The Daimon Said To
2011-01-05, 4:09 p.m.
recently on Chaos Attraction
Darn, I thought tomorrow was the last day of Holidailies too. And since my work computer hates reddit, I won't be able to post this until late tonight (am going to sushi/movies with my friend having the drama). Argh, so much for pre-planning. Well, what can you do.
I'd like to extend my thanks to Jette and Chip, who are probably super effing sick of Holidailies by now, but keep plugging along at setting it up for the rest of us. And while I was a "I hate reddit" grumbler (see above work computer issue, among other things), if it was a choice between that and no Holidailies, which apparently it was, then I'd pick reddit. I'm glad I bit that bullet and signed up, since I was seriously debating not doing so. I would have missed it.
Other than that, I read something today that absolutely blew my tiny little mind and hey, while more than four people might be reading this, I might as well say it.
You've heard the whole fate vs. free will debate before, I'm sure. I have usually come down on the side of "some stuff's fated like inheriting a disease, some stuff is free will, let's not go crazy over this fight here", but in the last few years I've had weird reasons to start thinking that there's some kind of level in the middle between the two. Mostly because I feel uh... called... to do certain things, at least one of which (the last one, way down the road) I think is a bad idea, but the universe seems to heavily disagree with me on that one as far as I can tell. I'd explain what, but you would seriously NEVER believe me. It starts out with moving to LA in a few years and then uh... weirdness ensues. I like SoCal, but can't say I've ever given a crap about LA specifically or cities in general, so part of the truthiness of this for me is that it's not something I would have thought up on my own. It's like, there's a list of things: (a) move, (b) do X, (b) do Y, and Y eventually leads to Z. Z is the thing I disagree with, and for years while I've had this feeling, I've tried to talk myself out of Y because of the unlikelihood of avoiding Z if I go that far. Unfortunately, I also have had weirdly strong indications saying that uh... YOU'D REALLY BETTER DO Y AND Z, JENNIFER. Badness will ensue, you're the only one called to the job, etc.
I've spent a ridiculous amount of time trying to find exactly how to describe it. The Calvinists have irresistible grace, which kind of seems to be along the lines of "God rapes your brain and makes you choose Him." Not a pleasant way of looking at it. A more colloquial, albeit Mob-ish, way to think of what I'm talking about is "an offer you can't refuse." TECHNICALLY you could say no, but (a) you're under heavy coercion to do so, and (b) the consequences of saying no are going to be a lot worse than if you say yes.
I say this stuff and people stare at me funny.
But I read this article today and holy shit, did it ever get exactly what I mean by that. It starts out debating whether or not stuff like guardian angels exist, decides that well, there's some kind of something that knows the future in general and what you're supposed to do, and is there to help you along at it. Before you got here, a blueprint was laid out as to the main points to cover in your life, and the daimon (I'm just gonna go with that word, Golden Compass made it cool) is there to help remind you of what you forgot.
There are some things in my life (which will probably become more evident in a few years) that make me feel this way: like yeah, technically I could choose not to do that, but uh, YOU REALLY SHOULD SERIOUSLY DO THAT. Like, bad things will happen if you duck it. I kind of feel like the point of it is the coercion: I have to agree to do it, even if I'm on the fence as to whether or not it's a good idea, or think that someone else would be far better suited to the jobs in question than crazy ol' me. For some reason, getting me to agree to it is the point.
The article puts it like this: "Real freedom, it turns out -- paradoxically -- is freely to choose to subordinate our egotistical desires and wishes to the imperatives of the personal daimon, whose service is perfect freedom." I dunno if I'd remotely say that service is freedom (way to sound like 1984 there, or a Virgo feeling especially Virgo-y). It does, to me, sound rather creepy. But it does kind of nail the feeling I have about it. Like, either way it's gonna kind of suck, but it's so much better if you just shut up and give in! Because if you don't... well, the nagging feeling, and the guilt you have from not doing it, doesn't go the hell away.
"One rule was paramount for those who were called by the daimon: you must shamanize -- or die. That is, you must learn to make the dangerous journey into the Otherworld, retrieving souls who are lost there and bringing back the songs and myths on which social order depends. If you do not, you may not literally die, but you will lose any life worth living. For you will lose your way, lose your meaning and purpose, lose your own soul. Nor can you easily shake off the faithful daimon which, if it is neglected, will plague you with dreams and images, compulsions and obsessions, driving you mad."
So... yeah, godly coercion indeed. The consequences of saying no scare me too much. So in 2010 I agreed to give in.
Now comes the part where I actually start doing shit to head in that direction. I've got a deadline hanging over my head and the ol' daimon said that in 2011 is when things start moving, so... yeah. It might get interesting around here one way or another even before I move on to the weirdness.