Thursday, 7 February 2019

Dancing in the winds of uncertainty.




The modern world has a fraught relationship with astrology and commonplace dogmas, religions and humanist dialectics. 

Today we are unclear how any can tell us much about the future or guide our paths through that future (it is a little like trying to make a detailed law from human rights or religious principles - despite my best efforts, i do not think it is possible - i have tried my best and failed). Instead, i think that their strength lies elsewhere - each forces us to consider options and possibilities that might not have naturally occurred to us.

The weakness is that those waiting for a predicted lotto win will wait in vain. This year, astrologically, all of my friends would have variously become happy, treacherous, loyal, ill, pregnant, menopausal and cancerous. Few have actually transpired - but each prediction forces contemplation and allows a sequential focus on a different possibility. Other dialectics, humanist and religious, provide tools for helping to identify vulnerabilities that might not have occurred naturally to any of us. 

A couple of years ago i did a good deal of background research on palmistry for a book i was writing (Catalyst). I ending up reading a 700 page comprehensive guide to the art and a ton of scientific papers from the 50s and 60s on palm crease association with clinical disease or behavior. While i approached skeptically, i left with greater caution. For fun, i took on volunteers from work, to practice reading. It ceased to be fun very quickly, for me, for when i started to explain how a life line or health line worked, i sensed great discomfort and anxiety in the person concerned. So i always trivialized and ended the sessions in fun, rather than being serious.

Despite living in an age dominated by secular scientific humanism, we are just a heartbeat away from reaching for superstition. In this i see a battle between the comfort and stasis of certainty, and the desire to dance in the winds of uncertainty.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

From a good place, certainty is preferred.
But from a place of despair we prefer uncertainty. It leaves room for hope. And sometimes that is all we have to hang on to.

Anonymous said...

PS
... and so I dance. I dance in those winds of uncertainty until the end.

Peter Quinton said...

i can think of no better reason to dance. Thank you.

Unknown said...

Shall we dance? I definitely prefer uncertanty, ignorante is happiness...

Unknown said...

*ignoranCe

Meli said...

By the day, I like your tattoo, it's look like Stark house of GOT, but It is from your story about two beings: Freyja and a wolf. Do you know there is a TV serie named The Originals and one of thier characters is a witch Who calles himself Freya?😋☺️👋

Meli said...

*way, *their. Shit! My keyboard is just that!

Peter Quinton said...

Thanks Unknown :) I once tried to answer the question of dancing this way:

Solstice accepted the ice-cream with a smile and snuggled back
in the protective shoulder of her life-partner. She looks out at
the world, shy and content.
Onesti asked, “Now it is your turn. You survived the black
dragons. Tell me of your encounter with Anthem.”
Solstice protested, “But this ice-cream will not last long. Get
me another, just in case.”
Onesti said, “You have tricked me before.”
Solstice smiles, “I cannot tell you another’s story. I can only
tell you my own.”
Solstice stretches up into the shoulder of her life partner.
Remembering the moonlight last night. Remembering the
touch of delight.
Onesti asks, “Why do you bring your life partner into the world.
Surely this is cruelty?”
Solstice says, “Blood sister, I was young when I met him, my
life partner. True, he does not understand everything and never
will. But we sing and in his eyes I am content.”
Onesti shrugs, “And the Black Dragons?”
Solstice says, “We met the painter on equal terms, in human
form. The painter had been running, his dragon taint evident.”
Onesti bows her head, “He is unpredictable and dangerous. I
am responsible for giving him the taint.”
Solstice said, “So you have said blood sister.”
Solstice continues.
I stole ice cream from him while we stood for him to sketch.
The ice cream was made with the juice of lemons and limes,
with crushed mint.
He drew quickly, following the curves of our bodies and the
swirl of my hair. I could see he felt the warmth of our bodies
and how perfectly we matched.
After he had finished, I held him gently and soaked away some
of the taint. He looked at us and tried to understand. Why so
casual with your affection?
I explained what it is to be a life partner. To commit to one
alone and build a nest, a family, a life history. To learn to sing
together and together take chances against the dark. To slowly
build wealth, power and influence among the clans. But to not
let that poison delight, but to accept the warmth of another’s
embrace and their songs without regret or condition. To dance
with many, to lose myself for a moment in the shoes of another
and look into new eyes with hunger and joy. But, just as I would
never challenge another life partner, I would not place my life
partnership at risk.
The painter shook his head and said he did not understand. So
I asked him to tell me about his life partner.
He hesitated. He told a confusing story about relationships
that burnt bright and then cooled into unsustainable forms. Of
how at the end of one partnership, another emerged. How his
life could be defined in terms of those fractures rather than
slow continuity. He told how he had bought the White Album
seven times, only to see it stolen away, snapped in half, burnt
or shredded in the cold rage of another failure.
Onesti interrupted, “What is a White Album?”
“I made the same inquiry. Not only do humans have personal
relationships but they have created forms of imaginary
relationships to pursue enterprise. The painter called on the
image of the White Album to represent the defining moment
of one of those intellectual endeavors. But, just as personal
relationships fail, these imaginary relationships also fail,
creating chaos and lost opportunity. But instead of rebuilding
on a rock, humans persevere in building their houses on sand.”
Onesti interrupted again, “And where did you leave him?”
“Many creatures hunted him. Even as we spoke, dark eyes were
searching for him. So I placed him in safety to recover, within
the care of a guardian.”
Onesti said, “He is unpredictable and dangerous, but not as
dangerous as the weaver.”
Onesti handed her a second ice-cream, rich in whole milk,
honey, and crushed macadamia nuts. She asked, “And what of
Anthem?”
Solstice frowned.

Peter Quinton said...

Thanks Meli :)
Vampire stories are a lot of fun - the fantastic New York artist CR Bravo and I put together the New Adventures of Vampire Girl a year ago. The genre is a great way of exploring how the world actually works - good and bad. I haven't seen The Originals - i will keep an eye out for it, it looks interesting.
My tattoo reminds me of the past and, at the time, helped me accept the 2003 fire storms and aftermath in my part of the world. Today, i think it is a nice design and it has become part of who i am :)

Meli said...

Peter: I was the one who ask you to dance, i'm totally in love with your writings😍 ...to take chances against the dark... Without regret and condition... you are very talented, you know? By the way, i'm from Spain, I live in Seville

Meli said...

Sorry about my grammar mistakes, like i said i live in Spain

Meli said...

*asked