“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover is yourself.” ~ Alan Alda
Don’t believe them, when they tell you something’s wrong with you.
The world is full of psychopaths, sociopaths, killers of revolutionary creativity. They’re lying to you when they tell you you’re a broken toy, so they can put you in a box with all the other broken toys, where you won’t cause any trouble by asking questions, wearing hats or lighting the curtains on fire.
Insanity is a privilege when it’s not aborted by the other, more common forms it takes in the world. If you see your madness through to its end, you will realize that true insanity has been re-branded as normalcy.
You will fall on your knees at the altar of your greater self as you come to realize what you really are. You will be appalled by the ordinary life. You will hear your own song for the first time since you left the spheres of heaven, and will worship no truth but your own.
“Some people never go crazy. What truly horrible lives they must lead.” ~ Charles Bukowski
These people, who have been given status because they’ve gotten with the program are not there to help you become free.
They will offer you a chemical strait-jacket or some other kind of cage and promise you release from your pain but, pain is just what you need to become your true self. It is an electrified fence, a vast virtual landscape that stands between you and all that is divine. It is designed to shock you awake. Don’t let them take it from you.
Consider your depression, your bi-polar disorder, your DID, your ADD, your PTSD rites of passage. They may feel disorderly, but they are not without order. In fact, they are perfect road maps designed to bring you through your shadow valley and into the promised land.
And you orchestrated it. Aren’t you clever? Aren’t you brilliant? And of course, they’ll tell you it’s not real. They’ll tell you you’re too sensitive, that your brain malfunctions, that you don’t know the difference between reality and non-reality.
When you are tempted to believe them, look out at the ordinary world. Does it seem sane to you? Does it seem sane to you to live in a world where chemical companies are making your food, putting frog genes in your tomatoes?
Does it seem sane to you that when you look up at the sky the sun is a faint, fuzzy, globe struggling to be seen through layers of wispy silver clouds that emerge in long lines from the assholes of military aircrafts?
Does it seem sane to you to that a faceless corporation dictates — directly or indirectly — when you can eat, sleep, smoke, shit as you sit for two hours in traffic, heat rising in waves from cracking pavement on your way to the factory line where you put screws into the backs of barcode scanners all day long?
Who would want to be sane in a world like this? Who would want to be satisfied, compliant, accepted here in the nuthouse of now?
Your inner pain is the chaos of the world. The war is inside you. The enslavement is etched into your cells. The silver skies are your pain blocking your never-dimmed, bright and shining soul from view. The distance between who you think you are, and who you really are is a wasteland of lies.
Only you can create clear vision from blindness. Only you can pluck the diamonds from the singed earth. Only you can slash your way through a thousand miles of mazes: a techno-magical obstacle course filled with wizards and riddles, designed by you and for you to make your smallness feel real.
How else could you be a victim? How else could you show up to fold shirts at the Gap? How else could you know despair? How can the sun see itself but through the humble eyes of earth? How is value understood without contrast?
If you’re not traumatized by the ordinary life, you are already dead; you are a goat about to be sacrificed to the lion, surrendered on your back, waiting for him to take his fatal mouthful. What have you left to be scared of? What can you risk that is not already at stake?
Here are some declarations to help you reclaim your brilliant and unique shine:
1. I am willing.
I am willing to stand on the precipice of the greatest adventure of my inner life, and liberate all that I am from the lonely, dark, forgotten places within me. I am willing to risk all that I am for all that I might become. At least then, I will know. I am willing to leap madly into my destiny, and meet myself where the worlds collide in celestial fields of glory and redemption.
Willingness is all that is necessary to begin. You don’t need to pack anything else. You will become determined as you go, entranced by the infinite mystery of yourself. You will become invested as you find out what you’re willing to fight for. Metaphorical blood will spill, resurrections will occur, immaculate conceptions will happen, and points of no return will be passed.
You will become increasingly pregnant with the light of yourself, and consumed with meeting the Christ-child in your belly. You are living the story that creates and dispels all myth, all religion, all the forces that bind heaven and hell to the sidewalks.
2. I am not the labels cast upon me.
They are like spells from small men with big hats waving sticks. I am greater than these. No spell within which I do not believe may hold power over me. I define who I am. I define what is right and what is wrong with me. I cannot be labeled. I transcend labels. There is no language that can hold me, no lie that can bind me.
“Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner.” ~ Lao Tzu
The mind is shaped in large part by words. It is a meta-computer, referencing a lifetime of programming: tribal programming, cultural programming, national programming. It absorbs everything it sees and hears: on television, in church, at the flea market, in those little welcome packets you glance over when you take a job at the big box store, on the radio playing from a tinny speaker in the dressing room.
Your depression, your anxiety, your internal screaming is just a sign that the truth within you contradicts what you have been downloaded with, and the hospitals will tell you it’s the blue screen of death. And they’re right, it is. It’s the death of the android self, the death of “Yes, Sir,” the death of time cards.
3. The meaning of my experience is only that which I assign.
It is up to me whether I use my experiences to run towards or away from my true self. It is up to me whether my pain is a beautiful and ingenious means to sift for gold through many miles of river bed, or just a cruel prank played by sadistic gods who get off watching me cut myself and complain.
“To change, a person must face the dragon of his appetites with another dragon, the life-energy of the soul.” ~ Rumi
If it benefits you to believe you’re crazy, then by all means wear your tin foil hat to the grocery store. If you are comforted by having your personal responsibility stripped from you, shivering outside while the hard cold rain whips your naked flesh, then you have chosen to resign yourself to begging for crusts of bread and pennies from heaven while the vast riches of your true nature stay in a cave, guarded by a dragon that only you can slay.
As in every hero’s journey, you will find the resources you need along the way, so don’t worry if just yesterday you were a peasant sheering sheep. You’ll remember where you left your dragon when the moment of truth is upon you. You will remember all kinds of magnificent things you’ve forgotten.
4. I am the expert of my experience, and the only authentic expression thereof.
There is no oracle with greater insight than I. No one knows this terrain better than me. I lead this expedition and only the loyal, the courageous, the compassionate bearers of lanterns and secret soul scrolls may accompany me. Everyone else, step aside; you would not survive here.
“If I had not created my own world, I would certainly have died in other people’s.” ~ Anais Nin
Don’t be afraid of the wreckage. Don’t be scared of the dark. You are the dark, too, and in the beginning only the tiniest spark will light your way. It’s in your belly.
You will see almost nothing but the tips of your shoes and you will straighten your ankle and sweep your foot out in front of you to be sure there is ground there, before you move: just one step. Sometimes, just a half step. And somewhere, in a world you can’t yet perceive, your greater self will step toward you 10,000 times.
You will learn to become decisive as you come to realize what’s at stake. You will find superpowers you didn’t know you had. You will pick up rings of power and rubies and emeralds that you steal back from ogres and sorcerers and creatures your ancestors wrote myths about. You will use them later to pay back the gods of karma or to cross the River Styx with Charon. Stay long enough to be reborn.
You will bump into your selves again and again, and most of the time you won’t recognize them: they will be great glowing angels, they will be raving red-eyed demons, they will be priests and will be star-dusted. You will fall out of time and space. You will tumble down rabbit holes inside of rabbit holes.
You will do impossible things. You will summon your weapons from air so thin no flesh could survive it. You will make things disappear and reappear. You will scream, and topple cities. You will cry and the mothers of mercy will come to you when you are on your knees, begging. You will shape a new earth this way. You will write your plans here, so you can live them later.
5. The only way out is through, and I am predestined to win.
Even though it doesn’t look that way, the game is fixed in my favor. The out-there, is in here, and I am the Kali of this microcosmic universe. I destroy and create. I am creator and created. The resolution of opposites happens here, on these hallowed grounds within me.
“I am not afraid. I was born for this.” ~ Joan of Arc
We think that it’s normal to be five-sensory. Things are simpler that way. In five sensory reality, we participate in a shared illusion, and it comforts us. What we see makes us wretch, but when everyone is covered in vomit, it’s en vogue.
When your spirit starts speaking to you, everything within you that is anything else feels it first, and in great chaos it will rush at you, and form a wall of fire through which you must pass.
You have been cryogenically frozen and you are thawing already. The bondage of your encasement in ice is melting away leaving you, perhaps for the first time, with a choice. To you, it may seem like many choices, but really there is only one. One glorious, blazing choice. One moment of unspeakable courage.
If you think there has to be more to it than labor and alcohol, then say Yes. If you believe you are destined for something great, then say Yes. If you know — and you don’t know how you know — that somewhere inside you is something that has no master, then say Yes.
Say a prayer. Write your will. Have an adventure. Bring an angel with you. Find God in the fire. Be changed, from soft and impressionable clay. Get reshaped on the way by the swords and the teeth and the claws of your inner enemies, and when you are perfect, you will emerge with a story to tell, and little left to fear. You will have discovered the wizard behind the curtain.
The world will still fear you because you will have found the eternal within yourself, and that which is eternal cannot be bullied, cannot be brutalized, cannot be stolen from and cannot be manipulated. This is not the state of the average or normal person, but by now, you’ve let go of normal in exchange for something of far greater value.
And you will know this. You won’t think it, or intellectualize it or wish it so. You will know it, and your very existence will be an impossible rebellion to suppress.
“The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.” ~ Joseph Campbell