by Jake Block
“Laugh, laugh, I thought I’d die. It seemed so funny to me.” — The Beau Brummels
Life is a serious matter. There are mouths to feed and bills to pay and there are interdependencies in economics so vague and so intricate that it takes a master mathematician to figure them out. We are born, we toil and we die. End of story.
Well, that’s what many people think. I don’t happen to be among them. There has to be a time for play and a time for humor and mirth on this earthly plane. We as a species need to laugh and enjoy. It’s an integral part of our lives that can be observed almost from the moment of birth.
I’ve found that a sense of humor is one of the most humanizing aspects of mankind. We seem to enjoy being around people who can help us laugh, releasing us from the drudgery of the workaday world. We tend to shun those dour and gloomy people that tend to bring us down. I don’t think that I could trust a person without a sense of humor. I know that I would have a distinctly difficult time liking them. Now, I’m not talking Pinky Lee, Soupy Sales, pie-in-the-face funny, although there is a place in the world for the slapstick, but able to laugh about one’s own frailties and foibles. That’s tougher than “Who’s On First” any day!
I suppose that psychologists are correct when they say that it takes a secure person to be able to find humor in himself. I’ve often found that those who take themselves too seriously have little or no sense of humor and none when it comes to themselves. They feel that they have to be perfect in everyone’s eyes all of the time. Any show of imperfection would lead to a degradation of their power (usually magnified in their own minds) with whatever individual or group they hope to impress. If that’s not insecurity, then what is?
Perfection is an abnormal state in nature. That’s why we tend to prize it so highly what it is found. The perfect rose, the perfect sunset, the perfect this or that… all wonders to behold, yet unreachable by the vast majority, and impractical as a whole. Perfection is meant to be admired from a distance, for there chance that it be taken up in loving arms to be held or inspected too closely. Flaws in perfection are all to obvious under the microscope of public scrutiny.
As with fine pottery, a classic rose or an exquisite carving, so too is it with people who would be perfect. There seems to be an abundance of Ascended Masters, Ipsissimus Maximi, Grand Exhalted Croutons, snf High Muckedy Mucks who, by virtue of an esoteric title and “gifted insight,” set themselves apart from the general public. Maybe it’s because they have some knowledge that nature or Providence has spared the rest of the world that the majority have the same look about them… call it stoic. call it sour…it’s a lack of humor.
While we know that all people need dome humor and mirth in their lives, most of the people we know who aspire to greatness in the worlds of the metaphysical or the occult seem to leave a sad and somewhat smoky legacy upon their passing. So it was with Rasputin, with Crowley, Blavatsky, Mathers, Spare, Home, Gardner and many other “Masters.” While they may indeed have been masters in their respective disciplines, there is little doubt that their personal lives were less than pleasant.
Rasputin rose to the heights of power and prestige, yet lived in seclusion, lest his enemies assassinate him. They did. Crowley became dependent upon drugs and died alone and lonely. Blavatsky, Spare and Home fell from grace and into decline. Gardner, towards the end of his life, fell into the hands of those who would callously use him for their own ends. I have seen a “documentary” on his life that pictures the then aged man, dancing in a jockstrap device in a parody of ritual, scarcely able to maintain his dignity, and surrounded by those who had little or no respect for his past glories.
Is it possible that those who follow actually mold their own masters and predetermine their temperament? This is not only possible, but quite probable, inasmuch as those who tend to gravitate toward those who display any level of charisma demand perfection in their leaders, whether they are capable of perfection or not.
Those of us with skills in “metaphysical” or “occult” disciplines have all been victimized by those who assume that by virtue of being able to perform certain tasks, we become at the beck and call of those who have skill enough to dial a phone or knock upon a door. We might have lives of our own, children to rear or jobs to do. Those who have assumed that we will take control of their lives for damned little praise when we succeed and condemnation when we fail to get them out of the messes they’ve made for themselves, fail to understand that we do indeed have lives of our own. Their needs, of course, must always come first.
There seem to be but two ways to go. One can strictly regulate those who would follow, much as the “traditional” masters of the genre have done, becoming demigods to preserve what semblance of order they may have in their lives. The other option is to become lost in the problems and distractions of others. But perhaps there is a third way… self discipline and selective “altruism.” Help those you can when you can, and maintain your dignity, supporting those you hold dear first. Be the best at what you do, but also take time to laugh and enjoy life.
A true Master is a study in balance – Yin and Yang. There is a light side and there is a dark side, and he or she must dwell somewhere between the two. There is good in us all, and there is evil as well. Why should it be any different for the Masters? A Master can be a Master and still enjoy the gifts that life has to offer.
Even in defeat, one must look for something of humor in the fabric of one’s own life. There is humor, trust me. You may not find it in the slapstick comedy of Soupy Sales; it may be in the subtle “chest chuckles” of a Rita Rudner.
Let me tell you a true story about a Master in his own right, who had a sense of humor. Maybe you’ve heard of Captain Osho.
Now, Captain Osho was a pilot, flying for a large Japanese Airline. He was the cream of the crop. His flight logs were perfect. He could hold forth for hours on any aspect of air transportation and could accurately describe the operation of his plane and each officer’s position in the cockpit. Not only did he know the theory, he could perform the tasks… flawlessly. He was the model pilot.
One day, on a routine flight from Tokyo to San Francisco, Captain Osho landed his plane two miles short of the runway. This, of course, meant that he landed in the shallow waters in the glide path to the runway, but it was a perfect landing. People had no idea they had landed short of the runway (presumably until someone looked out the window and realized that we just don’t get THAT much rain in California), for Osho had brought his jet in so smoothly that the plane seemed to simply glide in. The plane floated so perfectly, in fact, that people were spared getting their feet wet and they made their way from the cabin to the wing and then to the waiting life rafts. As the passengers rowed ashore they sang songs and joked. It was a lark. That is to everyone except the Federal Aviation Administration.
Within days, Captain Osho was called before a hearing of the FAA. This in itself was enough to make most pilots tremble with fear. Osho sat quietly. facing the panel, who questioned him at length on his performance and training. It went something like:
FAA: Captain Osho, do you feel you were alert on this flight?
OSHO: Yes, very.
FAA: Was your training adequate?
OSHO: Yes, very.
FAA: Was your plane in good condition?
OSHO: Yes, very.
FAA: Well the, Captain, can you tell us what went wrong?
Osho stood and faced the jury of his peers and looked from man to man. He squared his shoulders and, the man standing before Masters spoke the words that have made him a legend among Masters of Aviation. He very simply said, “As you Americans say. “Osho fuck up.”
Now, the world was not prepared for this. Captain Osho, by the conventions of modern aviation should have hung his head in abject apology and accepted discredit and shame. But he knew that he had made a mistake, and he knew that the world would still turn in the morning and, despite the possibility of a disaster, which did not occur, he could see the humor in the situation and in himself. Osho was none the less a Master Pilot. He was simply a Master Pilot with a sense of humor.
Try to find one of the masters of our “occult world” with that kind of sense of humor. Take your lunch, boys and girls… it’s gonna be an all day job!