An Explanation for my Mother
I’m really being pressured by my mom right now to explain shit, so I guess I should. I didn’t want to show you what I was drawing over and over when I had my episode because I didn’t think people would understand, but I do now.
I was looking through some photographs of a concentration camp named Sachsenhausen which I visited just outside of Berlin. I took a photo of the inside of the pathology lab, and when I looked at it later I saw this image, an eight pointed star.
But as you can see, there’s something about that star, it’s not standing on it’s own, it has a line through it. That line is what makes the seventh and eight points, but it radiates out further than the star itself. Later on I had the picture blown up and I could see that what made this star was sunlight hitting a crack in the window, so I dismissed it. But what does it matter how it was made?
If you look at it again, what you see is a six pointed star sliced in half, which is a very apt symbol of what happened in Nazi Germany. And while it symbolized what happened in Germany and elsewhere, it also symbolizes what has happened to us internally, which is that we cut ourselves into pieces to fit something we try to believe in.
I drew this division over and over because it represents what I feel in my heart, I feel torn between two places, and I’m starting to discover I don’t have to feel torn, there is no two places, it’s all one.
So to start drawing this symbol as a perfect eight sided geometrical figure, that represents to me, healing from this violence and division, while also acknowledging that something fundamental has happened to us and that we can’t ever really return to the way it was. But that doesn’t mean something can’t be whole again.
Marion Sarain Stump believed himself to be Quetzalcoatl. Which is a pretty intense thing to believe in. But what Queztalcoatl represents was just some person, and androgenous figure by the way, who was an artist, scientist, and philosopher. And rather than act like those are seperate disciplines, he could see where they overlap. And when art, science, and philosophy intersect, you get spirituality. What spirituality is is a way to acknowledge that all of those things are interconnected, that they don’t disagree with each other at all, they compliment each other. I can talk about spirituality on it’s own, but you’ll call me a flakey dude. So instead I am trying to figure out how to show that art, science, and philosophy do compliment each other. Nothing has to be jettissoned to fit into a whole.
As a two spirited person, I have a natural inclination to bridge life and death, and it’s hard because people have made some hard and fast rules about what life and death represents. Not only that, but they’ve also made hard and fast rules about what two spirited people represent, which is apparently just kinky sex. And I don’t disagree that kinky sex isn’t part of it, but there is something else there as well. But it’s natural that people would have seperated sex and spirituality, because like I said, we do have a divisionary history, and it’s been imposed on aboriginal people especially.
Some people think that altars or medicine are just some flaky shit with some rocks and feathers, but those things have meaning to someone, they represent something, and having them organized in a place lets someone come and contemplate how life is interrelated. And the connections are not a bad thing. They seem unusual, they seem kind of scary sometimes, but there is a pattern here that’s been here for years, and yes it does have a scientific basis.
Where psychosis comes in is when someone realizes that these things can all work together, that there is a wholeness that is possible, but the world has been designed to work against that wholeness, to chop it off into manageable pieces. Schizophrenia doesn’t mean broken brain, it literally means broken heart, and that is what happens when you see that people are actively encouraging divisionary tactics and it means you might not be able to survive those people.
I think I am moving towards this idea of wholeness, I am so many different things that if I keep pretending those things can’t coexist I will surely die. And it’s frustrating because I see the way people are creating extreme violence through divisionary tactics.
But there’s a reason for that. The less people are allowed to know, the more power can be exerted, to the point that if someone is going through a healing episode they are given drugs designed to eliminate higher cognitive functioning and keep them from going back to a wholeness, because that wholeness upsets a power which is very happy keeping things the way they are.
Skepticism is good, it means critical thinking. But sometimes people are just very stupid and can’t grasp the whole. That’s okay. But if someone around you can make sense of the world, that is not a negative feature, that’s a very positive feature.
I have decided to transcend colonialism, and so I am looking at this figure of Quetzalcoatl, because it was a figure which hated blood sacrifice, it was a figure who inspired a renaissance in New World civilization. And yes, that civilization fell, but there are other reasons for that, mostly having to do with Quetzalcoatl being tormented and shamed into leaving.
What if Eden was fled not because Adam and Eve ate some fruit, but because there was something fundamentally wrong happening in Eden? The Old Testament god was notoriously difficult to please, and kept changing the rules on the people all the time. It would do things like ask a father to sacrifice his son and then yell “Psych! Just kidding.” But this one Rabbi said that the history of that book was this higher being negotiating with the people, and both it and the people learned things from each other.
These are archetypal stories and they exist because these symbols exist in the psyche, and in times of great duress people go back to these archetypal stories. Life of Pi demonstrates this really well, and if you haven’t read it I recommend it.
Skip this paragraph if you haven’t read it. It starts out with a guy trapped on a huge liferaft with some zoo animals, including a tiger. He spends most of the book trying to figure out how to survive a liferaft with a tiger on it. The whole book is told in this fashion until the end, when he tells the real story, which is that he was with his family on a liferaft with a murderer. He uses the archetypal story to make sense of his situation, because that’s what feels right to him. But in the end he can still tell you what was really happening to him.
I think watching this world fall apart, a lot of people are looking for answers, and in looking for answers people are dismissing knowledge out of hand. But that’s what the people in power want you to do. Bush is shutting down scientific research because it’s conflicting with an ideology he’s been trained since birth to advocate. We’re being told things are wrong without adequate explanations of why, and for some reason we’ve accepted this. We’ve been told psychiatric medications are good, but without hard scientific evidence and with the FDA being paid off by Big Pharma and with psychiatrists being paid off by Big Pharma and with the government itself being paid off by Big Pharma. But still when people get scared, they fall back to these pills, because it’s got advertising clout.
There are alternatives, and I’ve outlined them in this blog, and I am moving towards them. But there are still so many people who want me to go back to this old way of doing things, this divisionary way where if something thinks of unpleasant things, we just smash their brain up so they’ll stop.
Pain does end, and it doesn’t end in death and it doesn’t end because you pay some Neo-Freudian 21 000 to terrorize your kid. It ends because eventually people move towards a wholeness again, that split is healed, and life goes on.
A Mandala, besides representing something happening in Chaos theory to some particles, also represents the psyche, as Jung explained. And to imagine a oneness, for me, is to imagine a wholeness, a time before that window was smashed in Sachsenhausen.
This is a video of a sand mandala being made for the 70th birthday of the Dali Lama. It is also eight sided. So you see, I am not so crazy for looking for this wholeness through this specific geometrical figure.