I can't help but feel the knowledge and wisdom of the old and ancients of this world is being proliferated in a neurotic and unhelpful way.
Over the past ten years or more, there has been talk of an ‘archaic revival’ to quote the late Terrence McKenna. I’ve slowly witnessed the rise in the dissemination of knowledge, parables, laws and sayings of various ancient tribes from around the world, including some of which are still in existence.
Many documentaries are made showing the loving and intelligent side to these tribes, how they care for their young, their old, their sick. How they live in harmony with nature.
I myself have taken on board many of these messages and teachings as they do altogether make sense and point towards a more compassionate, reciprocal way of living, that aligns with the partnership culture so many of us on this planet are striving towards.
Yet in all this I see a dilemma, or a trap if you will.
Many of the teachings can make you feel a sense of sadness. A sense of regret at how screwed up the modern world has become. Fair enough so far, but humour me for a moment.
Imagine that we are not at the top of the food chain as many of us believe. Suppose the world is in the clutches of forces that feed on the more negative of human emotions. Darker forces that manipulate our reality with war and disaster to farm feelings of fear, desperation, sorrow and anger that they can then feed upon, in much the same way we feed upon the eggs laid by chickens.
What purpose would this glorification of tribal culture serve?
Guilt is right up there with the most powerful of negative emotions, it is not fleeting, it does not come and go. Instead it deeply embeds itself at the centre of your being, slowly eating away at all prospects of bliss and pure unfiltered happiness. The flow is constant, the food supply chain never breaking. It is the perfect food source in terms of efficiency and cost/benefit.
It’s the guilt that we have made a mess of things on this planet, that it’s our fault for being too selfish, greedy, destructive. We’re the reason the world is in a mess, if only we could be more like the tribal cultures of old that lived in partnership with the planet. It’s a subtle and deep guilt, but it’s a story that we’re told that will always prevent us from meeting our fullest potential.
While we’re trapped by feelings of guilt we can never see ourselves as we truly are, born free and innocent with unlimited possibilities before our feet. This self flagellation I see, only serves to hinder the potential of what can be, by trapping us in the prison of what currently is.
Not for one minute am I denying that the planet is in a mess, but this is a system that I was born into and programmed into, as were my parents and their parents. We did not create this system, it is not our will, although at present we are firmly a part of it.
We can still learn from the tribes and as Bruce Lee said ‘Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless.’
Yet know that they were human too, their history like ours involves its fair share of violence, murders, rapes, killings and mistakes.
No-one on the earth is perfect and we are all here to learn and grow. If that is what you’re doing then make your mistakes, for that is how you will learn.
The guilt you carry will neither serve you, nor will it serve the planet and your fellow humans.
Feel the negative emotions by all means, they are a part of this experience, but allow them to leave as easily as they came. You are not required to hold onto them. You can let them go.
Use the good stuff
The first time I drank the Amazonian brew, Ayahuasca, the big question it asked me was, what are you worrying about? You don’t know enough to be worried. Your worry assumes you have some kind of overall control, which you don’t. Focus on what you’re doing and that’s about it.
At the ‘As Above, So below’ wisdom gathering in Manchester last year, elder and original Australian, Uncle Doug, spoke of his lifelong fight to win back indigenous lands from the Australian government. This man had been through a lot, but the nugget of wisdom that stuck with me the most, was when he said this:
“You have to wake up every morning with a sweet heart. Otherwise they’ve got you.”
I’ll leave you then with some music