April 30, 2021

01

Gingkos 11/28/2017 Oil Paint Rendered — Charlotte, North Carolina
No judgment.
No opinions.
Just seeing what needs to be done,
here and now,
in this context,
under these circumstances,
and doing it.

Moment-by-moment
in each situation as it arises.

We are not free
until we are free
from our wants
and don't wants.

That is the freedom
that allows us to look 
things over,
to see what is happening
and what needs to happen in response,
and to do it
to the best of our ability
with the gifts, proclivities, preferences,
traits, virtues, genius, daemon 
(sounds like "diamond"), original nature/
etc.
that came with us from the womb,
from one moment to the next.

What is possible, here and now?
What are our best options, here and now?
What is called for?
What is the thing to do,
all things considered?

Do that!
With nothing personal to gain,
and nothing personal to lose,
just being what the situation needs us to be,
here and now,
through all of the here and now's
yet to be.

Get that down,
and we have it made.

And the world will be a better place to be.

–0–

02

Canyons Forever 03/07/2007 Oil Paint Rendered — Grand Canyon National Park, South Rim, Arizona
Freedom from bondage 
to our wants and wishes,
desires and cravings,
is the ultimate release
from captivity. 

We are not free 
until we are free to choose
what needs to be done
without being constrained
to obey our wants and don't wants,
our addictions and our disgusts.

Being "free to do whatever we want"
is not free at all.
It is being enslaved to our lusts and longings.
And tormented forever by the delights
that remain just out of reach.

Seeking our own good
at the expense of all other goods
is The Law of the Jungle
beating at the heart of civilizations
around the world over time.

When Jesus said,
"You shall know the truth,
and the truth shall set you free,"
he meant free from the blinders of desire,
and free for seeing and doing 
the right thing,
at the right time,
in the right place
and the right way--
with no concern for what is,
or is not,
in it for us.
And no intent to benefit,
profit,
or gain from our effort
to serve the good of the situation
in light of what it means
for all concerned.

Our life goal is to live
with complete sincerity
and without contrivance--
to do what is good
with nothing personally at stake
in the outcome,
and nothing to gain or lose
in the transaction--
moment by moment
in each situation as it arises,
over the full course of our life.

No one can do better than that,
and it is well within the reach of us all.

It only requires a slight shift of perspective
in the way we view what is important,
and a simple tilt of the will
to tip us in its direction.

And it is the transformation of life as we know it.

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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