The Fallacy of Incremental Well-Being

The Fallacy of Incremental Well-Being

There seems to be an unequivocal conviction in the mind of man that he needs to strive to be better than what he is today. This constant yearning for the betterment of oneself is, undoubtedly, the force that drives humanity’s endless thirst to advance into an eventual technological utopia. The thirst for betterment is driven by external forces and the entire idea of becoming something, or someone, is driven by the desire to add things, whether tangible or intangible, to oneself. These things include cars, spouses, college degrees, trendy clothes, decorated vocabularies, and can range to things as extreme as spiritual supremacy and political correctness. Nobody is coded to find such things strange as the common mind in society is securely entrenched in a matrix of beliefs and convictions that are accorded to a collective human mind. The normalcy of every member in society is usually measured by its degree of accordance to this collective mind. The security that such accordance offers is so immense, so complete, and so intellectually unchallengeable that it clouds the natural intelligence of the human brain and keeps it from recognizing the fact that the collective mind, itself, is a manifestation of a very serious form of insanity. To begin with, very few people have questioned their elders about the validity of obedience to the older generation. While the wisdom of the experienced is sublime and immensely helpful in guiding the human child into a responsible style of living, it is only limited to very basic lessons such as, fire is harmful or wood is not food. The wisdom of the elder might extend to dimensions beyond such basic lessons, however, it has no place in defining the morality of the new age being.

Morality, being inherently subjective and carrying with it high levels of danger, is not a psychological form of energy that anyone must tamper with. Science has induced in us an innocent sensation of awe at our smallness in the universe, but has also simultaneously cursed us with the recognition of our mortality. It has given our mortality an aura of doom instead of an understanding of liberation. The science that is nurtured and advanced by modern man concentrates on a very limited dimension of human existence—the physical. While the play of the physical universe seems to occupy the majority of man’s awareness, by no means is it evidence that the limitation of man’s awareness is an implication of the universe’s limitations. However, the collective human mind, being so childishly infatuated by the physical dimension of existence (and its limitations) has somehow managed to develop an almost incurable fear of its inherent mortality. Such a fear, of course, is guided by the mind’s perception of its separation from the rest of the universe. It is this sensation of separation that leads every individual to believe that more needs to be added to oneself in order to complete oneself. There seems to be a great feeling of lack and negative emptiness that motivates us to strive for betterment, and often times, at the cost of the comfort and happiness of other beings.

We cannot transcend this diseased system of thought with haste. It requires a tremendous amount of clarity and inner observation to even recognize the disease. The regular mind will cease to even spare an extra glance at such an enquiry because it is convinced that there are other important activities to pursue such as finding a good job, buying a new car, finding a reasonable spouse, or visiting the next spiritual guru who can offer a fresh concept of freedom at the price of one’s individuality. Man seems to be too occupied with the games that occur in the physical dimension and will perish as a race if he seeks his survival only in the correctness of outward affairs. It is a fallacy. We have been enslaved to this endless desire to add things to ourselves. If I tell you that you are perfect as you are, you would pant like a dog searching for reasons to justify something imperfect within you.

So, what now? Do we give up our jobs and burn our cars so we can throw ourselves into a pursuit of the unknown? Do we hastily enquire into the nature of our mortality and rebel against the formidable establishment of the collective mind, so that we might discover our freedom before it’s too late? An intellectual mind that is spurned and excited by logic would find only such a conclusion valid and rational. Only an intelligent mind, as opposed to intellectual, will understand that there is no conclusion that is required. The trick is not to change the world, but to discover that it does not need to be changed.

But, of course, the collective human mind will resist the individuality that is inherent in each one of us. The individual mind is alive while the collective psyche is a residue of a million yesterdays. The transcendence from the collective psyche of humanity indicates the transcendence from human history. We make ourselves unavailable to the divine potential of our own intelligence because we are afraid of the insecurity that is kindled by the unknown. You only fear your mortality because you have never walked deep into it and faced it with an open mind. Instead, you have settled for the fancy heavens and hells that you bought from strangers and, at most, have come to realize that if not for the heavens and hells, your life is a purposeless dance into a pointless, hopeless void. Such a recognition has made most people bored of living. The human being is the only sentient creature (I hope) that has reduced the eternity of the universe into time. There are several illusions to be uncovered if only one dares to step out of the collective psyche and shed light on one’s own mind, as it is, in its natural state, uncorrupted and undivided. It takes a courageous man to decide that his freedom lies in his own hands. Do not waste your years on patriotic freedom and social correctness. Why do you so fervently endure the trash that is fed to you from the collective psyche of humanity? You are neither responsible nor accountable for the rash, ignorant activities of your kind. You are responsible to the universe for a far more important thing. You are a creator, and if you waste your years in this beautiful world seeking success, convenience, and incremental well-being, you will meet death in a very distasteful manner.

Creators are not born to be survivors. Eternity is in their very nature. Why do you add things to yourself? You are born to add things to the universe that belongs to you, as much as you belong to it. Why do you so thirstily rummage through the wastebaskets of society’s false offerings of happiness believing that you will find a sense of satiation? The answer is inside, in the very same place that the hunger for truth resides. The only voice that will help you return to the humanity that you so desperately crave for is your own voice. You do not need time to wake up. You can do it right now, wherever you are, whoever you are.

Screamjack

 

art: Real Gold – Sir Eduardo Paolozzi

Made in Bangalore

Made in Bangalore

Sweet friend, as I depart on this unsure journey,
Unknowing of when I will find the comfort of home again,
I find it crucially fitting,
To leave you this note, populated
With half-hearted lies,
And tearful vagaries
In the hope that you might see,
The work of its rhythm, give you,
Memories, smiles, and gentle tears,
In your times of rare silence and reflection

This place; this place forged us.
And as the world loses itself,
To a mere advertisement of our home,
We know the scent of its blood,
The nature of its dreams, and the height of its ambition
The world knows of our hi-tech labor,
Our early curfews and the pleasantries of our environment
We’ve heard all so much of our upbeat entertainment,
Our free-thinking folk, our corrupt police,
And our dried out lakes
Deep in the hearts of our comrades,
We hear the pleas to rejuvenate this broken forest
To bring the cradling voices of rustling trees,
Back into the streets where our homes stand,
Stained with the smoke that fills our air.

While our sisters, brothers, seem to so often,
Find only avenues for complaint and the need for rectitude,
I see harmony. I see life. I see a living organism,
I see a great city that is decorated in its imperfection,
I see an important chapter in life’s endless dilemma.

As we expand perpetually, forwards, backwards,
Sideways, we grow like a virus.
We seem to only see the need for betterment,
Instead of understand the purpose of our chaos.
We, the children of this magical home,
Have been transformed into warriors for humanity
We are no silent souls encumbered in deep appreciation,
For rare flowers and patiently composed symphonies
We are the children of chaos treading danger’s razor edge,
Forever dancing with our dilemmas and soaking in our problems.
We dare the extremes of human experience,
As we allow our wonderful city to waltz along to its doom.

While the elders say,
Heaven’s where we’re made,
I see it otherwise
It is the smoke in our skies, and the filth in our gutters,
The gruesome stares of rude strangers,
The clouded judgment of our senile seniors,
The tormenting traffic spewing murderous noise,
The pretentious folk, the untrustworthy folk,
The endless fears of an imperfect policing system
It is these that have made me, us.

It is the good folk, the sweetness of our green trees,
The silent streets where we kick around spotted balls,
Cycling to no avail, looking for first love, last love,
Kisses with sweet lovers in heavily treed corners,
Sudden rains in summer and the endless dark monsoon.
Ah, can I say more about our sweet moments in dingy bars,
Our endless conversations in perpetual drunkenness
Our nights of hatching world conspiracies,
In non-lit terraces blazing a big one for the enjoyment of the stars,
Through the half-smoked atmosphere of our growing town
It is these from which the man I am, is born,
These from which you are born

As I travail into more and more ambitious endeavor,
I will always remember,
Remember the midst of the chaos in which I was born
The midst of the orchestral delight,
Perfected with the honeyed breezes of April,
And made sick and interesting by confused inhabitants
A great chaos, a sweet chaos,
But all the same, a chaos that is my mother
Hell! I was born through no heaven man,
I was made not by spirit nor star nor stardust,
I was made by Bangalore, in Bangalore City,
Perfect and whole with imperfect pieces

Cloudy Lines

Cloudy Lines

Entrenched and aching,

In a mild prison, that is barred by soft breasts,

And visions of a delight that never arrives

If you can look into the darkness,

That I have erected in the midst of my perfection,

You might tumble into rapturous laughter,

Gently urinating on my funny dreams

 

There’s a girl who lives in a cottage,

That stands beside a thin river

She lives alone, she smiles,

She bakes bread, has a dog,

Drinks whisky every night

She spares no mercy to offer her heart to the world of men,

No time,

To lend her ears to the tremors of fear that rule our world

No television, no radio, no internet,

Just her whisky, dog, and bread.

She’s happy, I’ve kissed her, loved her in summer,

Hated her at fall, touched her warm skin in winter

I’ve known her fears, tasted her dreams,

Drank her whisky, stolen her wine.

Her life rolls on toward oblivion,

Like the stars do at dawn.

She spares no thought for tomorrow’s possibilities,

And dies to the whispers of midnight light.

 

Lyrical delight leads us to naught but damnation,

Too much I have kept my hopes in verse

Invested my heart in beauteous tones,

Strung my heart to give life to words.

I have no complaints. Just a broken heart,

And a mind too small to hold and embrace,

Its endless frames of melancholy.

 

Words exist to tell lies.

There is nothing a word can tell,

That is anything but a lie.

Can you see? Look far into your mind,

Can you see?

Without words, our lives are nothing,

And yet everything, and nothing.

Without words, these constructions of color,

Have no place in existence.

Our world is a world of words,

And we, the most gifted of all liars,

We wondrous tellers of verses,

We poets, we dreamers,

We weave the deepest,

And most elusive of all worlds.

 

I feel like my soul empties into the night,

As I give birth to more verse.

You cannot see, no looking into me.

I bleed. A blood that has no taste,

From a spirit that has no breath.

I am the messenger of death,

And I say to you,

“Go now, live. Tomorrow is a tearful thing,

Death is our blessing. Our end, our gift.

Tonight you see only the endless sky,

So, that when death comes,

You might see beyond it.”

Broken Painting

Broken Painting

I want all kinds of things,
Like a life with no work, no hardness,
Simple moments floating around,
Like paintings, to be looked at.
I want lots of whisky, laced with magical syrups,
To do all kinds of things to my mind.
To be innocent, I want to be drunk with innocence.
To know nothing, and be in foolish awe at every penny,
Striking glass, spilt water on the floor, boiling milk.
And to laugh with the wind and dance madly,
To shave my head, leave my hair to wildness in winter.
Let the snow freeze my balls and the sun of May eat into my lips.
I want to leave my tongue to touch the rain, leave my ears,
To be slaves to the senseless semblances of old music that live today.
I want to be a bad poet. A good one. To listen to good music, and bad.
And drink cheap wine, expensive whisky, illicit rum,
To die young. To waste my years into old senile rebellion.
I want the world.
But here I am, sealed to a plastic chair and brightly lit screen.
Looking at the reflection of a large universe,
Dying every moment.

I want to fuck her with her hair pulled back,
Pouring peppered boiling whisky into her mouth.
Watching her groan for more, and smiling,
In all that dastardly pain.
I want her seething and rolling in thorned cotton,
Screaming for her blood to come rushing,
Through into the light,
Spurting through tiny holes in her skin.
But we as men make pacts, as women we settle,
For cheap roses and hot chocolate.
For expensive wine, satin clothes,
Plastic condoms and boring nights before a dead flickering screen.

I want me, in absolute insanity giving origin,
To new life. To let the whisky that dances on my lips,
Birth some great new verse. Great new dream.
But then, I’ll stay sealed to these old ambitions.

I want no schooling. I need breed insolence,
Bloody wreckage in all that is orderly.
I want to heat the blood of every working class drug addict,
Every tobacco smoking fool who’s sold his life to repetition.
Every alcohol consuming shit-speaking contract-making,
Hair-trimmed half-spectacled well-dressed dead body,
I want to teach them how to dance.
But then, I settle as a brother to them.

Only defeat makes me write, and I waste my wisdom,
To be ashed into the trays of self-righteousness.
Dead, already.

In those older years the words came from honesty,
Now they come from disgust,
Flavored with a strange taste for life,
To keep on living.
For what? Who knows?
The song keeps pouring away into the future,
And we remain, stuck to yesterday

We are the men and women of our dreams,
Freeing our hearts violently,
Fucking each other with our lies,
And seeing the final freedom in our bondage.
What a joke?
Life! Aha!
It takes a great taste for madness to understand it.
A madness to want nothing and yet all of it.
And then the cowardice to switch your love to that whisky bottle again.
A deep column of sweet shining gold,
In the sweet embrace of which your dreams find a marriage,
To everlasting non-happening.

People have forgotten the charm of tragedy.
To stand and behold, the subtle subliminal flavors,
Of injustice and monstrosity. The evergreen messages,
That linger beneath the ever-elusive grasps of death.
Tragedy is our friend! Our friend! She remains,
Till time frees us from whisky and women, men.

Here comes the bad news, we are all going to die.
And between the lines I see it,
The great hoax. The things I’ve wanted, the things I’ve had,
And between the photographs of red lips and heavy breasts,
Lost trips to wonderland in chemical indulgence,
Forgotten bibles and bashed folklore.
Between it all, I have found myself, and yet,
Not the self I quite expected.

Give me more drama,
Or I will fade away into the backstage of existence.
Forever left unsatisfied,
And screaming for one more breath,
One more inch of open eyes and honeyed lies,
Never to return.

Touch It

Touch It

It takes wounds to write,
Several. And if there are none,
We must hurt ourselves to create;
Through wounds the light can come out.

From what glorious futuristic vision,
Does our elation stem from?
It feels like that good feeling,
Which we chase our entire lives,
Hoping to touch someday,
Forever eludes us, cheating, escaping us.
It seems that our imagination is discontinuous,
With the heat that operates our bodies.
We have decorated ourselves with job titles,
Expensive suits and beautiful wives, husbands, whores,
Jeweled our invisible images with neat talk,
Defensive vocabulary, heavy wallets and hearts,
Spyked with the endless thirst to be emperors of our world

As we build elevators to glassy penthouses,
And leave our eyes in the basements of our dreams
We come to hear the toll bells of our honeyed hells,
Through the streets of our cities, that like garbage dumps,
Harbor and nurse the whims and what nots of our erect penises.

We are a “touch it” world, where we need to feel,
Our toes wringing in maddening glee
Every inch of our feeling selves dancing,
Every cell mourning and dying to ecstasy;
There is nothing more than that
In all our endeavors;
Our chivalry, our righteousness, our goodness,
Our poetry, our dance, our glorious revolutions;
Everything is a “touch it” thing,
And if it isn’t worth our mental erection,
We will abandon it by dawn.

Two types; one the suited, the other—the nature guy,
Both don’t know and both are right, both wrong.
They will battle till this chapter of life comes to naught

Our wounds will be ointmented with whipped cream,
Made from steel butter and urine ice.
Our world moves toward a dark time,
When hell will erect its massive edifices on our lands;
Our endeavors flourish only for entertainment,
And death comes racing; greatly motivated,
To move this wheel of time into nature’s deepest abyss

Our satin-saffron clad priests will perhaps survive this descendence,
Chanting their verses in praise of their Adiyogi.
But they would’ve missed, they would’ve missed.
Life is no great thing without the darkness,
Without the hurt, without the fear,
Without the knowledge of possible annihilation,
From a very un-enlightened perspective

I will come back,
To give you better renditions of our mysterious fates.
Until then,
Bask in sweet sorrow and drink to our demise,
Chasing the dreams that you can touch,
Relaxing in crisp and clear sensation,
In confident erection, eyes open,
Tongue tucked behind gritted teeth,
And a loudly beating heart.
We crave all things that ask and beg and plead,
Mourning, “Touch Me.”

Screamjack

Puppets in Paradise

Puppets in Paradise

Dwindled in boredom,
Aching for feminine touch,
Salted in pretense, rage, and fever,
Aching,
For all things dark under the sun

Come now, hearty one,
Who lost his laughter in the rains of time,
Who has given his humor to idiots and thieves,
Come lay by me, and rest beneath the moon,
And find your solace in a dreamless sleep

You cannot go searching for Canaan with an empty heart,
You cannot dance if meaning is your purpose
I have beaten senseless to pulp your notions,
Of grave family, ambition, thieving religious greed
I have removed the division between your Science and Love
How many years through which you will sell yourself to this prostitute?
These equations and symbols that swerve in ignorance

Kiss rain,
Before it slips like dust,
Through the dreams of the stars
Hire the scent of the wind,
Before she lays once more,
With your enemy laughing,
With another damsel in his arms,
Who you fucked last night
Dip your arms in this bloodstream,
And let it turn to a lily farm
Come leave your melancholy at my doorstep,
And run to your wife before it’s too late

My heart only aches with more lizard tales,
Reptilian nonsense about aches and lost lakes\
Can you come look into my meandering self?
A little fading dream in a colorful adventure
I have heard the fools bring color to concept,
The blasphemers with beady eyes selling their shit,
To cravers and ravers on these shit streets,
People simply seeking some last inch of archaic wonder
It won’t come with your words stupid wonder child,
Leave this place,
My whisky loses its charm with your senseless ramble

The heart seems to be a hole for treacherous things,
So come, let’s behold treacherous things
Let us glorify the sickness of our glorious race,
Let us decorate our dysfunction with inner murder,
I will teach you a new yoga. Would you dare to hold my hand?
I will bring you a breath that will tear your limbs,
Cut your tongue, burn your hair, break your heart,
Do you dare to know this magic?
These old fools sell you their ecstasy nonsense,
Let them rot in their white light and saffron-robed kindness,
Let them rot in their godly folly, their selfish understandings
I will give you the very edges of darkness,
I will kick your innards into that maddening awakening
Over there, in that dark place, you will find yourself,
On the razor’s edge, where you will lose me,
And I you
And us both, find ourselves, and never look back again

These folks don’t dare the infinity of the human being,
They will bring you to a hurtful finitude
Where your endless potential becomes an endless illusion
A thirsty search for some great money dream,
Where these losers bow down to you,
As you are puppeted on a plastic box,
Doing things that make them laugh

You derelict soul, you broken mind,
You are here to be whipped into a mold
Like butter into cake batter,
They will make you thick and tender,
But you will be dead

Who dares look into the workings of anger?
Who dares kiss him before a mirror,
And shed tears of rage for all cosmic life,
Do you remember tears? I wonder.
The world’s evil is a mere comical folly,
In the eyes of the eternal cosmic darkness
And we waste our years with the plastic box,
In drama, rage, and childish conversation
Go live! Stupid wonder child,
Bring yourself to open capitulation
No one cares for last night’s visions,
No one dreams of you. No one cares for you.
So alone, the snow comes down,
And we’re drenched again in yesterday’s dreams

We must rest now.
We’ve beheld enough treachery,
On this useless night
Ah! The stars seem to have not moved.
Things shall remain as they are,
Tomorrow.

 

artwork: Enchanted Doll – Maruhana Bachi

Breathing in the Shadows

Breathing in the Shadows

Sometimes, we all get sad. We get distraught, entirely confused and craving for some light, a little inch of understanding that might salvage us the remnants of our half-wasted lives. The various flavors of guilt steal our attention to remind us of the miserable ways we treated people, the low energy moments when we fed off the joyous memories of some ancient glory we believed to behold but had no part to credit ourselves to. Sometimes, the whole of human existence feels like a ghostly movement of flawed vocabulary and broken spirit. And then, we turn to rum, on some days its whiskey and the few days of wine. And every day, there’s beer. The liquid diet serves to cure both a broken heart and the guilt that spurns from the memory of other hearts that were broken.

The universe has a tiny irking for brokenness. It kicks itself about it and yearns for more and more brokenness. Brokenness gives perfection a glorious crown. It is an element of art that decorates the highest level of creativity with aliveness. It hosts an immense power to alchemize existence into something higher than itself. Here we are, the pinnacle of the universe’s desire—humanity. A wretched race built on the broken ideals of morality, love, and hope. Here we are, a tormented people striving for greatness and blind to the doomed quality of our ignored mortality. We are the peak of the universe’s magic, and the foundation of that peak is the broken nature of our hidden spirits of whose existence we will always be doubtful of.

Every journey into the realm of understanding—to understand oneself, others, all of it—every journey, smells of vanity and stinks of cheap beer at the end. Sometimes it’s best to say things in a way that the only implications are the things being said and no greater meanings hidden or pointed at. The power of transcending grammatical perfection and lingual decency is the only power that helps anybody break out of the shackles of their own concocted verses of rhyme, meaning, clarity, and eventual boredom.

Each alphabet, each sound, is an explosion of the one thing there is—life. Is it here? What does it mean for something to exist or not exist? What does existing mean? Do I exist? Do you, who is reading this exist? Or are you just a swirling in the cloudy imagination of dreams that I spurned yesterday. So many men want their lives to end on the shoulders of a pretty woman and on the rims of a glass filled to the brim with rare whiskey stored in nurtured barrels for a million years. I have no dreams for tomorrow. I want today. And the more I look at it, the more I see that there is no today. Today was over, many years ago. All that remains is the inklings of the little child that dreamt each day of a future that never came and a future that never comes. I like Ms. Plath, glorious and alive in heart look up at that fig tree and wish for every bit of it that it can offer, but I see it all, grown rotten and created to hoax the only thing I ever believed to be alive—myself.

Our lives become staircases into the shadows not because of sorrow that we claim to be our own, but sorrow that we claim to have shared with the tender reflections of ourselves—other people. The many masks and personas that we dance with from dawn to dusk into the weary walks with our dreams at night, we are the dreams of endless nothingness. Have you ever felt like nothing amazes you anymore? Felt like the greenness of the trees and twinkles of the stars were nothing but boring kisses from the same old mother? In the end you see, all things are robbed of charm and light, robbed of dreaminess and steaminess, robbed of life. The only fear the living are left with is the fear of who gets robbed and who keeps robbing. Neither exist.

Somewhere between this dreamed beginning and feared end, there arose this “I am”. And “I am” is the hoax that breeds this endless oblivion.

With the end of things, all that remains is the infinite potential for a new beginning. Even such a thing as glorious and eternal as poetry meets mortality. The only real thing about being alive is death—the fact that one day, all this that we know and love and cherish, hate, despise, and scorn at will be gone. All gone! And then I, my own sweet precious I that I nurtured and kept moist with attention, light, and sweetness will come to what? Nothing. I see that now my friend, and smile.

I’ll ramble till the sun goes down on his knees and begs me for mercy. I will speak till the breath flowing in my toes leaves through my nails. I will not preach but I will scream. I have no reasons for my dances in the moonlight, no causational rendition of meaning to my madness. All you have is me, and the experience that is me. All we have is the stars, to mourn and complain of our mortality.

If you aren’t afraid of death you haven’t seen life yet. I’ll leave you now, with an empty heart and a shallow hope for an eternal tomorrow. Give it up sweet tearful friend, from birth to death is one large lemon, and we swim through burning ourselves, slowly disappearing into a forgotten nothing.

 

art – The Road Through Death – the jamesstark