Featured Insights Laughter — 31 December 2016

Marc Itzler’s insight: “Laughter is intelligence, the ultimate expression of rebellion! A rebellion against guilt, against shame and self-doubt. A rebellion against fear itself.”

Do we have to be angry to have strong feelings?

Do we have to be upset to show that we care about the madness of the world?

And do we have to inhibit our humour and joy to show that something is really important to us?

kids laughing

This tension, this apparent contradiction in our lives, when we feel the pain of those suffering, both around us and in distant lands, and yet we know, that to dive into that space, makes us feel dark and contracted, heavy and negative. We feel guilt and shame and frustration. So we look away, we scroll down or we switch off and get on with our lives. But inside, we still care, we still ache.

It is only human to feel empathy, to go into an experience of another’s pain, in order to know it and be there for them. It is a loving act but, it also feels like it spreads the pain out. It expands the very suffering that we anguish over.

This vicious cycle can be so overwhelming, that many of us choose to avoid or ignore the reality of life as it is for us as a global village, as a species, sharing our beautiful little blue ball hanging in infinite space. It’s just too much to let it all in. The corruption, the cruelty and torture, the suffering and the despair of our fellow humans and creatures of this paradise.

We struggle to even work out how we got to this point, let alone where we go from here.

What we do know is that we are in a serious situation.

But are we served by making that state of affairs our state of being? Is our seriousness actually empowering us? Or does it send us into a state of collapse, of defeat, of resignation?

How can we not cry tears of sorrow? How can we not hang our heads in despair?

When we face our greatest fears, the loss of our life or the lives of our loved ones, the loss of our liberty or maybe even worse, the loss of our very hope, then what are our choices? Where is our power?

What happens if in that moment, we decide to let go of seriousness and yet, remain deeply sincere in our truth? What if we can stare fear in the face… and begin to laugh, really laugh, to know that at our deepest core we see the truth and choose to remain free?

Laughter is so often seen as a lack of capacity to understand the gravity of a situation.

It’s frivolous, it’s selfish, it’s a sign that you’re not getting it!

But when we really try to understand laughter, when we get real about what laughter and a sense of humour actually is, then we begin to see that it is, in its purest form, the greatest expression of understanding that we have. Laughter is our body’s reaction to a moment of ultimate clarity, it is how we express the recognition of truth itself. It is what makes satire both deeply funny and deeply moving all at once.

This is because laughter is Intelligence! It is the ultimate expression of rebellion!

A rebellion against guilt, against shame and self-doubt. A rebellion against fear itself.

A rebellious person is a dangerous person. Dangerous to the system, to the status quo. They will not be easily controlled and they will not be easily silenced.

Unhindered by the fear of condemnation and judgement, the rebel is not playing by the book. Not keeping to the script. A rebel will laugh in the face of their own fear, even their own demise. But an intelligent and awakened rebellious and joyful person is always, always sincere! They are led and guided by a bigger picture, a bigger perspective, and that creates an immense freedom. The laughing rebel lives a liberated life. They live an authentic life and a life of courage and truth. Laughter relaxes us, it unites us, it connects us and it heals us.

That is why we must move from seriousness to sincerity. From emotional enslavement to personal power, where we can care, more than ever before!

We can desire and fight for justice, equanimity, and dignity for us all and we can stand strong against the headwind of corruption, against the mass insanity and indoctrination that would have us on our knees in a state of futility, worn out by the sheer size of the challenge.

The dark forces of this world want us to take it all very seriously.

When we are serious, we are open to their message of hate and division. Open to the script of tribalism, nationalism, religious separation and isolation. When we are serious, we are open to dis-ease and disinformation. We can be controlled, because seriousness is fear. It is blind faith and blind action. The serious and scared are easy to control. They are easy to manipulate and indoctrinate.

So if we want to be a part of creating a new world, a new way of living, then we have to renounce seriousness and embrace the power of humour and laughter as a force of vision, of perspective and as an expression of our true authentic being.

Laughter is the expression of this powerful state. It is the manifestation of our deepest truth. That is what the sages and great mystics of history have always taught. Laugh in the face of fear, celebrate, dance and sing in gratitude, because that generates power and conviction in ourselves, it engenders individual thought and values and right now, more than sorrow, more than sympathetic sadness, this world needs sincere, laughing, courageous rebels!

Ha ha! Ha ha haaaaaa!

First published on Marc’s blog – more articles on Laughter in this magazine

Marc Itzler (Divakar)Marc Itzler (Divakar), a sannyasin since 1974, spent his teenage years with Osho in India from 1979–81. A father of two grown sons, a stepdaughter and granddaughter, he lives in North London and is the founder of ‘A Liberated Life’, running courses, meditation workshops, and is also a Human Potential coach. marcitzler.com – More articles by the same author published in Osho News

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