November 23, 2020


Sourwood 05 11/04/2020 — 22-Acre Woods, Indian Land, South Carolina
We are to live out of the center of who we are--
"Like a wheel turning out of its own center,"
(Friedrich Nietzsche).

In order to do that,
we have to spend time
and nourishing 
our relationship
with our center.

Our center is the contact point with
our original nature,
our natural rhythms,
and the Source--
the Mystery at the Heart
of Life and Being.

It is no light thing
to return to the center!

And it is an absolute essential thing
to live from there!

At the center,
there is stillness and silence
and a perceptible, though faint,
sense of "AUM" in the air.
And we know we have what we need
to find what we need
to do what needs to be done
in each moment,
throughout our life
and beyond.

Return regularly to the center,
and everything will fall into place
around that.

We have to understand, however,
that "falling into place"
doesn't mean "having our way."

We will have to adjust 
our expectations,
and ambitions
to align them with the center's aims,
and our destiny's interests,
which is necessary to turn things around
and create the framework
for a life lived from the center,
transforming all things.



Crepe Myrtle 02 11/10/2020 — 22-Acre Woods, Indian Land, South Carolina
It takes returning regularly
to stillness and silence
in maintaining our connection
with the center
and the Source--
with the Mystery at the heart
of life and being.

When we lose that connection,
we are on our own,
without guardrails or guidance,
lost in the wasteland
of fear/desire/duty,
with nothing to stabilize
or orient us
beyond the next thing to want,
and all the things to hate,
and detest
to keep us going.

Groundless living
is drifting--
through our life,
hoping to find something
to make it worthwhile,
and settling for one addiction
after another
as an acceptable substitute
for being alive.

All the time ignoring
the life that is "right there,"
"right here,"
waiting to be recognized,
and engaged.

Like the man holding the butter,
looking for the butter.
Like the woman with her glasses 
on her head asking,
"Has anybody seen my glasses?"
We walk past our life,
through our life,
seeking our life,
when all it takes is stopping,
seeing what we are looking at,
hearing what we are listening to,
knowing what we know
and doing what needs to be done
about it.



Reeds at Sunset 05/27/2012 — Abbot Lake, Peaks of Otter Lodge, Blue Ridge Parkway, Bedford, Virginia
"I believe, help, thou, my unbelief!"
Means, "I know who I need to be,
help me be who I am!"
Means, "I have the mental part down!
Help me incarnate that in my life!"
Means, "I know what needs to be done!
Help me do it!"

"In each situation as it arises!
All my life long!"

We live to put it into action.
We live to live the truth of who we are
in the midst of the 10,000 things.
In the whirling Dust of the World.
Amid the heaving waves of the wine-dark sea.

If you think that is easy,
back it out of the drive way
and take it round the block
a time or two.

It takes focus,
and silence,
and practice, practice, practice
to live without contrivance,
with sincerity,
acceptance of--
and compliance with--
how things are
and what needs to be done about it
in each situation as it arises,
throughout our life.

Once we get that down,
it is clear sailing 
all the way.

Published by jimwdollar

I'm retired, and still finding my way--but now, I don't have to pretend that I know what I'm doing. I retired after 40.5 years as a minister in the Presbyterian Church USA, serving churches in Louisiana, Mississippi and North Carolina. I graduated from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, in Austin, Texas, and Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana. My wife, Judy, and I have three daughters and five granddaughters within about twenty minutes from where we live--and are enjoying our retirement as much as we have ever enjoyed anything.

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