is a lifting of the veil. What veil? The veil of authority. Consider the Catholic Church, or the Boy Scouts, or Lance Armstrong, the Federal Reserve, Wall Street and the Federal Government. The stories these entities and institutions, and everything relating to them, have rested upon, are everywhere revealed to be a fraud. A fraud for what purpose? A fraud to control resources, to control nature, to maintain power and influence, to maintain BAU. A fraud feeding at the foundation of everything life depends on.

I intuit we are closing in on some kind of bifurcation point, after which normal will be turned upside down, metaphorically. What that is going to look like, I have all kinds of ideas. Anything from a comet strike, to a solar wiping-out of the global electrical grid, to a collapse of the global financial markets, to a series of nuclear strikes, to an organic or inorganic destruction of a series of off-shore oil wells, to the collapse of the Saudi royal family, to mass starvation, and on and on and on, unto a widespread collapse in belief in the current paradigm.

The Mayans don't have the corner on cycles though. There is also the 26,000 year cycle of the rotation of the axis, the cycle of precession of the equinox. We are now in the Aeon of the zodiacal house of Pisces, the fish, associated by some with Christos. It will be another 200 years before the cycle of Aquarius, the water bearer, begins. Which I take to mean it will be another 200 years before a true healing of the waters will begin. With all the nuclear and poisons and off-shore oil wells around, how polluted we allow the waters to become remains to be seen. Perhaps enough, that there will be no human to witness the healing of the waters.

My hope is, though, the thing ultimately revealed, is that Homo sapien is a vastly more profound being than any control freak has ever lead us to believe. And the Sun and Gaia would not have spent billions of years bringing us into being in order to let us perish of our control issues.    

Cycles upon cycles upon cycles of time. Change eternal. To illutrate, my black-cap raspberry vines, sans leaves:





Luciddreams said...

A couple of weeks ago my wife, son, and I were at a gypsy meet (swap meet/flea market/jockey lot...whatever you wanna call it) selling junk to predominately southern redneck geriatrics, and I heard the Mayan prophecy come up as I was passing by a table. There was a group of old southern baptist talking about how the Mayans had predicted the end of the world this December..."I tell ya, I think there's somtin' to it...Revelations is upon us, that much is certin'." Anything to back up the coming of Jebus. Otherwise the Mayans are just a bunch of godless heathens who are all burnin' in hell.

Aside from that, I too have noticed that the apocalypse meme, especially the 2012 prediction, has faded a bit. I think it's because Hollywood made a bunch of movies about it and Americans have a short attention span. On to the next thing.

Great post by the way. You always get my intellectual ruminatin' wheels turnin'. I don't mean the reasoning/logical intellectual either. It seems everything I have been reading lately is pointing to visceral intuitive intelligence. I've spent far too much time in my life servicing that rigid Cartesian mind set. I've been reading about Blake's Zoas...really is resonating with me. I feel like I've got a lot of Orc in me. Society needs Orc to emerge.

Justin Wade said...

I do however believe the Mayans were about dead on with their long count calender, which 5,126 year cycle happens to coincide with the rise of the written Word, the Logos transcribed; and the rise of agriculture about 5,126 year before that. Those two, ag and the written word, are without peer in their effect on Homo sapien. The Logos written, the Word, leading to a paradigm of control...

The urge to control becomes the urge to destroy quickly, that is, men often destroy something than accept that it is out of their control. Personally, I think control is an illusion, a selective metacognitive interpretation of experiences that orders events and experiences in such a contrived way as to render the illusion of control.

As for the written word, yeah, I've been thinking along those lines too. What we do is adequate, the rest is semantics, sentences, syntax, synthetics, sent texts, sin checks .... whatever the hell you want to call it. Free speech as the antidote to free action is one of the more devilish conceptions of control laying about.

William Hunter Duncan said...


Orc? Too bad Tolkien went and used that word for Blakes Christ-like Luvah, for his servants of the Dark Lord - though I have to say, the poet chose a curious alternative name for Luvah. Sounds more like: Urizen: reason, tradition; a cruel god resembling the Gnostic Demiurge.[from wiki]

Thanks for saying so, about the post. I'm never sure. Trying to articulate Pan/Dionysean/Chaos Theory/Goddess in this hyper control-freak culture, is a always a challenge, and I'm not always sure I'm understood. And yes, the apoclaypse is also an awakening to all the energies I just named. Terence liked to say your Jebus folk intuited the change, but twisted that knowledge up to serve their control fantasies.

Justin Wade,

Nice shades. :) Looking very handsome and bad ass. Your first sentence reminds me of mining companies, who ravage the land, pollute the waters, corrupt local politics, remove those resources to foreign lands, and then declare bankruptcy without cleaning any of it up. BAU. Control is a curious concept, in that it appears to work so well - look how many billionaires there are! Meanwhile, we threaten our own extinction. The opposite would be flow, which is what the universe does. It being a fairly creative thing, the universe, in case anyone has noticed. Humans are nature too, and very creative, but under the current paradigm that creative has been harvested in service to the industrial machine, and destruction generally. Demonic.

Written Words lie easily, and the Right lie has STAYING power. The written word also literally rewires the brain, to the dominance of the Left, analytical, logical, Apollonian, abstract hemisphere. The right hemisphere is the seat of music, art, emotion; hence, the written word puts a kind of lockdown on creativity. Command/Control freaks like to say most creativity and tech evolution emerges out of war; which of course implies that we must have ever greater wars for ever more advanced technologies. Rather, what would humanity create if the gifts of every human were nurtured from birth?

"Free speech as the antidote to free action is one of the more devilish conceptions of control laying about."

Yes. One could also replace the word antidote with "replacement", for another angle, looking at it.

William Hunter Duncan said...

"Aside from that, I too have noticed that the apocalypse meme, especially the 2012 prediction, has faded a bit. I think it's because Hollywood made a bunch of movies about it and Americans have a short attention span. On to the next thing."


As Dec 21, 2012, has yet come to pass, I would say, it is more like denial in service to BAU.

Luciddreams said...

I didn't know that about Tolkien's dark lord. Never been a Tolkien fan for some reason. That is curious if the two are compared.

Blake's names seem a bit contrived to me, and I find it interesting that he dealt with a debilitating depression towards the end of his life. Bit of a tortured soul it would seem...but I can relate. However his poetry is magnificent.

Jeff Z said...

I like those pavers. They look cool no matter what your old man says.
I imagine he's proud of what you've been able to accomplish, but too Minnesotan to actually be able to say it.

Whether or not the Mayan apocalypse amounts to anything (and as a relative non-theist, I'm guessing there won't be much) there is a building background hum. The last two years of weather are apocalyptic in their own right, and I don't see any sign of that changing course. If the powers that be allow the country to go over the fiscal cliff, that may mean the undoing of the house of cards that is the economy now.
There are more roads leading to chaos right now than there are to stability, so it's easy to see where we'll be in the not too distant future.

Luciddreams said...

I'm struggling right now with the BAU BS. The Matrix is pulling at me in various directions. It wants my servitude back, and yet there is nothing worth my time out there. Nothing but corporate sponsored servitude for a pittance. I can't go back into health care, and even if I could my credentials would get me about 12 dollars an hour.

Permaculture is what I need to be doing for money, but I don't have a PDC and don't have the time or the money get acquire one at an average 1500 dollar price tag. I'm thinking of going rogue, advertising on Craigs list, and seeing if my bliss will throw me a bone. I don't want to waste my time working a job, away from my family, for 400 dollars a week after the man gets done robbing my labor.

I wish things would collapse so it would at least make decisions easier for me, but that's just a pipe dream. I know that nothing about collapse is easy.

Interestingly enough, my buddy just texted me and said that 20 states are starting the process for succession right now. Seems the Arch Druid may know something about the future after all.

William Hunter Duncan said...


Have you seen his paintings? There is a Blake tarot. If he was "tortured" it was merely that he painted what he saw; and otherwise, he was unknown in his lifetime, outside a small circle.

Twenty states aren't starting the process, twenty states have Americans who have formally introduced the idea. If we get to the process, things will be one hell of a lot more turbulent.

Money. Right. How much time do you have, before it really matters? As for the permaculture thing, call it something else. If you're confident you can find work without the permit, find the work and do it. Otherwise, you're confident in your fermenting skills, get busy. There's lot's of thing you can ferment. :) Consult with Sandor Katz, about the food at least.

Rogue? Go Peace Pirate.

As for collapse, hurry not. Besides, your in it, it is progressing, and it will continue. That incident with Mordred you reported in your blog, was a test of character. What do you suppose a wide-spread financial collapse would be?


Thanks, and well said, about the paths forward. I vow to go joyward. I'm also harder on my father than he deserves. He's a conservative guy, and he always over-reacts with anger. But he always comes around. I'm concerned though, that a widespread economic collapse would blind-side him. He's lived a kind of ideal middle-class life, and he's convinced, things economically will continue to progress just as they have all of his life, indefinitely, or at least as long as I'm alive.

Apocalyptic the last two years indeed. And it looks like it's going to get increasingly so, day by day.

Luciddreams said...

I'd like to know how much time I have before it really matters. It would make my decision making process a hell of a lot easier. At this point I'm buffering with credit. We have managed to walk the tight rope pretty well up to this point, and I'm sure we could continue if it were not for the fact that my wife is pregnant and having a difficult pregnancy at that. The first one was a walk in the park compared to this one, on all accounts. Before there was no emotional roller coaster and no sickness until it was labor time...this time is the complete opposite making her working not very possible.

That means I have to pick up the slack. I haven't given up yet...

not that it's going to make a difference...but at least I'm trying.

What the hell is a "peace pirate" anyways? Isn't that an oxymoron? As far as the test of character...I suppose. I wanted to kill the bastard. Who's doing the testing and who's keeping score? I'd like to talk to them about some bull shit.

So you're not a fan of Blake I take it? I don't know too much about him, but I like what I've read and seen so far. To be honest it's just coming from "Where the Wasteland Ends," I'm still reading it. Chapter nine is an exploration of Blake, Wordsworth, and Goethe. Apparently Goethe was a combination of the two. Pretty interesting stuff.

William Hunter Duncan said...


I wish you and Wendy the best. Curious times, these. Ringing like a bell, that baby, sounds like. A little discordant. He or she has strong parents, which is good.

Blake is divine. Highly recommended.

Ok, meathead :) a peace pirate follows the rules that arise out of one's own heart. A better definition, an original, and fun for your kids,