By Roya Monajem, Tehran
It is Christmas times and thus all over the world, no matter whether a believer or not, Christians are busy shopping presents for their beloved.
Why? Why do we like to give presents? Why is it one of the most joyful deeds in the world? What may be the physiological need for it? Was it love and thus the beautiful sense of appreciation and thankfulness that drove primitive humans to present presents (oblation) to their gods and later their kings? Or fear; and thus seduction, manipulation, control and the idea of 'here you are, take it and instead please leave us alone and let us live our 'life'? And when we see that our primitive ancestors went to the extent to sacrifice even their beloved daughter, son, wife (mother of their children), but not usually their father, we naturally can suspect that the idea of gods, oblation, present, sacrifice is a masculine invention. And as such acts were performed at the onset of history and civilization, which corresponds to the appearance of a new faculty in man -the faculty of reason and thus mind, which is in reality what made our human civilization possible, then we can suspect that mind is a masculine creation too. The evidence is that never or very rarely we see cases where the 'father' is sacrificed. Let's repeat, as history shows daughter- wife-mother and son can be sacrificed, but not 'father.' And this later gave rise to the idea of the Christian Holy Father (who sacrifices his Son, Jesus) with Church fathers (priests) as His mediators, and their Jewish preceding counterparts called Rabbi and their following Shiite counterparts, Mullahs. And in the word mullah, we can here the word Magi which was the term used for Persian Zoroastrian priests (=magus in English and mogh in Persian, equivalent of Christian priests or Church fathers). But Magi existed before Zoroaster the prophet. Some believe the word comes from the name of an ancient tribe called Medes, who were the first or one of the first inhabitants of this land -later known as Persia. And Magi is the root word of Magic. And the person who performed this act was called magician. And the first Tarot card (the oldest account of the story of mankind on the earth) is called Magician, who can be described as a human being who has access to all the necessary elements of creation and thus can act like a creator, a god. In other words, according to Taro, all human beings start life as a magician. From this angle, we are all magicians, that is, creators of our own life and destiny; and we are responsible for our individual and social reality. Putting it in other words, we are the god of our own life. Which is the inverted way of saying 'god created man in his own image,' as it is said, for example in many versions of Creation Stories. In other words, magician is the god on earth which really means 'every and all human beings.'
Meanwhile the course of urbanism and civilization and growth of mind continues. It is difficult for Magi to 'control' 'run' 'rule' both the spiritual and material life of human beings. Thus they divide into two groups. One group of magi took the responsibility of running the spiritual affair of the humankind and the other were made responsible for running the material affair of the humankind. The second group came to be known as kings and now politicians. Accordingly Human knowledge had to be divided into two domains. Physics became the field of research of our Materialist rulers and Metaphysics that of our Spiritualist rulers. Their common point however is that both are in love with power. And one of the ways to achieve power is through Magic which means the ability to use supernatural -in other words, metaphysical forces accessible to human beings.
Up to this point there is nothing wrong to be a magician, at least not until the Magi's power was not threatened. But what were women doing all this time? Harsh life, the full-time task of motherhood and their weaker physical strength - a quality most necessary under not yet very 'civilized' conditions - and thus their absolute need for protection had driven them out of the business of running the affairs of the community. So the overwhelming majority were busy with their task as mother-wife and getting help and protection from the husband -men- in return. But there were some bitches and witches among them too. Bitches were O.K. Not only they were of no threat to masculine magicians, but entertained them. Let alone human beings, even god needs entertainment. Some believe that God created man because he was bored and he wanted to entertain himself. Witches (magicians including male non-Magi ones), however, could be of real threat. So came the era of Inquisition and witch-burning of the Middle-Ages. But as man-made rules and laws are not the only rules controlling the life of mankind on earth and there is this very important higher earthly absolute: the law of change and the fact that life runs in circle and there is a fall after each rise, gradually and with further growth of mind and civilization, the dark times of Middle Ages was followed by the age of Enlightenment and Physics (science) starts an extraordinary growth at the expense of Metaphysics. In other words, the age of reason starts. It becomes extremely difficult for all types of 'Fathers' to control human reason and mind. Now nothing can be taken for granted just because it is the words of god. Every word and claim must be scientifically proved first to be accepted as valid. Once the absolute power of God is questioned, the absolute power of His shadows on earth (clergies and kings) is naturally questioned too. And this brings us to where we are.
And where are we? No matter where, deep down there are only a few of us who feel happy and can take life as a gift. The Mind dominates all aspect of our life. And the seat of Mind is the brain and our modern medical science has proved now that our brain controls all our bodily functions, including our immunological system. And when this mind is sick, the body becomes sick. When one faculty of this mind, memory, is filled with fear, resentment, revenge, pessimism, mistrust based on our past experiences, it decreases our capacity to love and thus receive love. Deep down we are 'love-sick,' to use Bob Dylan's term. Never in my life (whether as a researching therapist or an ordinary member of the society) have I seen a person-in-love sick. Why? Because when we are in-love, the mind and thus our petty individual ego disappears. It is the only time that the world becomes a beautiful place to live in and life, a gift worth living. And one of the things that we really enjoy doing when we are 'in-love,' is to give presents to our beloved. In other words, we use presents and gifts to symbolize and show our love, appreciation, gratitude. We can even sacrifice our most precious things including our daughter, son, wife, mother, father, husband, life for our beloved. As we have done so throughout our human history.
And the more we are ready to 'sacrifice,' the more we are expressing our love. In our present world the most difficult thing to sacrifice is apparently our mind that is our ego which deep down means our individual, social, cultural, patriarchal conditionings. The more inflexible, prejudiced and thus narrow this mind, this ego, the more we suffer. That is why a jolly healthy happy human being has become a rare thing! Everywhere we look, we only see sick humanity. And again if we look carefully, we see that the root of our sick humanity lies in the fact that this mind-ego has become our foremost enemy and the root of any kind of war seen on earth.
So don't you think that the most precious gift or present we can give is to 'sacrifice this mind-ego?' particularly now that we know experientially and to some extent scientifically that 'love of neighbor starts with self-love.' Let us remember that this 'self' is a spectrum from our mind-based petty selfish self to our love-based godly self. Even if this sacrifice of mind-based ego doesn't help anyone and nobody takes it as present (because our sciences tell us that only what is seen with the eyes exists and has value), it will definitely help us to turn into a more jolly, healthy happy human being who automatically spreads the same vibration to our surrounding, thus our beloveds. It is a gift to have a jolly, healthy happy mother, wife, father, friend, lover.
Happy Christmas and New Year.
... Payvand News - 12/22/04 ... --