boat logo

Village Gate

Teaching Hut

Article

Why Not Celebrate "Junk" & "Crap"?
Jo Danieli

It was a beautiful morning at a Viennese flea-market, and the sunny scenery seemed to have been set up just to celebrate the variety and the personalities of the items that were to change owner. Business? No, just pure joy and self-presentation. The traders played the roles of the industrious agents around the "stars". And the audience was caught in glitter here, shiny sparkles there, views of streams of colourful fabrics, beaches of buttons and sophisticated furniture among plastic booth-tables, fancy old toys filled with children's voices, electronic stuff, happily developing new integrity, so far from the original devices ... thousands of products of human imagination, manufactured according to the humans' needs and abilities to manifest ... still parts of mother earth, who offered the raw-materials ... And after all, objects as well as people are nothing but descendants of the original "gas cloud", that revolved around its own center, slowly transforming itself ...

I strolled amidst these treasures, smiling, wrapped in an old black woolen coat I had bought here one year ago exactly, for a ridiculous price. The coat's "mana" had attracted me, consisting of everything that ever was connected and in touch with it, and "touched" my inner "antenna". I bought the coat because of all the ideas I have ever had about how a really nice coat should be and about the colour black, the softness of wool, the feeling of "drowning" in a cozy hug, about my skin looking nice in black as well as my hair, as well as because of the perfect lenghth of the coat and the size of its collar and buttons, I had to get it. "Ku", my "active mind" in "Huna"-terms, had searched for it in the "Aka"-world, checking out the coat's origin and the "cosmic personalities" of the designers, manufacturers and owners and had decided that everything matched with my ideas and wishes.

After a while of bathing in abundance, feeling energized and motivated by all the forms and colours, the praising voices of the traders and meeting the eyes of the other people strolling around in the bright and sunny winter-air, having just stepped out of their warm flats to catch a glimpse of gypsy-life, I finally met my friend P. at a corner of that market-square. He was surrounded by white breathing-clouds, smiling, standing still like a light-pole. I proudly presented the wooden mirror-frame and the thick, knitted blanket I had bought some minutes ago.

"Aren't they just marvelous? And I am not sure yet whether I should get that cute little stone cat over there for my friend E.?!"

P. swung his arm around my shoulders, leading me away from the market. But I stopped, holding him back: "Hey, what's wrong?" He observed my face with a very close look, holding me by the shoulders.

"It is just that I cannot believe that you depend so much on material things. They are not important at all. See, I don't even have a mirror. And why possess more than one blanket? Belongings weaken the human spirit. I feel sorry for you, ... and I hope you will not make yourself very unhappy by collecting more and more stuff."

I held my treasures tighter, breathing deeply instead of breaking out in a storm of contradiction ... (did I look unhappy before?) He had his way of making himself feel comfortable by sitting and attending his own breath for days at meditation-retreats, and I allowed myself from time to time to bring home some breathtakingly beautiful things that I felt comfortable with.

"There are no rules about what a person has to have, or not have, to be happy," I softly answered, "... What about a hot chocolate?"

He agreed, looking at me with that parental "poor-thing,-but-I-will-help-you"-glance,"... "Oh yes, I have been looking forward to that since yesterday!" I felt like asking whether drinking hot chocolate was a less material experience than taking over ownership of a blanket and a beautifully carved piece of wood ... Anyway, I thought, it is not the right moment to try to find consensus ...

The more material values are taken away from a human being, the more space remains for thinking and feeling, according to several philosophical "schools". The "true" values are encouraged to prosper if the personality is not distracted by crap, it is said. Many people ask themselves, though, what should a human develop that great spirit for if not to achieve a comfortable life standard (based on being happy and healthy or whatever it takes) in this half spiritual and half material world we are born into. To give away something we achieve or that is dear to our heart, to refuse to appreciate what we manifest, although "material", only because another human being tells us to do so, might seriously offend our creative spirit. It would be forced by that to learn that other people's spiritual authorities are more "valuable" than our own, that others "know the truth" better than oneself. But this is not true at all. This underestimation of Self doesn't really help to establish a healthy sense of self responsiblity. Fact is, whatever we think influences what we experience. So if we think others have better ideas about "right" and "wrong" than we have ourselves, we will end up becoming "spiritual junkies", "hooked" on other peoples ideas about life. And as life consists of thousands of questions, tasks and decisions to be made, we might end up in a real stress in search for answers and help.

What is valuable, anyway, in a human being's life? Only what every single human being thinks is valuable! No leader or teacher on this planet can experience everything possible. So none of them is authorized to tell other people what should be of value for them and what they have to ignore or get rid of.

If we have to deny the material values of our existence, who will take care of them, then? They exist as part of nature as we do. So why deny their value? Because we are physical beings we can experience other physical beings and objects and make use of their nature, that's what we have our body and senses for. We never ever have not enough space for thinking and feeling, we are thinking and feeling all the time, we cannot take one breath without doing it, cannot make one single step. Our attitudes towards the phenomena and objects of life determine how we feel with or without them.

Matter is part of the universe, so who are we that we can turn it down as "bad"? Don't we ourselves consist of it? In fact, many philosophical schools want the human being to consider himself as being "bad" and worthless because of physical needs and "lusty" attitudes. It's easy to see why people follow such philosophies: People who don't think good about themselves need leaders. Strangely enough, those leaders - like priests, gurus, politicians, scientist, philosophers and other stars - are human themselves! And they do go for what they believe in!

All the classifications about the phenomena of life established throughout the centuries, make it more and more difficult to think "holistically." Fact is, we are at the same time spirit and physical, and our mind's functions cannot be separated from the body's functions. Our thoughts, feelings and powers are closely connected with our physical experiences - with spiritual stuff as well as with material objects. "Spirituality" is life, nothing more or less, including everything that can be experienced - as we always experience with the mind's functions and the body's functions at the same time! "Oneness" is not just an esoteric term, it is the basic level of life: Everything interacts all the time with everything else!

"Wanna see the spirit of a plant?" Serge King asked the audience at a work-shop ("Creative Energy") ... and everybody nodded enthusiastically, expecting a foggy ghost to show up in the air ... "Then look at the plant. It is its own spirit."

The mind doesn't mind that it has a body - even though many "Gurus" try to make their students believe that it does. It is not our highest aim to get rid of all material possessions and above all: of our own physical existence! Our body is the expression of our spirit not its burden and not its hindrance! What we are, represents how we are. What we possess shows our "cosmic personality" as well as what we long for or what we try to ignore or get rid of. Our life is a play with all the phenomena of existance, which we use as well as create with the help of our own creative forces - and they surely are connected with all kinds of matter.

There are so many limiting decisions according to which we live, already, that we really need not build up more to make it more and more difficult for our spirit to be active and move freely in the "cocoon" of beliefs (that are often not even our own). How good is a spiritual teaching that causes stress and bad conscience and asks to deny nothing less than our nature with all its senses and possibilities of experiencing and creating??? The "fight against oneself" is said to be the toughest. Good heavens - why should one fight against oneself? We humans cannot help, anyway, accepting everything that shows up in our lives ... we'd better learn to handle our existence in acceptance of its phenomena instead of developing more and more skills in denial. The nowadays very common "Autoimmune disorders" or diseases like "Cancer", that the human mind cannot understand, may be rooted in deep inherited conflicts about "good and bad" and "right and wrong" at the same time in one and the same human being. The body starts attacking itself - our "cosmic personality" couldn't cry louder for help by the "directing mind": "Please - make the right decisions of how to deal with myself!"

Why be afraid of feelings for material goods, if there are so beautiful insights about the human nature in this respect? Why be afraid of desires, longings and just needs - if they can be fulfilled? Said the German poet and scientist Johann Wolfgang von Goethe: "Our wishes are previews of the abilities that lay within us - messengers of what we are able to achieve." I did not let my friend spoil my pleasure of having bought the mirror frame and the blanket. But I did not want to spoil his pleasure in thinking that he was living the "right" philosophy, either ... This is friendship in a "Huna"-sense, respect for the ideas of other beings, even if they feel strange.

palm isle
[Top of page]

Copyright 2002 Aloha International
Contact us