“When one has nothing to lose, one becomes courageous. We are timid only when there is something we can still cling to.”
Carlos Castaneda

The Second Ring of Power

Realms Beyond Reason


” … the crisis is being caused by the inadequacy of existing forms of thought to cope with the situation. It can’t be solved by rational means because the rationality itself is the source of the problem … the solution to the problem isn’t that you abandon rationality but that you expand the nature of rationality …

We’re living in topsy-turvy times, and I think that what causes the topsy-turvy feeling is inadequacy of old forms of thought to deal with new experiences …

You look back at the last three thousand years and with hindsight you think you see neat patterns and chains of cause and effect that have made things the way they are. But if you go back to original sources, the literature of any particular era, you find that these causes were never apparent at the time they were supposed to be operating. During periods of root expansion things have always looked as confused and topsy-turvy and purposeless as they do now.

… Moon exploration doesn’t involve real root expansions of thought. We’ve no reason to doubt that existing forms of thought are adequate to handle it. It’s really just a branch extension of what Columbus did. A really new exploration, one that would look to us today the way the world looked to Columbus, would have to be in an entirely new direction …

… Like into realms beyond reason. I think present day reason is an analogue of the flat earth of he medieval period. If you go too far beyond it you’re presumed to fall off, into insanity …

But what’s happening is that each year our old flat earth of conventional reason becomes less and less adequate to handle the experiences we have and this is creating widespread feelings of topsy-turviness. As a result we’re getting more and more people in irrational areas of thought – occultism, mysticism, drug changes and the like – because they feel the inadequacy of classical reason to handle what they know are real experiences.”

Robert Pirsig – Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
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