March 04, 2022


Beulah Land 06 03-02-2022 Oil Paint Rendered
Beulah Land is a fictional land
flowing with milk and honey
where everything is perfect,
at last, 
commensurate with Nirvana,
The Farther Shore,
The Happy Hunting Ground,
Elysian Fields,
and every religion's idea
of where we are going when we die.

Where we are going when we die
is fading back into the Tao,
the Infinite, Eternal and Everlasting, Mind
where we came from.

Which we could begin to participate in here and now
if we were to be so inclined. 

Buddha talked about Buddha-Mind
being available to every enlightened one,
and Jesus said, "The kingdom is spread
throughout the earth,
and no one sees it."

Enlightenment simply means seeing what's what
and what needs to be done in response,
and doing it with the gifts of our original nature,
when it needs to be done,
the way it needs to be done,
because it needs to be done
for the joy of doing it
and the satisfaction of having done it
all our life long.

Sounds boring to us,
and we hate being bored.
So we comfort ourselves with 
hymns about Sweet Beulah Land,
and wrap ourselves in our delusions
until we die.



Ukraine Sunflowers 01 Oil Paint Rendered 03-03-2022
We want, we want, we want...
We live to get and to have what we want.
All we want is to have our way
And what else we want.
All the time.
Especially RIGHT NOW!!!

When did wanting take over the earth?
Has it always been the modus operandi of the species?
We cannot imagine life without it.

Trees seem to get by on what they have.
And clouds.
But human beings have been making weapons from the start.
A weapon is just a way of getting what we want.
Or keeping someone else from taking what we want.

Wanting is the heart of the matter.

Wanting what we need
needs to be as far as wanting goes,
but needing what we want
is where wanting takes us.
If we want it, 
we need it.
And have to have it.
So give it to me NOW!

Being able to separate wants from needs
and live in the service of legitimate needs only
is the untended task of life.
And the foundation of being alive
to what has need of us
in the moment
every moment.

No matter what we might want.

Living with fealty to 
what needs to be done here and now--
to what needs us to do it--
regardless of what we want
is the goal of life
in each situation as it arises.

This is what Jesus was saying when he said,
"If you are coming with me,
you have to pick up your cross daily
and do what needs to be done!"


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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