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On the Tricky Ghost of Joylessness
A look at the ghost's marketing brochure and where it belongs.
Let’s talk about the centuries-old battle against joy, sexual expression, and unmonitored human contact. What we are seeing today is technologically new and politically brazen—but the roots of it are in that same old tradition of showing up with a not very tempting religious proposition, taking control of people’s physicality, and stealing their property in the process. (That Atlantic story, for example, compares “digital companions” with Japanese Shinto deities. The nerve!)
Before I finished writing this story, I did an experiment. I asked myself, what if I am wrong about all of this? What if I am wrong about the shot? What if this is all innocent, and I can relax, and do the deed, and trust the government, and just get on with my life like it’s 2019? God, that felt so good. But as I was chasing the good feeling of innocence, I remembered that there is no 2019, that they are checking the papers everywhere, that they’ve just promised to ban half of the population from restaurants, flights, and producing an income, that they are firing doctors for speaking up, and that they are… in this physical world that I live in, they are talking about a future with next to no human contact? Wait, what happened to people in that scenario? Why are the kids in that plot being raised by computers? What happened to people?! Hell, I just posted the magazine covers myself! And if I were making a court case, how would I be able to do away with that evidence of intent to change the very fabric of life? So maybe something is really happening?
Let’s talk about the spiritual root of it.
We are dealing with the ghost of joylessness.
The ghost of joylessness is super stealth.
It doesn’t care what you do—whether it’s science, music, business, making breakfast, or having a relationship—as long as you do it without a spark, without inspiration, without paying homage to life’s exiting mystery and the dignity of your own spirit, the ghost can eat. It’s a vampire.
Just like an intestinal parasite who siphons the nutrients away from you and sends you toxic signals that your brain perceives as your own food cravings, the ghost of joylessness siphons your soul’s powers away from you and sends you signals that your brain interprets as your own choice to defend your right to live in a predictable manner, without joy.
As long as you are confidently subdued—and nothing inside you wants to celebrate but instead you want to just get through the day, get things done, and go to bed—the ghost has you just where it wants you to be.
It gets you if you are poor and it gets you if you are rich. It really doesn’t care—as long as you diss the spark.
It gets you by taking the irrational spark out of work, and it gets you by taking the irrational spark out of human interactions. As long as you are subdued, the ghost is feasting.
It flattens everything. It makes everything or-di-na-ry.
It likes it when everything in life is linear and transactional first, and spontaneous and human never.
This ghost is terrified of the free flow of creative energy, and when it sees it, it starts creating mistrust, martyrdom, discomfort, fuss, or guilt—depending on the person’s peronality and vulnerabilities.
“Remember that thing that your soul knows and wants? Well, it’s not real. Forget what excited you as a child. Those confident people living in the gray scale, those clear-contour people who are following the rules—they are real. You, on the other hand… do you even feel real? No? That’s because are not. Don’t even try to remember joy!”
Again, it doesn’t really matter to the ghost what you do and what you believe in—all it cares is that you remain subdued, that any attempt to tap into your soul gets interrupted. All it cares is that you your existence has nothing to do with anything spiritually significant.
In the past, the ghost slipped the concepts of Sin and Inalienable Guilt into people’s minds to divorce them from their spiritual home. (God has never looked down joy or sexuality, it’s what people made up to the ghost’s delight.) Today, the ghost uses the Speedup and the Trick of Never Being Able to Focus Because There Are Just Too Many Things. It still uses the concept of Sin, too, only a different kind.
One thing I’ve noticed is that the people who have temporarily succumbed to joylessness get tense and a little hostile when you walk in the room, emitting joy.
Creative energy burns the ghost’s lungs and so it growls, tricking the person to self-harm by waging a battle on joy.
This phenomenon is clear ghost warfare since objectively, joy is good and pleasant. it’s good for the soul, and it’s good for health. Happiness is real. An unobstructed flow of creative energy is pleasant and satisfying.
But the ghost of joylessness hates it. When there is joy, the vampire has to vacate the premises, and so it starts whispering propaganda into the person’s ear so that it doesn’t have to die.
It is important to note that the ghost of joylessness works with the ancient ghost of merciless domination. The ghost of domination’s marketing brochure states two things: that your heart is stupid, and that self-harm is an expression of collegiality.
And since joylessness is self-harm, both ghosts love it.
But your heart is wonderful, and self-harm is not collegial! Joylessness is just a ghost marketing trick!
And one thing that we gotta understand about the ghost of domination is that it actually despises us. It doesn’t care what we think, what we feel, or what we want. It doesn’t care what’s good for us or for our children. It thinks of us as food, and it’s been this way for centuries. It may lie to us or flatter us briefly to get out trust but it truly sees us as strictly food.
Joy, on the other hand, is a greeting from our soul’s home.
I see through ghost marketing! I have so much love they have nothing on me.
I am not a home for ghosts, and I am not a hotel for ghosts.
I say so firmly.
My Good Ancestors, please protect me from ghost marketing, please guide me to be grounded in joy at all times, and please fill my life with lasting joy.
I am grateful to all good energy, and I welcome it.
May it be so.