Steve Wynn has completed his $2.7 billion 2,716-room hotel in Las Vegas. We have associated the three energy centers of the false self with three American cities. To help us remember the behavioral characteristics of security, sensation and power, a quick review of that model and the three cities are:
The Security Center
(first Chakra – materialism) New York City and Wall Street
The Sensation Center
(second Chakra – pleasure) Las Vegas
The Power Center
(third Chakra – control) Washington D.C.
“Wynn believes the best Vegas hotel will cater to what people really crave: calmness. He figures that now that he has helped defang gambling and strippers to the point where they’re in every town and on many websites, the real luxury is doing swankier versions of those things in a relaxing environment. Last year he had a two-hour meeting with the Dalai Lama, which she [his wife] says has profoundly changed his life.” Yea right! Steve Wynn is the latest embodiment of the Four Noble Truths. I can see entering his next hotel through the belly of a giant Buddha with incense wafting among the slots. Steve Wynn does not know from calmness, trust me.
What Steve Wynn really understands very well is how powerful the sensation center is in each individual and how to exploit that for his own personal gain. The second Chakra is the “seat” of our addictions and other pleasurable sensations. It is normal human behavior to develop habits that distract us from existential pain. (First Noble Truth: Life is suffering) Among these distractions are both substance addictions (alcohol) and process addictions (gambling). The “sensations” associated with sex are very complex and are woven into the Las Vegas “experience” as well.
Will people go to Las Vegas in search of “calmness?” Hardly! People go to Las Vegas to explicitly avoid calmness. Calmness, silence, serenity are achieved through meditation—withdrawing attention from the world of sensations. Las Vegas is the worst place in America to seek “peace within.” Any attempt to seek calmness in Las Vegas would involve self-delusion—which is the whole purpose of the sensation center. In fact some of the most amazing shows on the stages of the big hotels involve “illusions” like making stuff disappear. People going to Las Vegas are creating their own “magical illusion.” They are trying to make their pain disappear.
“The Mister Rogers of Vegas is hoping you’ll want to take off your sweater, put on your slippers and sleep off your sins in one of the classiest hotels in the world.” Good luck with that!
References and notes are available for this article.
For a much more in-depth discussion on Simple Reality, read Simple Reality: The
Key to Serenity and Survival, by Roy Charles Henry, published in 2011.