I take it as a given that most people in the West live on a flat Earth. With no value for the nuances of language and mathematics which have engineered their technology, or the cultural capital of their Christian history, they are unable to sustain the emergent reality they have inherited from the commitment of their ancestors, let alone build on it. They are objects, and their introspection is devoted to understanding and perfecting themselves, and others, as objects. The spiritual dimension of their lives is reduced to ideological conflict, because the spectacle of their finitude is not immediately present, but filtered and polluted. Their suffering is unique, renegade, and blind.
In the month of Sagittarius, for the Sun has only hours left in Scorpio, you have the time to indulge your imagination, behind your sunglasses on the beach, with the chatter and laughter of children confirming the safety of the shallows, and if you join with Sun and Moon in discarding the intellect, you may be able to imagine who you would be without human rights and victimhood, neighbours and argument, retirement security and parental influence, cultural cringe and the tall poppy syndrome, political correctness and cognitive dissonance, and any other idol which springs to mind before which you worship the self-enclosed and permanent utopia to which you pay your weekly subscription.
However, for the imagination to free us from a prison, it needs to do more than place us outside. It must create a context for the prison, and for this you might need an entirely new language. We might call this the language of extrospection, since it is the reverse of introspection. Instead of regarding the interior of an object as a subject, it enters the object’s exterior as its subject. Perhaps such a reverie might voice a song of change to dissolve the permanence of your victimhood. Is the situation you have been intent to define really intolerable? The lineaments of creation are hidden in thunderous surf, the sun-parched wilderness, its distant low hills, waterholes, trees and sky. Why are we seduced by healing from a celebration of the wound creation stamps us with? Because such consciousness might be the aura of death?
Extrospection is a peculiar type of consciousness. It is not a tool of social control with evolutionary benefit for group survival. It is not emergent in a cultural sense. It is akin to the intimate connection farmers have to the land, First Peoples have to country, poets have to language, and medical practitioners have to health, not disease. It is like introspection, in that it is a consciousness of consciousness, but the self which is conscious of itself in extrospection has no boundaries: what inspects itself is an artefact of the timeless process of creation, the universe created by your understanding, at once subject and object, eternal and finite. A meditation on change, it is the landscape of one’s absence, an unfolding of the immanent death of emptiness.
Imagine your life lived at the dawn of humanity, emerging from the refuge of the tropical forest, and increasingly confident of your group’s capacity to repel predators, but now sleeping all night in pitch blackness under a canopy of stars so vividly ablaze you could reach up and touch them. You know them. They are all dead spirits flooding up from the underworld to watch over you while you sleep. They are beautiful, but terrible too. They saturate your bodily awareness. You live in death.
If we are to find equanimity in the extremities of awareness, not merely escape them as utopians do, we must address the question the stifling trappings of the mediocre class mask. What is my country? How does what I’m conscious of respond to my consciousness of it? What, if anything, will survive of my consciousness in its death? Not in what memory will I be remembered, what mark on the world will I leave, questions of the living dead, but what mark, what miracle will I take, what bubble will reality burst?
The field of archaeoastronomy is not properly the province of top-down thinkers, and certainly not researchers who have not witnessed an heliacal rising or the stars of a very dark sky. Most research I’ve read focuses on the emergence of the understanding of eclipses, planetary movements, seasonal correlations and the utility of stars for navigation, and this might be expected from searchers working backwards for the roots of what we think we know. I believe research would better serve a quest for what we think we don’t know, such as the impact of the Milky Way on our distant ancestors, which indefinably we have inherited in our cultures in ways we no longer recognize.
Right and left: what do they mean to you? Yes, besides left and right hemispheres of the brain and opposite sides of the body, lateralized information processing, and what several generations of scientists taught, that language was exclusive to the left, etc.. Where did some First Peoples of Australia get the notion that the cardinal direction of language was the West? Where did astrology pick up the idea that the West is social and the East is personal? Do metaphors of East and West have something to do with rising and setting, or with left and right, or both? Perhaps it’s not only astrology but evolution and emergence that a bit of confirmation bias gets into.
As our ancestors migrated northward out of the tropics of Africa, what impression do you imagine their ancestors created, and where in the mind, when every one of them lined up in the West, and at other times in the East? Was it left and right which made it meaningful? Or East and West? What can you imagine the First Peoples of South America, Southern Africa and Australia made of the migration of left to West as they faced natural law, the Sun? Why did they go south? What was different about them? Was it a story the galaxy was imprinting on their imagination in Crux or the Emu in a language as yet to perfect itself when that stellar region was high enough to see? Are they different, people who find West right and left? What do you imagine happens in migrants from North to South today? What would you do? Go back? Build a home facing south?
You see? The galaxy we evolved in wants to leave its mark, even as it is dying to the naked eye no doubt.