October 11, 2021


The Neighbor’s Tree 12/22/2008 — Greensboro, North Carolina
Our place in "the great scheme of things"
is to recognize and maintain
the proper working/living distance
between ourselves and our life.

This is to say
that we are to take everything
with the degree of seriousness
that it deserves--
and it deserves 
that which is warranted
by the situation as it arises.

What now?
is always an appropriate question
to answer as is warranted
by the situation.

We have to learn to read 
the situation.

We have to know what's what.
We have to see what's happening.
We have to hear what is 
being called for.
We have to be empty
and quiet.

How long has it been
since you have been
empty and quiet?

How do you go about being,
and remaining,
empty and quiet?

How can you hope to see
what you look at
without being empty and quiet?

We cannot expect to live well
without being empty and quiet.

We have to keep a running tally
going in the background
at all times,
the Nine Priorities
(Also called "The Nine Guides"):

Emptiness and Silence.
Balance and Harmony.
Sincerity and Integrity.
Spirit, Energy and Vitality.

With these in place,
everything flows.

We see, hear, understand,
know, do, and are in accord with
the Tao of Life and Being.

Until then, 
it is pretty much what we have,
just as it is,
every day.

Everything changes 
when we take stock
and get to work,
being and remaining, 
empty and quiet,



Grace’s Tiger 08-23-2018 — Grace is one of our granddaughters, and was 15 when the photo was taken
Jesus said,
"You have heard it said,
but I say unto you..."

"Who do you say that I am?"

"Why don't you judge for yourselves
what is right?"

Jesus is saying:

Stand on your own two feet!
Live out of your own authority!
Listen to your own heart!
Do what you say is right!

If you make a mistake,
it will become clear in time.
When it does, stop doing it!
Do something else instead--
whatever you determine needs to be done!

If you are wrong about that,
stop doing it!
Do something else instead--
whatever you determine needs to be done!

Got it?
Do it!

There are no steady states of being.
There is no static state of life.
Movement is the rhythm of the cosmos.
What is right in some circumstances
is wrong in different circumstances--
and the circumstances are always changing.

What we do in response to the circumstances
must change in response to the circumstances.
Nothing is suitable for all occasions.
We dance with the music of NOW!
We do what is called for HERE!

Who is to say what that is?
WE are!

We say what needs to be done, 
here and now--
and we have to be right about it!

How do we know what is right?
We do something and see what happens,
and adjust what we do according to the outcomes
of what we are doing.

And we determine what to do here and now
by seeing what we look at
and listening to what is being said
on all levels--
particularly the level of our heart
and our body.

Let your heart and your body be your guides,
and you will never stray far from the path.
Listen to your heart and to your body
as much as you listen to your head.

Our heart and your body are co-collaborators
with our head in determining
WHAT needs to be done,
and How

They come alive
in emptiness and silence, 
and come together
to shape our life and guide the way.

Logos is good for analytical thinking.
Mythos is good for instinctive and intuitive feeling.

Integrating mythos and logos is what 
knowing and doing what is right
consists of,
allowing for the changes and adjustments
required by the time and place of our living,
over the full course of our life.

Got it? 
Do it!



Yellowstone River Canyon 03 06/30/2011 Oil Paint Rendered — Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
My recommendation is that we die
with cookies in the oven
and crumbs on the plate.

Live all the way to the end!
Die in mid-sentence!
In mid-book!
In mid-stride!
Doing what you love to do!

Why spend one non-work-related minute
doing what we take no pleasure in?
Which means finding the pleasure
in the chores and tasks of life,
and doing them as they need to be done.
Which means getting our attitude
turned around!

This is the hidden element in 
doing what needs to be done
the way it needs to be done!
We don't do that without
an attitude adjustment!

The AA slogan,
"Fake it 'til you make it!"
fits in here.

Act like you like it
whether you like it or not!
And play the part so well
not even you can tell that 
you don't like it!
Deserve the Academy Award
every time you step into action!

You will make the world a better place
just by stopping all of the complaining
and pouting!

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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