Sanity and Change

Concerning the arising of the Jesters - Part 2

By Sander Funneman, the Netherlands

This story took place a long time ago or it may even be in the future. Nobody knows exactly which year it was. In any case it was a time of dramatic change, and it was also the time when the Jesters became more organised and influential.  They, in fact, were a living sanity, planted in the fast changing times.
Just before this, very different balances of power had been the order of the day. For instance, at that time ‘being right’ was determined by the function and the position of a person rather than by them being able to present sound arguments or well-grounded reasons. This system caused a desire in all people to be found to be right as well. So legally established titles such as lawyer, manager, president, public notary and so forth, provided a person with the power to be right, but whether such people were in fact right varied from moment to moment. It was really more a matter of the effect of seeming to be right than about actually being right. It was a misleading situation, as the public, sometimes en masse, agreed, that so called ‘important people’ were always right, without ever having thought about the matter themselves. The Jesters, however, changed all this.

In Topaz 14 we reported on an important court-case against the City Jester of Utrecht and about his valiant efforts to question ‘the place and importance of identity in these times of change’. In this Topaz however we feature an exclusive report of a recorded conversation between the court-Jester and the King about ‘the changes’ themselves and about the ‘necessary sanity’ to survive them. The recording begins a few minutes after the conversation started. What went before remains unknown.

The King – “So you think that you are ready?”

Jester – “I am open.., if that’s ready enough..?”

The King – “No.., I mean, are you prepared? Did you make yourself ready? Did you manage to employ some discipline?”

Jester – “For what?”

The King – “Well, the changes of course!”

Jester – “But how would I know what the changes will need? They haven’t happened yet!”

The King – “Did you not follow the news? Did you not read about the dramatic results of the latest global report about world energy resources? This report says that if we do not want our economy to collapse, we need to find larger sources of energy to increase availability. The same research says that if we do not reduce our energy consumption then this planet might turn into an uninhabitable environment. Dilemma... And not the only one at the moment.”

Jester – “Which disciplines did you have in mind?”

The King – “Are you not worried?”

Jester – “Oh, yes. I am worried sick, your majesty! Who can help us now in these disturbing new times? Everything speeds up. Nothing is the same. Yes I definitely worry! I worry about the sanity and safety of the world as it all spins out of control.”

The King – “Exactly! Exactly! And I tell you my friend, what we need. We need a very special kind of discipline. A modern form of discipline...! I have crafted some plans already! It involves windmills, tax-reductions and subsidised behaviour...”

The Jester – “Did you know that in 2003, in the UK, 60 people were hospitalised during the act of putting on their socks to get ready for the day and did you know that in the same year more than 70,000 people were injured in the US during the activity of lawn mowing while getting the grass ready for the barbecue? It seems that discipline is not only a quick way to get ourselves ready but also a quick way to get yourself injured.”
The King – “As with all things, ‘modern discipline’ will also need some development. People will have to learn it and become better at it. New technologies are the answer. With human ingenuity we will be able to conquer the dilemmas.”

The Jester – “But Majesty, people might not know where to find this ‘special discipline’ that you speak of. They will begin to surf on the internet and they will discover that there is ‘no software for personal development, or personal motivation’. And they will become insecure, frustrated and angry even...”

The King – “I am the King and I personally will see to it that an efficient group of instructors will be made available for all people, to tell them what to do in these new and challenging times. Every person in my nation should have the right to regain their natural creativity and happiness. The efficiency of my instructors will surprise you. Trust me.”

Jester – “Someone I met recently, a lunatic, someone who doesn't know much about anything, and who certainly does not have any idea about the kind of responsibilities that you carry, as a King and as a Father of the Nation.., he said to me, in all ignorance: "technological efficiency is a condom for human creativity". Of course I informed him about your dilemmas, but instead of coming to his senses he continued: "Efficient instructors don’t liberate anything, they only confirm the dependency, confirm the lack of readiness, confirm the inability to change, confirm the belief that the changes are a dominant end-result of an inhumane regime". But, your Majesty, you are right, of course. This is a lunacy. And the changes will need some ‘modern discipline’.”

The King – “This is what irritates me so much about people like yourself, free-radicals, anarchists, people that carry themselves with a profound lack of responsibility. There are all these people under my care. We need to get practical about these changes. The geo-magnetic field is changing, the dipole is decreasing and the multi-pole is increasing. So, how do I protect my people, for example, against the increase of violent solar winds and the economic consequences of global warming? I see no solutions in your philosophical vagueness.”

Jester – “When you take sand and place it on a vibrating metal plate, magic shapes and motion-patterns will instantly appear. Perfectly ordered, dynamic and harmonious figures in the sand. And if something changes the frequency of the vibration then the shapes in the sand will change also, immediately in response to that. It’s a fact.”

The King – “What does that say? You make it worse, you start to talk in riddles and have lost me completely now.”

Jester – “When you take a vibrating plate and cover it with water and tilt it. The water does not yield to the gravitational influence. It does not run off the vibrating plate but instead it stays on the plate, continuing to form new shapes as though nothing had happened. If, however, you turn off the oscillation, the liquid begins to run, but when you are really fast and get the vibrations going again, you can get the water back in place, on the plate! So everything changes, even the laws of gravity seem flexible, as long as the water is ‘dancing’. ”

The King – “What do you suggest practically..? Doing nothing!?”

Jester – “No, Majesty, I certainly do not suggest ‘to do nothing’. Instead ‘I suggest nothing’. I am just here at your disposal, at your service. As you indicated already, my responsibilities are negligible and my trust in your wisdom is as always, unlimited. No, it is definitely not my place to make alternative proposals. I am only illustrating how form and discipline emerge from content. No-one worries about the next step in a dance, it just comes with the music... I agree with you, very much, that this is a serious time. But next to all the doom, there might also be hidden hopes, hidden indicators that herald a change of frequency. Ultimately.., I only try to keep dancing on the plate of the future with you, defying all the laws of gravity.”

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