February 14, 2021


El Capitan Oil Paint Rendered — Yosemite National Park, California
The greatest mystery all-time
without a close competitor
is the Psyche that forms the nucleus 
around which we revolve.

The old definition of God
being a circle whose center is everywhere
and whose circumference is nowhere
is as close as we are likely to ever get
in talking/thinking about the Psyche.

Words make no sense
because words are only references
to things that make sense,
and can't say things
about things that are beyond
our ability to comprehend
without sounding like nonsense. 

We are left with word-pictures,
or poetry,
that circumambulates the Psyche
without pretending to explain it,
or describe it,
in any meaningful way.

What controls/determines
how we see things?
How we think about things?
What we call important?
What we consider to be insignificant?

What governs our perspective?
Our perception?
Our designations of "meaningful"
and "meaningless"?

How good is the good we call good?
How do we know?
What makes us think so?
On what basis do we evaluate our values?

Why do we think the way we think
and not some other way instead?
How many different ways of thinking are there?
Why do we think some are right
and others are wrong?
Right in terms of what?
Wrong in terms of what?

What guides our boat 
on its path through the sea?

What directs our life?

Toward what are we living?

When something resonates with us,
what is happening,

When something repels us,
appalls us,
what is happening,

What determines what we say "Yes" to
and "No" to?
How do we know we are right
about what we say "Yes" and "No" to?

What is the central source 
of direction and guidance in our life?
What is in control of our "Yeses" and "Nos"?

Around what do we revolve?
Toward what do we live?

What makes us think
we know what we are doing?

How do we change our minds?
How does our mind change?

What is the most incontestable,
most unshakable, most constant,
most certain, most dependable,
most reliable, most true 
thing about us?

How many of us are there?

What are the contradictions
that shape our life?

How do we integrate our opposites?

How do we draw lines among
and not us
and also us
and no longer us
and not yet us?

What governs the relationships
among all of these "uses"?

Who's on first?



Sourwood 04 11/04/2020 Oil Paint Rendered — The 22-acre Woods, Indian Land, South Carolina
All seeing is interpretation.
It is saying what we see.
It is saying what is meaningful
about what we see.

If we cannot interpret it,
we can only look at it,
we cannot see it.

All looking is a search for meaning,
is looking for what is meaningful to us.

Modern art is meaningless
because we do not know
what we are looking at,
and we cannot see it,
and say it makes no sense.

We can only see what we look at
in light of what we have seen
up to that point.

Babies fresh from the womb
cannot see anything
though they look at everything
but nothing makes sense.
It is all meaningless.
A meaningless swirl of colors,
out of focus
with something saying
"I'm your Mommy!" 

How does meaning happen 
with newborns?
Where in our life 
are we all like newborns?

A modern art museum might be 
one of those places.
A book on inorganic chemistry
might be another.
A lecture on advanced calculus
might be another.

The hero comes back to the Wasteland
from her journey to realization,
awareness and understanding
with the message of truth.
What chance does she have?
The one who sees in the land of the blind
is crucified.
Or ignored.
or locked away.

We cannot comprehend 
what we cannot relate to,
what we cannot interpret,
what we cannot make sense of.

We are babies fresh from the womb!
Calling the One Who Sees blind!

How does meaning come about
with newborns?
That is how meaning comes about 
with us!

Sit before the meaningless,
until something shifts.
Until, somehow,
we can relate this to that.
Make connections.
Separate foreground from background.
See our Mommy for the first time.
And watch as everything falls into place
around that.

Not-knowing what just happened.
Not-realizing how many more times
it will have to happen
throughout our life.

Maybe, hopefully, remembering
that we are blind to all we cannot see,
and that there is much we cannot see,
because we have no experience with it,
and no way of making sense of it,
so we have to sit, 
waiting for the mud to settle
and the water to clear,
for Mommy to become apparent
and real.

Thinking that now, at last, we see.

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.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: