Every so often Facebook's consistently irritating time capsule reminders can turn up a forgotten gem.
I wrote this, now bereft of any context, five years ago on the much anticipated solstice: December 21st, 2012.
2012 was millennialism for the "New Edge", the "consciousness culture" I found myself in at the time (and still do, though the edges of what we call culture and counter-culture are so blurred as to be less useful A dichotomy these days). I didn't believe in any literal spiritual ascension or world transformation occurring on that specific date, especially with the dubious origins (mis)interpreting Meso-American calendrical systems, but I was open to the possibility of an inner, esoteric penumbra of light and dark. Aeons shifting on the level of archetypal reality.
I look back at this piece of writing—which came through me like a zap of lightning!—and can't help but feel that it is, in some strange way, prescient.
The past five years have been like riding out a wild thunderstorm, or clutching the Earth as the grounds swell, the mountains quaking, as Titans stir beneath our feet. 2017 saw the United States backslide into flirtations with ethno-nationalism, fires burn—achingly, burn and burn—in California, and we as a collective society seem all too ready to disregard the massive effort needed to steer the ship of civilization clear of the Anthropocene.
So, again, I ask, and perhaps we all ask this essential question that cannot be abandoned—where is the collective transformation?
We could consider that transformation requires apocalypse: literally, an overturning. Cracks in the Black Iron Prison burst forth as new lines of flight. Hairline fractures splinter off in fractal delight in unborn seasons, glimmering potentialities.
In the tension between novelty and decay, evolution and ossification, consciousness research has boomed through the meteoric rise in psychedelic legalization (M.A.P.S. and the treatment of war veterans for PTSD). Pop culture and occulture merged into new hybridizations of High Weirdness (just see the film adaption of Annihilation coming out in February 2018). Cryptocurrencies light up experimental possibilities of distributed economic systems in the shift from industrialized nation-states to noetic polities of rhizomatic planetization. Grassroots movements and ache for a progressive, re-organized left that speaks to these new sensibilities are integral to our survival.
When you break the old, the new has a place to grow, and it would seem the old has no problem breaking down these days. So we must be present here and "do the work", hold the important conversations, and bring the light down with us into the dark.
"You tumble forwards, down, down into the world," I wrote five years ago, in some spurious trance of daemonic impulse, "not knowing what radiance you have brought with you." Message in a digital bottle, intended to be read on the other side of 2012 when the brittle New Age gloss has been sloughed off—"let the painted glass fall away"— and we find ourselves standing amongst all the raging fires of the world.
December 21st, 2012:
Now go, go down deep into the Earth and do the work. It is called of you in winter to brew soul-crafts and potions, tinctures and alchemies of smiles to possess the living in their forgotten state.
Go down into the world and reap the good work, the work that beckons and calls and rewards little immediately, but always, always is working towards some new alchemy.
This is the work you must do. All the while your heart will chip against the painted glass to beckon the light, and call down the daylight.
So go down, down, deep into the Earth. And know that the sun would not abandon you, would you pierce though in a single moment and let it pale the crypt with light and let the green life grow even here.
Let your trembled hands steady, and your sweat testify to the groaning that takes place in your soul.
You tumble forwards, down, down into the world, not knowing what radiance you have brought with you, snagged in your coat and irreplaceable in your eyes.
So go down, and let the painted glass fall away. In all these ways the soul of the world creeps into the heart and trips time into the abyss; now here and evermore before invisible light.