the Art of Nao
68.5 x 135 cm ~ 27 x 53 inches
Scroll 16-section 1.1
If, in fact, a mass turns out to be of no consequence to us, then this realization alone is enough to thrust us away from what previously drew us in. Either that, or we recognize its actual importance and so, can accept our attraction to it. Once we see the masses at play, we also realize the action or non-action needed for our right relationship; this is when the dynamics of fun can come in.
Scroll 16-section 1.2
The experience of fun does not necessarily come from the activity itself, but because of the freedom from forms of gravity that it offers. To be able to ignore information liberates us from its effects on our nervous system.
Fun happens when the mass of an idea or an action is reduced, eliminated, or naturally light. The common thread is an absence of neurological activity connected to meanings that are more serious, and thus, have more mass. As a result, we can be light-hearted and can enjoy direct sensory contact with the fun activity itself.
Contrary to its image, fun is not automatically a benign enterprise; one person's fun can be another person's distress, as in the case of criminality.
As described in the last chapter, every situation and subject matter has a basic mass at several levels. Sometimes the mass comes from the essential role of the thing itself, as in the importance of air for breathing; >
Scroll 16-section 2.1
> anything that cuts off our air supply is never fun. When we are underwater with an air tank, however, we can have fun because the conceptual mass of inaccessible oxygen is absent. At other times, we attribute mass to something in particular, as in: “I’ve just got to have X,Y,Z!” The ability to remove something’s mass is key to the experience of fun. Mass can be reduced in various ways.
Skill makes the weight of an activity smooth and playful. Mastery means that we have enough strength in those areas necessary to make light of the elements and actions involved. Such an experience of competence is fun because we are no longer constrained by the weight of our awkwardnesses. We are also free from the gravitational pull of having doubts as to whether or not we are good or bad in the performance of the thing. Thus we can, literally, play with the forces of the materials and situations involved.
Scroll 16-section 2.2
Relief from responsibility can lead to fun. A vacation at a resort is fun because we are free from the masses of work and domestic demands, inasmuch as we have given ourselves permission to vacate any thoughts and feelings that have to do with them. As a result, we no longer have to respond to their needs and can care only for our own pleasures.
The removal of cause and effect conditions, as in the playing of all sorts of games, is fun. Free-form activities are enjoyable because the consequences of our actions are not intended to be meaningful—no significant neurology is engaged. This liberation from self-measurement does away with any judgments about how well we play or not: the youngest children clearly evidence this principle. Nonetheless, the concept of winners versus losers and betting >
Scroll 16-section 3.1
> games can add social mass to certain forms of otherwise inconsequential play.
Disregard for the boundaries of another person’s rights feels like fun to certain personalities. Crime is often fun for the criminals—until they are caught and the gravity of the situation sinks in. Before that, there was great freedom from societal restrictions, imposed efforts, and postponed gratification.
Reduction in the semantic mass of words results in fun, as with humour and word play, which show us that no subject matter is sacred. Through a joke or cartoon, anything whatsoever can be made “light” of; only a person’s own standards prevent them from going too far.
Scroll 16-section 3.2
Once we experience relief from a subject matter’s mass by laughter, it is difficult to return it to its previous heavier status. Hence the fanatic prohibitions of some belief systems to never make fun of them in any form whatsoever, or else… The threat serves to reintroduce the gravity that would otherwise be dissolved through the fun.
Chemical substances can reduce a person’s sense of obligatory functionality and so, as a by-product, reduce the usual mass of things in general. The effect is a sense of fun. The problem with this approach is that it can become very expensive when the masses of the >
Scroll 16-section 4.1
> neglected aspects of our lives oppress us into suffering.
Fun is essential. Without it, life becomes burdensome and wears on our nerves with its constant demands to process conceptual and emotional loads. As a result, we infect others with the masses that we carry by passing them along and thus, reducing their own capacity for fun. The ideal is to have, on the one hand, just enough gravity so that what we do matters and, on the other, sufficient lightness of being to make us offer minimal resistance to the guidance in flow that is streaming within and outside of us.
Scroll 16-section 4.2
Fortunately, part of our human being-ness is that we do have options for reducing the masses of our realities. Exercising these requires accepting concepts that correlate our external experiences to our inner activities. Otherwise, if we believe that reality comes at us strictly from the outside, then we have to be ever vigilant in case something “heavy” is waiting around the corner. Consequently, we are never truly free to have fun for very long.
If, on the other side, we realize that our reality is an extension of our self-directed imaginations, then we can give our >
Scroll 16-section 5.1
> full alertness and care to what is happening in our present moment, we can be and act in the Nao. As written elsewhere in this text, “now” is this most powerful of moments when all forces are aligned and can be steered towards a desired state. To consciously live and direct these forces at their most potent confluence is to be in, what I call the “Nao.”
To think of our situations in this way increases our sense of control and reduces any urgency we may feel. We no longer need to act from purely external levels where random forces await us, but rather from a creative stance of drawing out the transformations that we need and desire.
This paradigm offers fun in the same way as a natural high.
Scroll 16-section 5.2
Lightness of being automatically arises when we are fully engaged in life at all levels: sensory, intellectual, emotional, physical, and spiritual. At such moments, we do not ask whether we deserve happiness or success, we simply sense that these vivid moments are what life is all about.
Such an intensely pleasurable state derives its effects from multiple sources of sensory information interflowing throughout our neurology. This unrestrained, all-inclusive joy is our most efficient way of being. It elicits the least amount of resistance to the moment and is in step with our greatest reach towards holistic cooperation.
The thrust of a full life is exactly towards this intoxicating dynamic. It is one in which we are liberated from the gravitational pull of every weighty matter and so, free to enjoy pure creative play in the moment. At that point, we are free to have all the fun we can manage.
Scroll 16-section 6.1
22 Egos Everywhere I Go
An ego motivates a being to be what it is and, especially, to strive to be even more of itself. Egos are not limited to people; they exist in every creation, be it animal, object, situation, feeling, concept, idea, person, and whatever else you can name.
To the extent that it can, a being’s ego acts with all of its resources to maintain, or, better yet, to increase its status.
Scroll 16-section 6.2 — End of Scroll 16
This egotistic thrust of desire to “thrive in the game” is inseparable from existence. The differences between egos only come from what tools each one has to achieve its rise.
An ego not only applies to a thing’s overall being, but also to the separate parts that comprise it, each of which has its own specific and dedicated ego enfolded within the larger one of its context as a whole. In some circumstances, a part’s ego gets to increase its own status in equal measure to the ego of its overall container. For example, olive oil has a life of its own and, arguably, as big an ego as the olives themselves.
No matter what ego we consider, its chances for success can be greatly enhanced—as in the case of olive oil—through a host, such as humans. We make very good ones because we layer socio-cultural egos over each thing’s native ones, and so increase its total ego. The mathematics of egos can also involve subtraction whereby something’s ego has value in >
© C.C. Elian 2010 - 2016