Day 264: Defining Entertainment
“Stop the World, I want to get off.” This was a line from the film, “It’s a Mad, Mad Mad Mad World” and hearing it, subsequently more than once, I repeated it. I made it my own. At eleven years old, the line seemed to formulate in words something that I had been unable to articulate. In the narrative of the film, this line was made in the context of a wacky car race competition, a race for the prize of lots of money, a series of sketches, one-liners, and visual gags. The suggestion of an opt-out to the competition that seemed to pervade my life was welcome.
The intensity of my amusement experience had a big effect on me, I thought, “I want to see as many films as possible, I want this film experience every day, I want to write down in the pages of my diary, I saw this, and I saw that.” The pages in my diary contained short sentences like, “I had chips.” or “We went swimming.” So now I could add this to my significant experience collection, “I saw: It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World.” I was not aware of this at the time but all the same I was busy defining ‘films’, and hence ‘entertainment’ in and through the eyes of a positive feeling experience in my mind, that seeing a film I was then predisposed to be seeing it through this kind of filter.
It was not only the contents of the films that I added into this definition of entertainment, but the whole experiential context of it; it was defined as a ‘treat’, on a ‘Saturday-night’, which had come to mean a space in the week devoted to entertainment. Entertainment was thus installed not only in the buildings, but into the physical cycle of the ‘week’. My perceptions and experience of the physical building of the cinema blended into ‘Saturday-night’ and ‘treat’, all as real information about what ‘entertainment’ consisted of; going to the ‘pictures’ was like going to see the ‘real’ thing, compared to TV.
This was in my local town, back in the 60’s, a small town, with two cinemas. There was the larger cinema, “The Odeon”, with a ‘neo’ classic frontage, and its own apron of car park, and the other, a smaller more constricted building, down the hill, “The Gaumont”, which stood as part of a terrace on a busy main road, cut off from any parking by a couple of side streets, as it were, at the back doors of the town. While the big cinema would show the family films, the smaller one would show the shadier material, the ‘X’ rated sex and horror.
In my perceptions and interpretations the smaller cinema seemed to have a permanent “shadiness”, becoming stored in my mind like a furtive snap-shot from the passing bus, complete with shadows, just a moment in time through the steamy window to glimpse the value ‘X’, and maybe for example, the word, “Psycho”. During my surveillances of the physical entrance from the street, I noticed that it was arranged so that one could take a sudden turn at right angles, off the pavement and in through the doors and disappear from sight in a single moment. I was “casing the joint”, even if I had not known it.
The ‘X’ was a source of fascination to me, like a secret, or something forbidden. ‘Gaumont’ and ‘Odeon’ both seemed to me like words of power, as if they carried with them a myth-charged presence, having some preordained authority, as projected on the big screen, or as words across the sky. The bigger cinema stood on the hill like a temple, it was fronted by pillars and steps, between the doors were glass windows containing stills of action moments in the film, and inside the doors a massive ‘foyer’, all red carpeted with roped off sections and wide winding stairways and passageways that lead up into the dark. In walking up these stairs that lead into the ‘circle’ and the ‘gallery’ I experienced a sense of elevation and privilege like I had become for a moment as a part of the vaulted gilt and grandeur of the building.
All these impressions words and memories connected to the physical buildings, my feelings, my “Saturday-night” experience, all of it was then contained in ‘entertainment’. My entertainment was to be red carpeted, and elevated, it was an access to the higher circles, but also at the same time within this construct in my mind I was making provision for polarity within it; with this “Gaumont” building that I had not yet explored.
Bringing myself from those years ago to Here, I am looking at: “Stop the World, I want to get off.”
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to make a decision for an existence as myself as an entertainment in my mind.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to make this decision of who I am to be in my life in relation to ‘entertainment’ within and as a reaction of blame towards those around me.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to blame the ‘race’ and those people around me that forms my ‘world’, for ‘making’ me the way that I feel, which is always bad within myself, as always being the ‘loser’.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe in ‘losing’ and in ‘winning’, I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to attach experiences of feeling and emotion to ‘winning’ and to ‘losing’.
I forgive myself that I have not allowed or accepted myself to see that within “Stop the World, I want to get off.” that I have chosen to blame the World and through holding on to this blame that I justify to myself “getting off” into my mind.
I forgive myself that I have not accepted and allowed myself to see realise and understand that through holding on to blame of those around me in my world that I am protecting myself as the mind within and as the feelings of self righteousness, and so within the secrets of my mind have found ways to experience myself as the winner.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to define ‘entertainment’ in films as a source of feeling good within myself.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to turn to ‘entertainment’ when there is an energy building up inside myself that I do not like, where rather than in responsibility looking inside myself and breathing so that I can see what is actually going on in real-time and finding for myself a solution, instead I have accepted and allowed myself to decide for self distraction and procrastination of my own awareness.
I forgive myself that I have not allowed or accepted myself to see realise and understand that I am responsible for the way I feel.
I forgive myself that I have not accepted or allowed myself to see the emotional and feeling reactions within which I have defined for myself the word ‘entertainment’, and from this how I have accepted and allowed myself to experience myself within and as entertainment.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to value distraction from myself as a positive experience.
I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to become addicted to the ‘high’ experience of entertainment, that I have myself defined into it.
I forgive myself that I have not accepted or allowed myself to take time off from my own reality within distraction as entertainment in which I have formed a habit or conditioning to as and when a pressure builds up inside myself to seek an unreality experience within my mind.
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