This song, the title track of her second solo album, sums up exactly what I have come to realise is the problem that awaits many who embark, willingly or no, on a "spiritual" path. It certainly awaited me. Conditioned as I was by the anti-body bias of the Abrahamic worldview, I was looking for a reality that transcended the physical. I feared the irrational demands and drives of the reptile brain. I strove for something better. More spiritual. I did not want to go into the dark of my own psyche and embrace the reality that lay within and below.
But this was a fool's errand. For the iguanas were there all the time and my desire to transcend them only served to warp me. I thought that I could control them, tame them. In my arrogant reliance on my own intellect, I started to believe that I had done this. I kidded myself that the quest was finally over and the holy grail nearly won. I was now able to harness these forces to my will and thereby seize enlightenment.
The reality was that it was at this point that the forces I thought I could control had seized control of me. And I acted on them. I fell prey to hubris. I thought that I was something special and acted on that thought without regard to any other person. I used and abused another person whilst telling myself that I was acting nobly. I was not. I had simply been responding unconsciously to the call of the iguana, whose needs are primal.
This happened several years ago and the results were catastrophic both to my life and those who loved me. I spun out of all control whilst at the same time trying to convince myself that I had not. Before long, I returned to the heavy drinking that had characterised my earlier life and found that the downward spiral simply accelerated and the damage was compounded. I descended into the underworld and remained there for a long time. I retreated from the world, from contact with anyone beyond my partner, who for some reason has stuck with me, and focused, inasmuch as I could, on the intellectual search for Inanna within texts. This done, however, I found myself stuck. She was there indeed within the pages of the bible but where was She in my life? Nowhere to be seen. I wasn't really looking. All I could see were the iguanas.
And then, out of the blue, someone asked me to become her teacher. I agreed and we met a couple of times. It was then that I realised where I was. In the underworld still hanging on the hook of my addiction. I could not teach and I could not lead. I had first to get out. I had to put the bottle down again. I had to embrace and cease to fear the iguanas. To learn to play with them.
It has been a while now and it is only in the last few weeks that I have come to realise that I am no longer in the underworld but have now emerged. I no longer fear my libido or wish to conquer or channel it. I no longer want to submit it to my will even though there are aspects of it that are not pretty. In so doing I have found new energy and drive. However, like Inanna, I do not yet know where to direct this. But my descent has not been like Hers. She went in response to some inner prompting but I seem to have gone willy-nilly, without a real sense of purpose. I am more Dumuzzi. For, in the story, Inanna points to Dumuzzi and he has to replace Her in the Underworld whose ways are perfect and cannot be questioned or evaded. One of my last acts before leaving the UK to go to Hungary was to take the part of Dumuzzi in a sacred drama. Like him, I fled, seeking to escape, but in the end could not. Kicking, screaming and lashing out at all and sundry, I was dragged into the palace of the iguanas. For it was only there that the healing could take place. And I feel it has.
I am debating whether to contact the woman who approached me again. I am ready now to do as she asked. She, however, may well have moved on. Nothing stays as it was. I will meditate on this for a while. My life feels new again. My life feels good. The future is open.