The Transmission Has Been Made

Today’s posting is not something I wrote but a letter I recently received from my friend Paul. It details an intriguing story to use Paul’s term, I would call it an anecdote – for reasons I outline elsewhere. I hope you find it as interesting as I did. I look forward to the graphic novel (as well as the sound track or the full opera).

Dear Danny,
I hope this letter finds you well. I haven’t written for some time, but a recent memorable experience has led me to send you this account, which I thought you might find interesting, especially given your connection to Silo’s story “Day of the Winged Lion.” I have some trepidation about even trying to describe this experience, which is so far from everyday life, and in its most important aspects really not describable. So I hope you will bear with me in this effort, and enjoy what, if anything, you are able to make of it.
First I want to clear up a possible misunderstanding that may arise. When showing this account to a few friends I found that they often took it to be a work of fiction. But I want to assure you that this is not the case, and this is simply an attempt to describe events, however inexplicable, that actually took place.

Take a look at the rest of Paul’s letter…

First I want to clear up a possible misunderstanding that may arise. When showing this account to a few friends I found that they often took it to be a work of fiction. But I want to assure you that this is not the case, and this is simply an attempt to describe events, however inexplicable, that actually took place.
I’m still not very sure what happened. I kept mulling it over for days, then tried to dismiss it from my mind. But strange things kept happening.
It all started in a conversation with my son Scott. He was visiting us where we live near Red Bluff Park of Study and Reflection, and we were immersed in one of those close, synchronized conversations between father and son that, if one is very fortunate, can arise on occasions that are all too rare.
A recent college graduate, he is pursuing his dream of a career in composing and producing music in the magical and fast-developing world of interactive multimedia. Like the rest of his generation, he had run squarely into the wall that is blocking career opportunities left by the 2008 worldwide financial collapse, unleashed by the mad greed of big capital, and only intensified by the growing reality that music and much digital content are now circulated largely for free. As he had been cautioned by the experienced composers he apprenticed with, he was finding a greatly foreclosed path to a traditional career in commercial composing.
Despite this difficulty, it was heartening to see that, cast aside by the economic powers that be, he and others of his generation were neither despairing nor sitting on their hands. Instead, they were making full use of this “interruption” as an opportunity to forge their own destinies. A daunting task, but one that as we shall see, in this “void” was to bring forth something from within them more wonderful than could have been imagined.
Just before Scott was to leave at the end of his visit he began to recount a story he had written, which forms part of a broader project involving publication as a serialized online graphic novel illustrated by his girlfriend Jen, videos, music he is composing, and a new family of electronic musical instruments he and his friends are creating. This narrative, involving musical aliens and on a grand scale, carries a message of connection, of cooperation, of universal resonance even across the apparently unbridgeable intergalactic gulfs between beings so divided and orphaned in this fragmented time.
As he began to tell this story, at first I was listening politely, not quite able to follow the twists and turns of this tale from a much younger generation – imbued with the sensibility and language of the latest digital technologies, massive online video games, current science fiction, YouTube videos – and so distant from my own landscape formed decades ago.
But suddenly his story began to draw my complete attention – I was transfixed, in a flash I somehow saw and felt the impact of this story awakening in people everywhere the longed-for “answer” that an anguished humanity is searching for in these violent and altered times. In this sudden recognition I grasped that this story possessed all the elements required, in just the right proportion and just the right configuration to strike the chord aspired to. At least that is how it struck my ear, honed by decades of immersion in translating the works of Silo, which as you know carry this intention par excellence.
I wish I could describe this story from my son in greater detail. But I know that I cannot do it justice, based on his quick recounting to me of highlights of this multifaceted and richly woven tale of musical aliens and humanity coming together to create that one special resonant music required in just this moment to “rock the Universe.” In any case, what struck me so strongly had nothing to do with details and everything to do with some special sensibility in the story that suddenly erupted into Meaning.
After my son finished telling me the story he departed to return to his city. Still in a special state following this unexpected experience, I found that strange events continued to unfold – flashes of phrases, of scenes, of connections came to me. Somehow I clearly heard the words “The transmission has been made.”
I was confused. What did these words mean? In some way I grasped that this “transmission” has taken place in many senses – I could detect that this luminous signal has reached or awakened in the next generation, manifesting close at hand in my son’s story. And in the “void” left by the painful economic instability in which Scott and his generation had been abandoned, he was even now in the act of launching this “transmission” anew into the world, translated into the language and sensibility of his generation, delivering it into the common space of the culture, vividly rendered in images, music, and multimedia, resonant with humanity in today’s world.
More questions flooded my mind. How had my son been able to write such a story? How, or from what reservoir of meaning had this story come to him? Of course he had grown up in our household, immersed in our attempts to live this new way of life that Silo proposed. And it is true that at our request Scott had composed and produced music for the 23 stories of the book Guided Experiences by Silo – an enormous task that had occupied him over three summers. And in this project Scott had surely absorbed things from these guided experiences, even without having the explicit intention to study them. And he had also traveled with us on a few occasions to visit friends in communities of Silo’s Message in Europe and Latin America, even meeting Silo on one occasion in Mendoza.
But Scott had never identified himself as participating directly in Silo’s Message, he seemed to express little interest in and rarely brought up or asked about the themes of the Message. Nor had he read many of Silo’s works.
Another question was, of course, whether Scott’s story was indeed an adequate “tuning to the required chord” for evoking the “universal human sentiment,” as I had felt. Or was this simply the wishful thinking of a father, himself searching for signs of meaning and the sacred amid the appalling violence and non-meaning in today’s world?
Although the story Scott had told me was entirely different, something called to mind Silo’s story “Day of the Winged Lion” which I had helped translate some two decades ago. “Day of the Winged Lion” describes the “awakening” of humanity, facilitated by special virtual reality games and ushered in by a simultaneous worldwide experience in which 85 percent of the planet either dreamed or witnessed the coming of a magnificent winged lion, bearing visitors and heralding the arrival of a new and human world. Turning to the book, I was drawn to this passage, which begins as the winged lion has landed:
Before long a rider leaped down before the man, who was thankful for the long-awaited presence of his father. From a saddlebag on the griffin, the rider brought out a huge tome, as old as the world. Later, seated on the multi-colored rocks, father and son breathed in the air of the late afternoon. Having passed a long time in contemplation, they were thus prepared, and opened the ancient volume. On each page the cosmos was made visible. In a single letter they saw the movement of spiral galaxies, of open and globular clusters. In the dance of characters on the ancient parchment they could read the motions of the cosmos. In time, the two men (if indeed they were men) rose to their feet. The elder, with flowing, rumpled, wind-blown clothing, smiled as no one else in this world could ever have smiled. In his heart, Tenetor III heard the following words: “A new species will open to the Universe. Our visit has come to an end!” That was all.
As I read the text, instead of my usual understanding of Silo’s tale as metaphor for a hope whose fulfillment lay in some distant and uncertain future, now the global awakening foretold in Silo’s fantastical story seemed to be coming to life in my experience of this “transmission.” The words on the page began to vibrate, opening a three-dimensional space of vivid color I looked deeply into. I could feel the words of Silo’s story somehow become “literally true” – the impact no longer metaphorical but living, the text pulsating in a perfectly precise and intentional construction, the exact words for their Purpose. Pregnant with meaning, each word hinted at, opened other worlds, overflowing with meanings more abundant than I could absorb, beyond what I can describe.
And there was more. In this flood of illuminations, I grasped that, as I had experienced in listening to my son’s story and as foreseen in “Day of the Winged Lion,” the capacity for constructing meaning was suddenly widespread – overflowing from a previously dim and distant hope into a palpable present reality, pulsing with life, spilling over into the streets and the dancing eyes of the young and young in spirit, who are embracing this luminous opening all over the planet, the intention to live in a new and deeply human world.
Of course, in all this I knew that the story my son had written had not yet been published. And yet I was experiencing the certainty that the transmission has already taken place, and on a global scale. In a strange movement of times, the normal laws of temporal order were somehow subordinated to, reshaped by the larger realities in play and the transcendent intention of humanity – pre-history morphing into the first unsteady baby steps into a fully human future. And in this interleaving of spaces and generations, the different times converged, and that logical discrepancy became the merest detail.
Because what matters is that the transmission has been made. The next generation and the young at heart “have gotten the message.” The vibe. Music, cosmic music to resonate across the universe – and across the room. Just what is needed. Somehow I knew this, grasping it as surely as my son had somehow found this story.
In truth I cannot now remember the story in any great detail. But somehow in hearing my son’s words I knew that what he recounted for me is the required story. The whole experience was at another level, some strange confluence of memories and deepest aspirations mixed with flashes of “Day of the Winged Lion,” all coming to life.
Don’t ask me to explain how I came to all of this, trained as a rational scientist to exercise a probing look deep into the heart of nature, always within a beautifully logical framework. Only recently, in more profound experiences was I intuiting truths broader than the logical, touching spaces extending beyond the scope of the rational.
So was this experience real in some conventional rational sense, I asked myself? It seemed that it could hardly be so, falling well outside the horizon of what is regarded as possible in my habitual rational world. But at the same time I have the complete certainty that it is true in the deepest sense, and this is what is important. And just what I and so many have been dreaming of for so many years, and what I unexpectedly now found in this story from my son – the new generations revealing the music of the spheres, coming into resonance, the universal song that can at long last re-link the scattered shards into which the human heart has been shattered.
And what message is this? Surely not some passive reciting of immutable texts received from distant pronouncements. Rather, as Silo points to, it has more to do with a deeper change within – the path to a new world passing through the human heart to awaken that mysterious capacity for inspiration, for engaging in common construction across all apparent barriers, opening the door to true solidarity, a deep comprehension that “I exist because you exist.”
How can it be that something that too often seemed out of reach for humanity, even to someone like me who had so long dreamed of this, has now in the blink of an eye actually come to pass? And I am only beginning to grasp the wider implications, spinning off in all directions.
How vastly have I been underestimating others – and myself? I seem to brush against a new and inclusive look. And what I had believed to be the central task facing me and others concerned with the future of humanity, I now saw afresh – completely transformed. Rather than some monumental challenge of finding a way to somehow inculcate wholesale a completely new teaching of nonviolence and humanity in people who have no notion of it, I realized that this new Message is no longer orphaned and outside. It is already “inside” humankind, where it counts – something we have in common. Only the last bit of “making itself known” is pending… but already present, vibrating within the human heart, growing toward explicit awareness and synchronization with others. Then I remembered Silo’s simple statement, “the world has changed, the world has changed…”
The transmission has been made, and now I know that the central task is completely different from what I had believed: it is simply to send a signal of the message that is true. It is to connect with those who are close, to “get in tune” with what’s already inside but overlooked, waiting only to be recognized, deepened, trusted, in order to tip over the cosmic balance, bending it ever so slightly but momentously toward this new meaning. I was filled with an enormous sense of relief, of possibility. Now I know that within people something new is already dwelling, searching for a new way of being.
Well Danny, I fear I have gone on too long, and here I will bring this account to a close, with the hope that you have been able to decipher something from this experience, which has been so inexplicable and so inspiring, and filled me with the deepest gratitude to Silo and all our friends in this luminous project.

With warmest regards,
January 2014
Parks of Study and Reflection, Red Bluff