The other day I joined in on a conversation with some festival-garbed dudes who were bolstering each other with puffy yoga chests, draped with healing crystals and flashing shiny, entheogen-cleansed eyes, rapping about fully embodying the divine masculine. They were going on and on about totally showing up, about embracing life with their inner warrior king in total authentic next-level presence.
Sounds like my trip. But then I interject with questions like, “so what do you do when you realize your mind has tricked you into pain?” Or, “how do you deal with the incessant primordial baseline violence that is wired into the male body-mind?”
One of them just walks away with a wide-eyed smile and a dramatic, hand-raised gesture of joining in, his totally-showing-up powerful spiritual presence called away to the jungle of jiggly butts in hippy skirts dancing at the center of attention where he is sure his salvation awaits.
The other looks at me bemused, and with Shakespearian grace bows low and spins away to join his brother-in-knowledge, incanting loudly, “love is the answer bro!…”
Holy shit. But still, I love them. Someone has too.
Yet now I am bemused. What the fuck just happened? I entered the circle of power, ready to forge some truth with some waking dreamers, and the moment I draw my blade, these would-be warriors reveal themselves as phantom travelers and turn to mist. The moment I ask myself for more, they show me how little they can handle.
It is funny to me to describe myself as bemused because I think that that may be my default setting these days. Bemused by all of those who hold the mighty ideals of community aloft yet really want nothing more than a way to enforce hierarchy, avoid chores, and flirt with roommates. Bemused by the champions of activism who are so obviously playing out the roles of ego-maniacal petty-tyrants trying to dodge the suffering of their own psyches by directing theirs and other’s eyes to the do-gooding grift-work of modern martyr-hood. Bemused that any hand would strike another, or take from another, or chain another or fool another into thinking it wasn’t good enough. Bemused by the invalidation and avoidance that is this statement, “love is the answer.”
Love is not the answer. It is not a destination, it is never final. Love is the question. Love is an inquiry. Love is a process. Love is alive. Love should never be the way out of a conversation, especially one about love.