zdjęcie Autora

21 July 2018

Krzysztof Wirpsza

Cycle: Doorways Theory (how many: 14)

At a Feast with Dionysus

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We see, feel, taste, hear and think what we are used to feel, taste, hear and think. Occasionally we meet people who prod us to perceive it all in a different way. They see it differently and are living proof that our way is not the only way; it is just one of the ways.

We see it as we are used to see it. Then somebody comes our way who sees it differently. What is Reality, then? Reality is that I see it my way and you see it your way. That is Reality.


Now, what is Unconsciousness? There has been many attempts to define it as well as discussions if it really exists. But Unconsciousness is not a theory, nor a way of thinking, it's something much more obvious. Unconsciousness is the direct result of our not knowing Reality. It is the Limitedness of our perception.

If I see a different picture of something and you see a different picture of the same thing, then we do not know what really is there, is that right? And that means we do not allow in prisms, flavours, and ways of reasoning, that are not ours. Why would we? They are somebody else's. Hence the whole idea of Unconsciousness. It refers to all the vibrations that remain in us suspended in a sort of a quaratine, a waiting room if you will, expecting their time to come in.

We can say that Unconsciousness is full of suspended material, describing ways how others perceive Reality that remain, at least at this point, alien to ourselves. We denied those ideas. They are not ours.

Where Two Meet

An encounter with another living human being has become a symbol of Unconsciousness. If my outlook on Reality meets with your outlook on Reality, we are confronted here with a bare necessity: none is absolutely right. Both must be biased. That brings discomfort, because it activates what is denied on each side. What stimuli have been, even if only temporarily in some cases, disallowed entry into our field of knowing?

The Keyhole

Fact: our social relations activate our hang-ups, the denied material suspended in our Unconsciousness. If you don't like the word Unconsciousness (or Subconsciousness), if you consider it unscientific, say: Limitedness. The fact that our personal perspective is limited, extremely limited, that it is only a sort of a small keyhole through which we peek at Reality is what really causes the hang-ups. This, I think is very scientific and not too far off. This is what it is.

Our Limitedness as human beings shapes our perceptions, by denying certain aspects of Reality in a more or less consistent manner. You can't see gamma rays because you didn't need this in evolution. Similarly, I can't laugh every day with my full belly the way my friend Spiros does. But he is Greek. It is just the way things are.


The great symbolic patron of social relations is Dionysius, the wine god. He is the apotheosis of Life in its pristine form, the pure joy of meeting with another, and as Eleutherios ("the liberator"), one who frees his celebrating followers from self-conscious fear and care. He is also a masculine equivalent of Mother Nature, being a deity connected in a very intimate way with the wildness and beauty of all natural forms. But that's not all. Except being a god of laughter, party and good spirits, and except for being a metaphor of Life, he is also known as ancient symbol of Loss of Identity ­ or, in other words, the god of Group Self.

The duality of Dionysos is related to [...] loss of identity. The actors in the plays performed for Dionysos were masked; the mask symbolized the submersion of their identity into that of another. Wine also has the effect of submerging the normal personality of the person who drinks it. Dionysos made a habit of stealing the identities of his worshippers; the bacchants dancing on the mountainside have no separate personalities; they are mad, crazed, they have been taken over by the god; and they are all alike. (bold mine, K.W.) […] In this respect they are behaving in the same way crowds often do, in which the individual is subliminated by the mob. […] This loss of individuality is demonstrated in the theatre not only by the masks which the actors wear, but also by the chorus. They dance and sing in unison, all chanting the same words. The members of the chorus have no identity, each is merely an insignificant part of the whole, with no separate will. All individuality and willpower must be given up to Dionysos, when the god choses to take it.

And now please get ready for a surprise. This very loss of identity that we are bound to experience (or be tempted) in social relations is the denial we talked about just a moment ago. It is actually the reason why we deny certain things, why we do not want to understand another person's view. We simply do not want to upset the smoothness of our relating. It's been embedded into us by the very power of Dionysus (and Doorway Two), by the very touch of his thyrsus splattered with honey, that in order to relate we must be liked. We ant others to like us, and not only that, we want them to like us the way we understand it, which is oftentimes wrong. And in order to force them to like us, we commit a self-sacrifice. We switch off our individualiusm, become mindless, nod at every sentence and find it very hard to express our „no”. This secret vines, creepers, ties that hold us together preventing any reckless word or thought from breaking out, teaching us the honemouth diplomacy at every corner, are the basis of all society, all relationship, all family, and most of social life.

They are also the most fundamental reason of why it's so difficult to stay Yourself in the society.

The Hanged Man. Holy Sacrifice.

Doorway Two

Life, Celebration, Group Mind, Unconsiousness and Identity Loss are all close to one another and Dionysus is the one who connects them. It is extremely important to see them as mutually bound, actually all part of the same large semantic area. The Self-Sacrifice (or the Identity Loss) which was characteristic to many cults and religions, remains the perennial attribute of Group Self. To become part of a social organism you must (or are in many ways tempted to) lose your own will and ability to choose. You go with the flow, dance as the music plays and, at least for the time of the party, forget who you are. Now, you main purpose is to feel alive inside of a social organism, you obviously start mimicking certain established group rites which are testified to bring you closer to others. They are not necessarily what you personally „want” to do, but you immitate them, because they are „what makes everyone here happy.” You become like everybody. You strive to be, or else you would be seen as weird, maladjusted or selfish. This is the very essence of Doorway Two that we are going to discuss in the following chapters. You are both rejoicing in the rules and mentality of the crowd and feeling repressed, denied, pushed out into the dunegeon of your own Unconsciousness, where you slowly and inevitably grow mean.

The text first appeared at Author's blog www.doorwaystheory.com.

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