August 06, 2021


Dandelion 01 Oil Paint Rendered
There is what we do to pay the bills,
and there is what we pay the bills to do.
Which is the most important?
Which is the easiest?

Everybody thinks money 
is the most important thing.
Few people have a clear understanding
of what money is for.
Of what bills are the right bills,
and what bills are the wrong bills.
Of what we need money 
in order to do.

We have to work this out 
for ourselves.

What are we paying the bills to do?
What MUST we do with our life?
What are we here to serve and to do?
What MUST we do?

"I have no say in the matter, Gibbs.
It's the pirate's life for me. 
Savvy?" (Captain Jack Sparrow)

What matter is it
that we have no say in?
What is the equivalent 
of the pirate's life for us?

Then comes the question
of how much money we will need
to do that,
and what can we do 
to make that much money.

And we cannot think our way
to the answers!

We feel our way there.
We live our way there.
We have to start paying attention.

What has always been "it" for you?
Start with that
and see what emerges,
occurs to you
as you circumambulate 
what has always been "it" for you,
waiting to see what comes to mind.

Carry this with you through each day,
musing on
what for you is 
what a pirate's life was
for Captain Jack Sparrow.

That is the treasure you seek.
Everything falls into place
around that.

Don't stop questing 
until the deed is done!



Reelfoot Lake 28 11/04/2015 — Reelfoot Lake State Park, Tiptonville, Tennessee
Laughter and tears,
tears and laughter,
say it all.

As much as can be said.
As much as needs be said.


They have to be the 
right kind of laughter,
and the right kind of tears.

That's the stipulation
that transforms the game.

It isn't just about laughing and crying.
It is about laughing and crying
from the right vantage point,
with the right perspective.

With the perspective
that sees rightly
and knows truly,
so that you have no alternative
but to burst forth
in laughter or tears
or both.

Laughter and tears 
go where words cannot follow.

"The Tao that can be told
is not the eternal Tao."

"The path that can be discerned
is not a reliable path."

We have to live our way there,
with our eyes open.
Slip sliding all the way.

Which is, itself,
a fit occasion
for laughter and tears.

As all occasions are,

Because all occasions,
and every single thing,
are truth waiting to be seen
and received
with laughter
and with tears.

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.

2 thoughts on “August 06, 2021

  1. Dear Friends, I began to follow Jim Dollar recently on both twitter and email.  Love his photos, paintings and his musings. This is one of the things that popped out at me today: Jim Dollar (8/621) excerpt:Because all occasions, and every single thing, are truth waiting to be seen and received with laughter and with tears.


    Liked by 1 person

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