January 30, 2021


Great Egret at Black Lake 07/18/2009 Oil Paint Rendered — Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana
Making our peace with our life
and living in the service 
of what is meaningful for us
is a reasonable
and attainable goal 
for each of us.

Most of us want more than that.

We don't know what it would be
except that it would be
more than that.

And the distance between what we have
and what we aspire to
keeps us discontented
and at odds with our life.

The idea is to be aligned
and in accord with our life.
What that would take
is giving up our idea
of how our life ought to be.

We don't know what it would take
to make us happy,
but we know this isn't it,
and we think it has to be
out there somewhere.
But, we don't know where
and we don't know how to know.

Here's a suggestion for you:
Quit thinking in terms of being happy,
and start thinking in terms
of doing what is meaningful,
here and now.

Go toward what has meaning for you
here and now,
and happy will fall into place
around that,
or not.
And if it doesn't,
it won't matter.



Yoho River Oil Paint Rendered — Yoho National Park, Field, British Columbia
The ideal I live in light of,
and the purpose for which we are born,
is to live out our life
in the service of becoming who we are,
all of the qualities and characteristics
that came with us from the womb
in a balanced and harmonious way--
in communities of other people
who are living in the same ways,
so as to become who we are capable of being
as individuals and as The Collective,
over the course of our life
as a person and as the species.

We live on to pass it on 
(Martin Hägglund in This Life).

That is hard enough if we were all into it,
doing it.
We make it impossible
by the way we respond to it,
in having nothing to do with it.

We have our eye on bigger and better things:
Fame, Fortune, Glory!
Which leads us down the path 
to the way things are,
with it only getting worse
as we continue along the way.

Three to five thousand years 
before Jesus was born,
voices were raised in favor 
of The Way
and against the trend 
of ignoring The Way
(In The Yin Convergence Classic
of The Yellow Emperor),
and here we are,
resolutely refusing 
to have anything to do with The Way,
preferring instead to do it our way.

While The Way waits
for us to see the light,
or come to the end of our rope
(Which is too often the same thing)
as individuals
and as a species.

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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