Archive | Essays

Reverence For Learning. . .

If I was to be an earth shaker,  I would first shake man.  I would have the apples fall down on his head again and again until some sense would come from the constant bombardment.  I would ply him with this food that tells him who he is.  I would have him search his inmost self with the intensity that would move mountains.  And I would tell him that all he needs to make his world a fit place to live is to first know himself.  But that has already been written, hasn’t it?

How to get him first to look within, to study his own motivation and to dispense with his own alibis before he can begin to attempt to disassemble his brothers.   I wish I had the ability to write what is in my heart.

I wish that I could roar from the top of the highest mountain, the highest building in the cities of men, to tell them of their cosmic connection, of their divine origin and let them bask in their own glory.  I wish, I wish, I wish.  How do I do that?

How do I tell them that their god is all that they can wish for?  That their brother is indeed themselves walking the path that will lead them to the mansion of many rooms.  That their sisters are truly sisters and color neither separates nor delineates their origins?  How can I even venture to tell them that their godhood is within and there never was  reason to believe otherwise?  The Master told us that.

How can I tell them love has all the potential of healing the mystifying elements of earth life and  they would indeed no longer be the enemy?  Where is it said that man must crawl on his belly to be able to stand in the true reflection of what is his birthright?

I would take him and stand him up.  I would take his face between my hands and shout at him that he is magnificent.  I would continue to shout until my voice drowned out his negative teachings of centuries and make him repeat after me.  I am he who walks with my godhood intact.  I am he who walks. . . . .

 

(I wrote the above in a journal entry on September 6, 1982 when I was 51 years old.  I am now 86.  Many times I have written of my Independent Study Program which I have continued  daily since I became a parent over 60 years ago.  I felt our children were special and I wanted to be equal to their needs.  I began my ‘need to know’ seriously.  I wanted to answer their why’s adequately and with knowledge. 

I did not know the depth and height this journey would take me.  I did not know it was a journey.  Only now I realize in working to cross reference my work of 60 years,  that the injustices I have seen throughout my life are now surfacing onto the international scenes.  I see support systems coming to life with hope for the future.

The above thoughts have deepened and broadened and integrated in my philosophy. I was mostly silent with my thoughts because they were unusual for my day.  Being told I was out of step I now find the opposite to be true.  I have found as those in ancient days that the inner experience is our most valuable guide.  The heart’s intent with clarity is the valid one.  All of life’s experience cannot be proven in the laboratory).

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Angels Unaware. . .

 

Angels Unaware. . .

Seldom do dreams stay with me,  and though there are many diverse opinions on the importance of dreams,  in early times they were taken as imperative directions.  This one has stayed with me every day for a week.  It was a dream of deaf children and it seemed it went on all night.

There is a young woman hired to work with the deaf children.  She is well spoken and extremely good at teaching.  She is patient and clear in methods.  She is persistent in getting the children to work at being understood.  She teaches  body watching, body language, lip reading and any intuitive impulses.  Emphasizes words forming in speech and eye contact.  She  teaches ways that the body can use muscles  to work organs for added functions.  Since ears do not hear, she knows that other parts of the body are called into use and do what the ears cannot.

Most people do not know this.  Most people do not know there are other ways to hear than by ears.  Other parts of the body can be called in to substitute for what the ears cannot do.  She is good.  And helps many children learn to speak where before they wandered the silences.  The group  is so impressed with her work and success with the children,  who learn to speak  well and clearly,  sometimes even the average person is not convinced the person is deaf.

At the awards evening she is praised  highly because of her  excellent work with everyone in tears.  She stands up to give her gratitude  for the awards and is so overwhelmed she starts crying and the words out of her mouth are MY FAWA TOL ME I WA NO DEF! spoken like a deaf person with imperfect diction.  My father told me I was not deaf!  And my heart just about stopped in the dream and I realized that she was deaf and spoke like a deaf person but when not under emotional stress was clear in speech.

I was weak, though lying in bed, with the knowledge that here she was teaching what she had been taught.  Her body took over for her ears and she was able to teach because she knew how.

The dream has stayed with me and so have the questions.  Does the story tell of the young woman’s deafness , of her inability to hear but because her belief in herself and love of her father and his faith in her abilities, was able to call upon her body to use its self to the utmost and have her other organs and body do what her ears could not?

I remembered the story of the blind woman who worked in an office building who was legally blind and ran a concession stand who commented on employees’ new clothes,  a blouse or a purse and the person who told me the story insisted that the woman could not be blind.  She was and I remember telling the person that there are other ways of seeing than with the eyes.  I did not know how,  but I was certain of what I was saying.  Now I am more certain.  My own experience with deficiencies has proved to me that the body wishes to accommodate us.

When the footwork is done,  when the desire and intent is real,  heartfelt,  because the heart does not respond to any but intent that is truthful,  the work begins to show results.  It may not be in one’s  lifetime,  but in lives long after us.   We are in the larger picture with names attached.     Not only are we our own keeper, but our brothers’ keeper also.  We are the angels unaware.

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A Balanced Judgment. . .

Many Chances. . .

I had written that it is a wonderful play on words when we are given a phrase and then run like the wind with it.  I had written about  ‘a sense of snow’ and someone with this sense can tell you many things when seeing a footprint in the snow and who made it.

There is also a sense of time and also a sense of place,  a sense of self and a sense of who we are and what we bring to the moment.  It sums up what we do in gathering ourselves,  the many parts of our self and bring to the present moment the substance of us.

When we see our place in the larger scheme of things, when we enlarge our premises and push out boundaries, we see how we contribute to universal evolution.  It is our purpose in life in this dimension to contribute to all of life.  When we become aware of our sense of this, we cannot become unaware ever again.

(I scribed the following for a journal entry. . .’unite whatever effort in mind with hand and you will have consumed an enormous portion of this life.  Be it for the benefit of mankind and you will have found your life’s purpose.’)

In that same journal entry I mentioned that we had friends over for dinner that night and were enjoying the conversation concerning issues ongoing and deeply felt.  We were discussing Mozart and the movie about him and at one point the conversation was silent. 

It was everyone’s question which was why it was voiced.  Why,  a kind and gentle man asked,  why would God have put such wonderful music into such a vulgar man?

Precisely why,  I said, precisely why.  And no one at the table understood my comment nor saw the connection when I explained that it was sobering to offer judgment without knowledge of the substance of the subject.  Persons are vast subjects and to presume judgment limits all parties.

When there is a sense of self and many selves,  all in evolution,  and we are aware,  we see the fullness of who we are.  As the wise Ethel Waters said, ‘I am somebody.  God don’t make no junk.’  We are not a whim of the Potter.  Life is a soul keeper and we are given many chances to achieve our potential.

(Excerpt from poem)

When I Change My Life . . .

When I change my life for a new one,
I will have another chance
to love, to feel, to laugh
and to stretch my psychic bones
and shout to a world a hello again!

When I change my life I will remember
what made my life sad and
not to do it again and what made me glad
to remember to do that again.

I will remember why you cried
and why you went hungry.
I will remember we are two haves
and I will share what I have
and you will share what you have.

It will be a better world and
we will work to make it so.
I can say that because I know.
If daffodils get many chances
to come up new and mushrooms too,

am I not worthy of many chances?

 

 

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What Is A Mind For? . . .

What is a Mind For?. . .

When I read that it is nearly impossible for a youngster in high school to take upon themselves a novel and read it through to  report on it,  I had trouble believing it.  A high school student?  And the reporter of the article also had trouble.  She took a difficult book and it took her three times to begin and finally stay with it.  She was a young woman faithful in her reporting.

Because of the use of devices and the brevity of transmitting language, the young are losing the ability to keep in mind sentences longer than a few characters.  Texting someone a hundred times a day perfects this ability to transcribe thought.

And to keep a sentence, let alone a paragraph in mind for a complete thought trashes what centuries took to make civilized countries literate.   What went into making us humans and to help evolve our species has put us all into the lane for Sunday drivers.

We have lost a generation that was going to save the planet and help mankind big time.  We have instead a distracted generation that checks their devices all day to see their Likes from those invisible but yet influences their behavior to such a degree that relationships between touchable humans are ignored.

Discovering exciting information or pursuing insightful curiosities are not enticing.  Learning requires focus and a challenging pursuit of something that changes one’s life to broaden one’s frame of reference.

The explosion that occurs within our mind when something is learned is not forgotten because it is never experienced.  From the toddler who swivels to music by pressing a button on a toy that blares rhythm is enough because it brings laughter and applause.

It is with effort that the first Dick and Jane equivalent is attempted.  They soon know the pictures on their tablet can be changed within seconds.  Focus with study is not learned because effort is required.

You think too much, I soon was told.  You read things into conversations.  That was not said, they would tell me.  Stick to the point I heard.  Answer the question.  Spare me the drama was the demand.  And the list was endless.  I was young and wanted what the adults knew.

Tell me what you know about this.  But know they did not because they had given no thought to the subject in question.  I was asking them to reveal their inadequacy and they resented that and me.  My intent was to connect.

How can a language be a weapon of war?  Easily.  Maybe we will regress to grunts and groans again and leave body language to add meaning to a question.  It was during mid life that courage came to answer to ‘you think too much’ with ‘what’s a mind for?’

The Talmud teaches the purpose of life is to learn.  What we fail to learn and live will be repeated with ongoing life in worlds and circumstances not so pleasant.

The heartbreak will be in not reading a book is because they are unable.

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With Hope Eternal. . .

 

There are times, and this is one of them,  that is a heartbreaker.  I have long loved this Earth of mine and readers know even as a child I have felt this love.  When weather devastates the very places I have known, it is a keen pain.

Last week it was Houston and that was difficult to view.  This weekend it was Florida and up until November I was a resident in the state.  The evergreen forest that backed up our property was a delight for me.  And always in my mind and heart will be the rest I  found when my eyes sought their profound beauty.  To think now that forest must be in shambles hurts greatly.  The devastation that has come with this hurricane to the people and homes I have difficulty accommodating.  Facing the problems that come with flooding and the work involved has me hoping there are young bodies with boundless love and energy beside the homeowners.

Having been in a wicked storm with a basement flooding and boxes still unpacked and damaged, the only solution was to discard them.  Though years have passed I still have thoughts that begin,  I wonder what happened to??? And I used to have???  And then I had a copy of the book??? And of course what else was in those boxes,  at this time I have no idea.  But as a grandson said to me at the time, it’s only stuff,  grandma,  only stuff.  He is right of course and I remember to this day that it is only stuff.  Because when a family comes through a time of devastation and everyone is accounted for,  that is what is important.  When arms hug bodies and leave their imprint on your heart it is gratitude that we feel having come through together.  Most stuff can slowly be replaced.  Beloveds, never and we know that.

But my generation of elderlies came through some times that the youngers have no way  relating to because many generations separate us.   I remember saying to my mother when something was discussed and I said to her, but it only costs a dime!  And she from a time I could not relate to because I knew  love and a full stomach, said,  but when you don’t have a dime, it is a lot of money.  So many things lost that are memorable because planning and yearning at a time of no money in lives when those items or collections had a meaning.  Gone are those symbols and icons of a life lived.  Meaningless in themselves but representing a something.  Stuff yes but a time remembered.

Grateful always that beloveds came through.  The work begins now to rebuild with hope eternal.

 

(click on the photo to fill your screen.  That was my forest.)

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Gratitude For A Good Teacher. . . Nancy Zieman

 

Gratitude For A Good Teacher. . .

Amid all the events of these weeks,  a saddened addition for me was the knowledge that a favorite TV person of mine is retiring due to ill health.  For over 30 years Nancy Zieman ,  (Sewing With Nancy)  has been a visitor to my home.  I happened onto her program and she became a mentor in sewing for me.

She was a wondrous teacher.  Sewing was not a natural talent for me.  Everything I did was with effort and sweat.  A straight seam was never a reality.  I wobbled.  I frayed.  But I did not give up because of Nancy.  With a lifetime of obstacles,  she persevered and ended up with a business that gave work to both sides of her family and friends included.  How could a crooked seam stop me?

Recovering from the events in my life at that time,  I was taught that uniting effort in mind with hand  you consume an enormous portion of life.  Woodworking was cherished until fraught with carpal tunnel and the thought of lost digits,  so the sewing machine became the medium of choice.  Nancy showed me how to put together small pieces of fabric to make a something.  And that something was not only useful but accepted with gratitude!

Fortunate it was at that time  knit fabrics became desirable.  I became a proud owner of one of the first sergers. Nancy taught me to use it and I still do.   Difficult to thread even now but I learned.  I became queen of tee shirts and knit shorts and would never have known the joy of having a daughter say to me ‘we were already late but he threw all the pants out of his dresser and shouted that he wanted the soft pairs that grandma makes!’  And that child was overjoyed when I learned to double line the knees in the knit pants that Nancy taught.

I take pleasure in learning.  It is a joyous (sometime) way to live. She was an exceptional teacher.  She made the steps easy and I could do them.  She said there would be errors but nothing that could not be fixed.  She encouraged me to think on my own.  She showed how to do  something and I took her ideas and ran like the wind.  She taught quilting and though after 30 years I am still very primitive in my execution,  I love the art.  Because she taught me to love the process.  She taught me that my effort counted and was felt in the wearing or the looking.  How could you not love a teacher who taught that?

My age will put me there first Nancy,  but I hope there is a world that we meet.  Good teacher that you are,  I would be honored.  This is a talent that you profoundly fulfilled and I thank you. There are those whose work is undoubtedly professional,  but none would match my gratitude for what you taught me in so many ways about my efforts.  That is what is priceless.

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Apriori. . . the twig is (already) bent. . .

 

Apriori. . .the twig is bent. . .

It’s a loaded question, this one of evolution. Ask  anyone’s definition,  they will either stutter or give  an answer that barely touches the meaning.  Mostly they will be arguing whether it is man-animal or animal-man we have in mind.  Or they do.  To confirm the statement that evolution has been stagnant in many areas,  let us look at some things.

The simple meaning of please and thank you is something everyone! they say knows.  But they don’t.  In some cultures it is unheard of for males to say please and thank you.  Or to ask for anything when they assume females should know their wants.  Not needs, but wants.  A cuff upside the head tells of their displeasure.

For some areas of the world, evolution enhances the abilities of people to conceptualize.  That is to conceive of a thought  and to be able to see it manifest.  For others, the ability is not yet evident and is outside the frame of reference.

Draw a picture, they say.  Show me what you mean.  They are unable to take the steps from point A to point B simply because the brain has not evolved  to do this task. Yet in some areas they show magnificent talents to feed themselves from local wild spaces   Knowing inherently the difference between edible and toxic plants.

There are emotions that are unknown to various peoples.  Groups arrive from worlds where emotions are unknown,  not evidenced even in the toddler.   By example they must be taught to hug and love and show some feelings.  In some even honest anger is unknown.

Mythic writings tell of worlds (Lemuria is one) where fight or flight is the way of life. Our world calls them myths but myths have weight to them when we are confronted with members who cannot face obstacles or facts that cause unrest.  We say in today’s world they are in denial,  when their inability to confront may indeed stem from the world they came from.

We know the saying that as the twig is bent, so shall it grow.  The majority assume that life after birth bends the twig.  It is long past time for us to note that there is a history to each of us apriori.  We come from worlds  that have already shaped us and continue to shape us.

This does not mean we cannot change.  Because of the example of someone we admire, or love or honor,  we by due process change ourselves.  We evolve,  we grow.  And we take giant steps.  Evolution.  We can become all that our full potential promises.

You Must Not Think. . .

You must not think
it is useless to have trudged
the overgrown path
to make a road
easier for the one to follow.

We must grow up
and put on training pants.
It is time.
We must develop discipline
to house the night’s pleasures
and discipline
to work our days.

Evolution is what the name
of the game is,
but it really is life;
a way station only to the stars,

on the way home.

 

photo  by John Stanley Hallissey

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Another Meaning to Life Everlasting?

 

My friend and I were sitting in the hall waiting for the class doors to open.  I looked at the hanging painting and had to look away.  It made me sick to my stomach.  I knew the painting but not the artist.  It was of a one floor building, stark in a barren landscape.  The barrenness set my teeth on edge.  My friend asked me if I was suddenly ill.  I told her I knew that place in the bleak landscape and it was desolate.

The following was scribed about the painting in a journal entry. . . . The barracks were not in the painting.  There was an isolated house you had already seen.  You have been there and have given it your best work.  It demands workers to progress. The shillings ( money was shillings; why I don’t know) did not pay for the enormous amount of labor involved.  It is occupied territory for the barracks were significant.  We were told there was a type of evolution concerning mind taking place and a large physical work involved with the refinement of spirit .

You thought it was a nowhere but it is a world of some time and a where.  People need to give thought to what life everlasting means.  If heaven means playing the harp on a cloud,  have they given thought to harp lessons? Even with the promise of wine,  the vineyards are in need of workers.  Fields are unplowed.  Work needs to be done.  Lives lived make a certain shaped something of us.  And boredom leads to trouble.  A case in point,  out of boredom Earth was created and it hasn’t been a walk in the park,  now has it?

I have stood open mouthed and gaped when illusions have been shattered.  I labeled them bellywhoppers when they first doubled me over.  Coming into life with an open head did little to keep me innocent  but it did make me say many times,  I can’t believe!!!  whatever happened or was said.  Heaven stood by and gaped as I glued the pieces together.  An open head helped to understand the reasons why of behavior,  but heaven never said it would be easy to live with.

If you are not an immigrant now,  in our next worlds we will be.  For certain. Keep that in mind in the daily issues here.

 

 

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Be That One Someone. . .

 

In the midst of catastrophic events such as the ongoing flooding in Texas, we wonder if what we are able to do can truly make a difference.  It seems this topic is being brought up often lately  in our lives and the little we are able to do individually seems small indeed.

Even when it appears to be a lost cause, it is not.  That someone cares enough to do what needs to be done is never a lost cause.  There cannot ever be a lost effort to do good in the universe.   That would be an oxymoron, a contradiction.   The ability to see this is paramount.   Even when no words are spoken there needs to be someone who cares enough to help expedite matters.  If there is not, it is a futile life.   But should there be caring, there is hope and a chance for life again.

Even those of lesser stuffs, those stuffs are only lesser because of the parameters set by others.   Take the parameters away and there are no limits for good.  And that is what good is all about, what gods are all about.   Within the person there are no limits for good.  What is life sustaining and life giving wherever the need is, is good.

When we wander through the mental houses of those we care about or are responsible for and find much that we would like to help with and then decide not to,  the ‘then not’ means we wash our hands of the matter.  To wash one’s hands of the matter is to relegate all to the dung heap.

If the one who can do something about anything finds the matter too sticky, the flies will be attracted and the matter will deteriorate and rot.   The purpose of keeping on, keeping on means that the people are still worth the effort.  As long as a some one cares, there is hope.   Just one to care is needed.

I am adding the following thoughts to your already overburdened mind because we are aging and we also see the lack of personal responsibility in our elected officials too often.   Please include the thoughts for your prayerful consideration because futures of invisible audiences depend heavily on those who are clueless and dispense grave injustices.

Any imperceptible change to do good, no matter how small,  will be felt in your circle and others will change.  And the circle will grow and the genetic characteristics will be changed by due process and evolutionary change will be instituted.

However microscopic.  Seems like small potatoes when the catastrophe such as we face looms so large, doesn’t it?  But it is not.  There will be change on a larger scale and when that change is evident throughout the behavior of humankind,  we then have the evolution to a higher form of being.  What is done here on this planet of Man , this Earth,  there will be the refinement of policies and behavior throughout the universes. 

If we go to those places of worship we say we do, then we give thought to immortality.  Hiding somewhere in our thoughts and behavior is the world we prepare for.  Let it not be a rude awakening.  It takes just one,  just one to include this thinking in our attitudes.  Let our good extend to the invisible life.  We were told that what we do for one we do for all.   Let us be that just one  someone to begin. 

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The Universe I Know. . . .

 

Sometimes things need to be repeated because the lesson has been worn and the fit now is less traumatic.  On November 5th, 2013 USA TODAY had an article that the space observatory Kepler telescope had shown that about 8 billion stars in our galaxy had planets almost the size of Earth that could support life.   Flares should have been sent up by our religious institutions that emphasized the fact that our Father’s House Has Many Rooms.  The beginning centuries’ mentality could think in those terms only because at the horizon man thought he  dropped off the Earth.  Less than a handful at that time could grasp a subliminal concept.

Even now tempers still rage over evolution/creation and evolution/salvation.  Surely we will evolve to the point where we will see some truth,  a truth in all when our brains enlarge to grasp the larger understanding?  There are those whose lives were dedicated to the divine in all life and even God in a rock.

Destiny brings mavericks to Earth to enhance physical life.  They possess intelligence beyond what institutions teach.  They are not trendy nor dress in costumes designed for fashion.  They speak not of reality shows but of substance showing that thought is their companion.  When recognized one would surely yearn for such a companion.

They speak of life elsewhere.  And not of linear measurement.  Their worlds are rich with forms patterned by consciousness invisible to the common man.  Where worlds are filled with thoughts having a reality palpable.  Where mind speaks the nuance of meaning not needing the vocabulary as understood.    Where these worlds outside our own, watch closely the actions  of Earth gods that will determine their futures,  for many of them already acknowledge the divinity within mankind.  And the divinity is an uncertain kind when viewing man’s behavior.

The ancient knowledge of the mystics must be understood to uncover man’s future progress.  Man has argued for his rights loudly and now must own his responsibility.

On The Universal Watch. . .

Glancing into the icy calm
of the darkened sky,
leaving little to the night’s magic,
is a knowledge from minds in action.

Saying little in languages understood,
it moves itself with intelligence,
looking for evidence bespeaking intent.

Always wary,  ever beseeching,
reaching conclusions seeking
a desired peace with an enduring future.

Not only one world in motion with
an anxious search,  but many
whose futures are determined by the
results of a whirling planet
whose emotions are in turmoil.

A learning place, a starting place,
whose tentative decisions determine
the futures of roles dependent on
the unbridled, unharnessed emotions
of childhood still groping.

Worlds looming as non entities,
not proven by the laboratories
of the science gods,
is life in other forms;
as intelligent, viable, thoughtful,
as intent on living within the realm
of their possibilities as we on Earth.

Searching as we do as gods for an enduring Peace.

 

photo by
John D. Holmes

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