Archive for the ‘lala-land’ tag
This image is of the Pha That Luang stupa which is found in the capital city of Laos, Vientiane, a stupa that is said to contain a relic of Buddha. I am sure that there are a lot of stories to be told about the stupa and the people, but as most have learned here about me, the images are not really about being a tourist and telling tourist tales of places, information and history. There are many great sites out there already dedicated to that and I really don’t have the inclination or the discipline to do this type of blogging. Rather, the images are really just excuses to wander in a different world, one that is imaginal for the most part.
In saying this, I risk devaluing the work of active imagination. The point is not to create some fairy tale world of make believe, but to somehow approach stuff about one’s self that is hidden in shadows and forgetfulness, hidden from the prying mind that likes to think it “knows” everything.
The mind and the body via the senses are determined to limit the universe to concreteness, to the evidence that is placed overtly before the ego through all the body organs of which I include internal and external organs such as the mind. If anything contradicts the evidence or the facts that is stored, then it is dismissed as some “fiction.” People who operate on this factual level of reality have little to no patience with those who somehow perceive, intuit, imagine, dream other realities. One hears all kinds of comments such as “Wake up and smell the roses!” or “Earth calling, ______.” For someone like myself who often takes trips into “lala-land” it is a lot of work to block out the “otherness” that lies at the edges , above, beneath and within the overt realities celebrated by the “normal” people.
I can’t say as I understand the resistance that is generated to a deeper, fuller reality. Stuff happens, coincidences happen, wrong results happen, miracles happen, or perversely, stuff doesn’t happen when it should. It is only in allowing ourselves to wander past the self-imposed straight jackets that we get to tentatively glimpse something bigger, deeper, fuller and somehow beyond the limits of our human bodies. It is only in this way that one finds the presence of soul, that one nourishes the self from this soul.
And so, I bring photos here that open a chick in the armour of the mind so that I can go wandering in a hidden universe of the human psyche wrapped within the bosom of the wholeness of all that is and isn’t that is hard to name.
I took this photo in Can Tho, Vietnam, a picture of the night market busy with people. Night time is often busier that daytime activity in the market areas. It’s as if with the fall of darkness, there is a sense of freedom to laugh, to hustle, to enjoy an evening of drink, food, friendships and even sex. The primal urges come alive in the darkness. It’s a heady experience walking among the others who are bargaining, or otherwise engaged in the market place area. But of course, the photo really isn’t about a night market in Vietnam.
Night is also symbolic of the unconscious in full motion, with a cast of archetypes, complexes, feeling tones and shadows. Dreams are often taken as the expression of this activity of the night, this activity of darkness. But, it isn’t only a dreamscape; it is also an inner world landscape that exists when one is in the light of day. It is found in those pensive moments when one has lost connection with the outer world, a place many of those people who deny anything that is not about the outer world would call “lala-land;” a place where imagination both of light and dark find an expression. This is a place where I am often to be found during some of my periods of silence.
There isn’t much patience or tolerance by others for those who find that they wander at times through lala-land. It isn’t as though there is a lot of choice when lala-land intrudes on one’s psyche. Yet, with a lot of effort over time, one can recognize the signals that indicate lala-land is just around the next thought and thus allow one to engage in diversionary tactics and avoid disappearing into this inner space. One learns tactics to stay “present” and “accountable” to others who matter. For in the end, it is about the others, not about the self.
Lala-land is a rich place that offers more than it takes in terms of presence and time with the outer world. But typically what is offered has little value to the others who are invested fully in body and in presence, a world where the opinions of others matter more than one’s own opinion. In fact, one’s opinion is formulated on the collective opinion just as much as many follow fashions regardless of the practicality or need for fashion.
Think of how one is “Self” responsible, or “self” responsible and with that responsibility comes a requirement for authenticity, being true to one’s self in order to honour that which is at the root of self, that which can be called god, or SELF, the central and all encompassing dynamic. If we call god as all that is and all that isn’t, then we understand that everything and everyone is part of the one. As an individual, I am me or “self,” an unit of one. Yet, I am a part of a larger one-ness which most call god, a wholeness that is also called the ONE or the SELF. With the inner as well as the outer world contained in this unity of everything, there can’t be a devaluation of any one part of the whole. The inner world is as valid as the outer world. So, in daring to get caught up in lala-land, I find that I am daring to connect with a deeper aspect of self, one that hints at the infinite behind the self.