Thursday, May 11, 2017
Composting the Past
The past. It looms. It exists within our thoughts and memories. The thoughts that are the response to memory. The response to past experience. Some of us feel trapped from the past. Not truly in the present. Trapped in an almost psychosis of thought.
What can the past do for us? How can we try to be more present and not be so beholden to the past. Well since the past has “passed” and only exists within the realm of our own neurons and dendrite matrices, we can understand that the past is encapsulated in a cyclical pattern of compulsory thought. Thought that begets thought. Thought that can change the chemical composition within your body at each moment.
It’s the reactions. The reactions to the thoughts that matter. What is the moment before those reactions? How do we deal with them and how does it feel? Before that reaction exists some type of juicy stimulus. An amalgamation of experience and biological processes. This past that we conceptualize does not exist. It is not with “what is”. Our mind uses knowledge and experience to construct thoughts and images of with what was. The old. The mind can only act with what it knows and through the cyclical nature of thought. The compulsory nature of thought. Let it be known, that this past has passed and it is only conceptualized through the concept of psychological and the “theorized” time that constructs the self!
We can look at the past as if it is almost part of nature. Part of a grand landscape of vines, trees and creatures. The trees will shed their leaves across the seasons. The bare branches will bare new leaves. The dead ones fall to the ground and decompose and feed all wonderful bacteria and scavenging creatures. It is part of the cycle of life. ( As Cliche’ as that sounds) The energy transfer from life to death. Where life feeds the way for death to bring more life. The cyclical processing of matter to perpetuate its own magnificent existence.
How does thought relate to nature and natural processes? Can we see the parallel of the beauty of nature and the architecture of thought and conceptualization of the past?
If thoughts are like the cycle of decomposition and the cycle of life present in nature, can we attempt to compost the past? Can these thoughts that are the response to memory and the imprint of experience come to serve us and make us more “present”? If we see the past as a dirty compost heap, can we use the past to reseed new potentiality and perspective for the present and future? Think about it. If we see thoughts as leaves that have fallen from the tree and are decomposing to make the way for new life and organisms, can we see anew that isn’t tied so much to our past? Of course we can use knowledge to simply learn from our past. That is part of it. That is part of the decomposition/ composition process. Even the bad parts of our past, which are essentially images made my thoughts and memory, can seed the present without attachment to what was.
If we can turn that hot compost heap of the past, and take it to plant new experience without a specific agenda, we can open ourselves to discovery. Discovery of the unknown. Discovery of what is. The beautiful vibrant “what was” flowers will die and make room for a new host of magical fungi. The dead bird will feed and nourish the scavengers and worms and return the necessary energy back to the ground. What are we planting in our mind gardens? What can the fertile soil bring? If you can take all the “bad” parts of your “past”, you can grow some hefty and vibrant flowers? Think about manure. You can grow amazing food from that cow dung. You can grow amazing tulips, daffodils and the like! This is what your self perceived past can do. It can inform you. It can make you grow. The plants that seed. The seeds that will grow from the all the dead things! That’s it precisely! Thoughts are dead things because they are from the past. They are old and known! In order to grow, you must see it for what it is. See how it works!
I’ve heard somewhere...
“Flowers grow from sh*t!”
Cyclical. Cycles of Impermanence. These flowers don’t last forever.
Lettuce compost the past! Bury it. Turn it. Spread it and leave it be.
When it’s ready, spread that compost into the soil of the present.
Let the dead nutrients nourish your present plants!
All the trauma. All the drama. The thoughts, memories and knowledge.
They can all go into that smelly heap and mix and mingle. Move around and mutate.
Magic or not, they will break down. Breaking down for the new. Laying out for what is.
Life goes fast.
Or at least that is what we "think",
Thoughts of the old and nostalgic,
Here you and there you were,
Here at least and here at last,
Breathe it in and let it grow,
It’s time to...
Compost the past.