June 13, 2022


Ocracoke Lighthouse 05 10/24/2012 Oil Paint Rendered — Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Ocracoke Island, North Carolina
If we lay aside our expectations,
and lethargy,
and simply look for what needs doing,
and bring our original nature
and our innate virtues
into play in doing it
in each situation as it arises,
this will transform our life
and set us free to act in ways
conducive to the good of the here/now,
moment to moment,
throughout our life.

Instead of looking for ways 
to turn the moment to our advantage,
we remain alert to what is happening,
what is called for,
and what needs to be done in response
for the good of the situation.

We are no longer looking for mastery
and control.
We are looking for how to help
with the tools we have available
from birth.

And "like that,"
it is a brand new world.



Red Barn White Fence 02 05/30/2015 Oil Paint Rendered — Chester County, South Carolina
How is your balance and harmony?

What are the forces/sources of destabilization?

What is your go-to strategy for dealing with them?

I recommend the right kind of
and silence.

Returning to the Anchor Stone/Lodestar
of your original nature
and the innate virtues
with which you meet
all that life throws at you.

And waiting for the mud to settle
and the water to clear.

With foundation and clarity,
we are well-equipped to find the way
through the clashing rocks
and the churning waves
of the wine-dark sea
with the confident determination
of Odysseus
with his,
"I will stay with it and endure!
And when the heaving sea
has shaken my raft to pieces,
then I will swim!" 

The Anchor Stone of our original nature
and the Lodestar of our innate virtues
are the center/source/ground/foundation
which provide the stability 
and direction
required to find what needs to be done
and to do it here/now.

And with that, 
we can do anything,
for as long as it takes
to be healed and whole,
safe and well--
and ready for the next round
with life on a tear.



Purple Irises 05/18/2022 Oil Paint Rendered — Ross Nursery, Charlotte, North Carolina
From the vantage point of 
the right kind of 


In each situation as it arises
your entire life long.

Transforms your life.
Transforms the world.

Once you have the basic strategy
in mind,
everything else is practice.

The catch is that
what you want
and how to get it
are the first things
that have to go.

What we want 
and how to get it
are the two constant sources
of noise and complexity 
in our life.

No one can be empty,
and silent
in the service 
of what we want 
and how to get it.

What we want
and how to get it
are the first two things
to be rid of.

Once we are empty of them,
we can be open at last
to stillness and silence,
and ready for anything.



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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