May 7, 2013

James Wyckoff - There Are Two Realities

Below is an excerpt from, "Franz Anton Mesmer: Between God and Devil," by James Wyckoff. 1975. Prentice Hall: Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey. Pg. 20-21; and 70-71.
"We propose that there is not one, but that there are two cultures, two realities, two "histories" that reveal the story of man. One is the orthodox, visible tale seen through subjective eyes, a linear, sequential story, gleaned through mere "information." The other, not so clearly visible, is simply what took place, seen not with, but through, a different set of eyes, a different "instrument" as it were, and reached through an understanding. "Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder." So does history, so does the culture of mankind. Who writes our history, who records our culture?

The suggestion that "reality" is not really real is not new. That there is a real, a true reality behind, or beyond, our common logical-actuality perception of ourselves and our environment has been known throughout history; but known by those whom it is fashionable to term "primitive societies," such as the Indians of the Americas as well as by certain "civilized" individuals who have endured somehow the labels of "madman" and "mystic." It is only culture---the "we" and "our" of history---as expounded by the intelligentsia of art and science that has failed to take seriously the fact that what we call reality is more often than not a mere appearance, and that there is a different, or more real reality, an eternal reality, that it is at moments possible to experience. This reality is beyond the level of opposites or duality on which mankind normally exists."

"Mankind occupies itself with one reality, the reality of logic and mentation, of measure and comparison and the conflict of opposites, of time and space. This reality separates, excludes, defines and explains. The other reality, the hidden or "secret" reality is simply "given," it is not explained. It cannot be explained on our everyday level of understanding, our understanding that sees everything by comparison or in opposition. But of course there are those who attempt to explain it, and in failing, reject it, refusing to accept the discomfort of "not knowing."
And yet, this other reality is always there, though not seen; not seen because of man's structure, his impure "seeing instrument." But there are moments when this esoteric or secret knowledge, or pieces of it, appears, and sometimes this occurs during times of stress as in the Europe of the eighteenth century, and in our own time too. But it will appear in what may seem strange ways---strange to the logical mind; and it may be spoiled too because not always does the person through which it appears understand it. Hence, the ubiquity of charlatans, quacks, cheap mystics. But here it is the vehicle that is at fault---not the material."