August 05-C, 2022

Dry Falls 06/04/2006 Oil Paint Rendered — Nantahala National Forest, Highfalls, North Carolina
There is cooperating with the power
coursing through life and being,
and there is co-opting and coercing that power
(Or attempting to).

This is the theme of the Star Wars movies,
and is the difference between Yoda and Palpatine.
Using the Force for our own ends
(Or attempting to)
is the way of the Dark Side.

Doing our work and stepping back,
stepping aside,
getting out of the way of The Way,
and "letting nature take its course,"
is the Way of the Tao
as noted about 500 BCE
in The Lao Tzu
(Also called, "The Tao Te Ching").

This is the seminal truth
of the story of the Garden of Eden
running from Eden to Gethsemane and Golgotha, 
and is the bane of humankind. 

Each individual over the long span of humanity
chooses how to live in relation to the Tao,
and that is the choice that tells the tale--
of our individual life
and of the collective life of the species.

It is explored in the works of Carl Jung
and Joseph Campbell
and is the theme of our existence.

To cooperate or coerce?
We decide anew 
in each situation as it arises,
or, more accurately, decide
in each of the first few situations,
and then automatically maintain the momentum
of the Dear and Glorious Tradition
throughout what remains of our life,
though the Light continues to shine 
through the cracks
to enlighten/awaken/illumine
those who can see/hear/understand/know/do/be
even now,
even so,
even yet.

To cooperate or coerce?
The choice is always ours to make,
and choosing wisely is always the hope
of humankind.


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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