Page and the Golden Arrow

Cassy and her niece Page walked to the train station to head off to a fun weekend in Zermat. There were two sets of stairs from the train’s gate: one on the right and one on the left. The concourse above had shops and restaurants. Page lugged her skis and Cassy her photography bag.

Cassy headed right.

“No!” said Helen. “Let’s go left.”

“Why?”

“The golden arrow is on the left,” replied Page.

“What golden arrow?” asked Cassy. “Looks like tile flooring to me.”

“Well, sometimes when faced with two paths I simply look at the two paths and my subconscious sees one path that is grayed out and the other has a golden path with an arrow on it that is wider and rests atop the gray path. Sometimes, it just shows up and often when I just look for it. And … I …”

Page winced and shrugged her shoulders.

“… TRUST it?”

“To the left it is!”, replied Cassy. “It’s your 13th birthday.”

“Oh look Cassy, the food car is on this side. See? ALWAYS trust the golden arrow.”

“What do we do when our arrows are different?,” asked Cassy.

“We work it out until we both see the same arrow, silly.”

“Got it.”

Phil Makes it Simple

Planet Xarth.

Night. Above the street light shone a half moon called Pecanth. To its right was a three quarter moon named Num by local peoples thousands of years ago.

Phil took out his graffiti supplies and went to work.

After some hours, the two moons criss-crossed themselves and disappeared from the sky. Finishing, he repackaged his supplies and stole away into the night laughing under his breath playfully.

The next morning on the side of a bombed-out strip mall,  a starry night sky mural  greeted the village, complete with a large galaxy about the size of an American football. Across it – two golden phrases glittering …

“The meaning I  create is the power to perform my current action, in any reality, as a raging liberation.”

“Be. Free. Anyway.”

.

For My Phil Friends

Thank you to my friends who love Phil and Cassy. They’re back. And I’m looking for a publisher.

As often as I get inspired, I will put down a Phil and Cassy story as soon as they dawn on me. I am saddened at all the stories I lost because I didn’t write them down.

I will also be putting Phil and Cassandra stories into a fun correspondence course.

– KG

Phil Returns

Phil rolled his electric wheelchair to the edge of the deck looking across his brother’s back yard, the Houston heat and humidity slowly filling his shirt with moisture.

“There is only one philosophical problem and that is suicide,” he quipped from Albert Camus.

He thought about the quip. Certainly, it would lessen his family’s burden. But after thinking and quipping about it for awhile, he came to the same conclusion as Camus and chose to instead live bravely in the face of an absurd Universe.

He was different than Camus though. To Camus, the “absurd” was our relentless attempt to find meaning in a universe where it forever evaded logic. Camus felt the Universe was logical but beyond our understanding of it. For Phil, the universe itself was fundamentally absurd. Logic, for Phil, was a red headed step child of madness. And madness does not allow meaning because it is insane. Logic does not allow meaning because it makes sense.

“I don’t need to kill myself. My body has suicide built right in. Every life is, in essence, on a suicide mission.!”

A bead of sweat rolled down his neck.

“Goodbye world – again and again and again!”

He waited a beat, realizing it wasn’t happening today. So he rolled his wheelchair up the ramp and back into his brother’s kitchen. The wave of conditioned air setting his drops of sweat into cool fires of comfort.

 

 

 

Cassandra Fable: Supergirl

Cassandra looked across her classroom of Philosophy students. She turned to her chalkboard and wrote:

“Neuroscience points to the notion that no soul exists. Presuming that as true, then there is no soul writing these words. Supergirl also has no soul as we know she is fiction.

“Therefore,  we have this Aristotelian Syllogism:

“I, Cassandra have no self and thus don’t exist as such.
Supergirl has no self and thus doesn’t exist as such.
Things that don’t exist are equal.
Therefore I am the same as Supergirl!”

“Write what this means to you and turn it in. There is extra credit if you can teach me to fly like Supergirl.”

Is Free Will ACTUALLY the Self?

One definition of free will I haven’t seen before and came up with a few minutes ago is as follows: “Free Will IS ACTUALLY the self – there is no division.”

The question of “Does the self have free will?” in this case is not the issue. The issue is rather “Is free will EQUAL to the self?”

Thus, asking if a self has free will is like asking water if it has liquid? Or asking space if it has time? Or asking matter if it has energy?

For if I define self in this way, I have a new way at looking at death: Death occurs whenever I no longer have free will, and have thus my self is gone temporarily out of existence.

THOUGHT EXPERIMENT: My mum and I have a boat accident and are swimming deep underwater and desperate for oxygen. I wouldn’t normally kick my mom, but if she is above me and my body’s survival mechanics kick in, I may kick and pull on her to get to the surface twenty feet up. Once there, we both (hopefully) recover and talk about why I kicked and pulled the shit out of her.”

So, according to this definition of the free-will-self WAS I DEAD in those desperate moments?

Yes. My conscious choosing self was gone and only animal instinct remained.

And, later, back on shore I came back to “life” and would not willingly kick or pull on my mother.

***

Epictetus, Free Will Champion of the Roman stoics, said this once concerning the two men who worked to condemn Socrates to death, “Anytus and Meletus can kill me, but hurt me, they cannot.”

But Anytus and Meletus could torture Epictetus until he begged involuntarily for mercy or made other concessions.

So … IF the self is dead during overwhelm, is the self actually hurt in this definition? No. Because a self that cannot choose does NOT exist. Existence IS choosing.

***

Epictetus defines what we control (AKA: Free to Use) as follows: “Things in our control are conception, choice, desires and aversions and in a word, anything of our own doing. Things not in our control are body, possessions, reputation, and office and, in a word, anything not of our own doing.”

So, in the example above if the body’s needs dominates the will to where it can no longer choose and control is the self dead?

Yes.

And that would mean the free-will-self is dead also during anesthesia and deep dreamless sleep.

So, reincarnation AT LEAST has one place where it occurs according to this definition:

In. Your. Real. Life.

Cassandra: Enlightened Buddha-Thingy

Sarah ran across the parking lot of Target. Directly behind the Target was a movie theater. She ran around the strip mall, past the movie theater and into a housing development that was under construction.

She checked the green screen on her tracker.

“Yes, it’s HER!” she screamed and pumped her fist with excitement.

She sprinted about 200 yards toward a dumpster the builders had rented the week before, and beheld behind it a large ash tree.

She stopped, got her bearings from her tracker and heaved intently for about fifteen seconds.

She checked her tracker again and walked around the dumpster briskly and there, beneath the ash tree, was Cassandra.

Cassandra glowed with all the color and glory found in Buddhist iconography. She sat upon a dais atop a golden zafu. Her body sparkled with a technology that made her eyes shine with light and radiance that bespoke of sciences and maths way beyond Sarah’s Earth. Cassandra’s breast was bare and her nipples and form were perfect, golden and virtuous.

“So you found me,” said Cassandra in a voice that spoke of the multiverse.

“Yes!”

“So, tell me, why did you work so hard to find me across this multiverse of ours?”

“Your friend Phil sent me.”

Cassandra, despite the filter of her dominating enlightenment and transcendence, smiled ever so slightly.

“Why?”

“He told me to ask you two questions. ‘What am I?’ and ‘What is wisdom once I know what I am’?”

Cassandra nodded and spoke.

“That is good because I can only stay in a universe for a few hours before the predators track me down. It’s not easy being me. Once I attained true glory, the Monads suddenly want to take me down for the sake of their respective glories instead of letting me enjoy my own.”

Cassandra tilted her head. She appeared to be listening to the infinite realities she was transcending in real time by her mere existence. Then she looked directly at Sarah.

“Consider this for a week. Consider that what you are is an eternal death that thinks it’s alive sometimes.”

Suddenly before she answered the second question, a portal opened in the heavens.

Descending from the portal was an army of angels dressed in white, carrying swords and trumpets pouring downward toward her dias.

Cassandra looked up at them.

“Oh, you are early I see,” she said calmly. “Give me the tracker sweetie.”

Sarah gave Cassandra the tracker she used to find her.

Cassandra’s glory sparkled and brightened at an accelerated at a frenetic pace. As it reached it’s pinnacle the landscape filled with light that outshone the sun. She looked directly again at Sarah, evoking a sense of liberating awe in Sarah’s heart and said.

“Wisdom is your eternal death enjoying every life it thinks it’s having.”

And then she vanished.