Miley Cyrus – Malibu

We are all in the process of becoming. Actually, that’s not true. There is only the now. The now is all there is. You can point to elements of the past, or aspirations and fears for the future but you will be unable to touch them. Only ghosts and the residual fingerprints of our former selves can be evidenced.

In reality, absolute reality – there is only now. “But no!” you cry, “I’m hungover!” or “I’m living in the shadow of terrible events in my life, look at these scars!” or “I fear a loved one dying in pain.” The hangover is here now. The shadow, not the events that cast the shadow, is here in the now. Time, by the very nature of the universe moves you beyond the external events. It’s not always easy but your mind, free of clinging and bruises, is very much in the now.

The stuff of the human psyche is an amalgamation of habits, ritual, and ego-driven fantasies. We cling to empty assumptions, and the projections of personality in attempts to maintain our idea of self. It’s a paradox that on the one hand we’re typically lazy-thinkers, but on the other hand we spend so much energy waking up each morning to dress ourselves in the habits of yesterday, and the behaviors that will reassure those around us that, ‘yes, I’m still a nice guy’ (or not).

For the main part we’re a vague assembly of elbows and knees experiencing the urge to dance, or to not dance. To be brave or shy. To be cynical or compassionate. To protest or not protest. All of this happens in the ‘now’ of our lives.

If this is a world view that you struggle to digest then it’s probably because you’re protecting an element that you believe is worth preserving. Usually the things that people feel are worth preserving are perceived as being reliable – they make us feel a certain way, usually comforted, excited, calm, happy, and at best – loved. We perceive those things as being safe, or as lasting forever. Unfortunately, for those with attachment issues entropy is real. We are all moving toward a material end. The wonderful brevity of life – the arrow of time passing through an interconnecting web of jewels – is the thing that makes it so precious, so magical. However, you better be okay with goodbyes. Goodbyes to everything.

In her new video, “Malibu”, which dropped today, Miley Cyrus is literally and metaphorically growing-out her roots. It’s a fucking wonderful statement on the transience of life. Miley gets it. Summer songs are, by very essence, a celebration of warmth and hope and love. She wants to hold on to this ‘now’ forever, but she’s acquired the wisdom to know that her dream is impossible.

The artist who has passed through more identities than I give a shit about is sharing her ‘now’. Her ‘now’ is “Malibu” and it’s utterly beautiful pop. She’s forgotten her pants but is wearing an amazing sweater. There are flowers everywhere, and balloons. Everything here is a celebration of time and place and a golden-view of the world. Cyrus isn’t defending anything of the past, she is marrying her internal and external landscapes to share a level of incredible transparency.

Is this a re-brand? Yes, of course it’s a re-brand. We cannot move through life sticking out our tongues. We have to gather ourselves in. We have to move beyond previous habits, and remain true to ourselves in the now. But what’s more zen than dropping old shit to pick up new shit – acknowledging there is no picking up. And in being the game we escape the game. There is only dancing. And balloons.

For providing a sun-kissed modern day-koan we award Miley Cyrus a deep, deep bow.


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