On this New Year’s Eve, I reflect on a 2011 that surely was most challenging for many. For me the apocalypse happened in its entirety this year. Not in the Four Horsemen kind of way as many have come to expect, , but rather a silent and invisible neutron bomb has globally detonated, killing people’s souls en masse while preserving their bodies intact like real estate property to be occupied in the future by God knows what. Most evident for me of the success of this devastating report was when I sat across from my pudgy, balding insurance agent as he scrutinized changes in my car policy. Squinting at a computer screen, he asked about my family. I responded to the obviously wooden inquiry and told him how tough it was burying my mother the previous winter. Dead silence. He then turned to face me and asked about the status of the house. I told him that it had sold but refrained from filling him in on how a warm, personable and amiable guy named Freddie Mac had bought it sight unseen. I guess his hopes of selling me another policy were dashed, although he didn’t show it when he handed me a complimentary 2012 calendar on my way out.
The revelry of my fair weather friend Christmas was deafening. However, an Anishanabe woman with one lung arrived at my door with her 120 lb. dog named Taz-a cross between a Pit Bull and a Great Dane from what I could gather of its uniquely overbearing pedigree. We sat together in the cold, empty house by the cracked fireplace, on folding chairs, chewing on some pizza. With the two inch wide scar that arced over her right shoulder visible, she confided to me that her doctors claimed all her medical records had somehow vanished when she asked about them. She told me how a group of 'student' doctors were in front of her when her gown was ripped off in some basement in a hospital in Anoka and pictures taken. Afraid of another bout of steroid psychosis and a trip to the psych ward, she grew nervous. She then started crying when I asked her if there was anyone sober in the Pine Marten clan she was a part of to give her support.
“I just want to have a happy Christmas.” She sobbed, crossing her arms to prevent me from hugging her and looking away. I guess my empathy in response to her unfathomable plight was about as contrived as that of the three stooges found in the Book of Job who offer Job such bad advice- primarily because of the shallowness of their hearts. I tried to rectify things by giving her pooch some Rib Eye steak, but I haven’t seen my Indian friend with the unbelievably thick, beautiful hair since then, nor has she returned my calls. Maybe the ambulance siren I heard the other day was for her. Maybe it was DOA for real this time. Perhaps I should have burned the Frankincense she so dearly wanted to smell and remained silent during the visit like indigenous people usually do when together. After she left I was quite sadden but re-read the bible passage on the Christmas card she had bothered to give me:
I have come into the world as light, so that everyone who believes in me will not remain in the darkness.
Why I couldn't fully appreciate my friend's light that day, I'll never know. Maybe my heart too has gone dead.
And now on the cusp of 2012, a year supposedly rife with promise of dimensional ascension via some red herring galactic alignment, we are left with nothing but ruin and loss and total disillusionment. At least for me anyway. Matthew 24:12 comes to mind: Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold. Yet, we should respond to such wickedness with love and not acclimate to it by shutting down-especially to each other. That surely is the most disheartening thing of all considering just how pervasive this kind of heart closure has become and the profound division it has caused.
Please do what you can for others less fortunate than yourselves in the New Year-in a very down to earth and tangible way. Lose the perennial idealism you keep stored up in the stars. Forget about your Facebook 'friends'. And most of all, chuck all of your salvational assumptions in regards to the 2012 hype for there will be no delivering transformation whatsoever, no morphing of Daniel Pinchbeck into Quetzacoatl (thus depriving us of listening to his drivel in demotic Aztec) No collapse of the crypto-fascist corporate system whatsoever. If any transformation is to take place, it will come from whatever humaneness, empathy and compassion we have left within ourselves as individuals and not something 'activated' by some global meditation during the next winter solstice. Most of all, during these perilous times, be wise as serpents and harmless as the beautiful Mourning dove I saw this afternoon during a very rare winter encounter, which fluttered away into the snowy, bright sky as a reminder of good things to come :).
Cheers and Happy New Year,