Around midnight, hideous clamor, and infernal noise woke me. Outside, explosions echoed throughout the streets, while my neighbors from all sides went crazy within their own little apartment-worlds, bursting into grotesque commotion. It happened to be the midnight of December 31. Since the world made it impossible for me to sleep, I couldn’t help but start ruminating. No apparent reason whatsoever to celebrate anything tonight, yet the world still does. Why? What special occasion is occurring tonight that, though rouses the planet, I still fail to notice? Why do billions of drunk, drugged, euphoric humans throughout the planet flood the streets to celebrate, carouse, whistle, crown themselves with cone hats, feather tiaras and paper crowns, and let all hell break loose tonight? What do they celebrate that I can’t see? What am I missing?
Here is what I think. People, not too challenging to admit, tend to live unconscious lives. They do what they are instructed to do, think what they are suggested to think, believe whatever they are convinced to believe, and feel whatever they are expected to feel. They get born to blindly follow the course of their schools, get socialized and educated, in other words, well tamed and well trained, then start working until they die. On the go they may beget some young whom they’ll automatically set on the same path as they are following themselves. This very process is supported by the idea of workplace. Would there be any workplaces in the world if everybody were conscious about what talents they have, what and how they want to do with their life, and they actually did it? Aren’t all workplaces little euphemistic prison-cages owned by the conscious cleverly making the most of the masses’ unconsciousness? Why any workplace in the world if not to tell us what to do with our time? The 24 hours of a day would otherwise seem senselessly long for us, without knowing what to do with them. Why the media if not to tell us what to think, lest we should trouble ourselves to use our own logic and mind? Why the Churches if not to tell us what to believe in, lest we should find out the truth on our own? Why euphemistic public education if not to tame us into a system that serves and benefits the conscious by keeping the plebs unconscious enough to believe they are educated into consciousness?
My neighbors wake up in the morning, leave for work, sit all day long in a supermarket cash register, bank box or some city office, come back home in the afternoon, get some shopping done, have their dinner, watch TV, and go to sleep just to repeat everything on the next day. This is the life of my neighbors in San Francisco, the same was the life of my neighbors in Spain, and in Mexico, and in the UK, and in France, and in Hungary, and the same would be anywhere in the world. What a pitiful way of living. It lacks all consciousness, deliberate decisions, ideas, notions, opinions, planning and interpretation. It actually lacks even the living person’s participation in their own life: instead of deliberately participating in their life, they passively experience it through. What’s more, these lives lack existence itself, for existing and being are not the same. Although all these billions of people biologically are, intellectually and spiritually they don’t exist. They don’t know about themselves, are not in charge of their own lives, and make no conscious choices about who they want to be or become. They are because they were born. They work, because they want to survive, and they are supposed to give sense to their life by their job and its accomplishments, but are alien enough from their works to hate it and suffer it. They watch the news, because they are supposed to be well informed members of their societies, but would never doubt or question anything they are told by the media. They follow their religions, because they are told to feel spiritually good by doing so, but would never challenge or suspect any doctrine, dogma or thesis formulated and dictated by their spiritual leaders. The list is too long to go on. What I notice is only a sea of senseless, unconscious lives all around the world, keeping their human inhabitants in the captivity of their own grayness.
Tonight, when all these unconscious life-owners got released by their masters, intoxicated themselves with cheap hats, crowns, whistles and paper trumpets to experience some sort of forged existence-rush, apparent joy, fake happiness, and a few minutes of false liberty from under their burdens of daily grayness. They believed to come to a one-time real existence, and hallucinated to be, for a short-lived night, life-celebrating, happy, real, consciously existing humans. But they weren’t.
Why did they so firmly hold on to the night of December 31, and, pretending joy, did things that they don’t do on any other day of the year? Because in their entire year there is no day, no minute, no second or moment where they could find joy. Because they live without joy and happiness, and need to grab any little fake occasion to pretend to be happy. If they were able to find joy in their work, in their relationships, in their routine, in their life, they wouldn’t need special days reserved for joy, for every single day of their life would be equally special and joyful. If they were able to find celebration, satisfaction and happiness on March 19, at 11:22 a.m., and on December 2, at 5:03 p.m., they wouldn’t need to wait and prepare for the coming of New Year’s Eve, because on New Year’s Eve they wouldn’t have any more rush of joy than on any other day of their life. But their life is empty and joyless, it is not satisfied with itself, and needs fake occasions of pretended happiness. So, when the special occasion comes, they wait for the clock’s midnight chimes, then turn to each other, and wish a happy new year. But you know what? Either tell me, if you happen to know, how to actually make my life happy, or make my year happy yourself with your selflessness, attention, presence, patience, smile and love, but don’t wish me happiness, because, as far as I am concerned, happiness won’t miraculously happen to me just by you wishing so.
Joy, or true celebration, is not a transient one-night adventure, but a constant, perpetual state of self-controlled, fully aware, consciously managed inner life, in other words, a deliberate personality with intense spiritual and intellectual activity. It is not exterior, but strictly interior, and is not manifest in noisy revelry, bright-spectacular fireworks or ecstatic dance, but in silent, inner peace, equilibrium, harmony and quietude. Real joy is the constant state of self-awareness, satisfaction with myself, with my outlook, with my life, my place, my position, my soul, my spirituality, my personal beliefs, convictions and answers. I don’t need to tear out of my life for a special night or a federal holiday, because I am constantly and every day happy and fully satisfied with my state. I deliberately managed my life to come to an equilibrium, and am also able to maintain it so. Authentic joy is emotional stability, and the living of a constant, selfless love with myself and the world. It is visible in my eyes, audible in my voice, and detectable in my soul, because true joy is happiness, man’s inner, spiritual health. If I’m healthy, I’m healthy continually, not only for one night, and then sick again. Such spiritual state would not be health, not fullness, not happiness, not joy. That state would be a chronic disease, a state of illness, that, for one night or another, is alleviated by some fake drugs of the external world. These grotesque, distorted eyes, faces, voices, exploding shouts, drumbeats and cries, these unconsciously dancing, whistling, self-crowning and crazily spinning souls I heard and witnessed tonight are impossibly far from happiness. All these sad people who have no inner life and inner spiritual-intellectual activity whatsoever, are not able to celebrate real happiness or feel true joy.
But if so, then what were they celebrating? Their instinctive desire for happiness and freedom. For man, even though captive of his own unconsciousness, will always feel an inner urge for happiness, true happiness, true peace, true freedom, true humanness. They danced and cried, because they want to be free from grayness. They just don’t know how to. They, quite mistakenly, just happen to believe that the escape from the misery of unconsciousness is Christmas night, New Year’s Eve, Columbus Day, 10 day summer vacation, and the pathetic daily intoxication of TV, beer, prayer, church, sex, lies, lust, marijuana or any other externality bringing a few fake colors into the inner world of constant drabness. This is why these consciousness-longing unconscious people turn into uncontrollable animals for minutes and hours, give free course to their passion and have their fling, push and pull, trample and yell, drink and devour, spin and revolt, self-crown, vomit and fall asleep until the next day when they wake to the reality of their ashen life once again.
What did they celebrate tonight? Their animalness. Their unconsciousness. Their captivity, and the one-night release from it. Their own pathetic misery. Tomorrow, they’ll grow silent again. Silent herds of cattle, bearing the yoke of their own unhappy, wretched, grim tedium. And my nights, in all probability, won’t be interrupted by night-drum until the next federal holiday.