Thanks for that Federico,
And good luck with the long walks and the trying to give sense to disconnected ideas. The truth is you’re not alone, a great many people before you and no doubt today are puzzling through the mountain of learning we’ve inherited from our collective past. How to sift through it, what is valid and what not, how can we make sense of everything that is taking place today?
What is the key to it all?
And that is precisely what Stephen is pondering through the course of Ulysses. What ties everything together?
Things, believe it or not, are actually simpler than they are made out to be. Our education, the tools we need acquire in order to make our way and earn a living in this unbalanced civilization we’ve fashioned for ourselves get in the way of that simplicity. They complicate things immeasurably.
Simpler? How so?
Well, imagine for a moment a life viewed in time lapse photography. From the moment of your conception a photo is taken regularly once per week. My videos are recorded at 25 frames per second, so in the time lapse of say my life from conception to birth is about a second and a half. A year, roughly two seconds. The video of my life would have run about one minute and forty seconds so far, and the harsh truth is I only have about one more minute of wilting, withering, and then there’s death. Looked at from the perspective of Jeff, myself, my conception or the idea of myself, that which we all seemed burdened with these days, I go AAhhh! That’s all!
If I could run the video backwards from now in less than two minutes I would be back at conception, but what is before that? Two other two minute lives, that’s what. And before them more and more generations, for thousands, millions, even billions of years. And truth were known, all higher mysticisms get at that reality. Not identifying with the fixity of here, now, and Jeff, but identifying instead with that which is flowing through from one generation to the next.
Meditate upon that. In your own life and then in the life of every living being on planet earth. All are in flow from one generation to the next.
And the amazing thing about Ulysses is that at different times in the day both Stephen and Bloom do just that. On the beach at Sandymount Stephen imagines calling back to God through the telephone line of each successive umbilical cord that links him back to the beginning, and Bloom throughout the day plays with the idea of the stream of life.
Ok, Frederico, gotta get going here. It’s morning and my son needs to get off to school. And there it is too. My life is running its course, but his is just gaining momentum. How make this world a better place for him and his children? How to move things in ever so slight a way back toward balance?
If you have Netflix a giant of the human spirit of the calibre of Joyce, one of the only that I know of, is interviewed there. They’ve recently added the series The Power of Myth, the six part conversations between Bill Moyers and Joseph Campbell. Campbell is old, near death, but his is the wisdom of the Buddha, a Buddha for the modern age, our age, just as Joyce was.
That’s it. Have a great day down in Bogota Columbia and best wishes for the future. Life is truly a gift.