Ingress journal

Since this game is kind of special – it is the first RPG that blends the physical and virtual world – I have started writing about it in my more personal journal. It is less personal than the health whines and exercise posts there, although Ingress is a form of exercise, at least here in Europe. I understand that in the US, people try to use their car whenever possible.

Anyway, you can find it at my Slice of Life journal as a separate category: Ingress journal.

JulNoWriMo 2013

Screenshot anime Dog & Scissors

“The more you know, the more interesting will be the books you write.” In light of this, it may be not be a great loss if you can’t read mine yet.

I am trying my hand at novel writing again, this time in July (usually it is November). I was thinking of publishing each chapter here as it was finished, both as a motivation for myself and because some reader may be curious about my writing, or writing in general, and how a first draft looks while it is being written.

In the end, however, I decided not to post my fiction here. It is confusing enough here as is, I suspect. And there is the whole “Anonymous” debate going on. I don’t want to risk it looking like my fiction writing is in answer to that. Now that would be really confusing, because the story is itself largely about religion, spirit, psychology and the supernatural. While not particularly autobiographical (there may appear flavor elements from my own life or things I have seen personally, but not much) it has my distinct “voice”, I think, so it could cause unnecessary confusion.

Screenshot City of Heroes, approx. 2004

Randomly diving in the enormous archives of my Chaos Node, I think I found the first entry that outlined my belief in the Coming Change and the parallel to the arrival of the current mind. It was more than a year before the longer series in 2005. And it was in part based on an even older entry, but one that only contains the seeds of the idea, not yet sprouted. (There is a link to that entry too.)

A super future, if any (Idus Martiæ, 2004).

Neverwinter is no City of Heroes

Screenshot Neverwinter

Grim and gritty, not a place I would like to spend my afterlife.

I was planning to write about the new Neverwinter MMO for a week or two, much as I did with City of Heroes from the same studio exactly 9 years ago. But the truth is that Neverwinter is no City of Heroes, and I probably am not quite the same person I was back then, either.

That said, I could probably still easier write another entry about City of Heroes, even though it closed down 5 months ago. (It feels more like a year and a half, but then I have a strange sense of time.)

As for Neverwinter, I am making a habit of logging in several times a day to have my 3 characters pray, give orders to their henchmen, and if necessary send their pets or followers on training. I’ve run some quests and hunted some bandits and orcs, but I don’t see this game becoming a lifestyle. Your lifestyle may vary.

Pearls before swine, lots of pearls

“The poison of jealousy turns even an angel into a devil.” When we go too high above our pray grade, we unleash a universal Constraining Force, which has the power to enrage the swine around us, or even the swine within. This is a fearful thing to unleash.

Recently I have immersed myself in winter and spring of 2010, rereading my first months in Riverview. I sure wrote a lot of worthwhile spiritual and generally good and useful stuff. I received a lot of revelations, and of course I had some from before, so I just kept writing it down. I am not really sure it has been of help to anyone, but perhaps one day it will be. Who knows?

I read a bit in Mouravieff’s Gnosis again. He mentions that those who are trying to break out of the general law – the inertia of the world – should keep silent about spiritual things. It is natural, he says, to want to talk to everyone about the wonderful things you have found. But it will cause the constraining elements of the world to become aware of you and react in various ways, externally and internally. (Resistance from other people, and temptations.) So while you may not need to literally go through your days silent, you should be silent about the spiritual sights you have just seen. He refers then to Christ’s words about not casting pearls before swine or giving to the dogs what is holy. They will just attack you.

That may be so, but if no one ever mentioned the spiritual things, then it would die with them, is that not so?

Well, that is so, but by and large it should be left to those who have achieved lift-off, I guess. Those who have so little to lose, the constraining forces can do little about them except revile them and kill them, which is not enough at that stage. Christ said at the end of his life that the prince of this world was coming “and he has nothing in me”. That is not the case for us newbies. Whether we think so or not, there is actually a lot in us that can be activated by the constraining force of the ordinary world.

But I keep having this notion that if I throw enough pearls before the swine, sooner or later they will lose their footing and fall flat. Since there seems to be an endless supply of pearls – for when you have been given an internal companion from Heaven, no matter how undeserved, there is no end to what could be said – it seemed reasonable to me that I must say all the words that should be spoken, before they are lost forever.

On the internet, nobody can see if you are a dog. Or a swine. I like to think that there are a few out there who are neither. But if I were to think of myself, and what is best for me, then I should probably keep a lower profile. The more we speak up, the more the constraining force will focus upon us, what the ancients called demons and Satan, which attacks both within through temptations and wild emotions, and without through slander and hostility. In one story written down in the gospel, Jesus Christ drove out unclean spirits from a man, and at once they went into a flock of swine. This is unfortunately so even spiritually speaking, that the swine are always receptive to the negative spiritual influences. The more pearls you throw at them, the angrier they get, unaware that what they are being pelted with is supposed to be valuable. We are not talking cuddly piglets here, a crowd of enraged swine is a fearsome thing indeed.

For a beginner such as I – and this is tragic in itself, to be a beginner after all these years and with all this insight – for a beginner, the constraining force may well completely extinguish the spiritual life if I go too high. This is a fact deeply enshrined in all serious spiritual traditions, and also mentioned in Christianity of course: “and not a new convert, so that he will not become conceited and fall into the condemnation incurred by the devil.” The Devil is the personification of the constraining force, according to Mouravieff. I don’t think it matters here whether you think of the Devil as a person as such, regardless the point stands that it is not something we should mess with just for the hell of it. If we go too far above our pray grade, we become “inflated” as some translations put it, and the constraining force will cause us to fall into damnable actions.

This is not unlike what I experience when I play Go, actually.  See, at the start of a match, it is customary to place stones at strategic spots on the board, with the unspoken intention of declaring the surrounding are one’s own, or to occupy it if you will. But if I start out reaching far into the other side of the board early on, the opponent will react by invading my home territory and cut it apart, and I end up with nothing. Since I am a beginner and don’t have the skill to follow up on bold moves, the best I can do at my present level is to secure a smaller part of the board and wall it off from enemy incursion.

While I believe that my Invisible Friend could easily reveal to me innumerable books of Heavenly wisdom, it is unlikely that I would fail to make a fuss about it, and subsequently be cut to pieces by the constraining force, “an anti-dromedary” as I call it. (Enantiodromia.) When someone who has made a sustained and earnest beginning in spiritual work is gutted like that, the result is usually terrifying. An utter ruin, a destruction on a far more massive scale than the setbacks that anyone can experience in life. I have lived a charmed life so far. Long may it last – but that means not playing Buddha on the Internet.

I feel stupid

"You are not intending to screw up things again, are you?"

No, I am not intending to screw things up, but that doesn’t mean it may not happen.

One of the surest signs that you are making progress in your inner life is when you can look at something you said five years ago and think “How stupid I was back then!” -This is something spiritual teachers across religions and continents agree on.

But what if you look at the stupid things you did five years ago, and think they are stupid, and still do them? I am not sure what to call that.

I wish I had something better to write about at this age than anime. And in fact I do have such better things, but I dare not write about them, because of the great responsibility.

“We must say all the words that should be spoken, before they are lost forever” says Chris de Burgh, and my heart agrees.

“For each unnecessary word a human speaks, they shall make account on Judgment Day” says Jesus Christ, and my heart agrees.

Between these I try to live and write.

***

When the Web was fairly new, there were no blogs. But there were people like me, hand-coding our journals using HTML in Notepad. Back then, people would read my journal, since there wasn’t much else to read. Now there are blogs everywhere, and social networks like Facebook where you can read what people ate for dinner and look at pictures of their babies and their cats. I can’t compete with that.

So now that I have something to say, I have no one to say it to, nor the confidence to say it, since I know more about all the things I don’t know. Most people don’t even know that they don’t know, of course, thus their confidence. (The Dunning-Kruger effect.)

 

Chickening out

"Strive to be infinitely beautiful and good"

Today I actually wrote and uploaded a decent length review of the movie The Laws of the Sun from Happy Science, based on their most loved book, the Happy Science answer to Genesis. Then I went to bed.

A bit over an hour later, I woke up alarmed. It was not quite a panic attack such as I had occasionally through my life (and may well have again, though it has been quite a while). Still, something was definitely wrong, I felt deep within. Reflecting on this, I found that the entry was the one thing I felt troubled about. I could not say whether I had been too critical or not critical enough. In fact, I felt I had no clear mandate from Heaven, so to speak, to opine on it. So I removed my entry from public view.

If you feel that you need to know more about it, feel free to contact me.

Sleeping while still alive

Sometimes I just lie in bed, looking at the shining plumbbob suspended in the air above me – no wait, that’s my sim. Me, I tend to fall asleep almost as soon as I get my headphones on. It is just getting there that takes a long time!

There is a saying “I’ll sleep when I’m dead”, and sometimes I wonder if a part of me is thinking that way. Unfortunately, this attitude is likely to bring on the final sleep much earlier than necessary.

Over the last few days I feel more and more “run down”. It takes less exercise to make me stiff and sore. I believe sleep may be the missing ingredient. I have found in the past that physical exercise requires more sleep. For mental work, such as my job, a nap will do wonders. But when I actually burn off 500-1000 calories and use my muscles in slightly unfamiliar ways, my body needs the downtime to put itself back in full working orders.

Unfortunately, of late my good ideas appear as on cue around 11 PM.  Well, they may not be “good” in the Biblical sense, but they certainly are ideas. Whether journal entries (which may or may not ever be posted) or fiction, they emerge with unprecedented clarity when the clock should have encouraged me to put head to pillow.

I don’t generally suffer from insomnia these days. Well, to some small degree from the insomnia of the asylum seekers upstairs, who still tend to move their shouting closer to the bedroom at 0 – 1- 2 AM, but I have largely gotten used to that. Besides, I have the delta brainwave entrainment. But neither sleep nor delta entrainment go well with writing fiction about magic worlds or unexpected college romance. Or for that matter entries like this, finished around 23:55 European time.

A different discontent

I suck at being ordinary. Without the council of my heart, I am just a middle-aged guy playing The Sims. That is just not much to write home about.

I have installed Spore again, the world’s most epic strategy game ever, where you start as a small simple single-celled organism and evolve to dominate the galaxy, perhaps. I remember thinking, back in 2008, that I would like to play it for many years, filling thousands of planets with life. But this no longer appears to me a great way to spend my old age, if any. At least the Sims are a kind of model of the real world, more or less. Well, mostly less, but still. Perhaps at some point I shall learn to relate to aliens with three arms on their back and a head at each end, but it seems less than urgent at this time.

I made my way through one science fiction novel by the esteemed Vernor Vinge, may he live forever or as long as he wishes. But I got bogged down in the second, well written though it may be. SF kind of feels like a past thing for me now, no offense to the writer.

The different discontent inside me is this, that I am not discontent with my conditions, by and large. I have more than enough food, clothes, space, computers and so on. I thoroughly enjoy being single. I have the 24 hours a day that each mortal is allotted, hard to complain about that.  It is myself I am underwhelmed by.

I really don’t think I can give off much brightness by myself. What I have to share of value seems to come not really from me as such, but from the deeper part in me, from whatever structure has been built there in my subconscious, or from whatever being(s?) have set up camp there. How long has it been that way? Pretty long, I think. But how can I be sure I have got this right? Anyone who has revelations think they are awesome, I am sure. Yet some lead people astray, and some are just dumb, or miss the points that are worthwhile. The true nature of the tree is best deemed by its fruit, and the true nature of revelation is deemed by the virtue it imparts. This is what limits me, but not as much as it should, I fear.

As Elias Aslaksen says somewhere: “The speed of a human is like the lightning when it comes to puff himself up, but slower than the snail when it comes to humbling himself.” And that, when applied to myself, is grounds for discontent. Although a different one from what I had when I grew up, thank the Light.

Still here

I have not disappeared yet. I am writing pretty much every day but mostly I don’t upload it. I am also reading Vernor Vinge on my spare time. Unlike my usual reading, this is science fiction. Vinge was the man who coined the term “singularity” for the logical endpoint of the accelerating acceleration of the the pace of change. If we keep halving the time it takes to double our knowledge, sooner or later we will reach a point when change happens so fast, a human will no longer be able to follow, and it will not be possible to see from this side of it what the world will look like afterwards.

He is also a pretty good writer, for a maths professor.