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Thursday, July 09, 2015


 Revolving Door Panopticon Liminal Prison  (tm)

A threshold is a limen, and liminality

In anthropology, liminality (from the Latin word līmen, meaning "a threshold") is the quality of ambiguity or disorientation that occurs in the middle stage of rituals, when participants no longer hold their pre-ritual status but have not yet begun the transition to the status they will hold when the ritual is complete ...

Thus, one stands on the threshold of change, but has not yet crossed over.

To my mind, this can happen over and over again if one has not crossed firmly over the threshold. Then one is in a state of Revolving Liminality - formed after the metaphor of a Revolving Door in which one attempts to cross over and over but cyclically remains within the cage of tubular glass.

There are many well known thresholds, such as the passage from childhood to adolescence, complete with the rites of passage into puberty.
If one does not make it over the threshold, there are consequences. And often an individual must try to make it over the threshold year after year in an obsessive ritual of passage in the revolving door which holds them captive.

Some thresholds are not so well defined.
Not everything in Life can be captured in words and images. There are thresholds we must cross that only the silent and tacit understanding of the body and blood and mind can see, for they are invisible to the eyes of our rationality. We cannot even express them.
The rites of passage have been so much discussed that we think we know them a mile away, but we only can spot a handful of them. For example, very few in our society can perform even rudimentary passages in the realm of the Holy; we remain stuck at childish and jejune pictures of God and a Heaven packed with angelic choirs.
Or we cast away the awesome part of our perceptive natures, and we live in atheistic ignorance.

Thresholds are outside morality.
It is the crossing or not crossing that enters the realm of morality.

Crossing the threshold is good, and if the threshold is understood, society celebrates it as so.
If it is a solitary threshold, then it amends our soul.
If the threshold is not crossed, the repetition becomes fraught with danger and explosively destructive emotions, so much so that sometimes the failure to advance turn into repetitive evils and serial violences. (Recurring nightmares of PTSD could be so interpreted. What the threshold to be crossed is not clear, and that is one reason why there are hundreds of therapies that are applied, and each of them work for a certain number of sufferers.)

The good mentors are hard to find in the modern world, the ones who teach silent understanding as well as the explicit.


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