Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Eros / Consciousness / Creativity

Eros, as defined by Wikipedia (an awesome online user-created and maintained encyclopedia) has several meanings. In addition to "romantic or sexual love" it means "the desire to create life" -- it "favors productivity and construction" and "battles against the destructive."

Eros love might best be defined as promoting well-being by affirming that which is valuable or beautiful (Thomas Jay Oord).

I've been thinking about Eros a fair amount lately -- most specifically as it pertains to consciousness and the creative principle. Let's define the creative principle as being the crystallization that occurs at the intersection of consciousness and...well, I was about to write "matter and energy" but since old Einstein proved matter and energy are two aspects of the same thing, I'll say it's the "crystallization that occurs at the intersection of consciousness and energy."

Which is to say, consciousness and energy come together to create everything that is.

Which thought leads me directly into mulling how my consciousness helps to create everything that is. Certainly, my consciousness is merely a drop in a vast sea (consider the Sufi advice "Give up yourself, O drop, and gain the ocean!"), and that vast sea surely a mere drop itself in the vast Sea of Seas. Even so... I'm not trying to steer the entire multiverse from here inside my cranium -- but I do not doubt that the energy of my consciousness interacts with everyone and everything with which I come into contact.

The ancient Celts (and those moderns who are in touch with their spiritual roots) saw the world and everything in it -- animate or not -- as alive. As my kinsman and fellow walker between worlds Frank Mac Eowen writes in his poem "The Old Celtic Way of Seeing": The old Celtic way of seeing / is perceiving and relating / to the world / as a matrix / of living energy." Of course the Celts were hardly alone among the ancients in this basic orientation to the world around them.

In opening my mind to this relationship, the entire world takes on the energy of Eros for me. I consider the world around me as the world considers right back at me. An energetic relationship opens and the more conscious I am of it, the stronger the flow becomes. It becomes an erotic relationship. Not sexual per se, but in the give and take of energy it is an erotic, creative act. If a woman sits naked on a bed in her room alone, she is a naked woman on her bed alone in her room. Put someone who appreciates naked women in the room with her, and !zap! the energy begins to flow. There's no flow until there's someone else in the room. The energy has to travel -- it's not alive and therefore useful until it moves (just like electrical current in a circuit). Without flow, there is no life.

If I consider the world, its stones and streams as inanimate, I am cut off from it. If I look at a tree and see firewood*, or consider birds only when I find their poop on my car's hood, I am divorced from the world. If I disregard the other animals in my neighborhood (skunks, coyotes, deer, bears, possums, foxes and otters to name a very few) then I am living in a world bled of its riches. Consider the poverty of life experienced by zoo animals. Depressing, no? And it is a short, short step from ignoring all this to opting out of any meaningful relationship to the people around me. When all the world's just a resource to be exploited or an annoyance to be shut out, well the people in it become commodities and/or irritants.

No -- to be truly alive is to be aware of all my surroundings and of the creatures therein. True riches are everywhere around me, if I know how to look. To paraphrase the movie "The Abyss": "you have to look with better eyes."

As all that exists is created in observing and being observed, all existence and being consists of an act that is inherently erotic. When we shift our consciousness out of the overstimulated yet mundane world of so-called modern culture and look with the same eyes our ancestors used, we become adepts of erotic consciousness -- lovers of the world and those in it. We become co-creators instead of consumers -- acting in true relationship to the world and those around us, acting in a collaborative way to literally make and re-make the world -- active and not passive: getting into the juice and coming alive instead of letting life happen to us. We move back into our true place in creation -- the place in which we were created to be, in right relation to the world and each other; we return to a place of equilibrium. And as much illness -- physical and psychological -- is created by imbalance, we are healthier for it. And so is the world.

* (with regard to seeing trees as nothing more than firewood) Don't get me wrong: we need to be warm when it's cold outside -- I'm going to spend the weekend felling some trees and making firewood for the Winter. But I'll be keenly aware of the life I'm taking and humbled thereby, which is to say conscious about it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I fully enjoyed reading that, brother. <3