I have recently been reading a most enjoyable novel called The Dream Illuminati by Wayne Saalman (Falcon Press, Santa Monica, 1988). Mr. Saalman has found an epic theme – dreams of flight, and the achievement of flight.
Historically, dreams of flying appeared in the collective unconscious before the reality of flight existed in technology, and it seems plausible that if we understood our dreams better we would use our technology more wisely. Our machines manifest our dreams in matter crafted to coherence, and a psychoanalysis of our culture could easily derive from an examination of how we use science to materialize our fantasies and nightmares.
Mr. Saalman’s science-fantasy made me wonder: Why have we always dreamed of flying, and why have we built flying machines? This question seems “eminently” worth pondering in a world where 200,000,000 people pass through Kennedy International Airport every year, flying the Atlantic in one direction or the other.
To understand the profound, it often appears helpful to begin with clues that seem trivial. I suggest that we contemplate what our children look at every Saturday morning on TV. One of the most popular jokes in animated cartoons shows the protagonist walking off a cliff, without noticing what he has done. Sublimely ignorant, he continues to walk-on air-until he notices that he has been doing the “impossible,” and then he falls. I doubt very much that there will be any reader of Magical Blend who has not seen that routine at least onec; most of us have seen it a few hundred times.
It might seem pretentious to see a Jungian archetype adumbrated in crude form in this Hollywood cliché, but follow me for a moment.
When Hollywood wishes to offer us the overtly mythic, it presents Superman, who can “leap over tall buildings in a single bound,” and a more recent hero named Luke Skywalker. Continue reading
“..The problem is how to stop thinking; for the theory is that the mind is a mechanism for dealing symbolically with impressions; its construction is such that one is tempted to take these symbols for reality. That is, we manufacture units such as the inch, the chair, the self, etc., in order to organize our sense-impressions into coherent wholes, but the mind which performs this kind service is so built that it cannot then escape its own constructs. Having imagined inches and chairs and selves, the mind then perceives them “out there” in the physical world and finds it hard to credit that they exist only in the mind’s own sorting machinery. Conscious thought, therefore, is fundamentally false and prevents one from perceiving reality. The numerous practices of yoga are simply dodges to help one acquire the knack of slowing down the current of thought and ultimately stopping it altogether…”
Aleister Crowley, Confessions.
Mind is a disease of semen.
All that a man is or may be is hidden therein.
Bodily functions are parts of the machine; silent, unless in dis-ease.
But mind, never at ease, creaketh “I”.
This I persisteth not, posteth not through generations, changeth momently, finally is dead.
Therefore is man only himself when lost to himself in The Charioting.
The Book Of Lies, Chapter 8