January 27-A, 2023

The Sound 10/21/2012 Oil Paint Rendered — Pamlico Sound, Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Ocracoke Island, North Carolina
Joseph Campbell said the path of maturity
is that of "breaking out of the psychological
bondage to the culture
into a self-responsible authority
with the courage 
to accept and express
one's own thoughts about one's own life."

We are to become self-directed,
human beings in our own right.

How, here's the thing about that:
Nothing is lonelier than being on our own.

This is where the secret foundation of our life
comes to our rescue.

Maryanne Moore said,
"The cure for loneliness is solitude."

Solitude is finding the inner connection
with the One Who Knows within,
and establishing a working/living relationship
with the side of ourselves
that we are mostly unconscious of,
and being attentive to
and present with 
that which is present with us.

Solitude differs from loneliness
in that loneliness cuts us off
and isolates us from 
all aspects of life.
We are excluded from relationships
and expelled from community.

Solitude, on the other hand,
opens us to possibilities of 
relationship and communal living
with the Thou at the heart
of the invisible/unconscious world,
as the moved in response to the mover.

We enter that relationship
with a communal state of being
by being open to it
through the right kind of emptiness--
empty of all thoughts and emotions
(like the space between breaths)--
stillness and silence,
and waiting for what arises unbidden
as though from the Thou within,
which is our adamantine connection
with our original nature
and the innate virtues/traits/characteristics
that set us apart from all others of our species
and identify us as Who We Are.

From that point,
things take on a life 
of their own,
and you have an inner companion
for the journey to yourself
through the world of external conditions
and circumstances
in the physical world 
of normal, apparent, reality,
with your inner world
guiding, assisting,
your navigation in the outer world, 
and you doing the work of 
life at the interface of both worlds.

It is the adventure of a lifetime,
waiting on the other side of silence.


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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