I have become, of late, obsessively fascinated with what I like to call distractogens. They are a kind of discovery of mine. Most people can’t see distractogens – they don’t have the mental discipline, needless to say. Years of discipline are needed. Distractogens are just far too difficult to spot for the average person, and yet if you don’t spot them then they control everything you see. They don’t just control anything you see, they also control what you think and how you behave. They control everything.
With enough discipline however you can learn to spot them, and see what’s really happening. That’s the whole point of what I’m trying to say here. You can learn to actually see the little bastards. The way they work is of course by staying invisible and distracting attention away from themselves onto something else the whole time. All of a sudden something else looks incredibly interesting; all of a sudden something else seems to be so very important. Our attention flits off obediently to wherever it has been directed. No more obedient servant exists then the conditioned attention, is that not so? It’s impossible to conceive of a more obedient servant than the conditioned attention.
You know the way people keep on talking about the monkey mind? It’s monkey mind this, monkey mind that, monkey mind the other. It’s all about the monkey mind. Well I reckon I’ve got a weasel mind. I’ve got a weasel mind not a monkey mind – it’s always weaselling its way into this and weaselling its way into that and then trying to weasel its way back out again, back out of whatever unholy mess it has just got itself into. My mind is always busy weaselling – it’s a dirty little weasel mind and it’s always up to no good. It’s always into some kind of subterfuge, some kind of double-dealing, and what you do if you’ve got a mind like that? A mind that makes an unholy mess wherever it goes? The dirty old weasel mind is a horror to behold but when you’re identified with that you don’t see quite how bad it really is. You kind of know all right, you can catch something of the unholy stench, but you don’t get the full picture. You never get the full picture. You wouldn’t want to, either…
So anyway the thing about distractogens is that they always point us in the wrong direction. ‘Hey buddy look over there!’ they say to you and you – like the big old dummy you are – obligingly look wherever the finger is pointing. Hey buddy look over there, hey buddy look over there, hey buddy look over there, hey buddy look over there… But what I’m starting to worry about now is that I’m being tricked yet again. I’m worried that my attention is being directed towards the elusive distractogens by a hitherto unknown set of ultra-distractogens, which I shall call second-order distractogens. So I get all excited about spotting the first lot of distractogens and it never occurs to me that this is just a decoy, just a feint, just a red herring. I’m too busy clapping myself on the back for being so smart. I’m too busy basking in the glory to spot that I’ve been taken for a fool. Only now I have spotted it and this discovery is again – probably – yet another level of distraction designed to prevent me from spotting the third-order distractogens. I’m being played, as usual. How can you ever win in a universe like this? How can you ever hope to come out on top?