WRESTLING PRINCIPLE OF LIFE – LAOCOON
What is life and what is the consequence of life?
Answering the second part of the question gives the definition of life – slavery.
While Buddha aimed at deductive, reasonably convincing answer, proving that life is suffering, I will now turn it upside down, not changing anything factually, proving that life is slavery because of the inherent conditioning of all matter, the consequence of which is the uttermost slavery to the “rules of engagement”. But, to jump to the explanation of it, lets say that what the “nature of things” is, call it the “law”, isn't really obligatory, though it is violently imposing.
The legend of Laocoon is that he, the priest of Apollo, warned Trojans not to accept the Horse, as Virgil bluntly put it: “Timeo Danaos et dona ferentes”1. As a consequence of this, Laocoon was punished by angered gods to be crushed by the serpent, a giant constrictor.
So, Laocoon and his sons suffered, and it is all said in their facial expression.2 These facial expressions resemble those of Gorgon Medusa, goddess of wrath. Just a look upon them results in petrification of the looker.
Lets think about it a little, what really angers gods? Remember Prometheus, the disobedient titan who opposed Zeus and disclosed secret divine technology to humans – the fire! For doing so he was punished with eternal suffering.
Another story goes, that Adam disobeyed God Lord and tapped the pool of knowledge, for which he was expelled from Eden, supposedly the place of eternal fun, right into the world of suffering.
Life is suffering and is also punishment. Not dying in horrible pain – living in pain is the ultimate punishment. This would be later, in another and somewhat aphasic altered system of reference, rephrased as – Hell.
Also characteristic is, in the Hellenistic era, the emphasis in art is often placed on suffering, like in the famous sculpture of a mortally wounded Gaul. It was the time when Greek civilization suffered decline, Romans were advancing after defeating Carthage and eradicating Etruscans, slavery was the main source of profit. Very much like today, with one difference only – present art doesn't put emphasis on suffering. The purpose of art has been remodeled and reduced to the function of marketing “having fun”. Marketing is important in this story, it is what life offers as a lure, a promise, a hope. The price for falling to its advertisement is – suffering. Global suffering. Hope is another name for advertising fun, and hope was itself the most advertised item during the long period of Dark Ages. By the effect of hope, people endured enslavement and suffered from huge attacks of self pity, and that was – fun.
What Laocoon said sounded like prophecy, was labeled as false and misinforming prophecy, because gods wanted cunningness to win and Troy to be destroyed. Troy, which stood for the type of economy unacceptable to the rising idea of state. The idea of trade, an idealistic exchange of goods, was to be replaced by the idea of extortion.3 Civilization instead of culture, empire instead of ethnos. It took centuries or a millennium for this replacement to take effect globally. By the time of the man-god, Alexander, the world was pretty much mapped and ready to be tailored in a more advanced fashion. Virgil, who was obsessed with Troy, their descendants believed to have founded Rome, in his epic poem Aeneid, pursued this transformation of Trojan model into the Roman model, headed short before Virgil's time by another, ultimate man-god – the Emperor Octavian Augustus Cesar. Who was an unscrupulous, cunning beast.
Virgil punishes Laocoon for seeing the “cunningness” and spins it into a very clear political message. Virgil's ideal of pietas or dutifulness towards the state and religion, was the main stock of his marketing. And the message was clear: anyone who trades obedience for honesty must suffer. This is very much the same idea that dominates the rest of the history, at present day culminating in the form of a robot (worker, slave), Nazi Aryan superhuman, or the pop-cultural hero Superman, now genetically possibly, advanced servant of the state with incomparable physical and psychical abilities and a dream of fully self-conscious artificial intelligence. The – pietas!
Gods are there to ensure “predestination”, they direct the action of men and create drama (of suffering) because the idea of order must win and all resistance is painful and futile.
How is an emotional dream of feeling good concealing the ugly side of life?
Emotion, as it is, a conditioned reaction to a trigger, hides the cause of its appearance by pretending it is something else – the hope, masking the ugly reality and emphasizing a “better future”. This is typical marketing of life. Lets hope it will be better, as soon as we are over the crisis.
Why are we in crisis?
The cause of the crisis is life itself. Life is exchange, but it is not a simple, equal, just exchange. It is actually extortion, exchange is a misnomer. The free market of life is nothing but life's marketing, and marketing is imposition of projection, struggle of one idea to take over other ideas and to control by using them for its own purpose (which is self justified). And its own purpose is also marketing, the struggle of Uroboros to feed on itself. It's a deadly, vicious circle of self marketing. The excuse and justification for marketing is – crisis. Because auto-cannibalism is a permanent crisis.
Thus we have Laocoon and his sons struggling with the constrictor, just a bit more elaborate representation of Uroboros, the symbol of auto-cannibalism.
There are many missing links in operational language – for instance, when finishing previous sentence I should have said: the symbol of auto-cannibalism of life. I omitted “life”, so it is not clear that auto-cannibalism and life are synonymous. This is in practice resulting in Babylonian confusion of languages4, because there are so many synonyms which are not recognized as such. They are apparently neglected by assuming they have different meaning, and that is not an accident.
Negligence of knowledge is the strategy of life. Life pretends that some things matter, those things which will bring in the profit, that is, deprive someone else of life so that another life can go on. One needs to be ignorant to pursue this strategy. And all the energy of thinking is wasted on justifying (complying to) such behavior, instead of debunking the very idea that controls being in ignorance. That is typical and that is the nature of things. Because all nature is alive, by definition of exchange being life. And if we watch closely this “exchange”, we can clearly see that it is not what it pretends to be.
All nature, physis, is conditioned to react to certain triggers. Atoms must get into exchange with other atoms, there's no way they can refuse. This is the basic definition of life – exchange.
Other existing definitions of life are just part of the strategy to prevent insight into the simple truth. Life must stay a mystery, a mysterious mistress, times 70 virgins as a reward after you've earned your ticket back to Eden.
The rosebud of living.
The Predators and The Meek – Know Thyself
The division on predators and game, slave runners and slaves, capitalists and proletarians, wolves and sheep, winners and losers, smart and stupid, organized and chaotic, leaders and the lead – these are all synonymous phrases. The good and the bad, the right and the wrong – all these in function of perpetual motion, the true perpetuum mobile, the unmoved mover, the need to feel, the need to be conscious, which are a proof of being alive. Motion advertises itself, doesn't want to stop, doesn't want to die. The opposition of life and death is exactly that – empirical contents versus emptiness.
The wise men of the past, present and future all arrived to the same conclusion – one has to stop5. It literally means – to die. Why is that so?
Death, the fear of life.
The ignorance of life keeps forgetting the truth about itself. This is the engine of perpetual motion. Life is a struggle for ignorance, it is the struggling ignorance, it is the slandered Laocoon struggling. The real Laocoon, the one who pointed to the mistake, had won his struggle. But life, through its prominent poet Virgil, claims that he kept struggling – a permanent state of life. A lie told to cover up the victory of knowledge.
Know Thyself was inscribed on Apollo's temple in Delphi.
Delphi was a treasury site of ancient Greeks, not only a place where prophecies were issued and Oracle abode. Gold and bronze values were kept there, and also, apparently – knowledge.
Apollo was not simply a Greek god, it was revered, under various names, in many nations of ancient times – Thoth in Egypt, Orpheus among the Thracian – its attributes are many and are compatible with other deities, Prometheus for instance, the one who possesses and passes knowledge. Again, we have to clear up the confusion and establish a synonymous system of reference.
What is knowing oneself actually? What kind of knowledge is that, as opposed to the needs of living, which are a constant struggle to ensure exchange?
It becomes clear that being meek is part of the marketing strategy, favoring both the predators and their prey – favoring the principle of division which ensures victory of ignorance and enslavement. The message is blunt: It is better to live as a slave than to be free and die, because if you refuse enslavement you will be thrown to the lions by the authorities, the zealous servants of the idea of life.
All the propaganda and spin of Christianity as an institution of pro-life intent is about persuading meekness. As a matter of fact, it goes much further in the past, before Troy or Rome. Even before the Jericho.
Pietas, dutifulness was Hector's prerogative. He was the symbol of order, family care, the symbol of economy, the Troy incorporated. And yet, he was murdered by Achilles, the symbol of unrestrained violence, a heroic figure nevertheless.
The whole story of Iliad is about gods tampering and promoting bandits into heroes; it starts with a priest Chryses wronged, whose daughter was abducted and made a sexual slave by Agamemnon. The rascals refuse to give her back for a ransom, and the priest prays to Apollo to send disease upon them. First the cattle, then the men.
Eventually, the idea of trade among the Achaians, the extortion actually, takes over, and Agamemnon would give the daughter back, in exchange for Achilles' sexual slave Briseis. This opens the crisis among Achaians, for Achilles refuses to fight further on. You see, this is the principle of crisis perpetuating on its own. It will result in Patroclus' death on the battlefield (he was impersonating Achilles for that dramatic purpose) and Achilles' rage (shall we call it emotional intelligence?) which led to the utter destruction of Hector.
Homer explicitly described what is really going on in politics. Gods being the hidden force, the gray government, the shadow warriors. Gods are ideas and men are their fuel and food.
1“Don't trust the Danayans, even when bearing gifts!”
2The famous Hellenistic sculpture by three sculptors from Rhodes, Hagesandros, Polydoros, and Athenodoros, according to Pliny.
3The idea of trade, the today's “free market” is meticulously being implemented, despite the fact that trade was always being destroyed in order to be replaced by monopoly, which would ensure dominance of certain state. This is too obvious in European endless wars in the last centuries, as well as today, when it is clear that everything in the “market” is being manipulated to the last bit.
4This is also a misnomer, because The Tower of Babylon was The Tower of Knowledge, and its destruction resulted in confusion and misunderstanding among peoples. The Bible itself is a good example of that.
5Buddha, Socrates, even Aristotle in a rare moment of lucidity.