Storm


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There was I time I thought of myself as “Stormchaser”. It was a label I assigned to offset the difficult times that seemed to follow me as a way of reversing the odds.

I saw myself as not only actively engaging those hard times but as pursuing them in a “if life is suffering and suffering brings enlightenment then, for fucks sack, bring it on” mentality.

I was wrong.

Man, was I wrong.

The hard times pursued like a predator on blood scent and I, tough as the wind, really was bleeding, profusely.

I’ve said before how I’m only now rubbing the sleep from my eyes, but I look back with these blurry eyes and see that young man and rather than think “whaddadouche”, my favorite quote when it comes to ignorance, I can say “good start.”

It really was.

Since then I’ve learned that Life is more often concerned with giving lessons than with leading me to them and that the path of life is much more flexible than I thought.

She is the train
I am the rail
Or more like the spike
Or the ground it’s driven into
Or maybe just a house it passes by
Sleeping

That’s my attempt at Zen poetry, which I’m okay with, in a Zen sort of way.

My point is this:

I have felt the storm.
I feel it now inside me.
I’m not sure it ever goes away.
I’m okay with that.

That, by the way, has nothing at all to do with either Zen philosophy or poetry, it’s who I am.

So right about now you’re probably asking yourself what the hell this post is about so I’ll sum it up in six words …

 

We find what we are looking for.

 

… okay, seven words.

 


 

Audio: “Stormchaser” by J M Greff

 

Monday/Tuesday/Etc

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Monday: I woke this morning filled with a sense of purpose. I danced while I made breakfast for no other reason than to feel the joy of dancing. My intentions, pure and simple; love and gratitude, lighting me from within.

I got in my truck still smiling as I thought about this new spring unfolding before me and how life ebbs and flows with the seasons but never really ends, it just rests for a while.

Then I put my truck in gear and drove out from under my trailer, leaving it on the ground behind me. I am certain I locked the fifth wheel pin on Friday. I even had a second pair of eyes on it. At least it happened in the truck lot and not on the highway.
So now I have the day off, which is good because I can use the time to catch up on some of those things that need catching up with.

Tuesday: I woke this morning filled with a sense of accomplishment. The long list of tasks mostly complete. I danced while I made breakfast for no other reason than to feel the joy of dancing. My intentions, pure and simple; love and gratitude, lighting me from within.

When I got to my truck I noticed I had no trailer. It’s pretty hard to miss that. 40 minutes of phone tag and texting later and I find out I was supposed to meet the shop manager here at 7 am. I was here at 5:15.

So I took the time to clean my truck, catch up on emails, and do a little writing. All on the clock since the boss said to write it up as downtime.

So here I am, writing. It’s going to be a great day.

I’m going to make a prediction for tomorrow…

Wednesday: I woke this morning filled with a sense of [insert feeling here]. I danced while I made breakfast for no other reason than to feel the joy of dancing. My intentions, pure and simple; love and gratitude, lighting me from within.
[Then some shit happens and I’m okay with it]

——-

Picture taken at Gulf Shores.

Simple

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The wind in my face on a hot day
While I strain and swear
Wrench in hand
Making repairs on those things
That seem ever broken
Because my wallet doesn’t weigh enough
To spread the wealth
The salty sweat as it touches my lips
The water that tempts and taunts
The icy brew that lightens the load however briefly
The sun behind the limbs
Of the giant pecan tree
That gave up the last of its nuts and leaves
Long ago
Yet still provides
Even in its final days
Shade and shelter
The sound of music
Through the abused speakers
Of a radio new before cell phones
The phone I tap with fingers calloused
From too many hours
Of work
And play
It’s bright screen repeating my words back to me
Scribing the love I feel
Always
That makes me smile or cry
That drives the words that escape me
While listening to songs I don’t know the words to
Wrenching on broken things under the shade
Of love itself
Simple

 

 

Northern Lights over North Dakota

Northern.Lights.in.North.Dakota.by.Carl.Jones

I stand amazed
In a field of gold
Under a starry sky
Lit by green mist
A gentle wind sighs
Across the empty plain
After a cold rain
That has washed away
This far too short
Autumn day
Leaving the musky scent
Of harvest
And petrichor
To fill the chilled air

As the undulating stream
Of energy flows
I stand in silent wonder
Of such immense beauty
Taking my breath away
and dream

Oh, to take flight
Into this mystery
To join it there
So many miles away
Yet close enough to feel
It’s magic course
Through my veins
To sweep so high
I see from above
It’s glory
Then to dive
Through it’s dance
An play in its glory
To bathe in such light
Would be sublime
To be one with it
Divine

I close my eyes
let loose my soul
and fly

Image of the Northern Lights over North Dakota by Carl Jones

Free fallin’

choosing-and-gathering-a-silt-soil

I’m pretty sure no one ever thought of Petty as philosophical or scientific but…

… I’m listening to him sing about a freeway running through his yard as I sip a cup of once hot coffee now going cold and think about that freeway.

It is Life and it is constantly moving at millions of miles per second through the cosmos with no particular destination. It just is.

The yard is my life. A tiny pasture that interacts with the much larger, empirical, Life. It would be easy to think that my tiny corner of Life could not have any impact whatsoever on that mass of energy. It can feel like being a single molecule of water in an ocean and, in a way, it is exactly like that but it is also more than that.

Here comes a quick geology lesson:

Epigenisis is an accumulation of a mineral mass without loess properties, perhaps with a high silt and lime content, which under weathering and soil formation acquires loess properties and is transformed into loess (seriously, I swiped that from some geology site).

Eolian: the winds ability to shape the surface of the earth.

Loess: silt-sized sediment that is formed by the accumulation of wind-blown dust.

Syngenesis: the accumulation of a mineral mass that is mainly of eolian origin and the acquisition of all loess properties occurs simultaneously, under the influence of soil formation (also swiped because I have no memory for such things).

So what the hell does any of this have to do with Tom Petty? Well, nothing. He just got me to thinking. Free falling, so to speak.

Here’s where I landed: Life’s affect is eolian. That is to say that we are often blasted by it. It throws us this way and that. It wears us down until we are like loess. Tiny silt-sized sediment. Infinitesimal in that ocean.

But we are in syngenesis with that energy. You and I and my dog and the chair I sit on and the trees outside my window and the coffee I drink and the keyboard I type on… all flow in that river of Life. All part of it. One with it. The ocean simply can not exist without all the separate molecules of water. You. Me. The attendant at the gas station. The grass. The air in our lungs and the dust on the street which accumulates and coalesces and one day becomes the stone and soil upon which we walk.

My little yard, that tiny pasture in the great green field that is the Universe, is also the Universe itself. It exists because we exist. We exist because it exists. It is us and we are it.

How cool is that?

Thanks, Tom 🙂

 

Shit Happens

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There are basically only two Paths in life: Reactive and Proactive.

The Consequential Life is primarily an Unconscious Path. Shit happens and you instinctualy respond. How you respond dictates where the Path leads you. This is Reactive.

The Intentional Life is a Conscious Path. Shit happens and you choose your response. Other times shit happens because of your choices. Your intention and the choices you make that arise from your intent guide you on the Path. You guessed it, Proactive.

 

Either method is a choice. We either choose to be aware or we choose to go through life with eyes and mind closed.

Most people live a reactionary life. Here’s a few examples of living a reactionary life while on an unconscious path:

  1. A goat shits on your path. Step in in, rub it in your face, sleep in it, don’t wash it off. “Good things come to those who suffer.”
  2. A goat shits on your path. Make a shit sandwich and eat it in silent gratitude. “What good things?”
  3. A goat shits on your path. Its a sign! A goat has been here. Hang around and pray for its return so it can be sacrificed. “Good things come to those who wait.”
  4. A goat shits on your path. Its a sign! The path is unclean because you have sinned. “Sinners don’t get good things…until they die.”

I’ve known many people who suffered to the end and gained nothing. Known people who turn their backs on the good things in their lives because they can’t believe they either deserve them or that they exist at all. And I’ve never met a person who didn’t feed themselves…. something.

Personally, however, I prefer a proactive/conscious way of living:

When a goat shits on your path I say gather it up, mix it with sand and straw, and make bricks to smooth the path. Or mold menagerie from it, bake them in the sun, and give them as gifts. Or use it in a floral arrangement. Or turn it into incense.

There must be a million great things to do with goat shit and none of them have anything to do with moral causality or a reckoning of the scales.

What it comes down to is this; if you can’t find a good use for it, simply walk around it.

In the end, its a goat doing what a goat does. It shits. And shit happens.

Balance

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Today is the Autumn Equinox. Day and night are of equal length for a few days and then the days will become shorter.

It is the time of harvest. When we reap what we have sown and labored so hard to produce. It is a time of harmony and balance. When everything is exactly as it is supposed to be.

Seeing that balance isn’t always easy so I’m going to refer to the Oxford Dictionary to help:

bal·ance [ˈbaləns] NOUN
1. an even distribution of weight enabling someone or something to remain 
upright and steady: 
"slipping in the mud but keeping their balance" ·
synonyms: stability · equilibrium · steadiness · footing

I appreciate the example they provide, “slipping in the mud but keeping their balance”. I can relate to that. It defines balance as tenuous yet firm. Precarious and cautionary but upright and steady.

Balance doesn’t mean sure footed. In fact, I am most likely to be seeking better footing when balance is even, but slip and slide aside, I remain upright.

Tonight I celebrate that balance and while I do it while physically alone, I do it forging ahead with plans to join my Beloved.

The past and future are even tonight and beginning tomorrow the days grow shorter and each shortened day brings me closer to her.

Whether you call this day Mabon, The Second Harvest, Wine Harvest, Feast of Avalon, Winter Finding, or, my personal favorite, Cornucopia, I wish that this Autumn Equinox finds you in harmony and balance with all that you do and that your own harvest is as rich as my own.

 


 

Image: “Effervescent” by Christina Rivera

A Promised View

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She sits at the edge of the world
Unconcerned with my silent inquiry
In peaceful examen
Contemplating All
Serene in her surrender
To the known and unknown
Welcoming a future
She creates with intention
Every thought with purpose
Every movement decided
Every word chosen
Mindful and accepting
She gazes out upon her world
Created with the meaning she gives it
Surveying beyond the smoky skies
To a place where a promised view
Of the Milky Way
Conforming to her vision
Overlays the grey-blue background
With colors of her choosing
Where eagles glide
On winds that whisper the Sopurkh
While harmonizing
With the mystic forest below
Home to true magick
Where compassion is spoken
Not only when needed
Because compassion is always needed
But with consistent care and kindness
Where passion is more than a line in book
Or a poem
But resides in every touch
Every look
Every kiss
Because passion belongs everywhere
In everything
To everyone
Where Love is tangible
Something she can see
Touch
Smell
Taste
Drink
Something to be shared
.
I see her world merge with my own
It is a world
Where the promise of a view of the Milky Way
Is kept
If only in her heart
and in a picture I take of her unaware
.
.
.
.
.
.
If you’re not familiar with the So Purkh a good explanation and recording can be found here: http://www.spiritvoyage.com/blog/index.php/so-purkh/

The Hermit

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In the Tarot the Hermit stand alone on the top of a mountain with lantern held out to see and to illuminate. He is both student and teacher and he tells us that the answers we seek can be found within.

The card has two basic meanings;

First; the need to withdraw from society to become comfortable with himself.
Second; the return from isolation to share knowledge with others.

Several years ago I decided to withdraw from the world. There were many reasons for doing this. Some of them were valid. Most were not.

One of the biggest reasons I did this is because being alone hurt. It hurt so much that I became a hermit. Funny animals us humans; we withdraw when we feel alone.

I’d like to tell you that in those years I became wise, all-seeing, all-knowing, but I did not. What I did do is learn much about myself. Where I came from and how that affected who I am. How to reconcile my life experiences with where I was physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually.

When I raised my lantern on those things that shaped me, there were things that came into focus that made me uncomfortable and though they initially made me want to remain in isolation they also became the things that drew me out of it. By examining each act of rage or insolence or passion or love or joy or whatever, without passing judgment, neither good nor bad, but simply as a thing that happened or that I did, I was able to gain a clearer image of who I was and, more importantly, who I was not.

In that process I learned one simple truth: If you want to be who you are meant to be you must first stop being who you are.

Once I gained that clearer view I began the excruciating and liberating job of dismantling who I was and recreating who I was meant to be. I say “recreating” because I have come to believe that we are born exactly who we are meant to be and life, doing what it does best, getting in the way of living, rewrites that person. We may be raised or live in a way that is destructive and damaging or make mistakes or have experiences that reshape that person, but that original person, the ego-free infant with no concept of time or space or tragedy or love or hate or pain, remains at our core. Always there vying for our attention. Waiting to be realized.

This process is never ending. I am complete and whole but my work, examining and re-examining and freeing those parts of myself locked away and learning to become a better person, will never be done.

I chose to release myself from the isolation last fall. For me the process took seven years. It was long and painful and lonelier than I can possibly express but it was worth it. I am beginning to realize that person I was born as. Become the person you see now. I like this person.

This is not the only way to become a fully realized human. Not even close. It was my way and the methods I chose ran a high risk of failure so I won’t share those methods but for me they were worth the risk.

What I will tell you is that it came down to this one thing: Courage.

If you are not who you want to be all it takes is the courage to forget who you have pretended to be. There is nothing more liberating than being yourself.

I hope your own journey brings you home.

 

 

 

August 21

Today we enter into the final moments of what I truly hope has been an incredible season of change for each one of us.

I have been working on personal growth and change for a long time now. Years. What I am doing here is just the beginning of the task I have set myself.

As the eclipse passes keep your intentions, the person you want to be, the person you know you are, close to heart. Know, without a doubt, that during this sacred time we are closer to the Divine than we will ever be. That She is listening. That She knows our hearts. That She will listen to every single one of us. That this is as close as we will ever get to truly choosing the direction of our path. To choose who we really are. That the Divine will help us because She want us to be those people. Because She loves us.

It doesn’t matter if you’re in the outer edges or nowhere near this event because it’s a global event. Literally. Our moon blocks the sun and our planet lines up behind the moon.

You can not say you weren’t there.

We will all be there.

I’ll see you on the other side.