Archive | Observations

Pieces Enlarge the Understanding. . .


When one has knowledge, one also has the obligation.
God is a word most people stop at because the mind balks
at its meagre knowledge to proceed.
To not remember to lock the vault leaves it to be burglarized.
Or easily opened at best to remember without those whose presence
would have made the memories bearable, either in joy or sorrow.
To put memories into a vault and tightly lid them is
to crowd the emotions into a body with only death as a release.
It is a work when to sit down to rest in front of the fire
one has to build it first.  But no fire made by another’s hands
warms as completely as one’s own effort in building and fanning one’s own flame.
All labor is divine for it is the creative principle at work.  And
it is the creative principle one should cherish.
There never was an all right in anything.
The all right is always conditional.
How great a problem is,
is already decided by the forgetting.
Conscience is installed to monitor one’s life for one’s survival.
Conscience is memory of acts done to one
with the memory of pain.
Two by two was for the Ark.
But two by two can only be because someone has moved over
to allow space for an Other.
We are better than what we think but never as good
as what we know.


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.)


Worry. . .Still An Advanced Skill. . . .

I Am Sorry, but it takes smarts. . . .

When I hear the words hitting my soft spot with a why should I worry?  You do such a good job of it! I want to be mean and snarky and say we would still be crawling on our bellies if we did not have those who gave thought that this mode of travel  would be hazardous to the health of upright humans.

But I am certain that upright humans probably were not in a future of non thinkers.  Not everyone has the ability to trudge a perilous territory seeking out reasons for problems.  It takes immense knowledge to see connections when events appear to have no connection.

Immense for the time when common thought sees no problem at all.  And that is the kicker.  Common thought.  For those who are new to my work, I update this previous essay.


My mother, the Jenny, was an orphan adopted at 8, by owners of a barroom. To not go back to the orphanage, she learned to work hard to survive, emptying spittoons and scrubbing wood floors. She became a worrier also because she was late every day running to parochial school and being punished by the nuns.   She escaped by marrying too young and giving birth to 8 children.

All she knew to survive was to anticipate problems.  All 8 of us became professional worriers.  Four of us still survive, the eldest within 2 years of a hundred and the younger babe at 87.  We 4 are still expert at worrying.

 When the doctor stood at the door of the ward and mourned the death of the newborns and their mothers,  he observed the young doctors moving from one bed to another.  He noted also they only wiped detritus from their hands with a dirty rag.  Could they be carrying something from one to the other?  So he instituted the washing of hands between patients.  And the babies stopped dying and so did their mothers.

He connected the dots.  He worried long and hard enough and came to conclusions.  Worry is an advanced form of thinking.  It is impossible for some people because they simply do not know enough to see cause and effect.

Most do not know how to encircle the problem.  To have a human being who understands the fuller picture,  we have to introduce more levels of experience.

When this planet, our Earth, is called a classroom, it is because of advanced classes of education.  One crisis after another is chosen to further our advancement of chosen work.  When we complete a class, we move on.  It is with ultimate concern we who see the devastation of this natural classroom worry that future generations will not have it.

It is with a sacred blush that we who have loved it to distraction ask that its inhabitants become worriers.  Study the behaviors that have led to these elements of crises before our beloved best school be destroyed.  Not everyone knows enough to worry.  Let us be the smart ones.

Perhaps we who worry can do something because we know only an advanced form of thinking now will save us.


art by Claudia Hallissey


Favorite Aphorisms. . .


Favorite Aphorisms. . .

We are the cabbage and the rose at once.  Earthy and ethereal at once.
Memories are the bridge to the future.
To go over the same road again and again, until the pain as well as the joy no longer overwhelms, requires tough love.
Life was not meant to be a vehicle of convenience.  Breathing itself is an imposition of sorts at times.
Education is a thing of the heart and spirit and no learned institution  can impart what is necessary to complete a life.
Man can strike the essence of what is wrong in an area the heavens cannot reach.
Man must process an enormous amount of garbage in the place where integration of the human is of vital interest.
The sounds of mortal life cut deeply and quickly and with great pain to those who have ears to hear.
Television is the answer to a lifetime prayer for some.  To be entertained without having to participate is the ultimate dream.
It is always more enlightening to apply criticism of an Other’s behavior to oneself.
Rehearsed rhetoric is a game to use for one’s own justification.
Humanity’s progress comes quarter inch by quarter inch.  Not even baby steps it seems.
Mass evolution is an oxymoron, a contradiction in terms; never a fact and never a reality.

photo by John S. Hallissey


Time Is Now. . .

Events of this past week have shaken us all. Time is now that changes will be evident.  Time is now that much will be demanded.  And the young whose memories now of the violence that has taken their friends and innocence will demand restitution and behavior that comes with adulthood.

The children shall lead us.  And force the children in adult bodies to grow up and let loose  the behaviors that have kept this beautiful planet hostage.  It is time and the children shall lead because they have memory.  Of the worlds they have come from and where they exhibited behavior that showed accountability.

It is time now for all of us to grow up.



Kindergarten. . .

It is kindergarten, this place of play
that tells us that we are just boys and girls
and everyone wants us to be happy.

And we vow again like Tinker Bell
that we play the girl at heart and
like Peter Pan we will not grow up.

And we are adored to be  just as we are.
Never growing up to do those things
of pain we see.  Never growing up because
to grow up means to grow old and hurts
not only bodies but feelings we drown in.

There is no one to save us so
to grow old means we die.
We all know that song, don’t we?

There is no fun like ours when we stay young
to play with the wind in our hair and someone
pushing the swings higher and higher.

Nothing is expected then, is there?
Every day is a day to play. And if we are lucky,
we will die in our sleep and never have to think.

We ask, where is the fault in that?  Where is the fault?



The Journey Begins. . .


(When asked often lately, how to survive as a mystic in today’s secular world, sometimes the questions just need a repetition of previous work.  I edit for space.)

Previous entry the Teacher speaks. . .

When your mentor, the Nazarene,  thought man should be accountable, he did not wish for man to keep coming back and lamenting his ancestor’s anguish and never lift himself out of his mire.  He wished for every lifetime to be accountable. 

This is what making a difference is all about.  Not to become responsible for our ancestor’s inability to fulfill dreams.  Nothing can be done except by those who tied the knots.  The ones who did not meet obligations are needing forgiveness by their progeny.  There are enough worlds for this to happen in. 

Let their gods work it out and take them as responsibility.  It is not for the child to undo the parent’s tribulations.  Let the children be free to make a difference and the whole planet will survive as well as the people in it.  It will be a classroom of supreme order and not the hellish place it is today.


Continuing that entry I wrote. . . Like Machiavelli’s letter to Vettori, I put on my evening clothes (which in my case were flannel pajamas, ) and went to my table of books where I sat with my teachers of yore.  I, too, was lovingly received by them, where I pestered with arguments the injustices done to my world.  And answered by reason what their arguments were for the day.

I was revived in mind and attitude and went into sleep preparing again for the day’s events.  Like Machiavelli, the starving mind of me was fed and feasted on thoughts designed for the credentialed.  I was taught what no university could or was able to teach.  And given information only the gods in their compassion were able to garner and assimilate.

With understanding of the behaviors of peoples never to be voiced and nor even easy to live with.   It brings to mind the understanding of the word ‘expert’ the fledgling grandson in his growing knowledge of new words announced at dinner, ‘expert is a person who knows too much.’  And I followed with ‘and has nowhere to go.’


July 14, 2019. . .added notes today. . .for those who question how possible to live today like this.  There were those who say my life was not normal and neither were my interests.  All lives are different in ways peculiar to others. I came with an open head and one foot dragging in the world I came from before I was born.

Married young, we were of moderate means with no money for household help so I raised our children,   and in the vernacular, I painted and papered and mowed lawns and did yard work and appeared in public; an average life with no appetite for frolicking.

One does not need to take to the woods, (I sorely wanted to) nor to the mountain top.  Those are within.   But heaven does heed the crash at the gates.

Often with a ‘well, look who’s here!’  So the journey begins.


Differing Perspectives. . .

There are those who close their eyes to what it is they see because they know what they see will contradict what they choose to believe.
The look of innocence is the state of shock.  That level where the soul has rested, the mind has
stopped pursuing and spirit dares not delve deeper.
When it is given because it was asked for, love becomes a duty and a chore.
Regardless of what is done to you, your choices are limited the higher you reach for enlightenment.  The more given, the more that is required.
We do not tread lightly where a heavy foot is needed.
We are before we be something else or we were before we are.
Individually and collectively man’s thirst for power and what it can do is such a long drink of water that there is not enough Perrier in the world to satiate his thirst.
Time now for psychology of the divine to become Course Divine 101.
As long as the eye beholds and another heart beats to receive, there will be reason to keep breathing and not giving up.
The unfed spirit is just as hungry as the unfed body.
A one sided effort does bring results.  Even when it appears to be a lost cause, it is not.
When someone cares enough to do what needs to be done, it is never a lost cause.
There cannot be lost effort to do good in the Universes.  That would be an oxymoron, a contradiction.  There is only limited understanding for the moment in who or what we are.


When Words Wound. . .Evolution Halts. . . .

                                                                             Words Wound. . . Evolution Halts. . .

Children are wounded when they first tell a truth that is uncomfortable or embarrassing to their audience.  And no doubt it is a much loved parent the child is excitedly telling something.

But realizing they are saying something hurtful or worse laughable when the child speaks his truth, the next time the child is careful to doctor his words.  And each time it becomes easier and finally stories  change with each telling.

So is born a compulsive liar.  Knowing the present version of what they are saying is met with no hostility and is okay, the practice continues.

That they are never believed is a small price to pay compared to the remembered pain of truth telling, which they eventually put to sleep.

I have long thought that to call lying sinful was harsh because lies are told to avoid pain.  Lies are a learned behavior to give what information is wanted or more acceptable.

Misdemeanors are different than sins.  Sins are different than psychological impairments.  And impairments of judgments are not dismissed because lessons must be learned.

It is the deeply wounded child stunted in the adult who continues with the outright lies and dismisses these with a no big deal attitude.

It becomes a way of life and credibility has no meaning since they have never known it.  And what you don’t know you cannot relate to and what you don’t know you do not miss.

Children tell truth with no premeditation.  It is when they are punished for truth telling which generally is first a verbatim account of where they came from and what they remember.  That they learn to whitewash the truth and stories seem more fanciful is no surprise.

What was thought would be ways to alleviate the pain but too often learned was to stay away from the place where the pain was inflicted.  Sometimes that is home for the child and therefore becomes a place to run from.

Sometimes people, often parents, are causes and then they too are avoided.  Often it is school and the child becomes a dropout.  Often also, one does not learn new ways of speaking, but one learns how not to open oneself to more pain.

Evolution grinds to a halt and the adult in his dotage clutches the inner child to his grave.  Wars continue and peace becomes a nebulous promise.  But it is a work and it begins here, with us.


A Divine Surprise. . .


You know what I was thinking I asked my younger this morning.  He grinned at me and one arm  with hand out flat swooped over his head and then bent to the floor palm out.  It meant to me that my explanations are hard to understand.  I laughed.

I was only going to say that we have found the right foods for our bear Newfoundland because he is smooth and silky and shiny and his eyes clear and bright.  Leroy is one beautiful dog who loves his buddy and is fond of his food lady too.

I am ponderous at times it seems but my humor follows the pattern of my explanations.  It takes work I guess to appreciate my puns.  But I try, really do.

I came across this poem this morning as a change of pace.  I laugh when I read it and hope you do too.  It was after I read a journal entry noting that one of my readers said she doesn’t even know the language I use nor the words and thoughts.

She reads and rereads until she feels the weight.  I am grateful.  She is close to the kingdom because she learns and therefore teaches.  I am the perennial student and worship learning.  Truly grateful I am for my readers.

Physically Unfit or a Divine Surprise. . .

I muse that a derrick would be useful
for lifting an aging body from a chair
to legs that buckle.

My heart catapults out of its
protective cavity and I observe it
resting carefully in my hand.
Only to feel it pound against the ribs
Adam had broken.

I remember answering a phone with a voice
breathless and sexy  as the once famous
Jean Arthur of my youth whom I imitated
by sleeping in front of an open window
in weather forty below.

On flat surfaces which children vacated
I play musical beds to silence
bones that creak.

Darwin is puzzled.
I should not be alive this day complaining
but rather quite dead.

I too, have questioned when entire species
have disappeared and I remain to complain.
But I have learned while he did not,
that the unfit do survive
while heaven still holds the sparklers.

Even to me, I am I find, a divine surprise.                                                                 


The Mind’s Residual. . . .

The Heavens open momentarily and close but the glimpses from the views linger and haunt one forever.


The Self wills but the human spirit cannot be legislated.  Statistics are meant to sell beer.


It is not the Mystery of Life which stunts man and does not beguile him to further thought.  It is the work involved.


It is not easy for Wendy to become Tinkerbell in one fell swoop.  Not without destroying Peter Pan in that one fell swoop.


The long face of gloom does not become the human at all in the face of so many small victories, but the constant smile bespeaks an empty head too.


Those who claim good mental health have it only as long as they keep themselves wrapped in their illusions free from self examination.


Considering the condition of the world and considering who we confine to psychiatric wards, the question should arise how does one define who is mad in a mad society?


For one to see with eyes that wrench the closet full of tears open to view is to others an invasion of privacy


Speak the heart and in like silence the heart will respond.  In matters of the heart, doubt not.


Bless the elements of design for they are all inclusive.


What seems like a tragedy in the absurd and obscure indeed is a well thought out and prescribed drama.


photo by John S. Hallissey


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