It was William Blake who stated that the ‘Doors of Perception’ need only be cleansed so one can see the infinite. Could’ve it be that to aid in our questions of life we need only to quiet the left hemisphere of the brain and start cleaning this door with the right hemisphere? Or as Robert Bly called it, “doing our kitchen work“, deflating our ego by performing the work of a simpleton, task that free the mind, holding our thoughts temporarily in reserve, as we earn the right to transcend this door which lays hidden, not known to exist. So in our kitchen work, we labor completely unaware of the task at hand as we scour the mind of fear and loathing. There is faith in this, the faith of the just and downhearted on the path to lite and love.
As fields of green grass, cover my feet, I place nine rows of nine candles…surrounding a circle of nine candles not unlike the wheels of a bicycle. Flowers grow from the center, and more grow from the adjacent rows of nine for all paths congregate at the center. And the act of lighting these candles is enough to move the very fabric of the universe and all who conspire in that endeavor… they are sacred to my eyes and in the name of love for all who travel this road.
For many love and mindfulness arrive courtesy of September, the ninth month, the month of Virgo, the virgin queen. She is the month of shine courtesy of Vulcan, the god of fire and the forge. Vulcan may be at fault for the abundance of fire on earth in September… from the hearth to natural disasters such as volcanoes and the fires of industry, but most of all Volcans real work is burning off all the negative aspects of personalities and egos of humankind. We see this when Isis disguised as a maid takes a child into the hearth and holds it to the fire.
One must do diligence in this kind of work. Whether chasing angels in Appalachia, lighting St. Elmo’s fire on the open seas or painting the rainbow, one must be quick as Pan and stealth as Mercury. Still, other jobs require a special lightness to the touch and an understanding of symbols like Om with the silent syllable or Shiva dancing in a circle of flames. Everything points to something else and that is the true magic.
So I am mindful of the sacred order of things in the cosmos, heaven, and earth. I feel like a thief in the night except I’m leaving more than I came with. Again that is the trick as I am the true jester bringing one to a deeper understanding of themselves by way of the true sorcery at the threshold of silliness which lies dormant within each of us until we wake it up with the keys to our imagination pressed firmly in our hands.
“Is there a difference between happiness and inner peace? Yes. Happiness depends on conditions being perceived as positive; inner peace does not.” -Eckhart Tolle
One day not too long ago, a friend of mine, disgruntled about her lot in life said to me and I quote, ‘If I’d only find peace in my life then I know I’d be happy.” I thought about this for a while and suggested that peace and happiness have nothing to do with each other as one is not inclusive of the other.
Peace is being able to sit in the storm of life and be tranquil in the face of adversity or good fortune. This doesn’t mean a lack of feeling, for we are emotional beings, but a certain calmness that emulates from within no matter what colors give expression to each moment. This allows for the faith which goes hand in hand bringing harmony to our existence. And notice it’s not only the tough situations where we need to strive for peace. Joyous occasions can lead to stress and a lack thereof. The storm is the metaphor for life and all its circumstances.
Peace isn’t the absence of challenge in your life. It’s grasping the currents that sail forth out of the darkness of our own thinking thus sailing into calm waters.
Moving in quiet desperation, Keeping an eye on the holy land, A hypothetical destination, Say who is this walking man. -James Taylor
Its been a while since I’ve posted anything about Parkinson’s disease for this blog. Can you beleive it’s been 6 years that I was diagnosed! My page on PD has a complete list of post consecutively written almost as fast as changes were occurring in real time in my life. Thank you for reading those early writings for they make up the heart and soul of this blog. As for as I’m concerned, my personal goal in writing is to always leave the reader with words more positive than when they started reading. For what is life if not to lift us, one and another to all that heaven will allow.
Having PD can result in numerous conditions the body must cope with. Since Parkinson’s is an absence of dopamine in the body and dopamine is used everywhere in the body thus no two shades of the disease are ever totally the same physically and mentally. And symptoms can show up any day or take years to develop.
I became aware of Parkinson’s when my right hand began to shake violently, an effect called tremor. Drugs were’sable to control it. What keeps me occupied at this particular junction is the ability to walk or a lack of it as it was before my body becomes stiff. Now loosening the body is every day, a day-long practice. These exercises are like medicine since my abilities with my legs and feet have seriously been compromised. My feet shuffle along as I balance myself with a cane. It requires constant mindfulness to walk like a normal person, so mindfulness is more than just a Buddhist practice to me, it is the ability to walk. Yes, like what is normal for me.
There is one person I’m especially indebted to who is practically rewriting the book on walking with Parkinson’s and that is my physical therapist. She rocks, Thanks…jc
The joyful state, the combined results all states of being bringing laughter to the soul, empathy to the heart and compassion to the mind. ‘Joy’ that comes from the mindful observation of nature and how it’s triggered by the slightest of phenomenon.. positive and negative, right and wrong, joy and sadness; for you can’t know one without its other. Such feelings can come from a variety of stimulus. For me, it’s more often than not, music. Music that captivates me and brings me deep within the confines of life, only to lift me to heights unimaginable by the confines of life.Continue reading “Ode to Joy… cheerful again”
“ Love is extravagant, in the price, it is willing to pay, the hardship it is willing to endure, and the strength it is willing to spend. Love never thinks in terms of “how little”, but always in terms of “how much”. Love gives, love knows, and love last…” -UnknownContinue reading “The Shirt of Flames”
It seems like ages since I lived this one particular life and year after year it grew a little fainter leveling parts of my soul in total darkness. But always with lessons in tow, This should have been a day of joy and happiness… a celebration; but I chose not to attend and thus ruined the party for all concerned. Well, maybe not all concerned as some were glad the party didn’t take place at all and for them that was the real party.
But what do I feel and doesn’t it count for anything? That little intuition inside me kept saying, “no way, you can’t go through with this” even though I fought it tooth and nail out of fear that I was destroying a life. Better to ruin my life than another. Isn’t that the chivalrous thing to do?
What nonsense, cried our Pilgrim. Be true to thyself and that will bring you to a higher truth. Hide behind erroneous thinking and that will leave us as a naysayer of depressed energy longing for a life it thought it knew.
Yes, whispered the heart, fingers crossed, bowing slightly to the head. Likewise exclaimed the head winking back to the heart.
And at the end of the day When the oceans kiss the sky And the sky turning the deepest blue Where the vast array of stars in the night sky Give sight to the moon holding ancient secrets The meeting of an endless ocean to an endless horizon. It is here that one can embrace the vastness of the universe. And it is here I shall stay... jc
Oh blue ocean seize the day For the sea will survive when all else fades away And with our courage, we’ll rise again In the promise of a new day For the sea is where we hail from And where we long to be And to henceforth, we shall return.
So blue ocean lead the way And show us what mystery you hath today For when the ocean swells with surface waves I will see your name as the north wind lays claim Tranquil in your deepest blues Born from the sea.
And when the winds seek to divide As Poseidon’s trident stirs his great oceans The gust swells into walls of blue But I ask, am I not the same as you, For the sea flows through my veins too So great ocean I swallow my pride For we need each other to survive
I sit here in the middle of an ocean, Atlantic it is You are in the very air that I breathe Your winds purify the breath and energy I need
A blue ocean is in the mystics eye at ocean’s end Lead me to a single breath of the wind on the water.
There are times when we try putting together life’s puzzles, assigning the pieces as neatly and securely as we can, into a box of our own subjective thinking; a box that hasn’t any room for fresh interpretation. The analysis is so in sync with the cerebral brain that we fail to enjoy the epiphanies that are present especially when the pieces of the puzzle seem not to fit as we think they should…if our narrative comes together, we call it a miracle, if not we’re disgruntled. We tend not to appreciate that in the perforations of this chaos there are considerations waiting for our attention. It is only when we trip into overload from this temporal way of thinking, thus spilling forth into the mysteries, do we expand our thoughts into the universe of a higher understanding. It is then, I come to realize that what I don’t know is more than I thought I knew and I’ll never know it all. Thus, I stand blessed and open to all there is on the road of perception raining down in the pale moonlight. This is mindfulness at its best, waiting to hand you something you didn’t have an inkling you were in need of.