The oldest question we ask ourselves, is who we are. Yet this question is as spiritual as it is elusive to man, and very few acquire true understanding of it. This nature of ours is physiologically self-centred and just as much unaware.
There is, therefore, a requirement: to make room in the nooks and crannies of our thoughts in order to save a worthwhile idea, which would inevitably fall into a jumble worthy of a Room of Requirement – lost in a pile of junk.
To make room is to possess one’s mind or, in an anagogical way, one’s soul.
The process of organising one’s thoughts has been claimed lost, and neither yoga meditations (which we all pretend to do during this quarantine), nor prayer (to which we children of Western culture no longer devote much time) fulfil it. Our demanding studies have been alleviated, we take refuge in boredom and loneliness spreads; but it is no longer the prelude of a life in harmony with the Self.
Ultimately, our computer screens are the new icon for ‘making space’: in a few well-organised folders.
There is now an observation to be made: our ‘Ego’ has been left in the hands of others, and so our life is at the mercy of other players.
All geniuses are mediocre until they are enlightened.
We have forgotten the pleasure of freedom, autonomy and self-determination. Our bodies belong to medicine, our minds to therapy, our choices to marketing and our friendships to social media.
We are terrified of failure and stress, and we cower in vain hoping for potential futures which, to take effect, need cultured minds to be implemented. Companies do not address crises management, but rather react passively; obedient subordinates are preferred over independent minds.
Having said all this, what is there to learn? That true freedom is made up of relationships, work, passions and choices; and if these are the ‘folders’ of our ‘desktops’, we must gradually train ourselves to leave as much space between them as we need for something else: unexpected or fortuitousness events, the eureka that the enlightened mind produces when it is given the opportunity to act according to its own nature. The brain is a lazy organ: willingness is required to keep it stimulated, an initial moment of euphoria in order to enjoy the fascination that our own thoughts exercise; which, once free, react with each other, harmonise and rise to structure.
There is no greater historical lie than the romantic myth of the artist achieving his art through magical powers. Great artists work hard, constantly study, practice, make mistakes and try again. As a dear friend of mine once said: “all geniuses are mediocre until they are enlightened”, thank you my friend.
In order to reach this enlightenment, it is necessary to climb Wittgenstein’s ladder carrying the acquired knowledge on one’s shoulders and, once you have reached the top, encompass the Self, freeing it from ego and dogma in order to purify thoughts and become wholesome – a complete being.
Only then will it be possible to answer the question of who we are; and this self-awareness could greatly influence what we, as human beings, will be.