Thinking is mostly a meandering, purposeless activity. Love doesn’t think. Beauty doesn’t think. Consciousness has no thought process. In Ode to a Nightingale, John Keats wrote that “the dull brain perplexes and retards”.
Every single thought influences our behaviour. With a per diem roar of 60,000 of these entities, we inhabit a febrile state of being. The face loses its beauty. The body holds its phone.
This is a hard sell in a culture where the answer to every problem is more. But consider: Our basic biological needs are few, modest and easily met. If we have more than we need, we have too much. Craving sensory stimulation, we chase more and better experiences—more of what we don’t need. Craving is slaving. Every form of wanting, every anticipation, alienates us from the beauty and power of the inexhaustible now. Jesus to the cultivated rich kid: “Sell everything, give it to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven.” Which is nowhere other than now.
Some women, some men, share a vague but persistent sense that the world will be saved by beauty.
As we continue our journey into the Self, we discover that some of our memories have left a scar. The man who was beaten as a boy does not, cannot forget what happened. The inner journey is the path of self-acceptance. Scars and all.