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Why a Temple? Ponder this:
If god appeared to you and asked for a sacrifice, would you give it? if he demanded trials, would you endure them? If he told you to bleed for him, would you open a vein? If instructed to kill in his name, would you? Is there anything you would not suffer for your faith?
What if god put his face right in front of yours and demanded joy? What if god insisted on beauty and kindness instead of suffering and pain? What if god insisted you be free? Could you do that? Would you even try? You’ve mistaken the fears of old men for the voice of the universe. I haven’t.
Why circus monkeys?
Society, culture, government, they’re circuses (def. entertainment featuring exhibitions of pageantry, feats of skill, and performing animals, interspersed with the ant
ics of clowns). And like a circus, they appear to be free when they’re actually carefully rehearsed and timed. Every acrobat, elephant, and clown hits their mark. Except for the monkey. He might do anything. He represents chaos. So do we.
I’m “different.” I don’t “settle” or “fit in.” I find “normal” too boring, restrictive, and empty. I know the gods want us to be joyful and artistic, both warriors and m
onks. I believe in fun even if it’s sometimes dangerous. I like girls and rum and sex. I revel in my freedom as I fight the oppression of the Man’s safe conformity.
For hundreds of years spirituality and the word of god were spread by itinerant preachers and traveling salvation shows. Pitch a tent outside of town, put up some flyers and save some souls. The TCM harkens back to this simple time. No building. No hierarchy or bureaucracy. Just our little electronic outpost. Click on a link, hear some preachin’, then go home and do it yourself.
Are you the person you wanted to be when you grew up? Are you a little pissed off? Are you ready for something cooler? Look around. You might find an idea you like, a useful tool, or a community to join.
There are moments of pure joy in your past.
They are god.
Go have some more.
Why isn’t the world full of cowboys, ballet dancers, race car drivers, super heroes, and pony wranglers? Why doesn’t everyone still do art and gym? Walk into any kindergarten and ask around. These are all the cool choices. Nobody wants to be a middle manager. No one dreams of a cubicle and a computer screen. What the hell happened?
Human beings grow. For normal people, that means getting taller and more responsible. The Man likes things neat and orderly and he likes that order to be vertical. A clear line of authority so we all know exactly who’s in charge. Castes, social or economic classes, ranks and office manager flow charts. It starts in school where the “grown ups” tell you if you can talk, what to think, and when to pee. As you “grow up” towards them, you get more seniority and upon graduation you’re called a “grown up,” too. Now it’s time to stop growing, get a job and move up the corporate ladder. put aside those childish small things like dreams and hopes and piracy. Well fuck you and everybody that looks like you.
Limiting growth to children is a terrible lie and tying that growth to verticality is even worse. Growing up takes absolutely no skill or discipline. The average shrub does it perfectly well. How about growing down, more rooted with a deeper base? How about out, more connected to the world around you? How about in, with more understanding of your psyche or spirituality? How about wildly all over the place, letting your joy run amok like a puppy on caffeine?
Life is growth, but you stopped because “growing up” seemed to be the only choice. I haven’t noticed the grown ups doing a particularly good job at running the world. Most of the fucked up kids I see are abused by grown ups. Here at the Temple, we choose to be growing downs or growing ins or growing outs instead. So the next time you’re screwing around and someone tells you to “just grow up,” tell them “Fuck off, it’s against my religion.” It’s time for a cowboy or pirate revolution!
Down these mean streets a man must go who is not himself a man, who is neither tarnished or afraid. He must be a complete man and a common man, and yet an unusual man. He must be a man of honor – by instinct, by inevitability, without thought of it…He must be the best man in his world and a good enough man for any world. He has a range of awareness that startles you but it belongs to him by right, because it belongs to the world he lives in. ~ Raymond Chandler
I grew up in KY, TN, MI, and NY. I got thrown out of SUNY purchase for drug use and failing grades. I kind of graduated from Hunter College 3 years later with a double BA in History and Psychology. (I never filed for my diploma.) I considered attending grad school but studied martial arts and Zen instead. I earned black belts in both Aikido and Tai Chi Chuan and studied arts less seriously. I read voraciously and can hold my own on most topics, except maybe math. I’ve washed dishes, worked in a warehouse, spent 4 years at IBM, managed and then bought for a chain of independent bookstores, been a personal trainer specializing in mind-body relationships, started a dojo, founded a nonprofit, worked with high need kids, and started the Temple of the Circus Monkey. As an adult, I’ve lived in NYC, Los Angeles, Oakland, San Francisco, and Las Vegas. I currently teach regularly at Desert Monkey Dojo. I like girls, sex, motorcycles, rum, cigars, eating out, Coca-Cola, hard boiled detective stories, bad movies, and game shows. I have the attention span of a teenage gnat. I am the Archbishop and I will lead the Revolution. Vaya con Dios and Viva la Revolucion.
Angus has written books. Go to KWchop to buy one!