It Takes Power to Talk About Power

This is the aphorism I mentioned paraphrased. I could have written it; it requires some knowledge to speak about knowledge in a meaningful way. Or even; one has to have at least a modicum of wisdom to speak wisely about wisdom, its acquisition and application.

For me personally these Toltec aphorisms are by nature profound and succinct. It would be relatively easy to expand each one of them up into thousands of words.

Take the alternative meaning of power, the one of positional or political power. Until one has had a modicum of this one does not know what it feels like to wield power. One is also unaware of the temptations posed by such power. One might even get caught snogging an aide in front of a security camera.

Power of this nature cannot really be speculated upon; it has to be experienced. There are many people who might seek power but then when they have it be unable to use it or wield it. They may not like the flip side of “responsibility” which comes with great power as Spiderman alleges. The notion of power is one thing, its yoke quite another. There is another aphorism of my own writing.

“Power can do weird shit to people, man.”

When I started teaching it was before the days of PowerPoint. One used an overhead projector or old-fashioned chalk. I thought I was a smart young gun. That was until I tried to do a live chalk-based derivation of some rate laws in front of a hundred ultra-smart undergraduates. I nearly shit my pants when I had brain freeze and white out in front of the blackboard. Boy did I prepare well after that!!

Yellow chalk and black Levi’s are an interesting combination, be careful where you put your hands…

There is a strange quirk to my character that makes it difficult for me to teach other people. I genuinely have to understand it before I am comfortable teaching it. And for an INFJ that means understanding it on many levels and comprehensively. Others are able to confidently teach material without having to probe it, so far. Those that learn by rote to pass exams can teach by rote too. Because I don’t have a binary right / wrong orientation sometimes those brought up in a “I must pass exams” education system have initially found my methods lacking in confidence of delivery. They want to “know” the answer and I want to know even more questions. I want to fathom.

I had a break from undergraduate teaching for a long while. Then when I came to teach some of the material that I had done previously I started to find holes in the textbook derivations, too many shortcuts, wide generalisations. I found myself going back to square one and checking a whole bunch of stuff that I would have previously taken for granted.

There were some mistakes!!

I have had minor exposure to power back in the days of the start-up. Strange how I was more attractive to the ladies when I had board meetings and shares. At the moment in terms of material or temporal power I am powerless.

I can however say that powerlessness has its own special kind of power under certain circumstances. It takes powerlessness to speak on the power of powerlessness.

Having taught some material over a number of years, one can say that one’s understanding of that material changes with time. It is funny how a new facet and new insight can be had from the very same words. Even when we think we know, there is nearly always another level, should we be open enough to inquire.

One’s knowledge at any given time is just a snapshot of knowledge at that point in time, it is wise to acknowledge that this is all that it is, a fleeting understanding in our journey of evolution upon which there is no destination only travel.

If you think anything is absolute you are wrong.

Even the gospel of science evolves in time. There are many examples of scientists being adamant and later being proven inaccurate by the evolution of the knowledge base.

I am comfortable talking about knowledge, wisdom and power, because I have a modicum of experience of these things.

It is up to you to assess if I am bullshitting or not…

Temptations Posed By Power – Third Natural Enemy

Power can have strange effects on people, they lose the ability to ascertain right and wrong. They can get paranoid. One might see some hints of this struggle with power in Trump’s behaviour towards the end of last year. For whom are the Covid restrictions, the pleb or the powerful?

An Omen or A Dreaming Symbol?

This morning we awoke to find this being on our backdoor inside our closed conservatory.

A Bing image search suggests that it is a paon-de-nuit or a peacock of the night. The adults appear April to June, this one is pretty early.

As a dreaming symbol moths are symbols of power in the universal sense, a bit like THE Dao. It has perched on our door which is the dreaming symbol of possibility. It is still there now.

Here are some Toltec Aphorisms extracted from a book by Theun Mares, Toltec Teachings Vol. 6.

This is a “herald of eternity”.

We need to treat it with respect in case it is an Ally or decides to turn into an Ally.

The last time I had a head-on encounter with the ally my life changed irrevocably.

We shall see what transpires…

Unresolved Issues – Recapitulation

“You must recapitulate your entire life right from this moment all the way back to the instant of your birth. Otherwise, you will forever remain a clown re-enacting your folly.”

This is paraphrase of one of the key Toltec Aphorisms.

Here is my summary recapitulation map which was drawn from similar maps prepared for each year of my life.

Life can also be presented as a learning journey. My whole life began to pivot in 1995-6 around my crisis point.

I found drawing the map with key life events placed in chronological order helped me get my head round my life.  To make sense of it and then to stop trying to make sense, stop making sense.

I’ll make a wager that most people have some unresolved issues, which continue to bug them from time to time and as a consequence they have a button. Say one has resentment about a given situation and from time-to-time festers on it. All someone has to do is press this button, even by accident, and off one trots into rage and disproportionate emotive behaviour. This is because one has not been able to resolve a certain “thing” and even when one revisits it there is a tendency to indulge rather than face up to one’s own role in a situation. People blame more readily than accept their part. Until one can gain a measure of objectivity about what has transpired there will always be a button. That button could cause mild anger or metaphorical nuclear attack.

There are other versions including melancholy etc..

One can make mind-maps as a method of self-analysis.

Any button, any unresolved issue is a marker of work still to be done, which may / may not be of karmic nature. Rather than avoid them and pretend they are not there it is best to approach these buttons and try to figure out why there is a button, or a hang up. This requires above all honesty but also courage.

I heard once enlightenment loosely defined as having no hang-ups. In other words, no karma to work on.

Have you got unresolved issues?

If so, are you going to try to resolve them?