On Nurturing the Inner Life

The military utilizes video games to recruit “gamers” as drone pilots. A video game addict can drop out of high school to enter the military as a drone pilot, and, by the age of 19, be training a squad of other gamers. War as entertainment.

To be a deep thinker in such a world is to sit on the sidelines; better still, to ignore the Machine, to have contempt and disdain for the preoccupations of “the masses,” no longer hoping to discover like-minded individuals to engage in conversations with. Eventually, grasping the reality of this human zoo, no longer invading anyone’s personal space … just out of respect for that realm between their ears, knowing that each of us is isolated in a dimension of perplexity, which is incommunicable … maybe the exchange of a quick glance in the eyes … that’s it: mental independence. Stranger in a strange land in an alien heat.

How does one get through the day? How to face the abyss? Maybe spending some time in a jail cell or in a psychiatric ward or in a welfare motel or just on plain old universal economic house arrest forces the prisoner, inmate, dolester, or poor devil to fall back on the inner life. Hell, even the ultra rich and dangerously famous have to face this very same abyss!

When there is nowhere to go, nothing to do, and no one to know … when enduring existence … when an individual’s own inner voices are the only company, sometimes these inner voices can surprise us. The inner realm can make us laugh, can help us wonder, can invite us to experience awe and mystery, and can even allow us to contemplate the miserable and nightmarish bravely, without flinching.

Who can instruct anyone else on how to endure existence, on how to live? What’s the point in doing anything at all? This is the point: there doesn’t have to be a point. You stay alive, and still you will die. To be introspective, contemplative, reflective, full of thoughts, is to have access to the interior universe. Actually, the interior is all there is … it “reads” being-in-the world and paints the landscape with the imagination.

Using the imagination, I wonder if I might invoke the Cognitive Unconscious as some kind of mythological oracle and inner guide. That “unconscious” is the same dimension that our ancestors called “The Spirit World”. It’s all in the imagination. Everything, from our dreams to our day-to-day reality – all memories to be “in the past” – all consciousness of the so-called objective external material world … it’s all in the imagination.

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