May 10, 2022


Been Fishing 09/26/2009 Oil Paint Rendered — Medicine Lake Bed, Jasper National Park, Alberta
To be in the Flow
is to be so with what is happening
and to know so spontaneously what needs to happen
that we are one with the movement
of the moment,
as dancers are one with each other,
and one with the music,
and one with the dance,
so that neither the dancers,
nor those watching the dance,
know where one ends and the other begins,
either one of the dancers,
or the couple with the dance,
or the dance with the music,
or the music with the musicians,
and all is one.

It works with basketball,
and football,
and tennis,
and singing while taking a shower.

We can lose ourselves in the moment
by becoming one with the moment.

I do it writing this.
My wife does it with her flowerbeds.
Bakers do it with dough.
Cooks do it with breakfast, lunch and dinner.
At least occasionally.

The trick is to live that way,
at one with our life.

In order to do that, 
there can be no motive.
There can be no agenda.
There can be no opinion.
No idea of good and bad.
Of IT and NOT-IT.

Just dancing.
Just being.

Got it?
Do it!
No thinking!
Just being.
At one with the moment in time and place.
Being in sync with the Tao here/now,
through all eternity.



On Roan Mountain 06/15/2014 Oil Paint Rendered — Carver’s Gap, Tennessee/North Carolina
Mental health is seeing things as they are
with no extreme opinions.
Mental illness is a perspective skewed
by the 10,000 things.

PTSD is a perspective skewed by trauma
that overwhelms all available coping mechanisms.

When the forces of instability and chaos 
bludgeon and demolish our ability
to maintain balance and harmony,
our orientation, direction
and ability to function
will be lost,
perhaps forever.

"Tender-minded" people
are more at risk
than "Tough-minded" people,
but even the toughest-minded
have limits and boundaries that crumble
into ruins with enough
anguish and stress over time.

After a point, escape is out of the question,
and we carry with us the eternal presence
of terror and fear with no external threat
to stability and peace.

Our mind can be broken beyond repair.

Up to that point,
the right kind of environment
can restore at least the appearance
of freedom of functioning,
but even there nightmares
and irrational fears 
take their toll.

We never out-grow having had 
abusive/terrifying/traumatic experiences,
and have to make allowances
for the impact of that betrayal
of the human contract
to continue to play its way out.

"How long, O Lord?"
"Until its time is done, my friend,
until its time is done."

In the meantime, we make allowances,
take precautions, take refuge where we find it,
and bear the pain, bear the pain.


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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