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Old Pueblo On A Cloudy Day

Becoming is Superior to Being

Tucson (1 of 1)-2 blogView from Guthrie Peak Trail, Catalina Highway to the Right, Down Through Sycamore Canyon, Thumble Peak, Blackett’s Ridge, Tucson,
The Tucson Mountains with The Quinlan Mountains on the Tohono O’odham Nation In The Distance.
— Image by kenne

Tall trees stand behind
Scrubs cover the mountainside
Through which a road runs.

Rocky peaks reach up
Form a desert silhouette
Above the basin.

Clouds move slowly by
Cover parallel ranges
Hugging Old Pueblo.

— kenne

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Back from the Fields

A simple reminder!

Teacher as Transformer

When we are children, we are free to just be. Somehow, we lose this being as we mature. We are serious, but it is fun, fantastic, and ordinary things that make a good day.

Peter Everwine reminds me when returning from the fields it is important to remember visible and invisible reminders of what makes a good day. Sometimes, it is barbs, snaggle-teeth, and grinning ones that are easily overlooked. I don’t notice what attached as I ran in the fields. I recall them later as literal and figurative reminders of my adventures.

Until nightfall my son ran in the fields,

looking for God knows what.

Flowers, perhaps. Odd birds on the wing.

Something to fill an empty spot.

Maybe a luminous angel

or a country girl with a secret dark.

He came back empty-handed,

or so I thought.

Now I find them:

thistles, goatheads,

the barbed weeds

all those…

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Relaxing into the Game

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Life is a game – isn’t it? I’d rather believe that than believe it was some serious solemn thing where you have to put yourself through hell just because you feel you have to survive or get to the top. If that sounds blunt so be it. I feel people waste far too much time putting things down. They seem to complain far too much on the one hand while berating themselves for not making as much progress in their lives as they had hoped.

It’s almost as if they exist in some kind of independent bubble where they are stuck with the hand they have been dealt. Little wonder then that we hear so much about suicide, anxiety, stress, and illness and so little about raising consciousness and actually just feeling good about yourself for the sake of it!

Two articles reminded me of this negative self perception, which is so rampant on places like social media such as Facebook and in spiritual circles nowadays, not just in secular society. These were ‘Why Self Compassion is the Key to Being our Authentic Selves’ and ‘6Ways to Triumph Over Self-Pity and Self-Loathing’.

Although these are fab articles, I feel that they are only the beginning. One can go deeper. Two ways of doing this were excellently communicated in ‘Proof that the Human Body is a Projection of Consciousness’ by Brandon West and ‘Stopping the World by – Not Doing’ by Jose Stevens. I remember first coming across ‘wu wei’ or not doing in Alan Watt’s Tao the Watercourse Way.

For someone who was as obsessed with accumulating mantras as I was in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, this was a breath of fresh air and was my way out of the constraining ritualistic tradition I had become embroiled in. I was able to slowly realize that all I needed to do was relax into the way of things rather than trying to contrive to force myself forward into enlightenment as if it was a grim race to renunciation and wisdom. This was the breath of fresh air I needed and helped me to let go of any traces of solemnity and self serious that I had accumulated on the Buddhist path.

Adopting the perception of allowing things to be and not forcing enables us to recognize that our body is a perceptual thing and that we are limiting ourselves by just seeing everything in concrete scientific terms. Of course, people will always be skeptical and it is unlikely we will ever be able to satisfactorily ‘prove’ that the human body is or is not a projection of the mind. Granted spiritual healing is suspect in many cases as the comments point out, yet it is up to us to heal ourselves if we feel we do not trust conventional medicine or the consensus of others.

Whatever our views on all of this, the perception of our bodies and the world around us are major factors in our health and we need to go beyond such simplistic abstractions of health and environment being separate entities. All is connected and everything feeds into and flows out of the view we wake up with each morning as well as our motivation for how we live our day to day existence.

How to Move Forward from Here

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“The warrior’s approach is to say ‘yes’ to life: say ‘yea’ to it all. Participate joyfully in the sorrows of the world. We cannot cure the world of sorrows, but we can choose to live in joy. When we talk about settling the world’s problems, we’re barking up the wrong tree. The world is perfect. It’s a mess. It has always been a mess. We are not going to change it. Our job is to straighten out our own lives.”

Joseph Campbell in A Joseph Campbell Companion: Reflections on the Art of Living

As I am back from a long layoff from this I am wondering how to proceed. I believe we can inspire each other to appreciate our situation better so really this is my main motivation for blogging right now. With this in mind I have decided to share some thought provoking articles that i came  across recently.

This one reminded me not to be ruled by the values of others and totally resonates with since my son was born on the 10th March. So often we give up our lives for others only to realize that a) they do not expect this of us and b) there is only so much we can do. It is so vital to remain strong for our progeny and the best way to do this I believe is to remain true to our values rather than forcing ourselves to conform to those of others. Overall I felt this article was on the right track.

Going back to the statement at the beginning of this piece by Joseph Campbell, I feel we need to heal our relationship with the world rather than trying to change it. Perhaps this is the message of Christopher Chase’s article ‘The Hour’s Getting Late’ that I reblogged earlier today. There is little chance that environmentalists will ‘save’ the planet from destruction. What we need to do is embrace ourselves for what we are and appreciate what we have rather than trying to control everything. Like the of Tla-o-qui-aht people of Canada we need to remember that  ‘Everything is Connected’. It is pointless campaigning on issues such as global warming until we have reached this understanding. Otherwise what are trying to campaign for?

Whenever I go for a walk or look out the window I remember I am the same as the ground on which I stand and if it falls I do too. I hope we all remember this and that we can appreciate it whenever we can.

 

 

 

 

The Hour’s Getting Late: Time for Humanity to Wake Up

Creative by Nature

“Let us not talk falsely now,  the hour’s getting late.” ~Bob Dylan

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Looking out at the ecological crisis we humans have created, the analogy of mass murder or collective suicide could be applied. For centuries we’ve been steadily and methodically killing off other life forms in the Natural world. Now our greed and selfishness seems to be destroying us as well.

Is there a way out? Hopefully, yes, but it will require more creativity, love and wisdom then modern “technologically advanced” humans have exhibited (as a whole) in a very long time. It requires large numbers of us “waking up” and caring deeply, becoming less “techno-logical” and much more “eco-logical” in our behavior and thinking.

Do most people realize what we’ve been doing and the “inevitable” outcome of our actions- if we do not change? I think large numbers of us do, though its like someone struggling with a drinking…

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Strangers over for dinner…REALLY???

A great piece that gives you hope for humanity!

Culture Monk

a fountain

by Kenneth Justice

~Yesterday morning I was sitting in an outdoor coffee house at the base of the Arenal Volcano, one of the five most active volcano’s in the world when a 70ish couple from San Diego sat down at my table. The boyfriend was born in Mexico City and is part Aztek and the girlfriend is originally from New York (they are both artists) . Their time here in Costa Rica is the final two weeks of what has been a 14 month journey around the world which started in Columbia, spanned numerous countries throughout Europe and is ending here in Costa Rica.

When I asked them what was the most memorable part of their trip that they will remember for the rest of their lives they both said that it was the people they’ve met along the way, “When we were in Berlin we met a German…

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