The objective correlative of suck
The foul miasma of vast self-rejection is, of course, not a literal miasma but rather a mode of consciousness. The miasma is the objective correlative of a sucky, hopeless view of the world.
J. Alfred Prufrock experiences the miasma as a “yellow fog” in T.S. Eliot’s love song of self-doubt:
The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes
The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes
Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening
Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains,
Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys,
Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap,
And seeing that it was a soft October night
Curled once about the house, and fell asleep.
My miasma doesn’t behave much like a house cat, though. It behaves more like a wild wolf of slobbering terror.
Bad trips – always available!
When I’m in the miasma, my lovely life looks like a disaster resembling the scary drunken circus in Pinnochio. It’s not actually a disaster. It’s concretely just fine. But our minds do create our reality in the sense that if I’m feeling misery and fear I will see misery and cause for fear every where. That’s part of the difficulty of having a really strong genius. The genius is always creative; it creates worlds. When the miasma is on me, I’ll see only the very worst in myself, in people, and in the world, and it’ll be magnified 10,000 times. It’s very literally like a bad trip.
The thing most people don’t realize is that you never need to take psychoactive drugs to have a bad trip. Or a good trip! Our brains produce psychoactive chemicals all the time in response to our beliefs and interpretive decisions about the world. I have some traumatic beliefs in me, and when those get triggered, the bad trip comes on.
Half the key to getting out of a bad miasmic trip is just to realize, this is a bad trip. This is in my mind. I can see this in a different way and all the yuck can disappear. And by “disappear” I mean become no longer a problem in my consciousness. All of reality can exist in its realness without me having to wage a special internal battle against any part of it.
I only feel like the yuck in other people and in the world is a problem for me to battle when I’m beset by the yuck myself. The yuck (pain, aggression, delusion) has no intrinsic power. It can be healed. And I can’t heal it when I’m obsessed with seeing it everywhere because I’m identified with it in myself.
I’m right now in the process of climbing out of the miasma.
For me, this is a process of truth-telling. Queer Jesus said, “you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.”
Not just any kind of truth works to dissipate the miasma, though. To do that job I need uncut, high-grade, extremely potent truth.
We’re all fundamentally good and that no one deserves to feel guilty or fearful at anytime, ever.
Even if you’ve committed violent crimes – the wisdom to make amends for those crimes can only come to a consciousness that accepts its past confusion, recognizes its own inherent goodness, makes itself open to grace and becomes capable of loving action. Self-hatred and self-rejection don’t facilitate that process. They make truth-telling too painful – which means we can’t bear to acknowledge that we’ve been wrong and so we stay in denial and stay deluded and stay likely to commit more harm.
That’s why Queer Jesus was so into telling everyone that they’ve been forgiven and they can forgive others. Because non-forgiveness doesn’t help.
There actually is no cause for fear or suffering. Those things are causeless illusions that only perpetuate themselves.
A way to stop the spread of contagious miasmic miserableness is to decide to remember and embody the truth of my profound innocence and everyone else’s. This means I can forgive. I can make the decision to see myself and everyone else gently, with eyes of love.
I find it helps me to renew my inner commitment and decision that I can be joyful and free all the time, no matter what’s going on in my life. No matter if I have bills I don’t know how to pay or people angry with me or if I’ve lost something I felt attached to. It just doesn’t matter, as Bill Murray likes to say. I’ve decided that I’m worthy of happiness of the spirit all the time, without condition, and so are you, O Lovelight.
The minute I think there could ever be any real reason not to be joyful and at peace is the minute I become vulnerable to the miasma. It’s like opening a window in Venice when tuberculosis is in the air. Because even if nothing is “wrong” at this moment - what if something could go wrong? And then I’d be unhappy! Better start being unhappy right now, in anticipation of my possible future unhappiness!
Best, actually, to decide that unhappiness is totally unnecessary.
I can acknowledge loss, address problems, correct my mistakes – all without having to feel heavy and guilty and awful.
So if you’re feeling the miasma right now – start waving your hands around and jumping up and down to get it off of you. It’s just a bad trip. It’s not real. You’re perfect and you always will be. You deserve to be cuddled up into a big blanket and given nice hot tea. You’re not a failure, you’re not awful. You’re a magnificently strange human creature who makes the world better just by breathing.