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On the Ghost of Disconnection
Philosophy with a strong language warning.
I am so done with fear. I am really really done with it. And pain. I refuse. Enough.
Throughout my entire life, the hardest thing for me to deal with was situations where the people close to me—family members, close friends, or romantic connections—sided with their ghosts over healing, joy, and full aliveness. And me, in a way. By siding with their ghosts, not only did they deprive themselves of joy and betray their existential opportunity to connect—they also deprived me of the harmonious connection that my soul needed strongly to feel like I belonged. By siding with their ghosts and refusing to see their own potential for aliveness—without martyrdom or torture—they deprived me of the community and of the soul connection that I needed to spread my wings in joy. And I grieved, and grieved, and grieved. They didn’t “see” me because they looked at me through a ghost filter. And it hurt.
With years and life experience, I learned to accept that I am strong, and that I have a particular attraction to the truth, and that sometimes I see things that others maybe figure out later, and it’s lonely out there but oh well. I have developed some patience but I none the less fight for joy with tooth and claw. I think the point of suffering is healing, the point of mistakes is knowing not to make them next time because now you know, the point of confusion is reaching clarity, the point of cowardice is deciding to sure af never be a coward again, and so on. I think this way about personal interactions and civilizational trajectories. The point is always healing—but the ways to get there can greatly vary. There is a way rooted in disciplined dedication to wisdom, courage, and one’s soul—and there is a way where the amount of pain experienced has not yet been enough to stimulate the hunger for the truth in full, so it’s riddled with distractions and ghost addition, until pain.
Now, in the super long term, everything tends to get sorted out. But in each current moment, the degree of happiness depends on choices…
And because the modern society is so dysfunctional, and a lot of people live their entire lives broken, the standards are strange, and there are a lot of ghosts floating around, and a lot of motivation to side with them.
In fact, our culture often specifically rewards the act of siding with the ghosts with attractive temporary participation prizes. It does so in part due to bad collective habits and in part because it helps the Machine eat the participants. This act never ultimately works out for the individual in terms of happiness, and nature tends to punish self-betrayal with loss of control (another opportunity to straighten up one’s soul), but before there is pain, ghost parades are lavishly advertised by the Machine.
Our culture tells people to either accept the yoke of social pressure—driven mostly by broken people who have no idea about happiness—or to pretend that life is shallow, and that quality entertainment can hide the soul. Both pretty torturous choices, in my opinion.
I am particularly annoyed with the ghost of martyrdom and the ghost of disconnection because they are very much at odds with me. The ghost disconnection, for example, makes people hurt each other by withholding soul nourishment, and men are particularly prone to it. I have fought many battles with it. Cried my eyes over it. Historically lost most of those battles because people love their ghosts and sometimes are willing to die for them, even if the ghosts make them act like behavioral clones conforming to a marketing brochure on How to Be in Charge of Your Life as a Consumer King. But I pray for a miracle. And I decided to not be afraid of this ghost anymore.
We, human beings, are very mysterious, and connecting to resonant energy is a big part of what makes life meaningful. That is a fact.
When we connect to resonant energy in a healthy way, we are not alone, and we are not afraid. And the Machine then fucks off because it has nothing else to eat.
Therefore the war of the Machine on connectedness is a very old one. And what a better way to hide the resonance than to muddy it with ghost filters that prevent the people from really “seeing” each other?
The Ghost of Disconnection is a very clever and relatively modern ghost. Its marketing brochure advertises the benefits of replacing the quest for resonant energy with a quest for being an owner of things and experiences. (The “pandemic” version suggests replacing it with fear of other humans altogether, which is an extra step.)
“You must be in control,” it whispers into people’s ears. “If you connect to others, you may lose control. They may hijack you. They may take over you, and harm you, and subject you to uncertainty. So it’s much better if you are in control. If you dim your senses and your most innermost soul desires and reject uncertainty, you’ll be completely safe. If you don’t connect to anyone, you cannot lose. Ownership of things and experiences is safe. You are the King Consumer of other living forms. Here’s your certificate.”
(The “new normal” version adds that other people may also infect you and then you’ll die, but that’s merely a super neurotic variant—the pun is intended—of the original, centuries-old Disconnection marketing brochure, with the oldest version of it advertising disconnection from nature and sexuality.)
And then in due time, the ghost shows up with knives and forks to eat the Consumer King because without soulful connections, he is a wobbly naked stick. And when it starts eating him and he suddenly feels entirely abandoned and realizes he’s been played, and he cries out, “But I thought I was in control of my space and entertainment,” the ghost laughs and says, “Sorry no such thing. But I am a ghost, I cannot do anything without people’s cooperation, my job is to whisper ideas into people’s ears, and you decide. You could have at any point told me to fuck off. Who do you think owns your choices? You, perhaps?”
And sometimes this is when the healing starts. Healing always is the goal.
So I am using this moment to firmly tell the ghost to fuck off. I order it out of the door. No more.
And may we all heal.
(This speech by Sobonfu Some is a very powerful.)