My Son

Mister President please lend me your ear,
there are some things you may not know
your children well they never
have to go off to war.

Please tell me a story of your sacrifice,
Please tell me how you haven’t seen a golf tee in years
Tell me about your sadness
Tell me about your loss

Here’s a boy you did not know
He’s in my arms for the very first time
I took this picture so that he could have a memory
To you he may be only a casualty but to me
He is my son.

So tell me Mr. Senator
What you are losing here today
Please tell me what great things you have done
To protect me from myself

Here’s a boy you did not know
Taking his very first steps into my waiting arms
I took this picture so that he could have a memory
To you he is just a casualty but to me
He is my son.

So tell me Mr. Congressman
What have you done for me today
You have gotten so good at pretending
That you think you really matter to us all?

Here’s a boy you did not know
Riding on my shoulders as we walk by the sea
I took this picture so that he could have a memory
To you he is just a casualty but to me
He is my son.

So tell me Mr. Limbaugh
What bullshit can you say today?
You have your minions of mindless mothers
To make you feel like you know it all.

Here’s a boy you did not know
Fighting for the home of the free
He took this picture so that I could have a memory
To you he is just a casualty but to me
He is my son.

I carry this folded flag, I hold this stupid star
I honor him not as your hero
I honor him as someone you did not know
I carry with me these pictures burned into my mind
I hold on to those memories as the only peace I find.
Because to you he was just a name
To you he was just a boy
But to me he was everything, to me he was my life
So to you he was but a casualty
But to me he is my son.

Passionless

Passionless…
It seems as if even a sunrise could lose it’s luster over time,
That is if the sunrise ever had luster for you,
You see it as just another thing in life,
If you ever see it at all.

Passionless…
I walk into the room and nothing is the only thing that happens,
As if I had vanished into the abyss,
As if I existed as only a figment of my imagination,
If I had ever existed at all.

Passionless…
That is unless I strike the cord of an angry instrument,
To sing the song that dampens the best of times,
To harmonize that which is never really harmony at all,
We keep what is nothing as something and treat something as nothing.

Passionless…
To leave that alone which need be shared,
To leave that which should be alone tied to the whipping post,
We bait and switch and switch to bait,
To create that passion from where none should be.

When we drill for oil in your backyard…

It will be great, kids playing on oil derricks, finger painting in good, clean crude. Maybe the “oil rink” will replace the “ice rink” for playtime, and instead of “Spongebob” we can let them watch “Oil Pad Pete”, a new cartoon about how clean the environment is around oil drilling sites. It should be a BLAST!!

“Who lives in the landfill at the end of the street…Oil Pad Pete!”…I can hear the song already being sung by a bastion of toddlers.

Wait, I get it, it is alright to destroy the environment as long as you CAN’T SEE IT being destroyed. Out of sight, out of mind, right? Typical conservative philosophy, live hypocritically and never, EVER let the left hand know what the right is doing.

This oil discussion is like talking about prohibition with a drunk. These conservatives, all addicted to their money and precious debt ridden way of life need more of the black tar that keeps them going. Without oil, conservatives lose their power base (look at the only segment of our economy flourishing right now, it just so happens to be the segment that got the BUSH’s their wealth. Imagine that.)

So now the price of “black tar” (oil) has skyrocketed because the suppliers cannot meet the demand of the users. Rather than seek help for their addiction, the users will do ANYTHING to get more…more…more. Meanwhile, the “dealers” (aka big oil and their politician friends) are rolling in dough…laughing all the way to their local money launderer’s house…loving the fact that the addicts just can’t get enough.

Oh, and the addicts, well they keep their dealers in power. After all, what’s a hooker without her pimp or an addict without his dealer? The value is in making sure YOUR dealer is the one in control.

Well, I hope conservatives are willing to kill to ruin more of our environment for oil, because there are certainly vast segments of our population not addicted to money or oil willing to die for it. It will be interesting to see what legacy we leave our children, one based on acting like the Chinese in our addicted frenzy for more, or one where we actually lead the world again.

Paradox – A Q & A session

Is the anger I hate in others
The part of me I hate about myself?
The reflection of years of agony
Found in the depths of the time and space of memory?

I must end the noise,
Relish in the stillness of all that is,
Bask in the glow of Eternal Love,
The Love that unites all things to all things.

Is the mistrust I have of others
The part of me I mistrust about myself?
Do I doubt the ground on which I walk
Because of the tremors of doubt I feel in me?

To have such faith
That all is as it should be is a great gift unto itself,
Even if all is not how I wish,
To let go of the wish – that is life eternal.

Is the pain I inflict on others
The part of me that begs to hurt?
Do the daggers in each hand I carry,
Only look to cut those parts of me I wish to throw away?

To release – to let go,
To feel the sting of love
As it soothes and cleans those wounds bound by time and dignity,
That is the best of all I am.

Is the wish to conquer others,
The part of me I seek to defeat in myself?
The part that begs to end
The essence of pain, of the eternal search for more?

Victory is not in who wins,
But in who loses because he NEED NOT play the game?
In knowing the difference
He has set himself free from both.

Is the part of nature I cannot stand
The part I miss the most?
What part of us seeks to divide
The spirit of all from that which is?

It is in missing those things,
The nature of all that seems to irritate that which we find within ourselves,
For it is not the comfort that we seek that sustains,
But the understanding of all that gives us life.

My Friend

Take this hand, my friend
for I offer it as a gift.
Grab hold, be sure in its steadfastness,
Absolute in the knowledge that it shall never let you go.

Be at peace, my friend,
Secure in the fact that you will never be alone,
That in the darkest hour of need
I shall offer light or simply walk with you in darkness.

Be certain my friend,
That as you breathe your final breath,
I will be there with you as you need me to be,
Sure as time stands still as you slowly slip away.

Be free, my friend,
As the breeze blows calmly through the surly grass of time,
Know this for sure-I will be there again soon enough,
To reach out, and hold your hand again.

Equation of moderation

Concern for one’s protection and the protection of the environment cannot be taken lightly given the attitude and activity of those who are more concerned with financials than with issues of a more natural concern. Money has taken over our consciousness it would seem, a scary proposition at best considering that dependence on anything like money will surely doom a society to failure.

In order to counter an extreme, one must work in an extreme even if his views are more moderate. Issues [I]always[/I] meet in the middle, so the counter of two extremes would be moderation. One the one hand you have conservatives who would rape our environment to ensure our dependence on the drug of crude oil is met, and on the other hands you have liberals who would do nearly anything to ensure our environment is protected. While I tend to slant toward the environment, I understand that our dependence on materialism cannot be changed overnight, and that in order to ween ourselves from the teat of oil we must first find a distaste for the teat itself. That distaste is price. Rather, however, to get a distaste for oil, conservatives devise a distaste for nature that houses it and for those who would protect that nature. Rather than understand that dependence on anything limited is both foolish and counterintuitive, they wish to increase the burden (and thereby the suffering) by raping our own environment to get their “fix”.

Simply, the time has come to change our attitudes. Rather than search for a short term solution under the guise of finding longer term ones (that was stated back in the 70’s only to have us find ourselves in the same dilemma 30 years later!), we should just step back from our dependence and revisit our needs. Make the solution LONG TERM, not the quick fix Americans have been searching for all their lives for all their ills. Are you fat? Take a pill. Are you skinny? Take a pill. Are you depressed? Take a pill. Are you happy? You must be taking pills. We look for the quick fix always before searching for the longer-term solution.

In that could very well be our downfall and undoing as a society. America stands to be the fastest flash in the societal pan ever. Why? Because we have gotten out of tune with ourselves faster than any other society in history. Our reliance on science has driven a wedge between us and our environment, and that reliance has caused us to lose touch with ourselves faster than any other civilization in history.

It stands to reason that this society, the “great American society”, is the most dependent one in history. From drugs to oil, we produce the least and demand the most. We are a gluttonous nation of immature beings, unable to wait, unable to listen, and unable to act in accordance with what makes sense in our hearts rather than in our egos.

So, at some point conventional thought must be challenged if it is going to change. We can no longer demand the most, but rather we must reduce our need, our dependence, on things we do not provide ourselves. We must reduce our need for all things oil. We must stand up to a Big Brother and his Friends who would see the pattern of dependency and immaturity continue. We have to change our ways and intentions individually in order to find a solution that benefits our children and our children’s children.

Our government, that Big Brother, changes when we change. It cannot help but be resistant, but when our consciousness changes, so does our government (that is, unless it is so far removed from us that we have lost it).

This starts with our homes, our environment. We must put our environment above all things, because without it we cannot live no matter what our economics or lifestyles may be. A benefit to being environmentally aware is that it brings you more in tune with nature, and more out of tune with the dependence you have on things. When you actually love waterways more than your car, you want to see those waterways clean. When you love forests more than gas you actually want to see trees survive. And when you love the planet more than you love money, you actually want to see glaciers survive, and see if man’s actions have created the crisis we face. If not, it is natural, and all things will be as they are intended to.

That’s the thing with nature, all things are as they should be. It’s when you start screwing with it that you can no longer be sure. I simply view global warming, the high incidents of violent storms in our nation, and earthquakes as nature trying to rid itself of the flea of humanity that has taken one too many bites out of its ass. So, while we are busy trying to prove which ideological theorem is correct, nature continues scratching while we continue biting. One thing is for certain, we will NEVER beat nature at it’s own game, no matter how arrogant and intelligent we think we are.

Oh, and that reminds me, when we say “intelligent life”, we are certainly not talking about humans. All other forms of life are much more intelligent that we are. Soon we will go the way of the dinosaur, the analogy there being that the dinosaurs got too big for Earth, and so are we. Imagine the audacity of building a city under sea level next to a vast waterway and then being shocked when a devastating flood occurs. This is only surmounted by the arrogance of rebuilding it.

Time

Time – you ask yourself where it went when you don’t have much of it left, and you ask for it to go faster when it seems like you have plenty to spare.It is something certain yet uncertain, plentiful yet sparse, gentle yet unforgiving.For all that time is not, it certainly is a teacher of all things.

When our time is over, and we move on to whatever plane is our destiny, we leave little gifts behind.These gifts offer those we leave with tiny pleasures, tiny pains, and little insights into the world that was.We have a name for these little treasures, these gifts not extended yet always given, and we call them memories.Our lives can be summed up in the word memory.We either leave them behind or we don’t, and often time the choice is ours.Memories are some of the greatest gifts we can offer our loved ones, for when we no longer can reach out to comfort them, the memories we leave behind do it for us.They are, in essence, the “us” no longer alive but in the form we call memory.

For some of us it is hard to give the gift of ourselves that inspires thought long after we leave.We struggle to understand our value to a world that seems unforgiving, a world in which value is placed all-too-often on things that don’t matter.We sometimes can only see our value in the cars we drive, the toys we play with, or the way we look.When those things go we often are left to feel without value, without soul; because the things we cherished were without value and without soul.

For others it is easy to understand the gifts we give because they always get them in return.The laugh of a toddler as he wipes his nose on your pant leg, the chuckle of a preschooler as she pulls on your cheeks to get you to make a silly face, or the smile of your teenager as she tries to ignore your stupid jokes.It is easy to see the gift of love you give your spouse as she kisses you, because you can certainly see the gifts she offers without even trying.

It is hard to go from one of these extremes to the other.It is hard to forgive those who you feel wronged you in life.It is hard mostly to forgive yourself for both allowing yourself not only to hurt the ones you love but also from being hurt.You have to, though.You have to offer yourself the peace you need in order to share in peace with others.You have to extend yourself love if you wish to love others.You simply have to feel yourself worthy in order to find others worthy.

I am turning a corner in my life.I have found a unique spirituality, one that was always with me but one I finally understand.I feel love, in all it’s grandeur and all of it’s uniqueness.I feel so many things it is as if my heart is about to burst.I feel…

Wow.

I look back on the asshole that was me and wonder who that person was.I remember anger unabated when I met my wife.I remember hating the world, skeptical to the core of a world that never seemed to cut me many breaks.I remember seeing the world through glasses distorted by anger, hatred and selfishness.I can’t remember that person, I can’t feel what he felt, I can’t see what he saw, and I can’t be who he was.I can only hope to have one day get better than the one before it.I can only keep not expecting, but just allowing my life to change.I can’t ignore my anger, I can just learn to accept it for what it is – a memory of a time I can never forget.In accepting my past, in accepting the things that have happened to me, I accept who I am and fully understand that the dark side of me is only one side, and it need not own who I am.

I am letting go…

And I can feel the past slipping into a corner of my being.I can feel it becoming a part of me but not me.I can turn away from anger and grasp onto love.I can feel good about myself while loving my life.I can be what I was intended to be.

…and letting God.

I can feel His presence not like anything I ever thought it would be.I can see Him in the sunlight, in the moonlight, in the stars, in the grass, in everything around me.I can see Him in my children, in my wife, in my past and in my present.What’s else, I can see Him in the gaps.I see Him between the stars, between the blades of grass, between the sun and the earth.I can see Him in the ocean, and in those little bubbles that form when wave meets sand on the shoreline.I can see Him all around me in what is, and more miraculously, in what is not.

I can’t see Him as the angry God of my Christian roots. I can’t see Him flailing away at human weakness, just in human blindness. Simply, God is, isn’t and always will be.

Perfect Imperfection

It leaves little to human consciousness, this matter of religion. It is black and white, theoretically spawned from Beings far greater than our own, unable to be questioned or challenged, far fetched to those who simply cannot believe.

In this much God Himself has given man something far greater than the Word, or far less depending on your point of view. Man is inquisitive, both reviled and revered in a thirst for knowledge about where he has been prior to life and where he will go when life ceases to be. It is simply a cause for celebration, or a cause for contempt, again depending on your point of view.

To follow certain historical thoughts on the matter of kinship to God, it is important to do so with an open mind and heart; for bias in either direction will certainly leave the philosophical point askew. In this society leaves little room, as one must have some preference upon birth; for traditions must be upheld, laws adhered to, faith emboldened on the very fabric of our existence. This faith, however, has very little fabric of it’s own, and can easily be left in tatters when approached with an open mind and heart. So this is where we begin.

It is true, the youngest among us remain perfect, as newborns carry none of the fantastical human traits that make us less so. They are neither Christian nor Jew, Gentile nor pagan, Hindu nor Buddhist. They simply are human, perfect in their innocence, perfect in their form, and perfect in their faith; for they have no faith, yet they have nothing but faith.

Newborns have perfect faith in as much as they have none except in what is to be expected. They expect nourishment from their mothers, solace from their fathers, and structure from their families. They have faith it will come, and look toward each other with a perfect unbiased humanity as innocent as it is profound.

Then we allow adults to ruin the image of perfection. Installed tradition, contempt, and new kinds of faith are taught from the beginning of our lives. We become, by the very nature of our societal structure, imperfect.

State of Love and Trust 2

State of love and trust
as I busted down the pretext
sin still plays and preaches
but to have an empty court

The pretext of love and trust…to first look at the definition of both.

The accepted definition of love is “a strong affection for another rising out of desire or kinship.” Desire or kinship , rather uniquely human emotions closely tied to ego, a matter of form that is the source of all suffering in the world. In order to have desire or kinship with another, you must first identify with that other and the feelings of love of that other. That identity denotes ego, and all forms of ego eventually lead to suffering.

The accepted definition of trust is “a reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something.” This reliance is a form of ego, of identification with the form of something or someone, which also denotes the eventuality of suffering at some level at some time.

The accepted definition of a relationship is “a romantic or passionate attachment.” Therefore, as an attachment to the form of romance or passion is egoic, it can be said easily that all matters of relationship will, at some time or another, lead to suffering.

In this, all matters in the State of Love and Trust, including the relationship to which it can be said these matters pertain, are egoic and will eventually lead to suffering. That is as long as we identify with these forms. It is easily understood that there can be two types of love, because love in it’s purest sense is the absence of self, the absence of ego, and the absence of form. When this occurs, love creates no expectations like the issues of trust, it just is as perfect as the Creator who made it.

When that pure form of love is attained, the folly of sin, literally defined as “missing the mark”, plays “to the empty court”, in that no true form of love can be effected by sin (also an egoic state of judgment). Sure there will still be sin, and there will still be preachers, as the egoic state of form will still exist in the minds of many who cannot live without it, but to those who endure the truest sense of love, there is no need for the form of trust, of rules, of expectations.

So, to say that trust is the thread of all relationships is to doom the relationship to failure. It’s to stitch the fabric of love with a thread of air.

Take a look at the essence of a relationship. We become attached or “in love” (the state of ego that attaches oneself to another). In this attachment, since it is all ego, we create expectations in ourselves of how that other is to behave, to act, and to treat us. We wish to enforce that attachment by finding proof that the attachment is mutual, and that proof is found in the rules and boundaries we create that bolster our need for confidence. So, in this we have “trust” that the other who shares our attachment will forever honor those matters of form (boundaries) that we have created. Since this is egoic in nature, the only thing we can really have confidence in with surety is that at some time, some day, we will suffer the consequence of not only setting those boundaries, but also of having them set on us.

At that point the thread of air starts to evaporate, and the pieces begin to fall apart. It may be a minor tear, or it could be a devastating one, depending on the strength of the boundary and the strength of the force that crossed it.

Promises and/or a vows also are very egoic. They are actions of the form of power, as to say “I have the power to get this done and it will be done.” Now, unless you are all-powerful, you cannot say that you, at any time, have complete control. So therefore, in the egoic nature of a promise, you are introducing suffering into the situation for both the promiser and the promisee. So it is quite easy to say that if you make promises, you are going to suffer or cause suffering (or even perhaps both) at some point in some way. Introduce trust that the promise will be kept, and you sure magnify the suffering. Introduce trust and promises into a relationship that involves love and you have a recipe for disaster.

To simplify things, become aware that a promise is a matter of form that should be eliminated from your Being. You are not all powerful, so there is not one promise whose outcome you are in control of. Even if you promise something you are 100% certain of, you could be wrong. For instance, if a man promises someone else that “I am a man”, the promiser could be wrong, depending on what the definition of “a man” the promisee holds to be true. If my definition of a man is someone who has no children, and my father promises me he is a man, he would have broken his promise because both the promise and the foundation of it are tied to form, which is very dynamic and readily changed.

You should also not “trust” in anything except the present moment. This moment is the pure form of truth in that it is not tied to form. You should resolve to be “true” to yourself, and to not tie in your baggage (i.e. boundaries, expectations) to others. You should not recognize the promises of others as absolute, as they are beyond their control, but rather see them as egoic and easily manipulated. You should see vows as not concrete, but rather fluctuating as all things of form are. Therefore, you are not setting yourself or the promiser to the suffering the promise itself will cause.

You should also not identify with the egoic state of love. To judge something is to lower something else. To love something in ego is to love something else less. Rather, find your way of discovering the pure form of love, in which you love all things equally. When you say to yourself that it is impossible, understand that you are hearing your ego talking, not your true Being. You must understand that it is easy to love a tree as much as your children; you do not love the children less, you love the tree more.

In the pure sense of love, you do not identify with anything of form. You don’t identify with the cute ass of your lover, or their hairstyle, or their sexual ability. Your ego does, but the true sense of being does not. If they were to fail your ego, the true sense of love does not fade and the crossing of the boundaries of ego does not create suffering.

Finally, it is true to believe that if the pure, egoless state of love replaced the egoic “trust” as the thread that binds all relationships, there would be no suffering – no anger, no pain, no sorrow. Trust in things are as they should be as long as the ego has not created them – that is the pure sense of trust. Find kinship in the pure form of love and trust – in that you find the pure form of relationship.

To that end I close with a poem from Hafiz, a great Sufi poet:

 

Even after all this time
The sun never says to the earth,
“You owe Me.”

Look what happens
with a love like that,
It lights the Whole Sky.

The Issue of Purpose

We often banter about our life’s purpose. What are we here for? What is our reason for being? To some, that reason is to worship God. To others, it is to be successful in all that they do. However, when on your deathbed, would you consider yourself finished with anything you can possibly consider your “purpose”?

The short answer is probably not. When once asked what I considered my life’s purpose to be, I replied “to live in the service of others”. Yet daily I see myself failing in this purpose as well as succeeding. In the great paradox of the universe, success cannot exist without failure, so in order to experience one you must surely experience the other. So, if I fail so readily at “my life’s purpose”, can it really be my purpose at all?

The continuance of the short answer makes it a rather lengthy one. In doing some research, both from the external and the internal perspective, it has become quite clear that we have two purposes. One, the outer purpose, is the purpose we serve in our natural egoic state of needed something to succeed at. In this, we can never succeed, because anything rooted in ego is doomed to failure and to illicit suffering. My outer purpose is to live in the service of others, and in that I will surely find failure and success. I will do my best daily to serve others, to help where possible. I will succeed, and I will fail. I will experience glory, and eventually as with all outer purpose – suffering.

Similarly, the “praise God” purpose will offer success and failure if it is the outer purpose. That is why the Bible instructs us to keep our “light under a basket”, which could simply be a metaphor for converting an outer purpose to an “inner purpose”.

The inner purpose is quite different from the outer purpose. It involves awareness and consciousness, meaning complete dedication to the present moment. It turns whatever you are doing at that present moment into your life’s purpose. For instance, when you are walking across a room to get a book, your purpose is walking across the room (not getting the book). When you reach the book, your purpose is to get the book. And when you begin reading it, that becomes your purpose. There can be no success or failure in inner purpose, and their can be no loss of significance of each moment, of each purpose. There is no ego involved in the inner purpose, and since it is all about the event of the present moment, it can change quite quickly.

For instance, I used to be a specialize rescue technician. My life’s purpose could quickly change from grilling burgers for the family to rappelling down a 50-foot shaft and skirting out an icy pond. Each individual moment is your life’s purpose. The end result – the rescue – is the outer purpose, yet each individual moment in that effort is the inner purpose.

I once read an article of a spelunker who was repelling into a 250′ canyon to explore some caves. He apparently was a very experienced at rappelling, spelunking, and rock climbing. It became his purpose to explore some particularly dangerous caves, and his death became the subject of a lesson to all of us who took part in such activities: don’t become so engrossed in the success of your goal (outer purpose) to forget the minute details of each moment of it (inner purpose). Although each moment of his inner purpose happened exactly as it was ordained to, he ultimately failed in his outer purpose because of a lack of awareness, that moment when ego took over and mistakes were made.

Apparently the drop to the canyon floor was 250 feet, but our explorer only had 150′ of rope. Now, a common practice in rappelling is to tie off the end of your rope for two reasons: first, so that your rope bag stays at the end and second so that you cannot rappel past it. He apparently thought he had 250′ plus of rope, and only found out how wrong he was when his brake (he was using a figure 8) ran out of rope and he fell 100 feet to his death.

Now I am positive that while he was on rope he was very in tune to each moment, we all are. He checked his rigging, his harness, his light, all of his gear. He was very in tune with his surroundings, very true to his inner purpose. Each movement went slowly in his mind. He served his life’s purpose with each move, and as he realize he had quite literally reached the end of his rope, he served his life purpose in the end of his earthly existence. He failed in his outer purpose, and much suffering came of this failure, but each moment of his inner purpose was as it was meant to be.

If you take any form of outer purpose (all outer purpose is of form) and apply it to this man’s life, he would sure have failed (that is, unless his outer purpose was to die in a rappelling accident that could have been easily avoided). If glorifying God was his purpose, would he have succeeded? Probably not, as since the action of “glorifying God” is egoic, it is subject to judgment as to what is success or failure, so the measuring stick can be quite different depending on who you talk to. If his life’s purpose was “the service of man”, would he have succeeded? Probably not, since that too is egoic in nature so one cannot measure it’s success. However, if you break down each moment near the end of his life, did he succeed in inner purpose? Of course he did, for you cannot fail in purpose of each moment even if the purpose of your final moment is to die.

Inner purpose, because it involves awareness, cannot be of form so it cannot be egoic. To quantify it as “success” is unnecessary, just as describing water as “wet” is unnecessary. It is how it is, and the ultimate success is in whether or not you are aware of it. Your inner purpose never changes in the fact that it is always as it is, only your level of awareness of it can change.

Right now, my life’s purpose is to complete this post. Then it will change. I can’t wait to see where it takes me.

What you feel is life, what you live is another story.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox

Join other followers:

%d bloggers like this: