Friday, December 17, 2010

Rage Against the Dying of the Light

Methods of Defiance are about to go up a notch around here. Both my desktop and laptop computers were taken out by a serious virus yesterday and the day before. The first time it happened was exactly when I sat down and turned on the computer to catch up on this neglected blog. Our phone lines were down for a week. Telecommunications at High Velocity World Headquarters dipped to an all time low. Methods of defiance and the resolve to use the obstacles as a pushing force to break on through, keep me going.

It felt personal the second time when my laptop went down. We were bussed in to the World Wide Web, the laptop and I, doing business in the cybersphere, checking out a potential client's music video when the deadly, "your computer has been infected" message showed up. The instruction from my Computer Advisor had been: turn it off immediately and disconnect it from the internet which is what I did. It felt like I'd been peacefully walking down a street when, out of the blue, the friend I was with suddenly died. Hadn't realized how much sentient life I had granted the laptop.

Feeling angry at Evil Hacker Robots who launch destructive viruses against innocent silicon based matrixes I turned on the radio to hear Rock the Casbah by The Clash playing. It fit and amplified my mood exponentially. Some meta-programming circuit kicked in somewhere that decided to search for an alternate interpretation of the song title . I came up with Rock the Casbah = Crystallize the Holy Place which put a bit of an alchemical spin on my mood.

Then I flashed on something Dub Gabriel had posted on Facebook about Richard Holbrooke's last words to his Pakistani doctor before being sedated - "we've got to end this war." It's amazing what a deathbed perspective can do for one's sanity. How much differently would the political world run if politicians were able to gain that perspective?

Voluntarily gaining and maintaining a perspective of death before one's imminent corporal demise, meaning having the sense that one's death is always there right around the corner, gets recommended in both the Fourth Way teachings of Gurdjieff and in the shamanic tales of Carlos Castaneda. If I recall correctly, Castenada called Death an ally. Death does serve as an ally for accessing more rarefied circuits of consciousness.

"Die before you die" is an instruction found in the most ancient of Mystery Schools. Aleister Crowley gives an excellent exercise to simulate the feeling of one's death and rebirth into the light in the form of Osiris, the Egyptian analog of Christ.

The fader that adjusted my anger level which had been turned down, finally died as I stepped through the Library door. It got replaced with a firm resolve to transmit these communications more frequently and regularly. Communicating methods of defiance defines a method of defiance, for me.

As Richard Holbrooke found out too late, a deathbed perspective can serve as a method of defiance against the violent mechanicality of unconscious human life. Having this perspective also allows one to enjoy one of my favorite poems by Dylan Thomas with gnostic gusto. Dedicated to Don Van Vliet, ie Captain Beefheart who just crossed over.

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rage at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Painting by Don Van Vliet.


  1. Thank you for this Oz. Interesting connection with The Clash. I have been studying into how to make the body more crystalline. Wouldn't the body be considered the Holy Place or Holy Temple?

  2. Might want to check out a book called The Seven Bodies of Man by E.J. Gold. Very concise, direct and to the point.