To my ear, the phrase “Lest we forget” has a chiding, slightly ominous ring to it, echoing George Santayana’s platitude that those who forget the past are condemned to repeat it. In fact, the opposite is true. Those who remember the past are condemned to repeat it. Look at the oldest cultures on the planet, how they fight with themselves and each other. And with such ferocity! In the spiritual sense, we renew ourselves by forgetting ourselves. This happens every night in the state of deep sleep. If it didn’t, we’d go mad. And we do it consciously via meditation, wordless prayer, or total surrender to what is. We even do it just before we take a bath. By ridding ourselves of convention. By getting naked.
Tag Archives: memory
Inner peace is easy. Forget everything. And from here on, don’t look back.
As a person, a mere mind/body, I’m a bundle of memories and habits, fears and desires, obsessions and aversions, likes and dislikes. This is just a temporary arrangement. I am not a carry-on.
Under the influence
Consumer culture proclaims that happiness is having things and doing things. The advertising industry has from the dawn of its existence parked its considerable haunches on this belief. But having things and doing things is the opposite of happiness. True happiness has no reason.
Nostalgia at 130 kph
There I am, rocketing along in my nicked-up C30 Volvo, belting out the chorus to Jeff Healey’s Angel Eyes: So tonight I’ll ask the stars above / “How did I ever win your love?” / What did I do / What did I say / To turn your angel eyes my way. To fully appreciate this, you have to understand that I can’t sing. The choir master at the boarding school I briefly attended asked me to sing softly. Healey died at 41 from the same cancer that stripped him of his eyesight at age two. What a mensch.