Destiny, Spirit, and Choice

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“So we shall let the reader answer this question for himself: who is the happier man, he who has braved the storm of life and lived or he who has stayed securely on shore and merely existed?”  ~  Hunter S. Thompson

“I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery—air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, “This is what it is to be happy.” ~  Sylvia Plath

Today is my best friend’s birthday. I have not seen her in over ten years. We don’t talk on the phone. Facebook is the one way we keep in contact. Wellllll . . . not the one way. Spirit is way bigger than Facebook. Facebook should only be use as a conduit. She is the most magickal person I know – she who literally attracted lightning as a young woman. The lightning must have craved good company. And the laughter! Those crazy meetings, casual gatherings, with Doctor Tune, smoking weed and plying our intelligence with irreverent laughter and shared love. Those carefree island days are here with me as I write, tattooed on my soul. You don’t know how lucky I am. I wish you did. You will just have to take my word for it. I could go on here, but I don’t want to make myself cry again. I already did it once, when her reply to my birthday greeting came to me through Facebook Messenger. A conduit only, k?! Don’t make me come over there. But there is another one as well. I fell in love with her one night as we sat at the open air oceanfront bar on the banks of the ocean along Whale Harbor Channel in Islamorada, Florida. It was a tritely balmy night with the Full Moon sitting out there over the ocean’s horizon. She was blazing with passion that night. I saw it then bathed in it. It was good. Today is her birthday too. We still speak over the phone on occasion. The last such occasion happened about a year ago. The next one shall happen soon. Hey, a hug would be nice. Maybe someday? Yeh. Maybe. Her fierce Irish blood . . . mmmm . . . I’d better stop here. I am not talking about a love life here, just about love. Like unconditional stuff. If you catch a whiff of unconditional love, follow that aroma. You won’t be sorry. Listen, I have over ten woman who are the loves of my life. The one true love of legend went and died on me back in 1995. Poor me, right? Soooo . . . is there anyone right now? I stand out in the fields of infatuation. Yeh, there is one out in that field, out in the golden fields of grain. I don’t know if I am talking fantasy or dream. There is a difference. Dreams can come true, fantasies cannot. I am choosing dreams. There is always a choice, and Spirit helps if you make a choice. Destiny only occurs when you make it yourself. Says me. Choose destiny.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously

 

A Brief Conversation With a Raven

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“So okay― there you are in your room with the shade down and the door shut and the plug pulled out of the base of the telephone. You’ve blown up your TV and committed yourself to a thousand words a day, come hell or high water. Now comes the big question: What are you going to write about? And the equally big answer: Anything you damn well want.”  ~  Stephen King

Yeh, what he said. Nice quote there Mr. King. I’ve read maybe 5-6 Stephen King novels and have enjoyed them. It was his subject matter I found to be off-putting, but his writing quality makes it worthwhile. The guy is good. Now, moving forward . . . I had a brief conversation with a raven yesterday, as he took a brief moment to pull himself away from the fast food crumbs he was enjoying. McDonald’s is right next door to my workplace. He looked a bit alarmed at first, maybe as if I was going to get his stuff, or maybe that humans are of risk as being troublesome and untrustworthy creatures. I might have to agree with him on that one, in my darker moments. Luckily those moments don’t happen so much since I have learned to control myself. One benefit of having mental health issues is that if you apply yourself you can learn coping tools that are pretty much the same thing as wisdom. No, really. I must tip my metaphorical hat to the late great Stephen Levine here, for he provided me, back in 1980, with the inspiration that led me to incorporate mindfulness perspective into my being. I slip and slide with that one, but the mindfulness alone can become a self-regulating system after a while. It’s like, you start slipping and sliding and you automatically say “Hey, I’m slipping and sliding, but for the moment that’s just how I roll”. Anyway, back to the raven. He had his beak hanging open and his head cocked slightly as he looked at me. I vocally assured him, in soft and trusting tones, that I was not going to get him. He replied with barely audible clucks and rattles. Their vocabulary is extraordinary, and a tad weird. I then noticed that next to the McDonald’s bag there was a carton from KFC, and I had to wonder if the bird was maybe doing some performance art mockery of the president, thus the KFC. Ya know, like “Nevermore, Mr. President. Please, nevermore!”. That’s another thing I am inclined to agree with. No, I did not pick up the trash, because he wasn’t finished with it. It’s a courtesy, k? As Vonnegut (Kurt, not Mark) said – courtesy succeeds where love often fails. That’s paraphrased, a blend from several quotes and stuff. I’ve come to a different relationship with ravens ever since they started getting the media attention lately. It seems that scientists are finding that they may be up there with higher primates and dolphins when it comes to intelligence. I would add felis domesticus to that list but them friggin cats are aliens so I can’t rightly include them on the list. Oh, wait, I wasn’t making a list, I was just suggesting a vague hierarchy. My bad. Soooo, my perspective on ravens has changed. I am a panpsychist in my thinking but these birds have really got me thinking now. They are intelligent, logical, self-aware, beings. This alone makes me want to look them in the eye and say yo dude. Admittedly, I do that sometimes.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

Cynicism and Unaddressed Typos

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“What sort of philosophers are we, who know absolutely nothing of the origin and destiny of cats?”  ~ Henry David Thoreau 

“Problems that remain persistently insoluble should always be suspected as questions asked in the wrong way.” ~ Alan Watts

Sometimes I wonder what Facebook is doing to my brain. I’m not talking mind control or Russian manipulation. This is just something I sometimes wonder about. That’s all. And maybe I fear becoming entirely too tolerant of unaddressed typos? That in itself might be a tragedy. Or maybe I am overly reactive to GIFs. Those thing annoy me to no end. They can be mesmerizing and therefore insidious. Maybe there is some philosophical source to my displeasure. I ain’t gonna even try to worry about it. Yup, I’m in a cynical mood this morning. Several factors triggered this spell, but details are unnecessary, simply because it will pass when I get out among people for the day. Situational depression can truly mimic the clinical variety to the point where you can only say whatever then walk on. Now, the cat is on the bed and dawn’s light is rising right on schedule. I know, that was a clunky sentence. Earlier an overcast sky shushed out the stars, and the neighborhood was quiet as well. The Moon, now in her egg phase, reminded me that she will become full in two days. I had to look up the exact day. Luckily I didn’t have to go to Facebook to do that. Just kidding. Now, moving forward . . . yes, it feels good to write for a while before work. I’ve gone through spells where I felt a strange sort of duty to do so. Not so much right now. Right now it is exercise. My brain gets too entrained out in the retail world and I need to occasionally loosen it up again. That is where I am at this morning. Alas, I am short of words, and long on thought. Soooo . . .

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

The Dime and the Light

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Today I don’t need a replacement
I’ll tell them what the smile on my face meant
My heart going boom boom boom  ~  Peter Gabriel, Solsbury Hill

It’s been a chore to get my mind engaged this morning; which is not a bad thing. But dawn is here, fading night sky and all, and I pretty much have to pull off the task now. One thing haunts me these past few days, so I guess thats a starting point for this short post. I was counting out my cash drawer at work the other day when something caught my eye. I was counting dimes when I noticed that one of the coins did not look like a dime. I picked it up only to realize that it was in fact a silver dime, from 1944. In pretty good condition as well. That’s 73 years. I ended up giving the dime to my manager on duty, who was delighted to have it to share with his teenaged son. I love doing things that make people light up, especially when it is spontaneous. I reckon that is one of the essential things about life and what to do with it: bring more light into the world. That’s where I am today. Not feeling well but the faint feeling of illness also feels quite temporary. Bright red eyes earlier. Gut ache. Nothing that should hamper the good day to come. Retail work is friggin hard. Especially for an introvert such as myself. That, I find, is best addressed with good humor, even if it is dark humor. And making people smile. Especially the pretty women. One of the treasures of my life is eye connection when a pretty woman is smiling. Such a connection brings more light into the world. I think I will leave it at that. A good day it shall be.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

Now On the Floor

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“Say I feel all sad and self-indulgent, then get stung by a wasp, my misery feels quite abstract and I long just to be in spiritual pain once more – ‘damn you tiny assassin, clad in yellow and black, how I crave my former innocence where melancholy was my only trial’.” ~ Russell Brand

Let’s just get it over with, let’s face it. I am teetering on the edge of cynicism this morning. I’m running late in feeding the cat. And I suspect I am taking this mindfulness thing a tad too far. As George Harrison said in “Yellow Submarine” – it’s all in the mind. Now, let me go feed the cat right now. If this whole life is a dream or an illusion, or at least seems to be so, I have simply forgotten to take the cat into account, so I sit here thinking about feeding her instead of actually putting out the food, which would actually take a lot less time and effort. Be right back.

So much for cynicism. It comes predominantly from following the news, especially the ‘big picture’ ‘little picture’ political commentary. I admit to finding entertainment value in it all, just as I fully admit to seeking better understanding of the ‘really really big’ picture. It’s gone all wonky, this world, all wobbly. In my previous estimate, long since proven wrong, the human species was supposed to have evolved by now. Such was the optimism of a melancholic teenager. Or was I more seriously depressed? Probably so. Probably so (repetition intentional, for emphasis). This is where the cynic comes in. Is it cynical to assume that I was wrong about 50 years of random procession? I think it is cynical. And it is easy to be so in this scrunched up society that has been split right down the unkind center of black and white. By the way, both sides bear responsibly in this Left/Right polarity, yet at this time it seems only fair to admit that the Right has a much looser grip on empirical reality. Listen, I am firmly on the Left and I always will be, simply because I see Liberalism to be the only viable tool in mindfully transforming mere process into progress. And maybe that’s just me. But I am also a temporary hermit with the day off from work. It’s been a slow, somewhat dreamy beginning to the day. I’ll not speculate on where the day will take me, or visa versa. I would say that all options are on the table except I got rid of the table, put it in a storage locker, and all options are now on the floor. See, I’m working on being more grounded. This is a start.

Peace out, y’ll. Goof gloriously.

 

Entropy and Rattled Brains

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“At the heart of science is an essential balance between two seemingly contradictory attitudes–an openness to new ideas, no matter how bizarre or counterintuitive they may be, and the most ruthless skeptical scrutiny of all ideas, old and new. This is how deep truths are winnowed from deep nonsense.” ~ Carl Sagan

“When I was growing up I always wanted to be someone. Now I realize I should have been more specific.” ~ Lily Tomlin

Twilight time. Quiet. No traffic noise. No barking dogs. No chirping skunks. Coyotes? Nope. They did break out in song at sunset yesterday. It could have been a song to the Sun but more likely it meant that a hare or two were fixin to go down. This dawn feels odd. I suppose it could be an influence from the appalling activity in the nation’s capitol. That most definitely has an effect. I encounter edgy people as I serve the public in my job. I do wonder how much current politics contributes to this edge. Yesterday was such a day, but most days aren’t. There’s no answer as to the veracity of my suspicions. But it is still my guess that the incompetence and nefarious doings have a trickle down effect on citizens. I for one am tired of being shocked so I have trained myself to keep an eye on the eventual full application of justice. I cheer investigators as word of their doings comes out. The time for a full court press approaches. Yeh, I just used a sports term. Honestly I had to look it up to see if it really meant what I thought it meant. It did, does, whatever. As sports go I do not care for basketball. I used to love watching a good football game but since all the news about CTE research I’ve lost interest, because I now realize that them fellas out there on the field are breaching design function: the human brain is just not designed for such brutal treatment. Such treatment tends to trigger entropy if taken too far. This issue really hits home with me. My head has been banged severely several times. One time was so severe that it nearly killed me, or it did kill me, from a metaphysical perspective. That was a trip! From that perspective I died, crossed over to somewhere strange, flew through a tunnel, then into the Light, where I was met by a Celtic goddess who, in so many words, told me to calm the fuck down dude. Hey, I wonder if I am the only one to have succeeded in carrying anxiety into heaven, or wherever that was. So now you new readers know something about me that I rarely discuss in this blog. There is a stigma against telling such stories, and I kinda sorta get that. I shake my head at the non-believing scientists, and I put forth a hearty huzzah to those scientists who endeavor to learn the truth about a very strange phenomenon. Just in recorded history alone, tens of millions of people have reported having NDEs. Just sayin. But for now, moving forward and all that fun stuff, I must get to the groom and zoom portion of prepping to go into Taos to work. I say zoom because I also managed to bring my anxiety back home from heaven. Weird, just weird. It is going to be a sweet day. Something wondrous is happening. If you think I am dismissing the politics of the day, just remember that there is also balance it the world. Balance is an innate quality and characteristic of Nature. When a system gets too far out of balance empirical reality begins to heave and ho, to huff and puff and blow some house or other down. You may think, as I do, that virulent entropy has gripped our nation, but also remember that entropy is the measure of the lack of information about the true nature of a system. Let that soak in, k?

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

A Portal and a Temporal Loop

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“Now that you’re an adult, you might still feel a pang of guilt when you decline a dinner invitation in favor of a good book. Or maybe you like to eat alone in restaurants and could do without the pitying looks from fellow diners. Or you’re told that you’re “in your head too much”, a phrase that’s often deployed against the quiet and cerebral. Or maybe there’s another word for such people: thinkers.” ~ Susan Cain

What business has a novelist to cling to the memory of a smile or a look, knowing I so well the complexities behind them? Yet if I did not, I’d never be able to set a word down on paper; just as I used to keep myself from going crazy in this cold northern city by deliberately making myself remember the quality of hot sunlight on my skin.And so I’ll write again that George was a good man.” ~ Doris Lessing

Today’s opening photograph is a vista from the top of the pass to the south, named “the Horseshoe”. The big hole in the ground is the Rio Grande Gorge; and yes, it is a National Monument. That’s just a note for readers who do not live here to witness the grandeur and majesty of this place. It never grows old. Now, yesterday was a listening day, and it just feels right to have another such day today. It’s been a hard ride lately, and I find myself with the need to intently follow a spiritual path for the time being. It has grown easier through the years to do so. Feelings of gratitude and acceptance, of surrender and wonder, all provide a sweet foundation. Finding the love and compassion, that is essential, is not so difficult, it’s knowing how to let them run free throughout the day. But I will anyway. These are not values that can in any sense be applied. There is no app for such things; no algorithm for mercy. Application is in essence inimical to these values. It is an ego games, like applying some stuff you read in a book. Or like accepting channeled material as anything more than vague guidance. I like authentic channeled stuff. Jane Roberts’ “The Seth Material” changed my life back in the late 70s, along with R. A. Wilson’s The Cosmic Trigger. The latter is not a channeled work, it simply resonated with the other material, the Seth stuff, and the whole experience of reading those two books ripped open a portal from this material reality to show that this living world is way larger than we realize. I needed to hear this notion; fresh off of a divorce (the one and only marriage) and kinda sorta spinning around life’s curves. Dude it was like all gnarly dude. Just as it is today. This is transtemporal stuff I am talking about. Today’s “today” and yesterday’s “today’ are not mutually exclusive, and this is simply because today is today, the point and place in time makes not a smidgen of difference. The concept here is called “simultaneous time”. I follow the Celtic vision of time, which views time as a circular phenomenon, or more accurately as a spiral. The seasons change, and the change of season always displays the same basic characteristics, yet each transition from one season to the next is innately unique, because we humans are here to make it so. We serve other functions, of course, but . . . oh never mind. Today feels like a temporal loop day. Yesterday was free flow, which found me nap-ward bound a good part of the day. Yes, I did get the nap. A temporal loop is like Bill Murray and Andie McDowell(!) in “Groundhog’s Day”. Such a loop serves as a way to learn some hard life lessons, lessons that need to be learned over time, because there ain’t no revelation gonna provide the knowledge for you, and even if it did come in a flash your comprehension as a human ain’t gonna be able to handle the information. Is it just me or am I discussing destiny here? Destiny, especially the attempted application of it, is like a fidget spinner for the soul. As I see it destiny is a force, not unlike the forces that break down atomic particles yonder at CERN, in Switzerland. Speed and collision are the key. In daily life the collision are gonna happen regardless, but the speed of each collision needs to be governed acceding to . . . what am I saying here? On to my workday; looking for many laughs, or maybe an encounter with the smiling woman, or some semblance of some higher truth, or love. It will be a sweet day. I won’t have it any other way. I could be wrong. There are random forces in the world as well: happenstance and chance. Let’s go see what happens.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

 

The Listening Day

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“It is in your power to withdraw yourself whenever you desire. Perfect tranquility within consists in the good ordering of the mind, the realm of your own.” ~ Marcus Aurelius

“The tree which moves some to tears of joy is in the eyes of others only a green thing that stands in the way. Some see nature all ridicule and deformity… and some scarce see nature at all. But to the eyes of the man of imagination, nature is imagination itself.” ~ William Blake

“It was only a sunny smile, and little it cost in the giving, but like morning light it scattered the night and made the day worth living.” ~ F. Scott Fitzgerald

There was rain overnight, heavy dew this morning. Moisture in the high desert is a lovely way to start the day. And thunderstorms mid afternoon. Simply perfect. It might be advisable for me to stay at this elemental level for the day, or take as needed. It is so easy to just look at the land, to appreciate yes, but more is needed than just the admiration of the pretty place you live. You have to listen as well. This place sings, as does any place. That’s what I’m sayin’. Something liminal comes through upon listening. Music is like that. And yes, I am truly trying to avoid the struggle of putting into words the feeling I have in mind. There are no words for what I feel. As in Mr. Fitzgerald’s quote above, a sunny smile kinda does the same sort of thing. For me, the sunny smile from a pretty woman hits home and lights it up. It takes me to the place of home and hearth. That’s where I need to be these days. Yeh, there is one woman’s smile in particular, but that’s not the point here, if there is one. The Veil feels quite thin today. I wonder what it is that will come through. But I am not concerned with specifics. When the Veil is thin there is also that feeling that rises up from within. And there’s that liminal music thingy again. Yes, I will listen today. Today is the listening day.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

Ringing a Deep Harmonic

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“Writing is something that you can never do as well as it can be done. It is a perpetual challenge and it is more difficult than anything else that I have ever done—so I do it. And it makes me happy when I do it well.”  ~ Ernest Hemingway

“There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique, and if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium; and be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is, not how it compares with other expression. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. No artist is pleased. There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is on a queer, divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.”  ~ Martha Graham

Somehow I got caught up in videos about crows and ravens. There’s a lot of stuff out there. The sun is just breaking over the summits of the Sangre de Cristo range. The morning is moist and peaceful. My mind feels pretty soft as well. It’s a good day to hone in on contentment. That can be hard for me, because even when I reach a feeling of contentment some of my nerves and muscles beg to differ; in a manner of speaking. Both depression and PTSD have physical symptoms. They can be quite noticeable at times. I feel like that right now dude as I write these words and stuff bro. Hey, how come ya never hear someone calling a woman ‘sis’? Just sayin. One of the lessons I have learned from these disorders is that it might could maybe be best to drop the word “disorder” altogether. I sure as hell ain’t gonna call them bad habits! That approach is patronizing and can be wounding. What it is is that my brain does things differently than others. It is philosophically and logically indisputable that this brain is a singular organ. And that brings us dangerously close to a cosmic perspective: be yourself. Proclaim to the world that you are here. The response to that proclamation will likely be like yeh whatever. Do it anyway. You don’t have to be noisy about it. A simple smile spiced with a steady on gift of eye contact can do the trick. In people’s eyes the basic truth that no one really knows what the heaving heck is going on . . . well, let me just say the eyes show secrets of freedom and wonder, whereas the written word and the spoken word often holds secrets hostage. Deep thought, right? The concept of holding secrets hostage rings a deep harmonic in my soul. Guess I’ll put the idea in my inner cauldron and see what cooks up.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

When the Reason is Silly

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“Play around. Dive into absurdity and write. Take chances. You will succeed if you are fearless of failure.”  ~ Natalie Goldberg

It would be easy to get serious this morning. Luckily there is no time for that. Not much time to write at all, in fact. So I will take the liberty of choosing to believe that everything happens for a reason. See, I got lost in a time bubble while trying to find a quote to open today’s post. This kind of lengthy unfocused search has happened before, but it nearly got me this time. That done, I now find that my time has run short, so I’ll step out to the side yard to look at the mountains, then come back in to groom a tad before heading into Taos for work. It’s not that I don’t feel like writing. I simply frittered away the time, and that done, it now becomes clear that there is no fritter to be found. Just silliness. Everything happens for a reason. It is just that sometimes the reason is silly.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.