Thursday, October 21, 2010

Living with ghosts: a reply to Paul L. Martin


I have, Paul, as recently as this morning, while passing through Salem’s old downtown section on my way to the library, felt quite strongly that we are ghosts in our daily lives, and that there is no proof, nor need there be, that this world we inhabit is the real, concrete one we ascribe it to be — that in the present moment, seeking and struggling, we are already adrift in, if not an afterlife, an immense dream that has grown familiar partly because it is shared, and partly because of our frequent passage through it. How closely related are we, in this transient human form, to each other; how closely related to all else that we can, cannot, or do not yet perceive? Very closely, it seems to me. As part and parcel of this universe, we have been here before, we linger, and we return, charged particles of the whole. In my mind, this makes the existence of ghosts and spirits and much else inevitable. Things and beings are fluid; they overlap; it is thought, even, that universes do the same. These feelings we have, these visions and intimations, these dreams, these things we can see and yet put our hands through — who’s to say where and when it is all taking place? Who’s to say that our very own activities are not disturbing someone on another plane, in another time?

Thanks for your beautiful piece. Thanks, too, for your inspiration, demanding me to think and write.

8 comments:

Anthony Duce said...

Paul’s story was very interesting, and your explanation makes as much sense as any other. I still can’t make up my mind where I stand, the computer plug analogy or souls/spirits reincarnating or floating in other dimensions, maybe the real one. Thank you for posting this and the link to Paul.

William Michaelian said...

You’re welcome, Anthony, and thanks for taking the time to read both entries.

Jean Spitzer said...

"we linger, we return"

Beautifully put.

Paul L. Martin said...

William, I am about to start reading a book called "The Atman Discovery" by John E. Whiteford Boyle. The book details a meeting of a group of British and American writers in the 1950s here in California. One of these writers was Aldous Huxley. Evidently, using the major dogmas and beliefs of the world's religions, combined with quantum physics and analytical psychology, these writers found deep overlaps and connections, a sort of universal theory of everything. When I read your comment, I immediately thought of the book jacket and why I wanted to read the book. I think you are right, and that we just might be "ghosts in our daily lives." Thank you so much for writing and commenting, and linking up with your blog.

nouvelles couleurs - vienna atelier said...

... It is surprising to me yesterday the same thing happened when I was back home in the evening, the sun was setting and the sky was blue and all around me there were so many ghosts, many lived sensation ... bizarre, you know in this moment I schould be able to paint all this gost.. it will be like a Chagall paint...

Paul's blog is very interesting

William Michaelian said...

Thank you, Jean.

Paul, it’s my pleasure. Your piece really got my wheels turning. I’ll be waiting for your impressions of that book.

Laura, instead of “like a Chagall painting,” maybe Chagall will be in your ghost painting....

Two Tigers said...

Wow, William, for your reply and for linking the post that prompted it. You don't find stuff like this on blogger often, brave and insightful, taking on the big untouchable topics. I've had a few of my own brushes with phenomenon that could only be explained as being visited by some sort of after-energy from a being no longer alive. It happens, more to some folks than others, but it's very real. There are so many things our minds just can't grasp, why wouldn't there be? Arrogance to think otherwise. Many thanks for this post.

William Michaelian said...

Thanks so much, Gabriella. Certainty, it seems, is a kind of armor against fear.