Mark Reinheimer — Angels of Light
[image links to the artist’s gallery]

[this text is in process]


Contact, not Names...

Instead of attaching qualities or names to the concept of God, we can and should seek direct contact. It is this form of relationship that comprises ‘knowing’ as it relates to spiritual matters, and not understandings of names or scriptural legalisms. The only kind of ‘knowing’ about ‘God’ that counts is the knowledge one receives from a direct education at the feet of the primordial sources of awareness and intelligence. Names, ideologies and concepts must always take on a denigrated aspect and value in comparison to experience and communion, else our texts begin to define the indefinable, and we become trapped in the likeness of our tokens.

If we must begin the dangerous process of conceptualizing God — we can still avoid some obvious pitfalls merely by examining a few considerations we commonly ignore:

1: Things and beings aren’t our names for them, nor are they ‘alike’ with our models of them.

2. Naming is a falsely reductive and falsely divisive convenience — not a necessity for communication or contact. Classification is similar. In Nature, there is only one ‘class’: We Who Are Be - Come Ing.

3. Some ‘kinds of things or beings’ should not be reduced to a limited model, else we lose the traditionally conserved understandings related to limitless models, and those of explosively living or rapidly modulating emergent character.

When we model that which should not be ‘seriously’ considered to congrue with our models, we should realize we are making toys of speaking, not names or knowledge. We are pretending things and beings accord with our discernments and naming logics. As long as we remember we are pretending, we are generally safer from the pitfalls of such games.

4. In real human experience angelic presence or contact is contact with God. Our modern culture frowns upon and disbelieves in these matters, as do many modern churches — yet having had direct experience of this I can say unequivocally that it is extremely difficult to discern between God and an angel unless one has more than a smidgeon of direct personal experience with both.

I can also say that the nature of angels is vastly mismetaphied in general. Our ideas of them are not even worthy of being called reductions — they are boldly and impiously fashioned in the image of our fictions, and have little or nothing to do with what they refer to, in many cases openly opposing what they pretend to be raising high to our inner understanding.

‘Around here’ God and Angel are very close to synonymy. Our word Angel actually means something akin to ‘unique living vessel (of the) local assembly (of the) consciousness of the unityBeing’. Angels are not myths, and they are not akin to our christic or new-age models. Frankly, the simplest of them would put the sum of our science-fiction to shame.

Angels are experientially accessible with or without human ideas about them, and they may well be the reason we possesses representational cognition at all. Contact with them is not something reserved for special people, or special ‘religions’ or even those who understand ritual. It’s a lost human birthright, and we’re born in the hope of direct access to these realities of our source.

The problem is that we live on a planet that by and large doesn’t believe in angels at all. The things we do believe about them are so distorted as to wreck our access to contact by framing the whole dimension we refer to absurdly from the get-go.


Lin Chi sets the table...

Long ago, a Zen Master known as Lin Chi[4], a student of Huang Po, possessed amazing wisdom about the powers and pitfalls of naming things. He knew better than to pretend tokens of exchange were real, and preferred games which led beyond them entirely. Lin Chi knew and spoke of the dangers of naming, particularly in a passage in Barrett Watton’s translations in which he instructs the assembly on four ‘ways’ of relating with names (identity). I paraphrase it here from my own understanding, coupled with his translation.

There is the way of removing the person from the environment.

Person is, environment isn’t..

This is the invented abstraction of individuation as having precedence: i.e: ‘a self with a name’, ‘me’, ‘a victim’ or ‘a perpetrator’ This is the common position (in Western thought) from whence we ‘reference’ God.

This mode also may also be understood as ‘the common universe of human speech, action, agreement, and thought’.

There is the way of removing the environment from the person.

Environment is, person isn’t...

This is an invented abstraction which calls many by the name of One: i.e: ‘the people of San Francisco’, ‘Negroes’, ‘The Politicians’. This is the way we use to reference the idea of ‘Gods’.

This mode also may also be understood the ‘alien’ or ‘magical’ fantasy-universe of the experience of relation without the ‘addition’ of a given or specific perceiver. This is the transpersonal dimension drawn upon by our mythos, fantasy, science-fiction, and poetics.

There is the way of removing both environment and person.

Nothing is...except the structures we apply in testing or noticing this...

This is an invented abstraction which removes both person and environment: i.e: ‘7000 were killed in fighting’. Another example is our impetuous exclamation of ‘There’s no such thing!’ in response to something we consider logically or semantically absurd.

These matters are credentialed when we speak of statistical abstractions, calling things or beings by the names of measurements native to some specific system of accounting. Logics, mathematics and sciences emerge from this mode. Its purpose is to remove content from structure thus that the resulting highlighted elements are easily systematized, and further abstracted — purportedly to grant some form of intellectual power or liberty in most cases. A mode of tool-like compression, it fails to attend matters of ‘lossiness’ sufficiently.

This mode also may also be understood two entities so distant or opposed that they negate each other’s reality to some degree.

There is the way of no removing.

All is as it is...

This is a good way, and is a very natural and general mode. Not too much added or subtracted, each being is at liberty to define, fulfill and celebrate their station. Neither names nor the lack of names and judgments are sufficient to obstruct the essential communion of the truth of organismal and psybiocognitive unity.


We could illustrate these four positions as a game of polarities, played with the root aspects of the logics we portray to ourselves as ‘intelligence’, thus:

Examining this toy we can see that each of the ‘four’ polarities could be said to be ‘emanating’ from a central position which is not properly ‘dimensional’ in the same way the rays are. This central position can be occupied, producing from Lin Chi’s suggestion a 5th position, which unifies and transcends the presented polarities:

This is an ‘answer’ Lin Chi might seek from an ardent student of the way who moved to surpass his presentation entirely — a common goal of Zen practice. ‘A great beyonding which proceeds to surpass rather than stabilizing in one place or mode’.

Matters surrounding ‘naming and identity’ are crucial to comprehend clearly, as they form a hidden basis for meaning and distinction upon which all our thought and judgment are primordially founded. If we are trapped in only one of these, or denied the 5th position (and those beyond it) we are soon at war with ourselves, our own laws and ideas, and each other — because there is no way to come to a good agreement about something which is falsified by inept polarizations before the words and statements are even formed.

Naming is largely a game. When we make it more than this, it can be a very deadly trap. If we instead understand the powers and dangers of this game, we have the opportunity to set these ancient problems aright: we can ‘see with many eyes at once’ and thus are more alike with ‘that which we are’ rather than some peculiarly complicated model in terms.

The names of the unityBeing that we possess are toys of contact, offered as gifts to us by those who sought direct experience of the celestial home and the ‘living gardens of the sources’. They are none of them ‘correct’ (unless the One they name verifies them as such to you personally) — but instead are guides, best used as transports to contact rather than foundations of dogma.

Some of these sacred toys are profound in dimensions we have no words to describe, and I consider it true that intimacy with them has great value, particularly if one is amenable to the traditions from which they emerge.


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The Zen Teachings of Lin-Chi, Barrett Watton.