Sunday, January 8, 2012

On Discipline

What part of the self rules the other parts? In a proper democracy this role is always changing. We preach balance and call it a good idea. But houses are built on order. Bridges and walls are built with repetition. Mountains are climbed one foot at a time for several thousand. There can be no lenience if one is to complete the journey. There can be no wayward tendency. The blade is sharpened finest with patience.

So now I discover that unlike the nature around us, which shows us order and designation and repetition, and unlike our own bodies which are filled with structure and design, the three aspects that define us are at odds.

How we function at all...scratch that. How we achieve anything must be a matter of the heart. It must be obsession. What pulls all aspects together is more than I can define. But whatever it is, call it passion, or addiction, or insanity, or fear or desperation, it is the trump card on the enigma of humanity. It binds a man's varying faces in to one solid edifice, it binds people into stark contrast . . . we think money does this, or influence, power or leverage. Sure, people are herded, but what gives one man or group of men the foresight to conjure the mechanism to control other men; mind and body?

Why go through the trouble and how does one overcome the challenge?

It's not that control of others is the goal, merely control of the self. Should a person not delight so easily in escapism, or the company of loved ones, or indulgence of any kind. Should he forfeit a jovial existence so that he may create a lasting legacy?

What is discipline to the common being?

I can say, so far, of one path. It is through the destruction of the ego and it's replacement with an idea, that a purposeful action gains traction and a goal is pulled near. Even one's humanity may be compromised in this act of lunacy, in the tearing down of name and status and importance and desire all for one idea that will redefine the life of the being. It's not discipline, it is possession. It is being possessed.

One must give up, and not just once but repeatedly hit and dismantled. One must be torn down. It's sad but I do not the trust the easily organized, the casually right thinkers, the ones who manage their investments clinically without any temptation and the appearance of balance without any sign of the pain of growth. I do not trust the ones that say there is nothing to it. They have not suffered, they have not learned the hard way. They have never buckled beneath the weight of their needs and the anger caused by hunger. And if they have, and if they hide it, shame them.

To remove oneself from poverty means to remove oneself from the spiritual state that allows poverty and that may mean breaking down every definition one has come to live by and then to repeat that struggle with everyone that has to come to label them. True change is not just within, but without. To reshape one's existence, the idea ruling the mind must be known to be expendable. All interests, all habits, all fears, all doubts, all concerns, all connection...gone.

True discipline is dangerous. It means becoming a tool of a greater deed. It means sacrifice. The paradox: if the goal was appreciated in the former mind, what happens to its legitimacy when that mind, because of its failure to achieve it, is replaced? How does one transcend without forgetting the purpose of their transcendence?

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