The kind you’re born with, the kind you choose, the kind that teach Catholic school
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The universe story isn’t just about human beings, but also about trees, for example. You can’t fully understand trees if you understand only their hundred-year life cycle. You’ve got to go back to the very beginning of the universe. Now, that’s what I mean by cosmology as empowerment. When we realize that the world we live in today is a creation of an energy and power that is that deep and that old, it helps us get away from the idea that we’re the managers of the planet and know all about what’s going on here.
When, by some act of grace, the lines we think are there dissolve, something else appears, something timeless and rich, an intermediate zone, languid and latent, the lushness of something about to be and in no particular hurry to make it happen. The boundary between physical and spiritual melts, and we see that one is always infused with the other.
I’m talking about time not existing. Time as a continuing thread that unravels in an endless progression, linking all events together while remaining independent of them — that doesn’t exist. Sequence exists. Rhythm exists. But not time. This reification of time is related to the notion of mass production and division of labor. Tick, tick, tick, as you said: Identical seconds. Identical people. Identical chores repeated endlessly. But when you realize that no two occurrences are identical, and that each moment is different from the moment before, time simply disappears. If events are always novel, then not only is routine impossible, but the notion of time is meaningless.
At thirteen minutes, fifty-five seconds chart time, the thought entered my mind to burn the leaf. I didn’t verbalize the idea; I didn’t touch the plant; I didn’t touch the equipment. Yet the plant went wild. The pen jumped right off the top of the chart. The only thing it could have been reacting to was the mental image.
On the nineteenth of April 1989, one of the huge gun turrets on the battleship Iowa blew up, killing the sailors who were manning it. Debate about responsibility for the explosion continued long afterward, but lost in the emotion of the tragedy was a curious aspect of the story.
Our new false god is the idea that we can order the future. It’s a secular messianic view of a world in which there will be no death, no sickness, no stupidity — a world we will have totally ordered by the force of our own intellects and technology.
My theory is concerned with self-organizing natural systems and the cause of form. The cause of all these forms, I believe, is organizing fields, form-shaping fields, which I call morphic fields, from the Greek word for form. I’m saying that the forms of societies, ideas, crystals, and molecules all depend on the way previous ones have been organized. There’s a kind of built-in memory in the morphic fields of each thing.
The root of our contemporary industrial pathology is what I call a deep, hidden rage in the Western world against the human condition. We are devastating the planet in an orgy of destructiveness. We refuse to accept anything in its natural state.