Thursday, February 13, 2014

On our addiction to transcendence pt. 2

The first commandment of American economic life is “thou shalt appear constantly busy.” Even when there is nothing to do, the appearance of business must be maintained. To disrupt the appearance of business is to call into question the premise on which our entire economic structure is based: our insatiable addiction to transcendence. To say “no” to transcendence, even for a moment to desire balance instead, is outright rebellion.

This is why meditation always must be talked about and made public in some way. Private meditation is dangerous to the whole idea. Meditation must be brought into the public so that it, too, belongs to industry, becomes a choice for consumption, becomes yet another stage where our addiction to transcendence can repeat its performance.

But rather than seeing addiction as an experience that needs to be controlled, addiction can also be viewed as a frustrated passion frantically seeking a new mode of expression. And that gives me hope.

pt. 1 here