The Seven Bars Of The Soul Lesson Eight: The Fifth Bar

Lesson Eight “The Fifth Bar”

Dear Brothers And Sisters In Zen Boozism,

Welp, here we are, at the door of the fifth bar. We're almost all the way to the top of the inner-elevator ride that is the bar craw of the soul. Like always, it's best to start this new venture by taking the time to review what we already know about the subject of today's lesson, which is the fifth bar of the soul:

The Fifth Bar Of The Soul, A Revisiting

Bar five, or the fifth bar, is in your throat. This is usually the favorite bar of the Booze Wizard. We’ll call it “Legba’s” and it resembles an airport or train station bar. This bar is full of wizards of all types: travelers, writers, thieves, weirdos, and cartoonists mostly, but it’s home to all who have no home. It’s where those who know go to learn, talk, and study.

 The bartenders are all ex-jazz musicians, which should come as no surprise.

Associated Booze: Brandy, Absinthe

Color: Blue

Alchemical Phase: Fermentation

What To Do When You're There

Up until now we've been concerned with what you think and feel as you pass through the bars of your soul. The fifth bar is a little different in that while it is true that it is concerned and centered around the theme of communication, we're not going to be communicating at all with anything.

For us, the Booze Wizard, the Fifth bar is about shutting the hell up for once. Silence is the other side of communication. Too many of us are unaware of this and put all our communication efforts into speaking and convincing, rather than listening.

So here's what I want you to try this lesson:

Go on and get nice and stewed as usual, but don't start any conversations with anyone. You might want to bring along a newspaper or magazine, or comic book and read that at the bar. It'll signal to most people around you that you would like to be left alone.

While you're reading through the paper,  pay attention to how you react to the headlines and the stories you read. As you get drunker, go through the newspaper again and see how your feelings have changed.

Should someone attempt to spark a conversation with you, it's important that you not become invested. It's best to be polite, give one or two word answers when possible. Try to avoid revealing any personal information and resist the urge to sympathize.

Remember, when drunk people you don't know attempt to start up a conversation with you, they don't care about anything else aside from hearing themselves talk. They are you when you were in the first four bars. A lost drunk soul in search of some clarity and truth- and you are not and never will be the source of that. It's impossible for anyone to be someone else's truth. Why would you want to be anyway?

Another thing you may want to try is to get drunk alone at home while reading the newspaper, it's best to give both ways a try.

That's all for this bar, there's a lot of work to do in here, so roll up them sleeves and pour those drinks. Next time, things get weird.

B.F. Smith
Alchemist Of The Blues

B. F. Smith (photo unavailable), also known as “The Alchemist of the Blues”, is a time traveling Bluesman/Alchemist and founder of “Zen Boozism- The Path of the Booze Wizard.” When he’s not investigating chrono-anomalies or having the blues, he runs a mail order mystery school which mails out mysteries to those enrolled and then schools them.