Apr 4, 2012

On Obsesssion

Obsession derives from Latin 'Obsessus'
that meant
occupy, posess
Obsession is a powerful and profound experience. The complete and utter consumption of one's thoughts or feelings by an image, idea, person, desire, motif or phenomena... imparts such an intensity to one's state of being as to render ordinary life, that follows in its aftermath, a thoroughly stultifying affair.

If the object of one's obsession happens to be another person, as opposed to an abstract idea or a material artifact, the experience can elevate itself to a constant and intense meditation on an absorbing countenance. One's entire personal universe is invaded by countless internal representations of the other person. The imaginations of the other person, with exaggerated affectivity, swarm the conscious and the unconscious alike. Even in the rare moments of relief from the obsession... a visceral undercurrent of madness lurks beneath every experience, promptly drawn to the surface upon the slightest possibility presenting itself.

Retiring every night with your mind enthralled, waking up into the same thralldom every morning... the locus of experience helplessly fixated on the one person, life becomes an intoxicating feast of thoughts, ideas and feelings dominated by the internal presence of that one person. Soon the myriad apparitions of that person assume their own seemingly independent existence (and behaviour) in one's mental landscape.

Once overcome by obsession... a glimpse into the 'theater of self' returns an enchanting spectacle, that of many living images of the 'imagined other' engaging with one's desires, hopes, fears, fantasies.... comforting when (one is) in need of comfort, caring when in need of care, loving when in need of love, admonishing when deserving of it, indifferent when miffed, angry when offended ... and being and doing all else they possibly can in the 'wish-fulfillment version' of one's imagined world.

The experience of an obsession, while it lasts, enflames the inner world and illuminates the otherwise inaccessible possibilities of an intense, authentic and passionate engagement with life. It disestablishes the mundane everydayness of life and in its place establishes a pattern of progressively increasing fascination.

In letting oneself plunge into the vortices of a powerful obsession... one becomes, even if only for a spell, utterly deeply alive.