Α28. The mind is moved by my past pain.
Many days later, at five o’clock in the morning…
The mind has got angry, because the last several days, instead of focusing on the further construction of the State of Freedom, I chased after easy joys and constantly looked for excuses in order to avoid the work. He has gotten even angrier because for the umpteenth time I made the same mistake and ate yesterday late in the evening too much ice-cream with chocolate cake and thus woke up in the middle of the night due to a heavy stomach. Remember, please, o mind, that I am innocent for this folly and do not get angry.
Indeed, the mind recalls his recent conception, the acquittal due to ignorance of the pained child of the past which still lives inside me. He remembers the negative influences of its environment, which together with its dependent nature were his only teachers. He realizes and understands that due to the conditions this child did not grow up ever, even if it has taken the form of an adult, and even though he has had so many external successes.
He wonders now why I ate so much chocolate late yesterday evening, although I knew well from my experience the unavoidable unease which this deed would cause me during my sleep. The answer is obvious: the old emotional void, which since I was a child made me look in vain here and there for joys to fill it. These joys, however, were totally irrelevant with the problem and hence naturally always failed to solve it. I have been bewitched by numerous Sirens and have spent countless amounts of money, time and energy in their chase. But the void remained the same.
Because the cause of the void lied inside me and no external satisfaction of the senses or the ego (acquisition or conquest) was by nature able to fill it. The mind knows that since I was a child nobody taught me to find the center of myself and sit in there comfortably for a while, to quiet down, satisfied by the mere fact of my existence. Everybody taught me, with both their words and their example, to run outwards constantly, in order to prove my value.
The mind knows, as well, that I resisted the mandatory work of school and thus learned to detest and postpone up to the utmost limits any kind of work, like many of my Greek brothers also do, who have unconsciously been my teachers whom I unwittingly imitated. Hence, the mind concludes easily and safely that I am innocent, not only for the new suspension of the construction works of the State of Freedom, but also for the cheap substitute of joy which in vain and cursorily I tried to find yesterday evening in the ice-cream with chocolate cake.
Additionally, he proceeds one step further, while he remembers the anxiety and the wastage of opportunities for the establishment of deep inner joy which this uneducated child has gone through all its years. He sees in its eyes the aspiration for liberation whenever it heard the various Sirens, which were either a woman or social recognition, or business success, financial benefit, moral victory, a nice meal and many more. He is now moved by the aspiration of that pained child for free joy, an aspiration which is clearly drawn in its eyes, in the gleam of their enthusiasm and the vivid hope for the expected liberation with the assistance of the Siren whom he suddenly trusts and on whom it assigns all its hopes with a childish naivety.
Afterwards, he is also moved by his gaze of disappointment which followed each activity or conquest or acquisition, when the child found that the void was still there. For it continued to be dissatisfied by itself and dependent on the existence of external gladsome aids. Lastly, he is moved by the ensuing gaze of sorrow for its failures and its fury for the injustices which it underwent during all its years.
The mind is moved by the anguish and the pain which I have experienced since I was a small child until today in my futile struggle to find a quick way to fill my internal void for good. He sees me in the same way in which he would see an unknown persecuted brother on the street, as a third party, as an observer deep inside him aloof from the pain but at the same time compassionate. With this inner attitude he says: “What a pity! Why suffer so much with no real reason this child? Since the solution lies in itself, it is a shame that it does not see it, and it is an even bigger shame to have seen it and not apply it and instead be still tormented”.
By saying this, the mind feels from his utmost depth the rising up urgency to help and hence decides to act. He commits himself to find the way to guide the persecuted child to the path of focusing on the center of itself. In this way, it will learn to feel content with its mere existence and its inextinguishable inner flame. Thus, the mind will teach this child how to avoid being consumed in the insatiable and pointless wild goose chase of outer and at first sight exciting flames, which at the end of the day can only exacerbate the disappointment, while all their joy vanishes. The mind has now deeply penetrated into the space of the heart and is pulsated together with her by the compassion for this child. This time the compassion is vigorous and decisive; it is not manifested in the form of a passive self-pity like previously, which used to sink him even deeper into the ooze of misery.
The mind now recalls a poem of the great lord of humaneness, the brother Bertolt Brecht, which prompted him to show compassion and not contempt to the needy underage and unmarried mother who one night out of despair strangled her baby who due to his cry kept her awake for many consequent days and nights. The mind had been moved then, like he has been moved by the story of many other unfortunate brothers and sisters. At last, the time has come for him to be also moved by the painful story of himself and become compassionate for himself for the first time, as if it were not his own self but another unfortunate brother the one who confesses his pain.
 Source: www.leonardcohenforum.com:
On The Infanticide Marie Farrar
Marie Farrar: month of birth, April
An orphaned minor; rickets; birthmarks, none;
Previously of good character, admits that she did kill
Her child as follows here in summary.
She visited a woman in a basement
During her second month, so she reported
And there was given two injections
Which, though they hurt, did not abort it.
But you I beg, make not your anger manifest
For all that lives need is help from all the rest.