Oculus divinorum (2004-2015)

There’s a reason I haven’t posted here in a long time. After everything that has come to pass, my focus has irrevocably shifted. It’s a shift that has been well documented on this blog, the O.div, the Diviner’s Eye, which I began with Greymatter over a decade ago.

It’s been a 180 since then; I don’t have an interest in seeing into the future. In fact, I don’t believe there is this entity called “the unconscious” as described by Freud or Jung, and in particular, some kind of universal collective unconscious, or the Self archetype. These models have their usefulness of course, but it is funny reading how I wrote about such things in the past. There are many ways something can be “real.” I suppose I don’t much care whether something is real or not, I’m more concerned with how such concepts are applied.

I still read tarot, still look to the skies, still do my LBRPs, still record my dreams, still do yoga, still meditate. But these rituals serve a very different function for me than they have in the past.

I dreamed last night that I was being introduced to a new meditation exercise in which my sangha and I all laid ourselves into open, porcelain coffins and acted as if we were dead. One of our teachers walked from the foot of each coffin to the next, making a throwing gesture with his arms. This motion was meant to mime the tossing of earth that would bury us. And the earth was solely comprised of all the decisions and actions we had taken in life. And I lay there as he threw my life back at me, this imaginary earth, and I was moved to tears.

From dust, to dust.

When I began this blog, I dedicated it to the god Dionysus. It was a call to rupture. In 2007, following a technical disruption that took the O.div offline for a month, it returned online and I wrote the following:

“Modernity’s song is the endless wail of the alarm call, of the siren. At least, I wish it could be. A song that pierces the dreamlike, unconscious grooves and rhythms of everyday life, a song that warns us of danger or that signals the occurance of an accident, of damage, of trauma. But most of all, it is sometimes a song that promises hope for anonymous aid, aid that rushes towards a scene of an equally anonymous violence…”

I’ve sounded my alarm call here for over 10 years. And now, I believe it is time for me to listen.

Thank you for your presence and attention.

~Isthmus

hyperballad

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I’ve been reading Yoga Journal on and off for a couple years now, and as much as I enjoyed having a yoga magazine around, there was always something about the articles that left me wanting.

I do think it’s a great, accessible publication with lots of tips and short articles that are perfect for a beginner. However, there was always something too pat, too overly simplistic about its articles and its bite sized, processed nuggets of yogic wisdom for me. Chacun à son goût.

Recently, I stumbled upon a different publication the other day, Ascent.

This is the kind of thing I wanted to see, an exploration of the depths of where yoga can take you. I like the emphasis on service in daily life. In one article, Buddhist Tenzin Palmo comments,

It’s not enough just to sit on your cushion and think may all beings be well and happy and send them lovingkindness. This good feeling has to be taken into actual actions.

There is also a wonderfully titled interview with Jungian analyst, Marion Woodman: I had a marvellous dream about a metaphor machine. A critical point she makes,

In body–soul work, you honour your body because the musculature of the body is going to produce the image. If you do not honour your body, you will not get the deep dreams.

The last issue of Ascent was published in 2009, but there are archives of back issues for you to peruse online. Enjoy!

It’s been over a decade since I began recording my dreams, and while so much has changed, what remained the same is the powerful sense of having a conversation.

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Original Title: isthmus on Jung on dreams
Original Post Date: June 26, 2006 @ 3:33 am

TheDream

Johanna Pieterman

“… the relation of the unconscious to the conscious mind is not merely mechanical or complementary, but rather compensatory, taking its cue from the anfractuosities of the conscious attitude, the intelligent character of this unconscious activity can hardly be denied.” [1]

It’s a commonly accepted idea that dreams provide unconscious information that is in some way obscured, repressed or simply absent from consciousness. But Jung is saying something more: that dreams offer not simply a passive compliment to what is lacking in the conscious mind, but intelligent responses to conscious lack. Which is to mean, the unconscious is not simply a blank mirror offering an inverse reflection of consciousness, but it is an entity capable of generating its own symbols.

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