Sunday, July 5, 2015

2015.07.02 — For the Love of Psyche Out Fushigis*

Yesterday was Canada Day and I managed to spend the very hot day doing something I haven’t done in over a year. I spent much of the afternoon sitting and reading. I primarily read The Inner World of Trauma: The Archetypal Defenses of the Personal Spirit. And I managed to collect a trio of odd fushigis during the day and then closed the day — it was after 11:44pm — with a musical one.

Fushigi #1 began with a comment June 30th on the TPBM (The Person Bellow Me game in the WSS). Garrison commented on self-esteem:
TPBM believes that accomplishment comes before self-esteem.
Since I disagreed, and was the person below him, I wrote:
No. Without self-esteem, what appears to be an accomplishment will be short-lived. And no outward success has the power to transform someone without self-worth, into one with it.
This is, I well know, nothing special or particularly enlightening. But I smiled when the following came up, later yesterday, in my reading of the myth of Psyche and Eros:
… Psyche with all her beauty received no fruit of her honour. She was wondered at of all, she was praised of all, but she perceived that no king nor prince, nor any of the inferior sort did repair to woo her. Every one marvelled at her divine beauty, as it were at some image well painted and set out. Her other two sisters
which were nothing so greatly exalted by the people, were royally married to two kings; but the virgin Psyche sitting at home alone lamented her solitary life, and being disquieted both in mind and body, although she pleased all the world, yet hated she in herself her own beauty (111).
The Golden Ass Apuleius. Translated by Adlington in 1566 with an introduction by Harry C. Schnur.
And, from The Inner World of Trauma: The Archetypal Defenses of the Personal Spirit, I read the following:
This is the problem of narcissism, i.e., the identification of the ego with beauty, wealth, or fame — all collective values that inflate the ego with numinous, archetypal energies that do not properly belong to it. Psyche is ‘inflated’ by everyone else’s desire (she carries their projections), but her own desire is unawakened. Her ‘spirit is broken’ and she is full of self-loathing — precisely what we have seen as the legacy of early trauma. Only her outer beauty sustain her self-esteem. Inwardly she is empty and without an authentic self (168-9).
Fushigi # 2: Yesterday I wrote a Haiku in the WSS’s Haiku Game thread, my first in quite a long time.
The new day's new dew
Blessed a thousand leaves of grass,
Bedewed the ado hair-do
Today, while continuing my research of the myth of Psyche and Eros, once again from Schnur:
Thus fair Psyche being sweetly couched amongst the soft and tender herbs, as in a bed of dewy grass and fragrant flowers, and having qualified the troubles and thoughts of her restless mind, was now well reposed: and when she had refreshed herself sufficiently with sleep, she rose with a more quiet and pacified mind, and fortuned to espy a pleasant wood environed with great and mighty trees, and likewise a running river as clear as crystal; in the middest and very heart of the wood, well-nigh at the fall of the river, was a princely edifice, wrought and builded, not by the art or hand of man, but by the mighty power of God: and you would judge at the first entry therein, that it were some pleasant and worthy mansion for the powers of heaven (115).
Fushigi # 3: I continued to read the tale of Psyche:
Then straightway all sorts of wines like nectar were brought in, and plentiful dishes of divers meats, not by anybody but as it were by some divine spirit or breath, for she could see no person before her, but only hear words falling on every side, and she had only voices to serve her (116).
Later, in the evening, I read a FB post in response to a delightful song based on the voices of women telling the weather. Here is ‘Weathered’ by Dark Orchard.

And here is a copy of the comment from Malana Orr: i wonder if this is what "voices" in somone's head would sound like…. To view the comment, join the FB Group the Signal. This was originally posted June 19th by Jim Casson.

Does that count as a fushigi? It is all a matter of opinion, of course.

But to close off this post, as I was writing this I was listening to The Signal with host Laurie Brown,
and after her introduction, which I didn’t pay close attention to, I heard the following spoken word song come into my ears around 11:27pm:

Shoulders by Shane Koyczan. (And I found the lyrics here.)
Like many, I love to look at the stars.

I love the fact that ours is just one among many.

What I love about astronomy is that our constellations tell a story.

Our constellations were born from mythology.

Mythology was our first attempt to understand the world in which we live

We put a God in everything and those Gods would give us our reasons.

Why is the sky blue?

Who chose blue?


How come men have nipples?

It’s the will of the Gods.

Why does this wine taste so good?

There’s a God in it!

And for a while, there was not a single thing that the gods could not explain.

We believed that their anger gave us lightning;

Their despair gave us rain

We whispered our desires to them, believing that their charity would sustain us.

Those Gods… were just stories.

But stories became a large part of how we learn

They burn lessons into our memories

They become a part of how we remember; we can remember almost everything,

Right down to that first unbearable bee sting

When we learned that this tiny blue marble we call the world has rules.

Rule number one: don’t fuck with the bees!

An unforgettable lesson brought to you by your memories.

I remember that I grew up loving mythology.

I remember the story of the titan Atlas, who was also the god of astronomy

The original global positioning system sending sailors safely home by telling them which constellation to keep starboard.

He taught us about the stars, and in all this, while he held up ours

Our pale blue dot.

But Atlas is caught between two different tellings of his story.

In the first, he leads a rebellion against Olympus and is then sentenced to hold the heavens on his shoulders for eternity.

In the second story, he is chosen to be the guardian of the pillars that hold up the earth and sky.

I prefer the second story.

It means that the world is not a punishment; but rather, a responsibility.

But how can just one be charged with such a burden?

How can just one be responsible for all this?

When I think of Atlas, I think of a single drop of rain

I think how unfair it would be to hold a single drop solely responsible for making the entire world clean again.

I remember how my grandmother tried to explain our world to me-

She told me a story

She said the ground and the sky, they love each other

But they don’t have arms

So rain; that’s just how they hold one another.

I began to see how the earth and sky need each other.

But I wondered about us.

In this perfect design, where do we fit?

Which piece of the puzzle are we?

Like constellations, I began to see a connection between dots and numbered my thoughts

And drew lines from one to the next.

I began to see us in the context of a bigger picture, sharpening the blur slowly into focus

We are Atlas.

I saw that this pale blue dot, this one world, is all we get.

There will be no reset button, no new operating system, no downloadable upgrade

We will not be allowed to trade in our old world for a new one with climate control or better fuel efficiency

We get one shot at this.

Dismiss all reports of second chances; we get one.

And yet we draw advances on our future as if we one day won’t be held accountable-

We will.

We are.

The human race runs toward a finish line emblazoned with the worlds ‘too far’ and wonders,

Will we ever cross it?

Have we already?

We are faced with the seemingly impossible talk.

And it’s okay to be afraid.

Our dilemma stands before us like a mountain carved into a blockade, the sheer magnitude of our problem would be enough to dissuade anyone.

How do we save the world?

We lay in our beds curled into question marks, wondering

What can we do?

Where do we start?

Is hope a glue crazy enough to hold us together while we’re falling apart?

The burden seems immense.

But we can do this.

We must take the martial arts approach to loving our planet-

Love as self-defense

Forget about the cost

There will be no other thing as worth saving as this!

Nothing more important; nothing as precious;

This is home.

All of our stories start and end here.

We are sheltered within an atmosphere that has given us every single breath we will ever take

Every monument we have ever made has come from the flesh of our planet.

Water like blood, skin like soil, bones like granite

It is not a myth, there is no debate, facts are in

Fact is, there’s never been any question.

We are facing crisis.

We dismiss the truth not because we can’t accept it, but because having to commit ourselves to change is a scary prospect for anybody.

The most alarming part of the statement ’we are facing crisis’

Isn’t the word ’crisis’,

It’s the word ’we’.

Because those two letters take the responsibility away from one and rest it squarely on the shoulders of everybody.

We are Atlas now.

But our strength will come from finding a way to share in shouldering the responsibility of turning the impossible into somehow

Somehow, we will do this.

We can do this.

We can dismiss apathy; we can reject uncertainty

We can be the new chapter in our story

We will not see change immediately

We must act in faith as the hour hand grips the minute hand and they land on the eleventh hour

We must believe like the seed that change is possible to see.

Never seize the flower, it grows knowing it must become more than what it was

It changes, because in growth, all of its potential can be unlocked.

Change is like rain, it starts with a single drop.

Just one, like our pale blue dot.

Caught in an endless waltz called gravity, we circle the sun, wondering who, if anyone left the light on.

We are constellations drawn upon the earth, we are connected to one another, we are bound.

We must behave as the arms that connect the ground to the sky.

We must try to be more like the rain.

Our stories may differ, our goal is the same:

How do we save our pale blue dot?

We act as the rain, realizing that each individual drop is as equal and important as any.

We act as one.

Now, we are many. [My emphasis.]
Good night. I've had more fushigis since beginning this post, one involving a mojito, but time precludes me from adding them all.