Pain Requires a Response

An Obsession with Death is sometimes a Refusal of Life

First, I am intentionally leaving out any names other than the two the author of the referenced book, and the pain, used. And I will be as brief and succinct as I can in my response. The rest will become clear if ‘you’ read what I am compelled to write.

In August of 2016 I created a Twitter account for reasons that would require another story, not remotely related to this one, should I decide to write it.

In the Fall of 2017, I came across a Twitter account providing links to YouTube videos narrated by a man who was authoring a book called: “Sanction”. While the book is difficult to summarize, it could fall under the heading of an ‘apocalyptic science fact/fiction’ somewhat like another ‘Mad Max’. At least that’s the way I viewed it.

The narrator of the videos turned out to be a self-publishing author, one Roman McClay, AKA: Lyndon McLeod. For many, especially those who were acquainted with his online persona, the name will set off the alarm bells of the recent tragedy in Colorado. The murder and mayhem psychopaths often leave in the wake of their isolated madness.

Regardless, the videos were comprised of excerpts from the referenced book, and I found them to be a compelling art form that I likened to the “True Detective” series. So, my original take was that the work was more suitable for a movie or a series, rather than a ten-pound tome of who did what to whom with all the empty spaces between the lines characterized by a ‘philosophy crafted with a jackhammer’, enacted and justified by the characters as necessary to the unfolding of their destinies. This is also how McClay described his book.

Over the next few days, I communicated with him over Twitter. He was very effusive with gratitude and acknowledged with emoji handshakes and comments like: ‘you get it’, which were both a trademark response of his. What I ‘got’ was his pain which I thought he was handling and working through with direct confrontation, and by utilizing the relief valve of writing to shed light on his own path, rather than planting land mines across everyone else’s.

Over time I came to see this amounted to little more than my projections based on my own journey through the landscape of pain. Over approximately the next 2 years, as I read his posts and observed his interactions online which included one zoom meeting, I began to realize how wrong I was.

It was the zoom meeting with him that sealed my view of where he was emotionally and psychologically. He was contracted, boring, and dull-witted, with an apparent superior attitude fueled by Jack Daniels, ‘who’, I concluded, was his closest friend and the greatest influence for most, if not all the writing he did, which was demonstrably confirmed by a pile of empty bottles he liked to add to in his online display case.

After the meeting, I lost all interest in LM and his ‘work’, for I began to see he was just one more damaged soul, an alcoholic who was capable of being inspired by the real ‘Spirit’ but preferred to entertain the other ‘spirits’ who kept him numb to his own motivations and state. He simply didn’t have the guts to face his real demons. The ones he projected on everyone else.

Sometime after that meeting, LM threatened to kill another man and his family over a criticism that man had made about one of LM’s friends writing. When I saw his threats online, I sent him a DM on Twitter indicating I would no longer follow or support him.

I upbraided him in private thinking that was the honorable, principled action to take, but he immediately took me to task in the public square of Twitter seeking support from his ‘friends’ and accusing me of being a coward, when I was one, among few, if any I can remember, who condemned his violent bullying tactics. Of course, true to his form, he later threatened to ‘beat me death’ in a DM. So much for honor among thieves, cowards, or murderers who like one another’s company.

No mind, I’ve always put my destiny in the hands of ‘God’ though I prefer ‘Tao’ to describe the nature of the undivided truth. So, I lost no sleep in the days and weeks that followed, and my only ‘prayer’ to the universe writ large was to give me that single opportune moment to put him down decisively should he show up on my property. There would be no hesitation, any more than I’d hesitate to put down a rabid dog who viciously attacked a child. And since he had threatened to kill me, I had just cause according to the law and my own conscience. No praise, no blame, just the necessity of the moment, like a Samurai whose acts are not personally motivated and therefore produce no karmic consequences.

Thankfully, as fate would have it, that didn’t happen, and this short piece is my response to the pain left to be lived by all those lives ‘Roman McClay’ unalterably changed in late December of 2021, including his own. If he truly had any courage, he would have blown his own brains out like Hemingway himself and left everyone else with at least the little bit of peace this life can offer, and which he never inhabited.

In closing I’ll say this to all those who stood by him and continued to call him ‘friend’ even after he threatened to kill a man and his entire family over a childish slight:

Your notion of honor is skewed to your weakest tribal side. Examine your motives and the values you claim to be ‘masculine’. There is no greater act of cowardice than to murder defenseless women and men. If you can defend that, or even those that make threats of it, then you can defend anything. I stand against you, whoever ‘you’ are, now, and for as long as I live.

I don’t believe in a ‘New Year’, but I do believe in moments and days when insight reveals the errors of our ways. May we become our brother’s and sister’s keepers as we co-create a world that works a bit better than this one. And may you at least find the world you create in the immediacy of your life one worth living in.

It’s a short, unpredictable life, until the end… But as Alan Watts noted, there is wisdom in insecurity for those who can see and understand. And as for the heart:

“Gradually it was disclosed to me that the line separating good and evil passes not through states, nor between classes, nor between political parties either — but right through every human heart…”

~ Alexander Solzhenitsyn

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Architect of Intention

Architect of Intention

Born: Tao/20th Century. Observer/Disciple: Nature/Developmental Processes. RM/Consulting Engineering. Explorer: Direct Experience. Realizer: Self-Evident Truth.