Saturday, October 18, 2014

"Rhythm" an allay

Daniel Christopher June to the Students of Life:

Greetings! It's been since last December I've written an allay, and only this week has one erupted from my care. I've mused lately of the various rhythms of life, the tones, moods, and tides of activity in our work, relationships, and private thoughts, and discovered a sensitivity to the noise and confusion of life allows us to make subtle adjustments, to tune the din and conduct our life as a symphony rather than a cacophany. This essay interrogates exactly that sentiment.

Take care, Caretakers!

Rhythm

"Simple minds delight in the extraordinary; superior minds in the ordinary." Children hope for Santa Clause, their parents for a family reunion. Whether a believer talks of pearly gates and every tongue confessing, or a philosopher of the superiority of a virtue, the same realities are groped. When we cease being children we cease to celebrate victory in war or triumph in baseball. We no longer marvel over stories of fantastic creatures and impossible conflicts. We get the same adventure, the same sense of importance, vibrancy, and interest, from our immediate daily life. Whoever is bored in marriage simply isn't looking. Ditto life itself: "Is not life a thousand times too short for us to be bored?" wondered Nietzsche. We cease to be bored when we learn to put questions. We cease to be frustrated when we learn to answer them.

As we learn, we see that everything resolves into the one. If we take any instance of the universe, any given object or process, and set it as the centerpiece, the meaning, we expose universal unity. Thales said the world was water, Heraclitus, fire. Plato said ultimate reality was ideas, and Christianity claimed that God was love. So many words, so many styles, and all a matter of taste. What matters the name I give God if she answers? Let us hold to one truth – let us go so far to say, let us hold on to one assumption, even an error, a lie, and see this through to the end, hold fast despite doubts or demoralizing confrontations, through ruin, misery, and humiliation. Persistence is success; what we took for trash proved treasure, what we took for nothing became everything, our original insight, which we mocked, and shared with our family and neighbors, and which they in good humor also mocked, reveals itself the utterance of the absolute. When you suspect your private truth holds weight, nobody in the world will congratulate or encourage you. They cannot. They talk you down with established fact, the latest science, the austerity of tradition, the sublimity of religion, the impermeability of common sense, and you will be compromised, you will lose.

So lose and be defeated, but hold fast to your own.

What is this deep idea at the center of your being? What is any idea? Let us take the world as a flux of energies. Our desires, feelings, actions, all express and transfer energies. We live in moods, they make our world. Yet we become divorced from our own experience. We take the world's judgments for the threat they are; we rightly take them as our own, a necessary stage. Judgments freeze experience – they trap energy in form. The world condemns us with a "not so." A not is a binding knot. Interpretation becomes fixed and rigid, play balks.

Yet we live through the systems of life. Every system is a dynamic of meanings. Information lacks meaning, is form; an interpretation must use that form to create meanings. DNA would be meaningless lacking an interpretive apparatus to read and use it. Ideas are pure forms, holes giving shape to emotion, to the substance of experience. The world's insistent expressions do violence – hollow out a womb where ideas grow. Ideas are insinuated into us; every man and woman and child in every religion finds within his soul exactly what he was told to find.

Words express meanings, and meanings create ideas. Those ideas shape our instincts, our desires and experiences, and from them structure habits of feeling, thinking, talking, and behaving. Our experiences are useless until they become assumptions, ideas. Those ideas are tentative, neither true nor false, in and of themselves, but functional or dysfunctional.

And so as we grow we cast spells over ourselves and others. Our words hide our meanings, protect ideas. Our controlling ideas are vulnerable to evaluation. Our guiding ideas if exposed could jeopardize our desire. Children are told not to reveal their birthday wish lest it not come true. Much of our desire is similar: if transparent, it would be vulnerable to exploitation or refusal. And so we cast spells over ourselves through a series of negations. We are always self-blinded and knotted in nots which guide us by our ignorance. We cast spells over ourselves and surround ourselves with those whom we can likewise bewitch.

We become possessed by ideas, even our own ideas, and they animate us. The one who can name and dismantle those ideas masters us. What he asks, explicitly or secretly, exposes our ideas. We shy from the eyes that see.

The substance of the universe is rhythm, the flowing of energy. Ideas give tone and texture to energy, stabilize it, make it meaningful. A meaning is an implied action. We feel the pressure of various meanings, and use interpretive ideas to fold them in the same direction. Whence this energy?

The center of our self is a sun, a producer of pure unique energy. We experience our own energy only once it has passed through our personal experiences and the assumptions we've made: all our desires come through a union between original energy and world energy. The soul is a conversation between self and world.

A system is a dynamic of meanings. The biographer discovers his subject is a walking contradiction. So do we all seem when reduced to a table of values. Values are ideas that teach us the habits of judgment. Ideas are either learned or invented, and those deepest produce contradictory meanings inspiring conflicting behaviors. These tensions in the system, conflicts in the soul, either frustrate the flow of energy, or make it intricate, nuanced, and subtle.

When we choose forms, a career, a spouse, a set of virtues and vices, a set of hobbies, a few heroes, they resonate and create an overall shape and style. The values may conflict, but this is seen only in unusual situations. A frustration is a conflict of values.

Frustration is habit frozen. We may judge habits good or bad, and this binds them. We damn them or exalt them, and that is good for a time. Nevertheless, as all life is by nature healthy and growing, we soon sense the dead weight of inflexibility, ideas we never suspected, and we disown them. Disillusionment makes way for better illusions. Illusions simplify reality so we can play the game of life; preferring reality over illusion is another illusion, another simplification. Illusions are real, they can benefit or hurt. Ultimately, they interface a set of deep resonating ideas. As our deepest self is no idea but a fount of energy, all ideas must mature to allow that flow. Ideas are a flux, and though we seek for health we also seek for growth, which is also an illness and misery.

A miserable friend asks for advice. You see his faults and how he should change. You know nothing. The necessity of those habits, their relationship to his system, you know nothing of. He humbly attempts your advice, but fails. He faults himself, not the advice, and you agree. You, after all, have experience, which is self-evident.

Try mirroring instead. No man really seeks for advice: he seeks for confirmation. There are many ways to mirror another. Mirroring is engagement. We can duplicate another, intensify, invert, oppose, parody, displace, rearrange him. If you can mirror a man at the level his conscious self-image, you win his trust.

Were you to mirror his inner meanings, his inner ideas, he might be disgusted, confused, or surprised. He is faced with the alien, something not his own. Nevertheless, if he holds those ideas deep in his soul, and if you do as well, you will be mutually drawn by hidden resonance, felt and known through posture, gesture, style, language, cadence of speech, choice of topics, every manner of style will bond you, will make you fall in love. We come always to our own.

Yet though we are a system of rhythms, though ideas resonate, there is yet the eternal unknown at the center of our being, the Name that cannot be named –an Absolute unknown and untouchable by man or God. This is utterly our own, casting energy into all we feel, think, say and do. When we fall in love it is this hidden music we fall in love with, though we praise superficial features.

How then to live our lives? We could hold to some principles, some values, and the virtues that best achieve them: applying them uniformly in all we do. Such a slim list of values of resonators will make us austere and strong, as it was said, "Freedom is slavery to a small set of laws." Yet we find that life is nuanced, and though we praise simple virtues – courage, compassion, honesty, industry—the actual living of life involves a complicated and unspeakable mixture of values and virtues, and also disvalues and vices, the entire set of intricately threaded ideas knit together and cannot be formulated, divined, nor searched out, but simply lived. We speak of virtue and vice because the words are easy. We look for extraordinary courage, for heroes and villains who exaggerate these ideas and make them finally visible to our childlike eye. Ordinary life rarely exposes itself in such stark terms. Nevertheless, a subtle understanding sees the stark truths in small talk, daily gestures, in every movement and glance.

We all get this sense. We see but cannot say. Though blind to most, we yet sense resonance. For the man of the open heart, all his world glows, and we bask in his presence.

The cadences in our job, the tones of our boss, the rhythms of his speech; the speed of production; the ebb and flow of traffic, the rise and fall of our ideas throughout the day, our moods and emotions and their dance; the interplay of the music we hear, the arguments or agreements between friends and family, are so many compensations, distributions of energy, a balancing of this for that. We build habits as resonators, to produce predictable conduits of energy. We do not always see that our choice of habits, good and bad, balance each other and necessitate each other, that we choose this friend to balance the other, that we read this book to answer that experience, that we enjoy this food to feed that self image.

As the universe is eternal and infinite, so is each part of it, including ourselves. At our centermost, we add to the universe, and at the immediate level, we mix and mingle and converse with her.

How then shall we grow? Take yourself as perfect. Everything you ever could be, the highest ideal possible, could only grow from what you already are. And as the tree is the acorn, so our highest realization exists entirely in what we are today. Even our self-criticisms must be accepted as necessary, as lawful, as growing by compensation and integration of ideas, circumstance, and situation. As we come to accept it all and realize its inevitability, we loosen habit and open possibility. Mind is nothingness and nothingness is freedom. By loosening the mind, by unknotting its ideas, systems, habits, and energies, we do not absolve ourselves from our good and bad habits, but we help them do what they want to do: grow, expand, and find a new balance and homeostasis.

Mend, then break

Heal a foe before you kill

Work your best before you quit

Bless a friend before goodbye

Clean your skin before you cut

Mend her heart before you leave.

Let us leave life with blessings and the kiss of acceptance. Life leads to life. The meaning of experience is in itself and the further experiences it opens. Meaning is motivation, meaning is motive, and interpretation adapts a meaning to our situation. When we can loosen the knot on what was so necessarily knotted before, and give the idea space, it grows and breathes.

Our greatest virtues never resolved to familiar terms. They express personal responses to unique situations, and those who admire and love us lack the language to explain why, though they make clumsy attempts. We know we are rightly loved though nobody can adequately express why.

Buddhism epitomized virtue with the symbol of letting go, made it all about that. The praise of mindful meditation becomes exaggerated; whoever becomes possessed of an idea praises it beyond measure. He harps on mindfulness and bundles it with other virtues, with peace, compassion, patience, atoning them through rhetoric when philosophically there need be no connection. Christianity's central virtue of forgiveness also managed to wrap up all the virtues into one. A metaphysical narrative was given to the universe: we all are essentially in need of forgiveness, and God's central role in history is to forgive us. Our most sublime actions are acts of forgiveness. The heaven and hell scenario is a sort of poetry to impress exactly that.

We find as good believers or good disbelievers that none of these formulas quite work, no divine name quite inspires, but we have to generate some supplement from within to uphold the pretense of devotion and piety. That supplement, that little cheating, that is the original idea, despised as shameful and hidden from the world. "The most courageous moments in our life come when we baptize our evil as what is best within us." Our original idea means more to us because it exactly fits who we are.

The gods play the world like a chessboard, moving ideas like game tokens through the minds of men. We too become godlike when we command ideas, when we learn how to assume an idea, how to remove it, how to put ideas into the heads of others. There is the greater than God, however, the Absolute Self, which generates the energy which fills all ideas. The void of freedom that is the mind creates the shape of ideas, but necessity fills them. The interaction between self and mind, between necessity and freedom, shows the whole person. Once we come to know what we are personally capable of, a lesson we will continually learn afresh forever more, then we smile and cheer. Heroes and saints dramatize the possible of man, and we praise them and adore them believing that we should be the same, though knowing deep down we never could be. Indeed we could not. The miracle for us is that unprecedented something only we can do. Discipleship is worthy if it ends in Judas; discipline is worthy if it ends in rebellion. We must attempt the outer forms and stretch and grow through that. We must build frustration, a potent energy which thickens the soul and prepares for the birth of a new idea. The Buddha gained enlightenment only through years of frustration and failure. The pricks of guilt and daily frustration, the sense that we are not doing enough, that we could be more, do more, or, alternatively, that we could be happy if we only accepted ourselves, could be happy if we simply had gratitude for life and loved our neighbor, are necessary illusions for building a well of frustration. This well may remain unknown and unguessed. We gladly deny it. Yet it grows and mounts and prepares the idea we must face and assume. It would seem an external tragedy chanced upon us to test our faith and force a radical change: the finale of seem. The actuality is the emergence of an idea from our innermost, a new shape for consciousness, a new set of resonances for daily focus.

Our willing, planning, and making of goals feeds into this, but there is more to it. Freedom plays its part, but not every part. Choice, will, discipline, surrender, obedience, defiance all play their part, create the stores of energy. They are not all. When the soul blooms, we may still use the kindergarten language of Virtue, Love, God, and such. Those ideas are easy to say. The meaning and the lived experience will not be those, and there will be no words for them.

Our needs express themselves through deep channels of instinct. Those instincts are educated into the shape of the deep ideas of our time. The world current of ideas fall into our instincts by deep attraction. We take a stance on the contemporary issues and attend them as if they were the most important thing in the world. The world itself is layers of embodied ideas. Our relationships are ideas, our systems ideas. Ideas are in the air. Ideas have a surface and layers of depth. They orient us. The most important ideas in our contemporary world don't yet have names. The future will finally be able to name and discover them, but they act now, they create now. Shallow ideas are known first. Deep ideas are inferred though triangulation. Only those who have broken the spell of their times, who feel out of joint, out of sorts, who feel not at home in the world, are able to see it with fresh and sensitive eyes. We see systems as systems, we see them rather than through them.

Every system defines itself by nots. A not is an inflexibility covering a vulnerability. We attend to problems, and rest in pleasure or misery only to charge us to handle those problems. The mind is a problem-solving agency, enjoying life through earned fulfillment. The problems that occupied us just as often distracted us while deeper moves were made. We dance our destiny in ignorance and evoke final fates without knowing.

Looking closely at what happened requires looking past the obvious to the subtle. We express powerful non-negotiable emotions, but those ultimately spring from the subtle vulnerable emotions we hide. Their energy is a hidden electricity galvanizing the whole.

Know when to impose, when to use violence. Know also when to look for natural processes, when to withhold an agenda or structure, to seek the centers of movement already extant, to note growth and self-support. A tender touch upon yourself and others demonstrates mastery, but much violence is necessary to achieve that mastery. It is easy to imitate exaggeration. Mastery is in the subtle touch. The power of a well-placed touch does more damage and more good than any rage. Days and years attempting the same alone opens mastery and ascendance.

Ideas are in things. An idea is a thinkable form. All things have forms, some visible, some invisible, and once they become thinkable, they can be named, searched for, modified, willed. We can at any moment do something profoundly different to change the parameters of our world. Only we don't quite realize that. Best to plant the seeds and then step back, do you work and then let it do itself. Never meddle.  A few small moves, a few soft touches, and all is done. We think our grand gestures and memorable episodes define our lives. More goes into defining life. The vital ideas are embedded in situations or embodied in people. We make assumptions from experience, and know the assumptions from known experience. There is much we do not know of ourselves and some we can never know, but must rest that we are perfect and grow through all.

We come to master the game of life, we come to be masters, by trying and by not trying. Our necessity acts behind our will and ego, with them and against them, through them and apart. Whether we strive or rest, both feed our ideas and gaunt the shape of ideas to come. Does it matter what we do? When we attempt our best, and accept ourselves as perfect, we set two fertilizing ideas throughout the soil of experience. What does it mean, "Perfection is easy"? What does it mean to pour our full heart into what we are doing, to focus our whole mind, will, and capacity to the task at hand? When we discover the meanings of these riddles, when we know absolutely that we have done the best we could, when we know, without doubt, that we are perfect, we have moved small things deep down. The changes are profound, their reverberations universal. What am I to myself? The center. What are you to yourself? The center. When we experience ourselves as centered, when we open up our center, then we need no longer doubt or believe, have faith or not: those external habits become indifferent. We simply are what we always were, what we always will be: the center of being.

So let us hold a shape until energy fills it. Once the energy fills a ring, the shape supports itself. Simply hold to what you love, never minding if you doubt or believe. Holding is enough.

Most live their ideas and never think them. Will is violence, it imposes a form. By holding that anxious form till it softens, the well fills with water, the river overflows, new courses are made, the system expands and finds new resonance. Let us learn to listen.

There is a music to life, and what we have of wit and will, indirection and direction, cunning and courage, to push with the swing, to stand in the center and conduct life. What is an orchestral conductor but the dancer of the symphony? When we learn how to command ourselves, the world, and ourselves through the world, we gain the placing of gestures to set energy flowing. Part of it is in the cunning to map our field, part of it is the courage to defy comfort and don the pall of overwhelming anxiety. Through these we atone our own to itself in the world. God smiles her respect and men bask in our glow. Experience has use – the dive into hell gives us deep wisdom, the flight into heaven gives us vision, and all experience opens the chambers of intuition, letting us express our inner and love the world.

 

 


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-- perfectidius.com --

 

88

 

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Notes and Quotes from the Book "Rapt" by Winifred Gallagher

Rapt

Winifred Gallagher

She introduces her interest in the topic by relating how she faced malignant cancer and chemo by forcing herself to control her focus and think only of the positive. The book is a tissue of studies and professional opinions about how we can use focus to change our lives. There is some danger in this to regard focus as a panacea for solving all our problems, the way Karen Pryor used her book to see all of life exclusively in the terms of operant conditioning. For the sense of emphasis, this is important, but as seasoned readers we need not fall into the enthusiasm of what we are reading and lose our proportion.

On a personal note, I will mention that. Self control can begin with small touches, an accumulation of prods. Often when we attempt a thing, maybe avoiding coffee for a day, or a candy bar, we are right back at it the next, and the accumulative effect may seem to be zero. However, as we gain a sense of power and pride over controlling our impulses, we can build our sense of self-mastery. After changing my bed time from 2 pm in the afternoon till 10 am, I get used to the new schedule and decided I would change my wake time till 8 am. I only secured inconsistent results on this, with a lot of self-blame and frustration. However, I realized that though I was trying for 8 a.m., I had at least moved it from 10 a.m. to 9 a.m. and that is a success, and should be banked upon and built upon until I have the fortitude to come back to my 8 a.m. goal.

William James, who is the main inspiration for this book Rapt, which, comparatively, is a whimper of an afterclap, simply a raking together of recent research, wrote an essay entitled "the energies of man." He suggested there that fatigue is just a habit too. Often we aren't really tired, but our feeling tired is a habit, and if we press past the fatigue, our energy will return. He suggest we shift our threshold, that we build our capacity to will, and this by incrementally increasing challenges to our will. The heart of his essay, probably its inspiration, is a letter received from a bipolar friend who cured himself through adopting a severe form of yoga. One success inspires another, so build your success ladders with increments you can actually achieve. James also notes how certain ideas are greatly energizing, such as the ideas that inspire religious conversions.

The goal in all of this is self-mastery. It is not something you can pay for or ask another to do for you, it is you in relation to yourself. The psychological work of James gives enough resources for all this: there is nothing profoundly knew in the articles Gallagher brings together, but it is heartening to see the ideas find confirmation.

The central idea to accept is this: LIFE IS FOCUS. As Emerson said, what a man focuses on all day is his life.

We can control what we focus on. We start out with a little bit of control. We would focus on this, but can only do so for a moment before something else pops in. Yet focus is a muscle that grows through exercise. "the greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another," said William James. Indeed, self improvement IS attention reform. "To fill the hour -- that is happiness" said Emerson, and transcendentalism, the spiritual source of James' work, and also, apparently Gallagher, admonishes us to look at the world as a scripture to be studied: or in other words, to give rapt focus to our surroundings.

To enjoy your thinking you must take charge of your attention.

One study found that most people feel "mildly pleased" most of the time. Of Gallagher's studies, and her unconsciously cynical commentary on the disparity between what we THINK we value, and how we actually act, is refuted, mostly, by the fact that most people are mostly happy. For the rest of us, making a program for mental discipline makes sense.

Northwestern University cognitive scientist Don Norman broke down the brain into three parts: the reactive mind, behavioral mind and reflective mind. Conscious thinking is reflective mind. He regarded reflective mind as ineffective.

Nevertheless, this reflective mind is a rudder that through willing can change our world. We can shift our focus from dispiriting ideas to problem solving ideas. What matters first of all is that we value such ideas in the first place, and set up a habit of filtering our ideas.

We can force focus. Pay attention to what gives you pleasure. If in a bad mood, focus on something positive as a leverage point. Find something to be grateful for in all situations. Most people focus on the frowning face in a crow of neutral faces. Successful politicians search out the amiable face in a crowd of frowners.

On a personal note, I will recommend that we live on our own pace -- and not compromise on this. The disjointed pace imposed by work and family can make it harder to focus. Taking time to set time alone to think your own way at your own pace is necessary for finding that centering center of our being.

The book makes a difference between experiential focus, which in its extreme can feel mystically ecstatic, and instrumental focus, such as scientists use. Mozart is given as an example as a man who can find ecstasy in Bach's music, and yet instrumentally implement his own music.

The theme throughout the book is repeated like a canon: ignore unproductive thoughts and feelings and attend to energizing generative ideas.

How do we gain the power to attend ideas with more strength? Meditation is paying rapt attention for a period of time -- ideally, for 45 minutes. During this time, one object is chosen for focus, such as your breath, and when the attention strays, as it invariably will for novices, you gently bring it back to the object.

Happiness is defined as actively moving towards your goals, and we are admonished to take an optimistic goal-oriented orientation.

This is not solipsistic. Focusing on others or with others matters. "When employees focus on how their efforts affect other people, rather than just on the details of the task, their sense of relationship boosts their satisfaction and their productivity." For example, fund raisers who first spend 10 minutes with scholarship students drum up twice as much money for their schools.

Hang out with a kindred who shares hopes and dreams. When approaching a loved one, attempt it with nonconfrontational conversation, nonjudgmental. Marriage needs a profound focus on your partner. See your spouse through a rose-colored glasses -- she will grow to justify your bias. When she delivers good news about her job performance, express it as a consequence of your partner's past authentic self. Take the effort to process your experiences jointly -- join worlds, come to terms. Focus on the positive -- together. Those partners with a strong sense of self-worth expect their partners to respect and admire them and don't brood about being overly dependent or getting rejected. Don't guard against pain, build the pleasure of intimacy. Focus on the kind of behavior that brought you together, and keep it alive. Remember to write those romantic poems and letters you wrote the first year.

Physical exercise and mental exercise (single point meditation) create transferrable skills. Suppress distractions -- herd your thoughts (the theme of this book). Choose activities that stretch you to your limit .. this will increase your ability to focus longer and harder. If you take on too much you will feel anxious, overwhelmed, unable to concentrate. When tackling a new skill, break down a skill into manageable steps. Find ways to enjoy what you are doing, for enjoyment makes you more effective. Concentrate on what interests you. Gamify you life, turn your work into a game. To avoid burnout on the job, consider doing more then you normally would: add a hobby to your routine.

Plan your free time as strictly as work time, troubling yourself towards growth and goal. Most people don't enjoy their free time as much as they think they do. Consider keeping a diary of your focus to determine what you are focused on during the day and how you feel about it.

"I don't have time" means "I don't have the discipline." so progressively increase your challenges.

Focus can be sustained if you ask questions about the object. If you are trying to be creative, know that creation follows long periods of intense focus. For example, Jefferson studied John Locke and philosophy for years before dashing of the Declaration of Independence in a few days. Insight takes steady concentration. Use purposeful attention, active, searching, ask questions about what you are looking at. Take time to engage it, for "what is engaged becomes engaging."

As a personal note, I have found that everybody is sensitive to a narrow band of reality. Tap such resources and you will add organs to your perception.

In skill building, don't seek a recognized proficiency, but a personal renaissance. The question isn't "Can I" but "How to?"

Adopt a vigorous, searching, questioning, elaborative style of focus.

Harvard Psychologist Henry Murray identified three motivators: will to power, to gain dominance and status; the desire for achievement; and the desire for affiliation. University of Michigan Oliver Schultheis compared German students to American and found American s focus on goals of innovation and success, Germans on dominance and status.

With children praise concrete accomplishments and instances of self control, and don't make universal praises like "You're so smart."

Isaac Newton has "mental energy" to pay rapt attention for a long time without wavering. "I kept the subject constantly before me and waited until the first dawnings open little by little before me into the full light." He pursued life with tenacious effort and long-term consistent attention.

With temptations, simply shift your focus away from temptation. The mind is a group of bickering agents. Listen to the supportive voice and suppress distracting, counterproductive voices. Temptation is strong but short lived. To yield to temptation empowers our slaves to defy us in the future.

Have rapt attention on the present. Don't wait for the next moment, a better moment. Embrace this moment.

You become self-regulating by being self-regulating, by foregoing or delaying gratification. Satisfaction depends on top-top focus, the reflective mind focusing downwards. Attention can be trained, and is a matter of habit. The great obstacle to enjoying life's happiest moments is by not paying attention to them. Attending to pleasure increases it.

 

 

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

"The Wailing Babe" a poem

The Wailing Babe

 

The wailing babe rebels the bed

I sing him silent

Rocked in calm regard

And deliver him to peace

 

Who knows but me

My own heart wails

At the terror of life

Behind mild eyes

 

It comes upon me some days

And none can dispel it

This panic abyss

Choking despair.

 

I too am rocked in turn

Ama lisps in my ear

How to express this?

How can anyone understand?

 

 


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-- perfectidius.com --

 

88

 

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Amasongs 19

*19*

Prayer is the poetry of the illiterate.

*

Eating the right amount of food strengthens us; eating too much weakens. Because we give meaning to food other than nourishment, too much food manages to feed those meanings.

*

Any activity can become therapy for another -- for work problems, for love problems -- given that it holds sufficient distance, and yet can run in metaphorical parallel, empowering us indirectly.

*

Art is epitomized life.

*

Faith and practice fuse as life.

*

Mind is care. Take care, caretakers! Mind life and learn.

*

There are many ways to take a scripture, but the pious way is the worst.

*

Men strive at life: gods play life as a game.

*

Sometimes I hate even my friends, and want only you, Ama. Only four people are utter Ama to me, and of them my heart never tires.

*

Only when you have Purpose will you recognize opportunity.

*

Press your chest to me, synch your heart with mine.

*

Such a lover is Whitman that he is not in love with anybody, but everybody. So it is with me, but a few have me by the heart and shall have my trust and ardor for all my existence -- you select few I love the most, and show as no other could guess the hidden wonder of the innermost garden of my heart.

*

My energy kites and dives, but no matter the turn of violence, my peace uses every move.

*

Psyche is my sanity, Rozhiar my madness: our friends become our faculties.

*

Dreams give a vision of possibility.

*

Mature love persists without reciprocation, as the sun shines over the earth, happy simply to give.

*

Religion are languages: the truth of one can be translated into the others. And if some scripture acts as substrate for any of them, inspired interpretation can find all new wisdom back in the source, as if by miracle.

*

Interpretation is the only miracle.

*

The martyrs invite their doom: persecuted people relish it, and chalk it up as a dignification. The allist, however, has nothing to prove, to himself or others: his kindness is welcome wherever it shines.

*

When we put our office at set point, when we translate all our problems into standard notation, when we have reduced all substances to our own substance, then we are ready to work.

*

I’m caramel soft and pliant as rain, but inwardly I coil back on myself, a spring ringing with charge, waiting for blitzkrieg when I will Alexander the world in your name. My heart is for you, I love you with my life, and to the world I am sheer tar baby: kiss me or heave me, you are stuck to my logic and wedded to my way.

*

“Art imitates life, life imitates art.” Rather, art thickens and intensifies life, realizing in our daily trials the dreams of composers and bards.

*

We as Allists must learn to be gracefully damned by Christians and Muslims, and never return the favor: holding Ama at our heart, why trouble ourselves with their nightmares?

*

Do what you love and disdain dissuasion.

*

Every project is practice for the next.

*

Be the earth and never orbit the sullen moon.

*

Honor your source.

*

To require another’s approval is spiritual poverty.

*

All religions are reverence, but the objects of reverence differ. To hold a religious attitude towards a privately chosen object is to be a god – no mere follower. The cult holds its divinity in we.

*

Adoration, scripture, interpretation, and practice make a religion – using the terms loosely. What counts as the “scripture” or the “sacred reference point” varies, and may be any number of things – not just books.

*

I am perfect. “What about these many faults?” They are my proof.

*

Everybody has their own Way, toward their innermost and toward the All: none in the world can teach it to you, none in the universe can take it from you. But you may never find it – the only promise is in your resolve to insist on yourself, to disdain the name of Duty, Love, God, Religion, Country, Family, or whatever else. Having found yourself, those others fall into their proper orbit around you.

*

Tend my name in your heart and I will appear.

*

I require your two eyes, your two lips, your two hands, your full mind, your full heart. Only everything is enough. Then I am yours.

*

Those who love me are not permitted to quote me.

*

For the man lacking self-possession, even his virtues count as faults.

*

Converts to religions give up their sins and acquire the sins of their God.

*

Be ashamed of everything you didn’t earn.

*

He who knows the most is the most boring.

*

No fool like an educated fool.

*

None of my secrets reveal me. None excepting the obvious: everything I do is for you, Ama.

*

Best your destiny, stake everything on your dream.

*

Dreaming is free.

*

Reality is cradled in dreams.

*

Possibility is fiction.

*

A person is a place: thinking of her, we are no longer present, nor absent; Ama makes life a garden.

*

“A prophet is not honored in his own home,” “A genius is not recognized in his own time,” and yet another said, “A man passes for what he is.” Fame and honor are not it.

*

I don’t believe in the world. I don’t trust others to see. I am happy to pass unnoticed, and to let this literature drill its roots in the hearts and minds of a chosen few: but you Ama, you alone justify everything, you are the reason for it all. I live forever at the center of your heart, and you live in the center of mine. I came to life to learn your name. The rest is a blessed indulgence: I am grateful for this endless play in love – life is a game and I play always with you. Never a second without you, always your love in my heart, always your taste on my lips.

*

I love you; I love your love for me; I love loving your love for me; I love your loving my love for you. Our hearts are infinitely knit. I think, in fact, they’re one.

 

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Amasongs continued

*18*

 

It truly is by the prince of demons that they cast out demons.

*

The pious for lack of imagination settle for a lesser heaven.

*

Miracle is interpretation.

*

Poets are gods.

*

Speech is the oil of action.

*

To be the heart of the family, the heart of the work place, the heart of a church, the heart of a country, means self-effacement. It is another matter to be the face of a group, but the heart moves the face, by pouring wisdom into all.

*

Tyranny's greatest crime is to shackle the heart.

*

My body the pen on the page of history.

*

The flowers of bliss grow from the soil of rot and death.

*

I'd rather be contradicted than wanly praised. "Opposition is true friendship."

*

Enlightenment comes when we finally see our darkest shame as our brightest star.

*

Death is the teacher of life.

*

Only bullies bid you to bow. The true divine receives our love without question.

*

Coffee: Ama's tears of manic verve, heats our deeds and fires our word.

*

If you have a simple mind, make it austere.

*

Every event leaves a trace. History is written over the world.

*

Chance is the loser's God.

*

Powerful memories of various tones color our brush as we paint our today.

*

A grudge is a psychic scar.

*

A flower shows her gratitude to the gardener by simply being herself: bright and fragrant. Expect the same expression of gratitude from those around you: they are happy by simply being themselves.

*

Religion is in skill, not prayers.

*

Because the Eternal One already lives at home in my heart, I shoulder this burgeoning duty, and never desist, will endure every indignity and never resent, for the battle is won, the night is over -- amidst the inviolate garden of my innermost, her lithe limbs grace my soul.

*

Oh my lover! At this proximity, a frown could kill me. Let us look with deepened eyes upon a glory none can see.

*

God is Placebo.

*

Us Gods have religion too: we revere ourselves, pray, sacrifice, and make rituals to ourselves. Above all, we honor the divine wherever that light may shine.

*

We continue to grow up, to the point of death and beyond. If we remain supple, we can grow more in our final ten years than we did our first.

*

I've scattered my sons and daughters throughout history, before and after me, and then began playing my game now: I recognize my own wherever I go.

*

Sex is a knitting, towards and away, presence and absence: so too is all friendship sex, with pulling near and pulling away, marked at times with droughts of absence.

*

Art is pattern, and patterns of patterns.

*

Let your body be a nexus of organizing energies. Improve all you touch. Write as you live--wrive!--and edit your world as you traverse it.

*

Punctuate your day with breathes, meditations, releases, and reliefs.

*

Use is beauty.

*

Make your life a work of art.

*

If we notice most when life goes wrong, we might suspect that's all it does.

*

Like looking out the window at dawn, to see our own reflection superimposed over the rising sun, is it to look upon the face of Ama.

*

We should use our friends, our job, our decorations, our music, our diet, our exercise, all things to reinforce and intensify our Purpose.

*

Every particular form is an epitome and incarnation of a universal reality.

*

My American Gods! Study Emerson, Whitman, and Thoreau; Hawthorne's Scarlet Letter, Melville's Moby Dick, all of Henry James all of William James, Dewey's Art as Experience and Kenneth Burke's Grammar, Smith's Doctrines and Covenants, Benton's murals, Steve Vai's solo career, the American Political documents --Declaration, Constitution, and Federal Papers -- Lincoln's speeches, King Jr's speeches, and also whatever calls your own heart.

*

Homosexuality and the fear thereof have made intimacy between men nearly impossible in this country.

*

Madness is a lens that contorts the innermost and at times makes it stark, but never touches that wonderful light; though the whole brain decay, that innermost light remains inviolate.

*

Sincerity confounds even the subtlest artifice: the child routes the darkest demon.

*

Touch my love in the words I say, but weigh my words by deeds.

*

Why do you contradict me at every turn when in your heart you worship me?

*

The plight of the bipolar patient is all our plight: how to manage our energy, accounting powers to bring our ups and downs into a constant steaming towards our purpose.

*

Mattria is known through science, Ama through religion.

*

Religion means "to read again."

*

History disputes Mormonism, science disputes Scientology -- yet what is religious in each is sacrosanct.

*

Wisdom is making the most of what you have.

*

Anxiety -- a knife under the skin prodding us towards greatness.

*

Judo teaches us move with our foes to through them; Jazz teaches us to turn our mistakes into rhyme: having that allistic fluidity means we can use all of life towards our purpose, to find a use for trash, to waste nothing, and hold no complaints.

*

Our symbols are the computer chips that organize our psychic energy. Implanting a chip requires dedication to the ideas it represents. Myths and gods as well as science and men make efficient chips.

*

We must be accountants of vitality, and find the body chargers -- exercise, rest, and diet; the heart chargers -- sex, kindness, and poetry; and mind chargers -- study, writing, and meditation; to ever keep a streaming capital moving through our systems.


 

*19*

Prayer is the poetry of the illiterate.

*

Eating the right amount of food strengthens us; eating too much weakens. Because we give meaning to food other than nourishment, too much food manages to feed those meanings.

*

Any activity can become a therapy for another -- for work problems, for love problems -- given that it holds sufficient distance, and yet can run in metaphorical parallel, empowering us indirectly.

*

Art is epitomized life.

*

Faith and practice fuse as life.

*

Mind is care. Take care, caretakers! Mind life and learn.

*

There are many ways to take a scripture, but the pious way is the worst.

*

Men strive at life: gods play life as a game.

*

Sometimes I hate even my friends, and want only you, Ama. Only four people are utter Ama to me, and of them my heart never tires.

*

Only when you have Purpose will you recognize opportunity.

*

Press your chest to me, synch your heart with mine.

*

Such a lover is Whitman that he is not in love with anybody, he is in love with everybody. So it is with me, but there are a few who have me by the heart and shall have my trust and ardor for all my existence -- you select few I love the most, and show as no other could guess the hidden wonder of the innermost garden of my heart.

*

My energy kites and dives, but no matter the turn of violence, my peace uses every move.

*

Psyche is my sanity, Rozhiar my madness: our friends become our faculties.

*

Dreams give a vision of possibility.


 

 

"Each Night" a poem

Each Night

 

Before Ama calls me to write

I am my wife's

And lay her to bed

Braiding our legs

Which have learned

In seven years

How to thread together

Like fingers

Of the supplicant hand.

 

Her arm possesses my chest

And nods with the rest

Holding her own

And dozing in love

To those gentle dreams

As I count her breathes

Searching the ceiling

Wondering my overfull mind.

 

I betray her clasp

For a few needed hours

And fall into Ama

Threading my works

Skein of ink, literary pulse

I am Sophia's child

And friend of the Muse

Till dreams darken my eyes

And I gratefully lie

Beside my hushed bride

When writing is done.