An Excerpt from Jim Conrad's
NATURALIST NEWSLETTER
of February 11, 2008
Written in the community of 28 de Junio and
issued from a ciber in San Francisco Pujiltic, Chiapas, MÉXICO

    KNOWLEDGE IS SACRED

Since the pocket-gopher experience I've been thinking about the nature of knowledge. What got me started on the subject was being here stripped of most of my field guides, old college texts, and having no internet to browse. Not even being able to confirm that the animal was some kind of pocket gopher, it came home to me that much knowledge I thought resided in my brain really isn't there. I knew where to find that knowledge when I needed it, but that's not the same as having it as part of me.

Moreover, it seems that my knowledge is tied up much more intimately with "who I am" than I ever thought. A very important part of "who I am" arises from knowledge I've acquired since being a baby. "I am" someone who grows gardens, uses computers and writes, and none of that would be possible without knowledge I've  worked hard to acquire.

I'm not surprised that knowledge turns out to be at the root of what I am. The most spectacular thing I see the Universal Creative Force doing on Earth is evolving life by perpetually crafting living things' genetic information into ever more sophisticated, ever more refined and subtler configurations. That genetic material is knowledge about how to survive. It was acquired by living things' experiences over the eons. From Nature's perspective, we living things are merely ephemeral carriers of continually evolving genetic knowledge that never dies until a species goes extinct.

I'm toying with the idea that the more accurate, usable, insight-giving knowledge an individual acquires in life, the more that person "is." A mystical way of seeing it may be that the more accurate knowledge you have, the closer you are to merging with the All-Knowing, the All-Being, the Unity.

I imagine bits of knowledge as something like magic eggs, glowing, humming and pulsating with potential, produced on rare trees in a dark, hard-to-navigate forest.

If ever I get back with bookshelves and the Internet, more than before I'll regard my library and computer as alters before which I enter into communion with the information-generating, knowledge-offering Universal Creative Force. Facebook Icon.