December 05, 2021

01

Beech Woods 01 11/11/2021 Oil Paint Rendered — 22-Acre Woods, Indian Land, South Carolina
Everyone wants what they want.
No one wants what they ought to want.
No one knows what they ought to want.
Everyone thinks that what they ought to want
is what the Bible or their mothers
or some substitute for the Bible or their mothers
would tell them they ought to want.

We have a better chance of knowing
what we ought to want
if we empty ourselves of all our ideas
about wanting and ought to want,
and sit in the stillness and the silence,
waiting for the mud to settle
and the water to clear.

Which is to say that 
we ought to want emptiness,
stillness,
silence
and clarity.

Start there.
Wait for what else we ought to want
to arise unbidden
from emptiness, stillness and silence,
in leading us to do
what needs to be done
in each situation as it unfolds
before us.

If you are too impatient
for that,
you ought to want patience.
Start there...

And be true to the task
of wanting what you ought to want
and doing what needs to be done
all your life long.

–0–

02

Big Rock Preserve 08 11/17/2021 Oil Paint Rendered — Mecklenburg County Parks and Recreation, Charlotte, North Carolina
Emptying ourselves of all wants,
desires,
expectations,
agendas,
opinions,
assumptions,
inferences,
fear,
anger,
resentment,
denial...

You know, like that...

At every transition point
throughout each day,

In order to see what's what
and what needs to be done in response to it,
with the gifts/daemon/specialties/virtues/genus/shtick
that came with us from the womb
(That is to say, our original nature),
would do wonders for our balance and harmony,
and the true good of the world.

Emptiness, 
stillness,
silence,
clarity--
hold on to these things,
employ them often.

See where it goes.

You could do a lot worse.

–0–

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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