Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Oral tradition.

A long time ago I set out to study an 'oral tradition'.

To get the teachings
To see how such a system works

One must become an 'insider'

Not an easy thing to do.

The locations are explicit
Temples and prayer
Ritual and rules

These things are easily located

But the path to the secrets
Is self-made.

A mixture of doing the basic practices
Being seen to do them.

And asking the right questions- of the right person.

Oral traditions are often secret...

As was said of the Eleusinian mysteries
 'What is done in secret here, is common knowledge in Crete'

Yet secrecy
Dislocates what happens in the real world

To another place.

Reality slips
Creating another dimension
Preventing, disrupting

It also creates a bond between those who were there
Separating them from those who were not.

I cannot call it good or bad

But it is false...

After three years of working hard to become an insider
Doing the right practices
Taking the right initiations

I continued to compare and contrast
To notice themes and fragments
Elements from other philosophical systems

I continued to put ideas into order

I fell in love

Our relationship was secret

I became pregnant
I left....

Go back nineteen years...

There were many shoes outside the temple,
There were many people wanting to find their own pair.

The air was full of ice, the sky was black as tar, the ground hurt my feet.

I couldn't find my shoes!

And other things were going on in my mind,
Shoes wouldn't un-hinge me this much normally.

I found my shoes

Were they laces or buckles?
I wish I could see them even now.

As if I could re-enter the time and tell myself to Get OUT!

There was a bright light,
Low down, almost horizontal.

I lined myself up so that I could use it to see what I was doing.

And then he moved so that the light vanished

I was cold
Nothing worked...

"You are blocking my light" I said.

But I said it wrong
Let the pain get into the words..

He took offence
"How can it be your light".

I was too sad to answer.

Shoes done
I followed him

He walked in front of me
I wanted to lag behind
To vanish
Fall into the darkness.

His brother waited for me.
We chatted as we walked along the track..
He knew that I hurt
I was grateful..
No secret.

Perhaps, instead of walking
I should have turned and run...

The problem with this memory is
No date stamps affixed.

Was I pregnant?

I remember my fake fur coat flapping around my legs in the wind

Everything tasting of tears.

I don't remember time.

All an eternal now...

If this memory was a dream
I would sit back warm and safe

Write the dream down

And in writing
Meanings become clear.

But at the time
When I was there there..

Reflection and understanding could not take place

No space.
In that cold, hard darkness.

Accepting that someone does not love you
When when they say that they do..

Isn't easy.

Even now I'm no clearer about the truth of the matter.

Truth is
I was rejected
I was overwhelmed by feeling not good enough.
I saw myself as a walking symbol of weakness

At the time
I was made of splintering glass.

The images and words accumulate
Formed a critical mass.

But too slowly.

I didn't dare see
Could only feel
How the outer cold had found resonance within.

I should have run...

How could I run from something that didn't exist...