Thursday, November 26, 2009

In the words of the masters on the day of thanksgiving

Do not attach yourself to any particular creed exlusively, so that you may disbelieve all the rest; otherwise you will lose much good, nay, you will fail to recognize the real truth of the matter. God, the omnipresent and omnipotenet, is not limited by any one creed, for, he says, "Wheresoever ye turn, there is the face of al-Lah" (koran 2:109). Everyone praises what he believes; his god is his own creature, and in praising it he praises himself. Consequently he blames the beliefs of others, which he would not do if he were just, but his dislike is based on ignorance.
-Ibn Al-Arabi, Futuhat al-Makkiyah (The Meccan Revolutions)

This organic, constitutional, sensory oddity, in which Albert Corde's soul had a lifelong freehold, must be grasped as knowledge. He wondered what reality was if it wasn't this, or what you were "losing" by death, if not this. If it was only the literal world that was taken from you the loss was not great. Literal! What you didn't pass through your soul didn't even exist, that was what made the literal literal. Thus he had taken it upon himself to pass Chicago through his own soul. A mass of data, terrible, murderous. It was no easy matter to put such things through. But there was no other way for realityto happen. Reality didn't exist "out there". It began to be real only when the soul found its underlying truth.
-Saul Bellow, The Dean's December

It seems there's a connection between the true subjectivity of the God concept and this notion that literality is in the surficial interpretations of reality or whatnot that are not taken into and then followed through the soul. That it is this process of soul searching, if you will, that transforms the superficiality of literalism created through some merely rational or maybe emotional process into true understanding. This is the process of subjectivification that might somehow go beyond subjectivity. Maybe. Or something.

Anyway, a day of thanks and praises to be sure, but let us not forget that the history of which this day marks the beginning of, the history of the founding of the American nation, is a history of oppression, forced removal, and the wholesale slaughter of the native peoples of this land. It is a history of slavery, disenfranchisement, and intolerance. If we are to move beyond these disastrous failings of moral being, then we must not ever forget. Forgetting the too painful truths of this history can and has and will only lead us back into the darknesses of immorality and ignorance.

But still, to thanks and happiness and blessings and good feelings and family and friends and good food and stiff drinks and all that good stuff. Go forth and be ye merry, for there is a time for all things under the sun.

Purity and impurity, sloth and diligence in worship,
These mean nothing to Me.
I am apart from all that.
Ways of worshipping are not to be ranked as better
or worse than one another

Hindus do Hindu things.
The Dravidian Muslims in India do what they do.
It's all praise, and it's all right.

It's not I that's glorified in acts of worship.
It's the worshippers! I don't hear the words
they say. I look inside at the humility.
That broken-open lowliness is the Reality,
not the langauge! Forget phraseology,
I want burning, burning
Be Friends
with your burning. Burn up your thinking
and your forms of expression!
-Jalal ad-Din Rumi, Masnawi

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