rev., Mar 13, 2020.
A short note on the 50th anniversary of the Beatles announcing that it was over, April 10, 1970; and Let It Be, #1 US hit, April 11-April 24, 1970.
In a classic Beatles song, Paul McCartney talks to us about a figure that appeared to him, in “times of trouble,” since at the end of the song, he sings that he “wake(s) up to the sound of music,” this means that it is late at night, and insomnia has come to afflict him. And it has hit him so bad that he tries with two verses to get to sleep, but he struggles. Thus, “Mother Mary,” whom it would be precipitous to identify with the Blessed Virgin Mary, is invoked as a dream guide, to, somehow, get him to sleep, please, let me sleep. The song is Let it Be (1970).
it then gets worse, as the “hour of darkness” approaches, this is that moment in insomnia when you are simply in despair, but, then comes the wisdom, and the wisdom is a paradox–if, after besieging sleep several times, and failing, if, after all that, you still can’t get to sleep, there is only one answer….stop trying. That’s it, stop trying to get to sleep, just lie there, content to be “resting,” but taking the pressure off you of getting to sleep, that is, “let it be,” and, then, poof, surprise, six hours or so later you will wake up having slept.
these words are such a surprise, that as he recharacterizes them in the chorus, they are whispered, as if one hardly dares to say them aloud, the secret sounds so unbelievable.
at this point, he expands his answer, to maybe be the same solution to larger problems, in the world
that is, he is comparing being broken up, that is, “parted”, he wants them to understand that not being in love is a lot like insomnia, you have to stop wanting to be in love, you have to “let it be” and it will then happen to you again. This too is a whispered word of wisdom, more so in a world of dating services, and hookup apps, nope, the searching somehow makes love impossible to find. Wisdom.
this kind of thought, expanding on your “wisdom,” would seem to act against the wisdom, in fact to work you up, to keep sleep even further away. But, here is where a dream model that I came up with a year ago, comes into play. I noticed that when you do have a night of insomnia, and do wake up, surprised in fact that you in fact actually got to sleep, meaning that it was a surprise sleep, that the nature of the dream you had was different, it was more spinning, I was more reflective, as in a mirror; in fact, I argued that when in insomnia, you assault or besiege the palace of sleep so many times, more than five times, well on to two thirty in the morning, that does something to the sleep chamber of the brain. As I characterized it, each assault of insomnia, then repelled, as if cuts the space, to create of it, in sum, if five to seven attempts are made, a crystallized dream space, and turn it into a hall of mirrors.
Here is how I characterized it when I thought I saw the formation take shape in the movie, Suspiria (2018) (this from February, 2019, on my blog in 2019):
So, there is a second possibility, one, which, oddly, I have only formalized recently, and that is a dynamic agency dream formation I call the night mirror. By this theory, 1) if you have insomnia, you try to get to sleep, but can’t; then, 2) each time you lay siege to sleep, like an ancient army besieging a city, there is a reaction of your push in the dream space, a faultline or hair fracture as it were is created, to absorb the blow. If you have serious insomnia, and for me that will be five at least failed attempts to get to sleep lasting from ten pm to maybe past two thirty in the morning (agony!), then you will have so shattered sleep space, for that night, that it is a tissue of fractures. But, then, 3) the way to get to sleep is to forget it, accept what rest you may get just lying there, stop worrying about getting to sleep, and, then, surprise, you slip in. But after insomnia you slip into a very different sleep space, it is 4) a hall of mirrors, everywhere, in the core, in the adjuncts, the siege of insomnia against it has reduced it to a crystal, all mirrors, and this allows for a full line-less, unlinear wide spinning quality that brings the ambient right in, and in which one floats, and echoes, and, in fact, the brain becomes this big echo chamber (this is a good time to pick up a pen and write poetry, which will sing). This continues for a time, then 5) you begin to come in under the lattice, where the sleeper is, this is where the humming or singing commences, as well as a movement upward; this is followed by 6) moving up “under the bed,’ which includes looking up 7) to see through the mirror on the bottom of the bed. This, then, allows you to 8) wake up not in a leap but in an easy glide, going through the body, in which you find yourself actually humming the song in your awake state. I recorded this model the morning after having experienced all this (I recorded it at last after having experienced it a half a dozen times in previous years). The Night mirror dynamic agency dream formation, then, as I map it out, is an eight step process. Is this structure in Suspiria (2018)? I think it is.
That is, one is awake, then you assault sleep, at the level of the glass onion second stage, it cuts you off, you are bounced back up; then that happens three, four, seven times. Overall, this shatters the “glass onion,” that is, the symbol space, into a hall of mirrors. This results, then, in some sort of activation of the symbolic stage, so that, in sleep, when, that is, you surprisingly, having “let it be,” slip into sleep, the sleep you experience is more like a spinning prism, and a hall of mirrors in fact, which causes the mind to hum and echo as if an echo chamber (this is an excellent time to start writing poetry). In Let it Be, the song, this hall of mirrors moment is met by a repeat of the chorus, and the coming in of the “wall of sound.” That is, acoustically, someone, George Martin, someone, knew, that at that point in the sound, things had to open up and echo more.
And, then, something more surprising happens. In the hall of mirrors of a light sleep created in spite of hopeless insomnia, experienced almost as a nightmare, but not a nightmare, a certain spinning acceleration happens, bringing in from the ambient zone lying outside hypnagogy, more sonorous and heavy spins, which then as if an anthem, sing out loud (I have mentioned this characteristic of this type of dream too, that you begin to dream of being a singer, of really singing, and it is a loud, anthemlike, Broadway musical type thing (see my verse on this, February, 2019). Thus, the spin is somehow generated as a richochet effect of echoing from the previous assaults rebuffed. So, this is the hall of mirrors, and its expansion in an echo chamber
but, then, something remarkable happens. After the set up of that spinning, a conjuring approach formation comes into play, and in the space of the lattice and whoosh either side of the sleeping body, now come into view, a rich sonorous song resounds, I am serious, this happens; and, I am shocked, this is PRECISELY, where, in the Beatles Let it Be, George Harrison plugs in the Rickenbacher, and lets loose with one of the greatest lead breaks in all Beatles songs, this IS the form and the acoustic nature of this phase of this type of dream.
there is some deep intuition at play here, this is exactly how the sonorous songs that flow through this type of post-insomniac dream sound, you can even hear it, in the dream (or the light dream), the song takes over the dream, it is as if it is coming up out of some darkness, to take over the self. This is real, and George has rendered its reality in a masterpiece of architectural lead breaking.
But, then, another surprise. There is something that must be acknowledged. Paul sings, when the verse resumes, in a sudden hush, quiet, “the night is cloudy, there is still a light that shines on me.” This too is an element of insomnia that I know exists. If you lie down, there is blue spot or field in the crown, as it were, of your internal sight, that is, entopty. This light I have identified as well. It remains turned on throughout your whole sleep; it might dysfunction sleep to make it more likely this sleep will harshly bounce into nightmare; but it also can generate ghosts, and creatures of the night, represented in horror movies, ad infinitum, ad nauseum, it is the High Light, I have written about it often. This light Paul chooses to see as a sign of persistence through the darkness, that shines out onto down on him even on cloudy nights (yes, that is the High Light, as a trope in movies it is the full moon), I see it more as a negative force, because of the dangers it poses, but as it is an essential element of insomnia, it is necessarily an overseeing part of this sleep or dream formation, the High Light is what directs the siege of sleep, then is rebuffed. All I can think of for why it is neutralized here is that its jolts of energy fed into the frustrated hall of mirrors, then surged out to ambience, and, coming in, sonorously, takes it all into itself, to turn it into a positive, thus offsetting its negative impact on the other side of the hall of mirrors.
this thought is partly supported by what might end up being, if science cannot prove it, the more pseudoscientific part of my dream theories.
When you lay down to go to sleep, and settle in, you close your eyes, and see blackness. But, really, you don’t see blackness. Already your body around you is sending fissures of sub-entoptic “light” into your entoptic field, the forest of purkinjee trees, and at present I name six different formations that, settling in, one can “see” (with Le Fanu eye). Sometimes, the entoptic glow just settles in next to you, this is the face opposite, a trope, it also looks like a pet or alligator lying next to you, low, below your eye, identified with your body. But, then, 2, you can also simply feel like a green as if scarf of fissuring light lie over the eyes (I got in the habit one year of draping an eye patch over my eyes to induce this formation, in the hope it would reduce insomnia by taking the out-of-oneself distance of entoptic space out of entoptic space). 3 is another form, usually if there is a headache, I don’t have much to say about it now. But, 4, I often feel, often created by the piling high of blankets on my shoulder, it is the Blue Cave, and I know that if the Blue Cave forms, I am probably drifting off; ditto with 5, which is the Green Chainlink, that is, the entoptic seed as it were of hag attacks, down at your legs or feet. And then there is 6, sometimes, I settle in, and, if lying on my left side, up high on the right exposed side of my head some openness or pressure communicates to me some “light” and this hangs there like a bright blue sky, even in the darkness, it shines through, the High Light. This, for me, means, insomnia, but then again it also promises an interesting dream journey. But this is the light that Paul is talking about, again, he saw it as a sign of hope, I am a bit less hopeful, but I see his point (see my analysis of the High Light in movies like The Cremators (1974)).
then, my basic theory is that when you fall asleep the elements of the entoptic that you latched onto, they take you like a magic carpet into sleep, across the Luor, the in-between space, to bring you to a trope formation that is the “positive” outcome of the “negative” entoptic image. I believe this, I know it happens, though I have not entirely codified that, for example, the Hanged Woman is the hypnagogic form that, say, the Scarf over the Eyes takes, when you finally get to sleep. In any case, the important point here is that the ONLY form that does not translate over, or only does so at the end of insomnia, in its surrender, in the form of the hall of mirrors, is the High Light, the High Light over vigilogogy creates a haunted, palliative world, it then fills the in-between with monsters, and it can create in actual dream expansive scenarios. This is where we are.
so, Paul, then, from this quiet pause, acknowledging the role of the High Light, points out one more fact that is an important element of the dream formation I am talking about. And that is, as he says, “I wake up to the sound of music,” and says that “mother Mary comes to me,” this is something too, because it often happens that this dream formation is made known to you by the fact that you do, in fact, wake up singing, I am not kidding, you wake to music, in your ears, or in a song being sung on a stage by a figure in your dream, you come up out of the dream by a pathway of song too, the song takes you up into waking, and I will happen that you actually do wake up singing, no foolin (I only experience this formation three times a year, but if you cultivated it, would you experience it more often?). The amazing thing about this is that Paul is known to have written some of his most important songs, such as Yesterday (1966), as fantasmata, that is, he WOKE UP IN THE MORNING, and the song was in his head, this is true. A fantasmata is one of the oldest dream formations known to mankind, “I will sleep on it”, is what people say. And what they mean is that somehow, if the parts of a problem are not gelling in a way that points to a solution, with your rational mind, you can, in fact, sleep on it, and it might well happen that you will experience a dream formation like that that pulls it all together. Medievals called this the fantasmata, it is a technique I have used often in my life. But, now, this dream formation that I have formulated, what with insomnia, hopeless insomnia, the creation of the hall of mirrors, the wider spinning of pent-up energy, the sonorous song-singing echoing; then the coming up through the body of the sleeper, with a solution, singing, as if an insomniac dream turned out to be the most refreshing kind of sleep (which it most of the time is not), this is the formation I call the Night Mirror! I wrote about it quite a lot in the months after I discovered it, or put a name on it, in January, 2019. And here is Paul McCartney telling the world exactly how he wrote songs, and, as always, the only answer is, as it always was, “let it be.” As a result, it may be said that abstractly “mother Mary” is what is called a muse. Moderns have in their rational technical way imagined that a muse is a specific person one is in love with, that such love inspired poetry or whatever, for that some feminists now frown on the muse as an exploited being, but, no, the muse is simply the dream FORMATION, it is THIS EXPERIENCE of dream, that then turns out like this. I suspect that in his more creatively aware days he gave a nickname to this particular type of night visitor, and Mother Mary is what he called the Night Mirror.
On April 10, 1970, Paul McCartney shocked the world by announcing that the Beatles, the greatest band in the history of rock ‘n roll, having been a group since the late 50s when they were just kids, having had one of the most phenomenally commanding careers in the history of all popular music, not only in themselves but in terms of the whole “British invasion” they inspired, and the whole look and feel of the culture in the Swinging London era, Paul announced that the Beatles were breaking up. It was over. By possible coincidence, or not, the Beatles Let It Be charted at number one on the Billboard charts, for a two week visit after a month or six weeks of Simon and Garfunkel’s Bridge over troubled waters, on April 11. The Beatles would have another hit off the Let it Be album, the Long and Winding Road, in July, 1970, but, then, I think (I am a Beatles fan, not a Beatles nostalgic historian), that was it. It was over. And, as the swan song, Paul, though notorious for his inarticulateness in explaining his creative process, working, as I suspect, entirely intuitively, told us his secret, the secret to his creativity, the secret to the greatest accession of popular music into a realm higher than that, where art is made for the ages, since, perhaps, Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue, in the 20th century. And, now, here, 50 years later, I am amazed to find that, having come to believe that one’s soul is in particular the dream path that one adopts in one’s life, the Night Mirror, by the High Light, is how Paul McCartney got his sleeping brain, after the “hour of darkness” to write his most hopeful anthems, an amazing possibility.
And, as for the group, I have often joked that if you fed George’s guitar work as muzak into my coffin, surely I would live forever, and never perish. Now, strangely, I find that prophecy confirmed, he gave voice to the sonorous ambient voicing of the Night Mirror, the “night before” that leads to the “morning after”.
The Beatles are, for me, the Beatles. From the time I heard I them, when I was 11, to the moment they broke up, my musical life was all about the Beatles, all the time. I played guitar, on the model of George, and learned to play most of their songs, I was in a garage band, I performed a bit. But it is the experience most of all of the graduation of their creativity from mere cover songs for former pop stars into self-contained musical compositions in their own right, doing things that just about broke apart my little brain, and it is that experience, and the model of creativity it offered (I began to speak of this model, changing, accelerating, growing, as early as Sophomore year in college, 1972), that I remain committed to, it is quite fulfilling too then, as I now look to hypnagogic states as the key to creative expansion, that the actual Beatles, the Beatles that influenced me and shaped my life, those are the only Beatles I remain a fan of, all the rest is extraneous.