Up from all fours (ten for today)

January 3, 2017
 
Peeling back the layers, easy as waxy adhesive pleasingly pulled back from a band-aid strip, you might find underneath

the muffled amniotic sound of my mother’s fear, my father’s absence,

and her mother’s lung cancer, his two pack a day habit, 

her father’s leukemia, his brother’s stomach cancer,

my sister’s jealousy, me, smack dab in the middle, ordered 

induced, long-labored, lost virginity to a lie,

adolescent somnambulant, anesthetized

plucked peak, poised, cut in half, abandoned childhood

love, anger, pain, salty wounds and tears, trials

errors, risks and high cliff jumps, all of it, all of the skin’s striata.

 
And yet, and yet, still, it’s the new year, and 

I’m dressed in the same uniform, repressed ire,

suppressed desire, tempered expectations, doubt

longing, trust, fomenting flames, and churning torrential inward glances.

I’ve heard my ancestors’ voices mute, in a gesture, a turn,

phrases never uttered, lovingly eked from un-warmed fingers tapping. 

Beneath the eviscerated bowels, below the libido, homonidae snapping heads aside, 

peer over their shoulders, wide-eyed, and slack jawed, unsuspecting 

after all, for who would have known, how could she predict, she just up from all 

fours, awaiting death-birth, a notion less cerebral than pelvic, yet 

surely her demise and liberation? No, her gaze reveals she never conceived, never saw me coming.

 

ape-monkey/pixabay

Dark Matter, Does it?

“If the multiverse idea is correct, then the historic mission of physics to explain all the properties of our universe in terms of fundamental principles–to explain why the properties of our universe must necessarily be what they are–is futile, a beautiful philosophical dream that simply isn’t true. Our universe is what it is because we are here. ”
Alan Lightman, “The Accidental Universe”

Astronomy week, when the class and I read two essays, one about the relationships of the sun, moon and Earth–and one human to another, and one about the aim of science to figure out who we are, why we came to be, is an exciting week for me.

I wax on about the mysteries of the universe, the idea of the multiverse, Big Bang, Intelligent Design, Newton and the Theory of Gravity, Darwin and the Theory of Evolution, Einstein’s Theory of Relativity, ten or more dimensions of space, quantum theory, quarks, string theory, Inflation theory, dark energy and matter, the complete absence of a theory on how the human brain creates consciousness, and the overall pursuit of a fully coherent cosmos that adds up to us–what scientists had hoped to achieve through speculation, calculation and logic, beginning with observing natural laws, up til recent history when the Hubble deep field experiment revealed the probability of a multiverse.

The project to discover the cause and effect chain to everything had to be abandoned with thrown up arms, seemingly also abandoning the aims of the preceding thousands of years’ work. Alan Lightman writes about this interrupter known as the multiverse in “The Accidental Universe.” And when I ask students, who look at me as if I am on a 70’s psychedelic trip, what this all has to do with them, their reality right now, no one can answer–not even the ones who desperately want to answer something, anything.

Like history, the cosmos is just too far away. They cannot feel it, not even as a dream they may have had and can recall in that hazy sense of remembering a distorted reality deeply imprinted in another realm of consciousness.

“Not only must we accept that basic properties of our universe are accidental and uncalculable. In addition, we must believe in the existence of many other universes. But we have no conceivable way of observing these other universes and cannot prove their existence. Thus, to explain what we see in the world and in our mental deductions, we must believe in what we cannot prove.” Lightman

And so students interpret that faith in the unknown not as the spurs to discover what is out there but as the sigh of futility. It has so little to do with their immediate aims–surviving school, work and social media.

But it is human arrogance to require relevance to the human condition. Or that the multiverse is created in our own image, running round ourselves like the orbiting moon to Earth, Earth to the sun.

“The disposition of the universe–that crazy wheelwright–designates that we live on a wheel, with wheels for associates and wheels for luminaries, with days like wheels and years like wheels and shadows that wheel around us night and day; as if by turning and turning, things could come round right.” Amy Leach, “You Be the Moon”

I miss the eloquence, enthusiasm, sincerity and passion of this scientist to make the real imaginable and the imaginable real:

Improbabilities

  
I don’t believe everything happens for a reason. I subscribe to chaos. I believe in the randomness of the universe as movement, collision, coincidence and correspondence. I believe in an ontology of chance. Cause-and-effect is real, but we humans are not always accurate tracers of chains. We are a lazy species, thus the teleology of throwing-up-our-arms-at-space with a surrendering shake of the head and declaring that the proof of the universe’s supporting life lies in our being here–the best science has to offer after unsuccessfully tracing the mathematical and natural laws to their inevitable ends in hopes of figuring out everything, just everything. We theorize origins and evolutions. We interpret from variables of experience, anatomy, observation and subjectivity. I do not trust absolutes. I believe in intention and will, though not necessarily in intended results. Thus speaks the rational mind of me.

The smoke and whispers, the mystery of which intuition is born, lean into those uninformed leaps of faith inside an unthinking gut and take me in another direction: a life unfolds according to its makeup, an already-has composition that merely needs room to spread out and manifest. Choices come from inherent brain patterns in conjunction with pathways generated in reaction to lived experience. This orchestrated tapestry of evolving human is the carpet unrolling from birth to death, a definitive starting and ending point that always ever was because of whom I was born, when and where. In that way, choices logical and whimsical alike, are prefigured, patterns predetermined even in their ensuing alterations and modifications. A determinism I am not comfortable with somehow associates the mystery of the inexplicable to me–my fuzzy teleology.

And the Wall Came Crumbling Down

 

 
The wall shook, rock crumbles beginning to fall even as the creature living underneath and behind it began slowly emerging, escaping the barrier. The image of my own making would take years to shatter.
 

credit:  villagevoice.com