August 14, 2020

04

The Price Lake Variations V — Julian Price Memorial Park, Blue Ridge Parkway, Blowing Rock, North Carolina, ca, 2004 (with Grandfather Mountain)
Do not have a plan.
Do not think you know where you are going.
Do not have to know where you are going.
Do not need to know where you are going.
Do not know where you are going.

Do not think you know what you are doing.
Do not have to know what you are doing.
Do not need to know what you are doing.
Do not know what you are doing.

Do not think you ought to contrive a future.
Do not think you can contrive a future worth having.
Do not contrive a future.

Do not try to figure your best move,
or seek to serve your advantage,
or strive to gain the advantage,
or think you know what the advantage is.

See what you look at.
Ask the questions that beg to be asked.
Say the things that cry out to be said.
Listen to what you hear
beyond what is said
to what is implied,
to what is meant.

Know what is called for
in each situation as it arises.
Respond with what you have to offer
out of your gifts/daemon/spirit/virtues/character
and let things fall out around that.

Let sincerity,
balance
and harmony
be your traveling companions.

Consult your creative center and source
of your Original Nature,
and allow them to lead you in acting 
to incarnate your nature
in all of the times and places of your living,
in each here and now of your existence,
in doing what needs you to do it
within the circumstances that unfold before you.

Receive your life each day
as an adventure waiting for you to live it.

Dance with your contradictions 
and bear consciously the pain that is your to bear,
always open to the joy and wonder of being alive.

And your life will teach you 
all you need to know.

–0–

03

A Time for Shadows 02/12/2009
We are minding our own business,
going about life as usual,
all our plans are in place,
meeting our responsibilities
and carrying out our duties
in serving our own sense of The Good
to the best of our ability,
when along comes a war,
or a pandemic slams the door on one future
and opens the door to a starkly different one,
requiring us to adapt and adjust in mid-stride.

Transitions are tough to negotiate
even when we see them coming.
When they are thrust upon us
out of nowhere
we have to get our feet back under us
with the world spinning around us
while free-falling through a debris field
of all that once was the world we lived in
thirty seconds ago,
they are a monster,
eating our old life alive
laughing at our prospects 
and mocking our chances.

When everything is blown away,
we have to connect ourselves consciously
with the one constant that remains steadily in place
through all the vicissitudes of time and space.

That would be us.
Carl Jung said, "We are who we have always been,
and who we will be."

We remain constantly and continually ourselves
through all that comes and goes throughout our life.

We have to remind ourselves of that,
and breathe slowly and deeply,
as we recover our sense of our own being,
reunite with our Original Nature,
check to make sure our shadow is where it should be, 
and remind ourselves of who we are
and what we bring to this moment
and every moment flowing from this one.

Our task is the same 
across all conditions and circumstances of life:
We stop,
take inventory,
assess what is happening
and what needs to be done about it,
determine what is being called for,
in each situation as it arises
and respond to it 
with the gifts/daemon/spirit/virtues/character
that came with us from the womb
and accompany us wherever we go
all our life long.

Our work is the same in all times and places.
We stand up, 
and step forward,
rising to the occasion
and meeting whatever faces us
as only we can
moment-by-moment,
situation-by-situation,
day-after-day,
time-after-time--
letting things fall into place around that
and adjusting to new realities as they emerge,
responding on the fly 
as needed all the way.

Through all that comes,
we maintain our conscious connection
with the source and center
of our Original Nature,
being who we are
when we are,
where we are,
no matter what
every step of the way--
allowing the path to open before us
as we start walking,
and trusting ourselves
to the creative mystery within
guiding us through the choices and decisions
that are ours to make
as though we know what we are doing,
when in truth,
we are only doing what seems to be 
the right thing to do at the time,
and letting the outcome be the outcome--
which will be just another situation
where we stand up
and step forward to meet
and deal with as best we can.

Resting and regrouping as we are able,
and doing what can be done
about what needs to be done
all the way.

Each of us is uniquely suited 
for the adventure that is ours.
It only takes believing that
and living as if it were so
for it to be so
in every day that lies ahead.

–0–

02

Willow 04/06/2006
We have to be able to bear the pain
of seeing what we look at
and knowing what we know.

Bearing the pain of life as it is
is the foundational step
toward life as it may be.

The catch is that life as it may be
may be nothing like
life as we want it to be,
as we wish it were,
at least not in our lifetime.
And we have to bear that pain
in doing the work that needs to be done
to make things better than they are
for future generations.

How many generations out
are we
from life as it needs to be?
It doesn't matter.
What matters is that we do the work
in our time and place
toward life as it needs to be
in all times and places--
without keeping score
or caring what our chances are.

Democracy,
equality,
justice,
compassion,
human rights...
are worth living and dying for
across time and place.

And we have to bear the pain
of service to ends worthy of us
in every time and place,
anyway,
nevertheless,
even so--
because everything depends on that,
and flows from that.

Living as though, 
as if,
this were so
makes it so!

And we take our place
in the long line of those
who lived in the service of a good
greater than their own, personal, good,
in light of all that life may yet be
for all who are alive
throughout the time left for living.

–0–

01

Stonington, Maine 10/12/2009 02
What do you call a White Supremacist
who frequents tanning beds
and applies artificial tan
with lotions and creams?

Kidding ourselves is what we do best.
Self-deception in all its myriad forms
has characterized humanity
from the beginning.
We are always fooling ourselves,
looking in the mirror,
never seeing who is looking back.

If you are a member of an organization--
or a group--
larger than three people,
you are a danger to the rest of us.

There are Republicans who are convinced
that Democrats eat children--
literally, actually, in real time.

Witch hunts were conducted by conspiracy theorists.
Nazis and fascists were/are conspiracy theorists.
Qanon never met a conspiracy theory it didn't like.
Everything is so much better with someone else to blame
for things being the way they are.

And hatred is at the bottom of it all.

"It is people like you
who make people like me
hate people like you!"

Try making peace with people like that.
With people who just want you dead.
After inflicting misery and suffering on you
forever.

What's the fix?
How do people get to be 
the way they are?
What is going on?
"Why can't we just get along?"
How is hatred masking itself
in the things you believe?

If you aren't self-aware enough
to see what you look at 
when you look at you,
you are a danger to the rest of us.

Self-transparency--
with a particular sensitivity
to denial,
deception
and delusion--
is the solution
to all of our problems today.
And every day.

The fix is found in assuming our individual responsibility
for facing,
squaring up to,
dealing with,
handling 
and managing the truth--
particularly, as it pertains to us personally.
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