Archive | Touchstone

When Knowledge Obligates. . . .

 

The Teacher speaks. . and I scribed. . . .When you realize that understanding is a bigger or heavier burden than not understanding, your behavior or course of action is already decided.    The reason is this.

 When you have the knowledge, you have the obligation. Not knowing the reason for a person’s behavior gives one the right to rage. Knowledge takes away this right. Yet who is to blame for this behavior, if blame is in the picture? There is no one. There never was.

Each person is a result of a compilation of errors destined for the head of man.  And yet within is the spirit destined also for refinement, for an attuning that would bring the human species to the finest place of all. It is a testing ground for angels; each being the angel that decided to try his wings in a place that doesn’t allow flight but instead demands a rooting.

 Some behaviors one can ascribe to fact. Yet most things properly belong to a generation of characteristics. Or many generations of characteristics. Not all things are a learned behavior to gain certain results. Some things are passed through the genes. And do not need to have anything done about them except to talk of them and aired.

There is generally a self righteousness about ourselves because we have nothing else in our frame of reference.      We do what we do because anything else would be foreign to our natures.

When you understand the why of behavior you realize that understanding does not necessarily make the behavior easier to live with. But when you understand, when knowledge is yours, the obligation to do the correct thing is yours also. It is an incomparable growth experience.  No one said it was going to be easy.  

(In retrospect I see my life lived the only way I could in good conscience.  Born with an open head and memory, I did the best I could .  There are still some things to reconcile.  Those may be easier when I am not in human skin.  When you know you know, you know also that the way narrows and there are no options. As my granddaughter Jessie says, you suck it up.)

Genetic Memories. . . 

Lurking behind every door are ghosts
from a shadowy past, eager to be translated
to a dubious present.

Impregnated in genes are the memories
of these ghosts, split second DNA with desire
housing the delicate substance quoting life.

Stupid am I to allow others’ memories,
lurking in my fresh Being,  to
suck life out of my present.

But power filled even to think that I could
release their tenacious hold from a life
unfulfilled and requiring recompense.

Helplessness rages simultaneously,
pleading a judicious balance
to satisfy life’s imbalances, yet knowing,

I cannot do it.

 

artwork by
Claudia Hallissey

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We Are Not Invisible, either. . . .

 

In February of 2001 I journaled that I had a feeling pass over me that said (not the first time) that this world is but a fragment of illusion.  The reality is that there is no reality.

That when we leave we take our world but it stays in our memory bank like a rolling file, where we go back to see what was and how it came about because of who we were.

Last week I sat and watched a micro something swim in the pool and expand itself as it swam.  When stopping, it was a speck of something.  But when swimming, it was lit with 10,000 bulbs and glittered.

Brighter than the sun on the water but in shade, it still glittered.  Nothing else glittered.  I watched spellbound.

Son John came to the door and I told him what I was seeing.  He did not see it even when I said it was glittering.  Walking to the other side of the pool he saw a moth, the white fleck in the water. Amphibian?  Creature of land and water?   I told him it elongated and glittered.  He thought it was the sun.

When he came out later, he got the net and fished the moth out of the water.  I said if it is a moth, it is able to swim from the left side of the pool under the hose of the vacuum and had fins to weave in the water.  In the shade as well as the sun the water moved on both sides of the creature.

I remember my friend Jan saying when I described the butterfly swooping up the spider’s web and carry it (I repeated that post two weeks ago) she said I only had eyes to see that.  I thought again of my Mentor, the Nazarene, who said in Mathew 13:13 that having eyes you will not see and ears you will not hear.

And again as I have repeated in my blog when my world crashed Dr. Cassidy asked me what I saw when I went down Michigan Avenue.  I closed my eyes and told him what I saw and when I was through he whistled through his teeth.  ‘You understand not everyone sees what you see?  You don’t.’  I was too afraid to ask him what others saw.

I never related that conversation to my husband.  He grew up next door to Salem, MA and knew what happened to witches.

I want to think the moth was set free to soar.  It did light brilliantly so I could see it swim distances and stop if tired?  I can now feel sorry for my husband being married to me.  I said if the government knew people like me existed, we would be treasured quietly and used.

The science gods have made it terrifying for families to have the likes of me among them.  I bless them all.

 

Illustration by
Lucinda Cathcart, (my niece)
of TinyStudioCrafts.com

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A Respite. . to walk the fields. . .

The Door Closes . . . 

You say the door closes
behind me and you cannot follow.
I take my place beside the one
who holds my ceded heart in his hands.

All I know is here is the place I belong.
No other place feels right.
Though as I walk in other places,
they seem to be the places needing work.

I miss the belonging that once I had
in the arms tightly holding heart to heart.
It is now an isolation that accompanies my every day
with an emptiness that does not leave.

Nighttime brings my companion
and I to his side.  And I am at home again.
We walk my fields and I do not rush away.
It does not last, for morning

brings to light the day’s increment
of work and commitment.  Time was
when we  wound our arms tightly but Conscience
awakened me to finish a work once begun.

Those arms no longer fit the who I am
so it is my loss and isolation.
Yet that will be remembered always

as the time our arms fit and wound tightly.

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Godfriends of Caliber. . . gifts of heart. . .

This bouquet is for you. . .

Tish, Marylouise, and Dorothy, Jan, and Joy, heart friends gone but always upfront; now some cyber friends distanced including (few) males attesting publicly to science, but attending silently to problems not to be tested by science gods in their pristine laboratories.

All friends of caliber, all honorable characters with huge depth, with problems in the confines of earth habitats; the streets of cities and living rooms in homes.  My gender confronted mostly in the kitchens, midst getting dinner on the table or cleaning up afterward.

These are the laboratories where reality lives, while the one buying food for the table with the currency of the day sails out the door with a you take care of it dictum, (with an I have bigger fish to fry,  like maybe world peace?)

But in today’s world drama, the difference is the one left also needs to get to a paying job because two salaries are required to maintain the premises or a trained talent wants their fair share of today’s kudos or currency.  For particular reasons, that is the drama.

Since questions loom in many corners, what bears leverage on the troubled soul?  Is it visible to be handled or invisible with an I could not help it attitude?  The latter must be dealt with kid gloves or at best a saintly demeanor else we have worlds collapsing in quarters unable to be rebuilt.

Do we need religious or professional help or can we work it out with agencies designed just for this kind of thing?  A conundrum, to be sure.

If invisible, is it genetic, inherited,  meaning other members of the family have had this problem? Or a new one that deals with unmentionables, or drugs, from alcohol all the way to end of the alphabet, or something best left to experts?

Known is that no one ‘s upbringing prepares them for parenting in today’s world.  This is what is known as OJT.  On the Job Training.  This is how recruits are assigned jobs in the Military, no matter one’s background.

Good friends of caliber are required in life, someone or a handful to inspire or calm when crises loom.  Someone in Congress? Today, hard to believe.   Or a lawyer? (I called for a friend) Or an ear to listen to heart hurts? (too many times to count).

Or a nurse/friend like Cati who held our fractured  family together when David was leaving us, or young neighbor Cherl, who became like a daughter, or friend John, magically appearing in crises.

These are godfriends (correct word) who hold the leaky boat afloat when water rises and family cannot or is unable.  I wrote that heaven does not play favorites.  They don’t.  Everyone is cherished.  I was not spared the mountains to climb but had godfriends to journey with.  They gave the supreme gift of heart needed.

What can I say when language has no adequate thank you?  I call them godfriends.

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The High Jumper. . .

It has been said with anger
that I set the bar
too high
for mere mortals to scale.

It was not for them
the bar was set
but for me,
to rise as high

as the immanent god
had deemed for me.
I could not know
that they would try

 

to jump for me.
I was not the reason.
It was for them, you see,
for someone told them

they would never do it .
I showed them though
they could .
And they believed.

And they surprised themselves.

(Please understand that even when I learned that I was not abandoned, I was not spared.  This was not a known premise for me until I was quite aged.  Heaven does not play favorites.  The log was always in my eye;  hard going.)

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When Life Is An Act of Devotion. .love speaks . .

 

 

 

 

Grampa says . .  Grandma created first homemade meatballs in eggplant/ tomato sauce over polenta with a salad of romaine, cherry tomatoes and kohlrabi with olive oil and balsamic. . .

 

and then crafts with grandma Claudia, the talented artist. . . .

 

 

And then a story to close the day. . . .

 

It is a simple story but such a big hurdle for mankind . . . that is
to treat new life with an act of devotion to prepare for the challenges
we face in preparation of our potential.

Where we are now, is the place for us to start.  So we can then speak with
truth in our search for brotherhood.  Not a pipe dream but a fact.
Not just a wish but a promise if we use what is ours within us to
help make perfect peace on earth in our time.

A lot to ask when life has not been exactly fair with us?  Yes, but we
have help if we seek it out.  It takes courage to even ask I know.
But that too is within us.  To find we are courageous is a welcome
surprise. Sometimes invisible arms hold us up.                                                                                                   

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We Are In Need, sorely. . .

We Lift Our Heads. . .

We lift our heads as we face
our Source and give thanks to these gifts
beginning our day;
a body without pain and a mind
clear and receptive;

a heart that beats steadily and ears
that hear clearly.
For these gifts we are grateful.

Open us and allow not one bird
to miss our thank you for his song
and allow not the breeze to be
without gratitude for its breath.

Take this day and use us for Thy purpose,
for we will be at a loss
when time in space cannot be breached
by thought and the abyss
cannot be spanned by a leap.
Let our thoughts be more than a footnote
in the story of this day and our lives

lived with compassion, for we are all in need sorely. . . .all. . .

Amen and amen.

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We Teach What We Are. . .

The reasons are many for the ways of this world. It is not to see what difference we make in outward matters but what difference we can make within ourselves.  Do we see where our soft spots are, places we see needing change and where to begin?   What is wrought within are reasons for real changes in the world.

As a nation we struggle this time with behavior fraught with injury to all of us.  We wonder what to do as people who love what we have stood for since our country’s beginning.  We want to do what is right and guard our heritage well.

Do we contribute to what is going on?  How can I change how I think, what to think and what do I wish to make better about me?  Conflicts will arise in all of us time after time because of our cultures and the streets on which we live.  I may be at peace but it does no good for my neighbors who must work on peace within themselves.

Is this all I can do?  Is there not something I wish to become that will enhance my thinking and knowledge?  And be a role model for someone who would desire to work on themselves to broaden their thinking.

We are told that what we do for one, we do for all.  Meaning that what is done for good will eventually be done for everyone’s good and by everyone.  Evolution takes one step at a time and the footwork is mandatory.  We must do all the steps in the procedures for the next step to be taken.  Otherwise we stumble.

Anything done for our betterment will be lasting, for that good then we spread to others.  Anything done with half a heart may be utilitarian but the lasting good will not be as evident.   Band-aid measures are like half a tank of gas on a desert road.

This classroom, and all of us in it, are all purposeful for earth life.  We all are god participants and changes can be wrought in us and be everlasting.   But to improve the quality of thought, the ongoing progress of evolutionary leaps that benefit and nourish the psyche of mankind is the kind of work done on the knees in the solitude of who we are.  When those times enrich our souls, they will benefit and enrich all Others in time.

When our cup runs over, the overflow is felt throughout the kingdom.   Since we all teach what we know, the question asked is what are we teaching?  We must think it through.

 

photo by John S. Hallissey

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A Big Step. . Loving For The Right Reasons. . . .

 

We must love for the right reasons if we are to find peace within ourselves.  When we think we must love because children must love their parents or parents their children simply because we borne them or are born to them, then when systems go awry,  there is chaos within.

As parents, we injure our children unless we search ourselves as to why our relationship is traumatic.  And as children, guilt rises and we distance ourselves because we hurt when our parents fail us, no matter our age.

Until we get to the place where parents consider children a sacred gift and not clones will we even be at the beginning of a relationship that grows in goodness.  But we also must recognize our lacks in not having mothers and fathers who knew how to parent and we must learn how to parent.  What we have not had we can learn in the classroom, in therapy or in our places of worship.

I do not view life through rose colored lenses.  It is work and in our country where education is mandatory even the youngest knows differences in the most basic premises, knows when something is different in homes of love as well as material gifts.  I realize also that recognizing  love’s absence is not always articulated, but I refuse to relegate to the heap what can be the only way to lift ourselves from the mire and rescue our children.

It takes courage to look at our parent gods and see how impoverished they are or were.  Yet it also takes courage to look at ourselves and see where nature has dipped to lavish us with what others see as our gifts, and from where those come.  And why this child we borned finds us pushing away because what we see is an affront to us.  Possibly those things in us criticized?  Education starts with stripping ourselves and removing the log which blinds our sight and granting courage necessary.

This is what evolution is about.  Confronting ourselves and from where we have come is hard while wearing  human skin.  We will find our history embracing worlds no longer in evidence, perhaps revealing  Nomads and Neanderthals and like Joseph’s coat of many colors, revealing our skin of many colors.  Think it through.

I have great faith in who we are, to have come to this time.  Times call us and our strengths to be the highest and best we can.  We begin now,

to love one another for the right reasons, because we see the highest and best in all of us.

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A Meditation. . . does the world stand still for you?. . . .

 

Come with me to this place
I visit often, hidden behind an eyelash;
where it is Easter all the time and
rebirth is not a sometime thing; where
gods cavort in joyous abandon.

Come, we dance. . . .

 

Today the world stood still. In the
bright afternoon sun I saw a butterfly
dart into a spider’s web woven between
the power lines and lift it up and carry
it with him.

In the silence I heard the question.
How heavy is a spider’s web on a butterfly’s wing?
Since everything is balanced,
the question is proportional.
A friend said to me, ‘only you had eyes to see it.’

Does the world stand still for you?    Ever?

 

It sometimes has seemed as if my life has been lived under a premise of ‘hurry, we are late already’.  And I’ve wanted to  say like the phrase I learned. . . I am dancing as fast as I can. . . I am taking time to reread things I have written and learning to thank who I was for finding the time when my  half of the world slept,  to leave a memo of hundreds of thousands of feelings.  Veronica,  I hardly got to know you. . . . this was the first post 8 years ago on fromanupperfloor.com  . . . a gift from me to my new readers. . . .

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