All Silliness and Metaphors Aside

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“When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back. A week is more than enough time for us to decide whether or not to accept our destiny.” ~ Paulo Coelho

“Each one of us has lived through some devastation, some loneliness, some weather superstorm or spiritual superstorm, when we look at each other we must say, I understand. I understand how you feel because I have been there myself. We must support each other and empathize with each other because each of us is more alike than we are unalike.” ~ Maya Angelou 

“Detachment means letting go and nonattachment means simply letting be.” ~ Stephen Levine 

Thankfully, the cat finally calmed down. She was wandering around the room making little mournful sounds. Likely a cry for early breakfast, but you never know with cats, it could be some form of existential expression. The wind seems to have calmed down as well. I don’t know, there’s just something about wind at night that fascinates me.


Since I finished that last sentence the wind has begun gusting again. The sound of it coming and going reminds me of something I can’t quite put my finger on, but I sense it has to do with emotions, soul weather. Yeh, likely so. Tonight we have the December Cold Full Moon. The sight of the steady passage of thick clouds is inspiring, as is the frequent break in the clouds where moonlight caresses its way down through the spaces. For some reason the air forgot to get cold last night. At 42º it feels downright balmy, compared to recent nights; going back weeks, now that I think about it. At least I won’t have to scrape ice from my windshield before I head into town in a few hours.


The coffee is all gone and I am mildly deliberating whether or not to make another pot. It might be a good idea to make more. My mind is pretty expansive so far this morning. Caffeine reins that in for me, and I will need that focus for my task in town later this morning. I’m not saying that ‘the big picture’ ain’t needed for what I have to do. It actually is a big picture kind of thing, having to do with my quality of life from here on out and stuff. My mind pretty much shifted into ‘endgame of life’ mentality throughout the past year. And my heart is perfectly okay with that, it seems. Mind and body are the key tools in soul shaping, cultivation, whatever. So, really, my body aches most all the time – and my mind quivers, most always, with self-sufficient anxiety, which means that situational threats and challenges merely exacerbates what it already there, all the time. For whatever reason this reminds me of Foghorn Leghorn, the Looney Tunes rooster, cock, whatever: “Boy, I say, boy – now dooonnn’t get me riled”. Ummmm, yeh, what he said. All silliness and metaphors aside, the key here, for me, for my quality of life going forward, is to craft purpose, entwining and entangling purpose on down deep into the pain and fear. I mean, if it ain’t goin’ away best put it to use, reckon? I just ain’t quite sure how, right now.


Just back from another trip outside, to sit on the deck and gaze at the racing clouds and brilliant moon. The time has come to finish this post, eat something, shower, then head into town to do what I gotta do. My mood says to stay home, and although that would have spiritual value I . . . dang, I feel this way every morning.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

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Just Call It Life

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“To live only for some future goal is shallow. It’s the sides of the mountain that sustain life, not the top.” ~ Robert Pirsig

“A writer – and, I believe, generally all persons – must think that whatever happens to him or her is a resource. All things have been given to us for a purpose, and an artist must feel this more intensely. All that happens to us, including our humiliations, our misfortunes, our embarrassments, all is given to us as raw material, as clay, so that we may shape our art.” ~ Jorge Luis Borges

“Finding the center of strength within ourselves is in the long run the best contribution we can make to our fellow men. … One person with indigenous inner strength exercises a great calming effect on panic among people around him. This is what our society needs — not new ideas and inventions; important as these are, and not geniuses and supermen, but persons who can “be”, that is, persons who have a center of strength within themselves.” ~ Rollo May

Something weird just happened. I was sitting here reminding myself to cultivate rationality, and then I realized that it is Sunday, I have two days off ahead of me, so why the big hurry toward rationality? The thing is that it is likely advisable to cultivate it anyway, but since it is Sunday, and the first of two days off, let’s just say there’s no pressure. Forgive me if I am being confusing here. I have spent the last 90 minutes or so perusing the political news. That’s where the spin came from. Being sleepy adds to the effect but sleep is natural and the current political climate is beginning to look distinctly unnatural. The cruelty of the Republican’s new tax cut? What about that? The president’s glaring mental illness? Right? There are a lot of examples I could offer. Malignant patriarchy? What about that? Sigh. I’d better take a break here – from writing, that is – to feed the cat, poke some insulin into her scruff, and enjoy the sunrise as well. Bisy backson.


Sunrise and cat both attended to. The inner fog lingers though the sky is clear. The sunrises have been pastel the past three days. It gives a softer start to the day. This day will be a soft day. I like that image. It fits in well with my borderline “be here, now” mood, attitude, whatever. One of the benefits of higher consciousness is that when tired or troubled or whatever you always have the option of leaning into it with a sense of surrender and wonder. It will not let you fall. Call it higher power, if you will. I think, for today, I will just call it life.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

A Fair Amount of Light

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“It’s astonishing how much trouble one can get oneself into, if one works at it. And astonishing how much trouble one can get oneself out of, if one assumes that everything will, somehow or other, work out for the best.”  ~ Neil Gaiman

For whatever reason, there is a lot of traffic noise this morning. The noise is muffled through the walls and window but it annoys nonetheless. The nearly Full Moon has just slipped down below the hill that leads up to the mesa. No animal or human sounds, other than the vehicles out on the highway. No doubt about it, it’s going to be a day. I’ve got one of those all too rare deep calms happening. I didn’t plan on it. Maybe I’m just tired – I mean, I am tired, and very much so, but this seems to be a low-grade cosmic contentedness. And the experience is free. I need to remember that. There’s a lot I need to remember, but I think I will leave it at this for now. This past Thursday was a bad day. I was plunged into a short-lived yet deep depressive phase. So I kicked up my rationality about ten notches and blew the dark clouds a ways into the distance. But the thing is that a depressive episode affects the body at least as much as it does the mind, emotions, whatever. So I cleared the head by going rational, but the body was like all dude y’ain’t gettin’ off that easy dude. And thus, this morning, I feel somewhat like a dust mop with lead tassels. Woof. Nice image though. It’ll be a good day regardless. And then there is the foreboding news from the nation’s Capitol, but I won’t go into that beyond saying that the monstrous actions of the Republican party . . . ummmm, let’s not go there. Friggin monsters. I’ll be walking the Beauty Way today, however draggy my steps may be, and noting that my heart is lighter than my feet. There’s a fair amount of Light within sight.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

A Coyote Surprise

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Snow, soon come, mon.

“Happiness is not achieved by the conscious pursuit of happiness; it is generally the by-product of other activities.”  ~ Aldous Huxley

“He whose face gives no light, shall never become a star.” ~ William Blake

“Be happy for no reason, like a child. If you are happy for a reason, you’re in trouble, because that reason can be taken from you.” ~ Deepak Chopra

“The crowning fortune of a man is to be born to some pursuit which finds him employment and happiness, whether it be to make baskets, or broadswords, or canals, or statues, or songs.”  ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

A short while ago, as I stepped out the front door, I was greeted by coyotes. It startled me to realize I had not heard any in weeks and I don’t remember noticing, not even one time. Seeing as how this call of the wild means so much to me I am surprised by my laxity of priorities. I’ll have to work on that. Although I must admit that the sudden outburst of coyotes being a surpass is a gift that I gave myself. It has been a long night, which so many of them are for me. Counting yesterday’s late afternoon nap I have had adequate sleep, but not really. And, yes, I did try to go back to sleep for a while. It didn’t work on account of my chronic anxiety being too itchy. Anxiety for me comes in a variety of forms. Sometimes it itches, sometimes it burns; sometimes aches, and sometimes seems to be content to instigate with the sole notion of keepings its stake in the game. It is always a pain in the ass. That is a given. Details aside, this whole itchy anxiety thing is making it a chore to squeeze out some text today. I simply did not feel like it yesterday, so I didn’t do it. This is progress for my process. Feeling that it is an obligation to write each day has become a sense of urgency each morning that I simply don’t need anymore. I’m talking about a managed approach to PTSD here. I may still write most every morning, but I will lighten up on myself. I mean . . . ummmm, I just mean it, that’s all. Now that I got that out I may just make some more coffee. I succeeded in bribing the cat to go back to sleep by giving her a snack, which strictly speaking is not on the doctor’s prescribed diet for diabetes. But quality of life, as a necessity, sometimes overrules more prudent means. I need to remember that for myself as well.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

Reasons for the Liking

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“Any writer worth his salt writes to please himself…It’s a self-exploratory operation that is endless. An exorcism of not necessarily his demon, but of his divine discontent.”  ~ Harper Lee

“Why did I write? Because I found life unsatisfactory.” ~ Tennessee Williams

“Go for broke. Always try and do too much. Dispense with safety nets. Take a deep breath before you begin talking. Aim for the stars. Keep grinning. Be bloody-minded. Argue with the world. And never forget that writing is as close as we get to keeping a hold on the thousand and one things–childhood, certainties, cities, doubts, dreams, instants, phrases, parents, loves–that go on slipping , like sand, through our fingers.”  ~ Salman Rushdie

Without going into details I will simply say that I had a nice post going just a few minutes ago and I lost it. No record of a saved draft in my blog’s admin logs. I got very angry, and now I don’t feel much like writing at all. I’m gonna go with that feeling. There are days when I berate myself for feeling I must write a blog post every friggin day. I do it because I like to, and that entails multiple reasons for the liking. And it gives, brings, whatever, a sweet feeling. I don’t know what made me a writer. I seem to have been born with it; must have been about nine years old when I first began putting stuff down on paper. Yeh, it feels good to resume work on the novel, although the effort there still stirs up my inner critic, my conscience, what ever ya wanna call it. But a slow start is still a start, and feeling guilty about the slowness does no worldly good. It is gonna be great fun to write the novel, if the beginnings are any indication. Even if few people ever read it. It’s just fun. That’s all.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

Rationality and Spackled Imagination

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“If the world were merely seductive, that would be easy. If it were merely challenging, that would be no problem. But I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.” ~ E. B. White

“Everywhere I go I’m asked if I think the university stifles writers. My opinion is that they don’t stifle enough of them. There’s many a best-seller that could have been prevented by a good teacher.” ~ Flannery O’Connor

“Anybody who has survived his childhood has enough information about life to last him the rest of his days.”  ~ Flannery O’Connor

It’s another morning frittered away in the quote search. I found some good ones though. A cloud cover has slipped in vaguely from the west since 3 AM. Before, that the sky was crystal clear, and the stars were bright as well, cast there to spackle gaps in my imagination. I haven’t been using my imagination in a reasonable way lately. That’s a good thing. Rationality can get in the way of imagination. I use rationality to pull myself out of excessive imagination, or that which has curdled. But rationality can’t get me back in to my imagination. Rationality is a one way street. As well it should be. Today is a workday. The task there is to dutifully perform my job, but I like to put a shot or two of imagination in the mix as well. Just in case a beautiful woman comes to purchase a wrench or something. The thing about beautiful women, in my case, in my job, is that my imagination gets sparked in a way that can happen no other way. I think this is natural. Romantic love has no mechanism. At times it seems to be applied imagination at work. I’m not going to knot my brain up by trying to explain it further. Not today. Today I would prefer to go with the flow. Ummmm . . . I think it might be more practical to be the flow. If you just go with the flow you miss out on the Unity. The integrative fire sputters rather than burns, when you make your moves instead of receiving the, I don’t know, but I hope to flow some today. Romantic love does much better in flow than it does any other way. I’m not saying that I have this form of love. I’m just sayin . . . oh, never mind. I think I’ll mosey on into the day at this point.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

 

 

Hope and Time Distortion

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“The highest activity a human being can attain is learning for understanding, because to understand is to be free.” ~ Baruch Spinoza

“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” ~ Clare Booth Luce

“The real question of life after death isn’t whether or not it exists, but even if it does what problem this really solves.”  ~ Ludwig Wittgenstein

“There are two ways to slide easily through life: to believe everything or to doubt everything; both ways save us from thinking.” ~ Alfred Korzybski 

Quiet morning here. Cold. Soft. Coffee’s all gone and the cat is asleep on the bed, so my lap is free. There are really no words to describe what I am feeling today. Yesterday I was talking about Jump Time, a sudden evolutionary leap in human consciousness. I do indeed think the conditions are right at this time in history. It is an optimistic gesture that arises . . . well, let’s just say that I forget sometimes. But I dream, and lately I have begun to remember snippets, but mostly feelings. Someday I hope to wake up to find the new world here and kindly waiting for me to get my ass out of bed and jump in, or to wake up to find that I have fallen in love. Ummmm, still waiting on those. No hurry, I suppose. But . . . today is a work day. I think I need it. Days off have been running quite long. Some kind of time distortion that I reckon arises from opening up to the world without . . . geez, I have no idea. I’ll just do my best to make it a hopeful day, a good day. I think that is what I am trying to say. There, I said it.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

 

Now is the Time

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from “Paracelsus”

At times I almost dream
I too have spent a life the sages’ way,
And tread once more familiar paths. Perchance
I perished in an arrogant self-reliance
Ages ago; and in that act a prayer
For one more chance went up so earnest, so
Instinct with better light let in by death,
That life was blotted out — not so completely
But scattered wrecks enough of it remain,
Dim memories, as now, when once more seems
The goal in sight again.”  ~ Robert Browning

“I used to be self conscious about my height, but then I thought, fuck that, I’m Harry Potter.”  ~ Daniel Radcliff, a.k.a. Harry Potter

The Robert Browning quote is me to a ‘T’ in regards to the NDE, or near death experience. Some may – just may – say I harp on that topic here at EyeYotee blog. Well, it is hard to explain how profound such a journey is, except to say dude it’s really big, dude. It commandeered to role of being the seminal moment of my life, a position originally inhabited by my birth. Hey, did I mention that I was not born under the influence of ether, as so many were, I was under the influence of sodium pentothal. They call the drug truth serum. I hope so. Maybe it gave me a jump start on the Warrior’s Path, on the Hero’s Journey. It’s a bold fantasy to say so, but I ask that you forgive me the folly I just cast forth in words. There is something to it, I tell you. I look back now and I see that I stepped upon the path and endeavored to walk forth upon it much earlier than the NDE. I was strangely, intuitively prepared for the NDE journey. So said the psychic medium who wrote about me in her book. From my perspective, when the nexus point of Spiritual emergence occurs, when the NDE occurs, it lays out a path through time that was not there before, throughout a whole life, up until the present, then proceeding onward into the vast web of probability and potentiality; into the future, my friend. As for now, dawn is breaking and it has come time to feed the cat, then to inject her with insulin. In today’s post I played with the words; and crafted the application of them. What I briefly talked about here stems from some thoughts I have had recently about “the Jump Time”, a term created by Jean Houston. I am beginning to feel a rumbling undercurrent in today’s national crisis. I’m wondering how, if, whatever, I can shift my attention into the great noetic dream of a better future and a sudden quantum leap into expanded consciousness. That’s what Jump Time is. It’s worth a try, I suppose. Now is the Time.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

 

 

The Winking Words

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“October knew, of course, that the action of turning a page, of ending a chapter or shutting a book, did not end the tale. Having admitted that, he would also avow that happy endings were never difficult to find: “It is simply a matter,” he explained to April, “of finding a sunny place in a garden, where the light is golden and the grass is soft; somewhere to rest, to stop reading, and to be content.”  ~ Neil Gaiman

“I think that to one in sympathy with nature, each season, in turn, seems the loveliest.”  ~ Mark Twain

A morning of few words. Both time and a mood make it so. It has been a long two days. That the first feast of the Winter holiday season arrived has something to do with it, for sure. It’s a frenzy. Get it? I’m in retail. No praise. No blame. People get worked up as the season arrives, and . . . sigh. I am writing here as if some relativistic critic sits waiting to pounce upon any mildly egoic statement I might make. Pounce away, good buddy. It’s not about me. I know that. Truth is that this phase of the yearly cycle of life kinda sorta harmonizes with the personal phase in my life. I await the snow and the cessation of these deceptive days in which Autumn would be Spring. Day after tedious day the comment of the day is that it is indeed a crisp, temperate day. Again and again. There’s a sameness to it that for some odd reason reminds me of a South Florida postcard. But what I want for myself is a physical stage set by Nature, to facilitate a cozy phase of intentional healing, of cherished solitude, of general sighs, and a chair, and a cat – until the season passes. I’ve got all three, and I know how to use them. So, I wait. Should be a lovely day today. No true discontent beyond the winking words of this scribe. I can wait.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.

The Arc of the Story

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“Do you want me to tell you something really subversive? Love is everything it’s cracked up to be. That’s why people are so cynical about it. It really is worth fighting for, being brave for, risking everything for. And the trouble is, if you don’t risk anything, you risk even more.” ~ Erica Jong

“The dreamer is a distinguished operatic artist, and, like all who have elected to follow, not the safely marked general highways of the day, but the adventure of the special, dimly audible call that comes to those whose ears are open within as well as without”  ~ Joseph Campbell

“Listen. To live is to be marked. To live is to change, to acquire the words of a story, and that is the only celebration we mortals really know. In perfect stillness, frankly, I’ve only found sorrow.” ~ Barbara Kingsolver

“To live is to change, to acquire the words of a story”. Wow, great sentence there. I have long found that living in the story of my life is a good place to be. Even when I am stuck, like I have been since late March of 2012. That’s a long time to be stuck, right? I mean how much time do I actually have, how many years? It matters not. One thing about this stuckness is that even though my story seems to have ground to a halt it really just slipped out of my conscious awareness. Looking back I can see the story line, the arc, whatever. So what if it doesn’t look pretty or wise? That’s not the friggin point. This way of looking at life came to me with the near death experience (NDE) back in 1984. I was working on a novel when the accident happened. The trauma changed the story in the manuscript considerably. I went on to complete the novel. It was a few years later that I came across the work of Joseph Campbell, and the mythopoeic hero’s journey as seen through the original Star Wars films. It gave me pause to look back at what had happened to me. When I began to do so it was a huge WTF moment. An NDE has a powerful tone not unlike a shamanic initiation/transformation. When it happened to me it could well have been a bright and shining hero’s journey just begun (Eben Alexander and Anita Moorjani are two great examples of that). But mine turned out to be slanted toward the dark side. Since the revelation sparked by Campbell’s work I have had to struggle to glean the arc of my story in some more proactive and positive way. Turns out that struggle may not have been the best way. That’s why I am sometimes so snarky toward the positive thinking movement. This is getting hard for me to explain here, and I haven’t much time to do so anyway. Life is full of choices. To say that I made a choice at the time if the accident is pretty much of an academic approach. Something that large – I died and came back to life – is about way more than the choice I may or may not have made at the time. Listen, what got me on this tack this morning was a conversation over dinner last evening. I was invited to join three friends for dinner at the Taos Inn. There were two of us men and two women. For a while the women fell into their own conversation, and I found myself in a rich conversation with a fellow writer. That’s where all of this is coming from this morning. The conversation and the context were sumptuous for me. Fine dinner at a classy restaurant with three people who are way more mainstream cultured than I am. They were all dressed nicely and I had on a black WalMart sweatshirt. But what was so profound for me was that I could participate as a writer, there in a public place in front of God and everybody, in a valid conversation. I’m not used to that. It felt good, and it allowed me to regain compassion for the immature part of me that withholds earned confidence to the point where I seem to have been stuck for five years now. My friend and I talked about the arc of a story, and I explained how I usually don’t see the arc until later in the story, maybe  . . . oh, never mind. Geez and boy howdy of course I can do stuff like that. I have been writing every day for years now. This may all sound like I have a very low opinion of myself. Au contraire, mon ami. I just forget at times, sometimes for a long time. But, alas, I am at this time out of time so it’s time to hit the shower so I can make it to work on time. I am pretty much sure I have the day off, but there is a little niggle of doubt that is enough to get me to go down into Taos anyway, just in case my confidence is wrong. If it turns out I do indeed have the day off I can treat myself to breakfast at the Taos Diner. I don’t get out enough, don’tcha know.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.