Tagged: philosophy

Who Is God?

Since time began God has been around in one form or another. Depending on when, where, and what age you were born in, you would have received from your elders an entirely different picture of Him . . .

Who is God anyway? This entity with the many names and personalities, this multi-faceted Father of the Universe, this Creator declaring His love, yet demanding our worship or else.

In our time, religious warfare has ravaged the planet. People of differing philosophies are killing one another to prove the point that they are the ‘chosen’ of the God of love and peace . . . What gives?

Say you were born in the US to Baptist Christian parents. Now, there were others in your town such as the Catholics, Protestants, Pentecostals, etc. who were also Christians, but the others were only privy to part of the truth, your parents taught you that the Baptists had it all. They were the ‘chosen’, above the rest of the ‘chosen’, who were chosen above the other religions because they all held at least one truth in common, Jesus the Christ.

The other guys, those religions and individuals that didn’t acknowledge Jesus as Lord, weren’t even in the running to be considered ‘chosen’.

Pretty confusing to a kid, but after a few years of brainwashing, you took your place in the church, accepted “it’s” version of the bible to be God’s holy word, learned your preachers denominational interpretation of all doctrinal issues such as ‘heaven and hell’ and thanked God for choosing you from amongst the billions of earthlings to reveal His truth to . . .

Is there something wrong here?

***

I grew up as a Protestant, but never thought much of it. My only remembrance of church was how I hated to get dressed up on Sunday and go. Jesus was just a sissy looking guy with long brown hair who got himself hung on a cross for some reason I couldn’t quite understand.

It was much later in life, after the army, after the free love ‘hippie’ days, that I began to give any serious thought to God. I had a bad experience on drugs one night with a Ouigi Board that scared me enough to seek some spiritual help.

I asked an old guy in the neighborhood about God and he sent me down the street to the Pentecostal Church. This was where my religious adventure began. Born again, Spirit filled, tongue talking, hell and damnation preaching, loud praising, song singing, Pentecostalism.

Years later, living a secluded life on a Christian communal farm, I began to wonder. I began to get an uneasy feeling about the whole thing and I left.

I stopped listening to what people had to tell me about God and decided to risk hell fire and damnation and get to know Him on my own. No bible, no Jesus, no nothing. It was time to lay aside fear of backsliding, fear of leaving the Church, and fear of everything else having to do with the Christian faith.

I began to read other philosophies, especially Buddhism, Taoism, Zen, and American Indian thought. Soon, I put these aside also and took a walk in the woods.

***

At first I found it difficult to deliver myself from years of religious conditioning, but as time went by, it became easier.

I began to peek into forbidden areas, and began to make choices. I thought about Jesus, about the necessity for salvation, and about sin, and hell, and death . . . and I thought about God,the creator of it all.

Today Jesus still has a role to play in my life, but not as a savior. Although I no longer worship him, I honor him as a great teacher, perhaps the greatest. His recorded life is an example of what life expects of me, and his sacrifices are deeply appreciated.

He was a teacher who revealed through his nature, what I could become if I chose to follow his lead. If he was the savior of the world, just believing in him didn’t seem to make much sense.

I can believe my math teacher is the greatest teacher on earth, but if I fail to learn what he has to teach, what does that make me? . . . a worshiper. If I absorb his teachings, I take him with me as I go into the world to become a teacher in my own right.

He will always be the Master and I his student, but as I build upon his foundation, it will no longer be necessary to sit at his feet. I will have taken on a mission of my own.

All religions seem to have a fuzzy image of God, He’s called a trinity in Christian philosophy. He’s the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Kind of confusing.

Other sects and religions have other names for Him, but none really pins Him down. He is the great I AM . . . and He doesn’t fit well into anybody’s preconceived box.

I needed a deeper understanding of Him than what religious teaching had for me, so I took a walk in the woods. . . and there I met Him face to face.

Simply put, God is not an individual entity, God is a state of being. Everything that lives, either animal, vegetable, or mineral is a part of God. He’s you, He’s me, the dog, the fly, and the leaf in the tree. We are surrounded by and engulfed in His omnipotence.

We are Him, His breath is what keeps us upright, the flesh He created is but a vehicle to contain His presence. We are drops of water originating from the same wave. We appear for but a moment, make a flash in the sun and re-enter. We are nothing . . . and yet we are everything.

We, as the highest evolution of His person, have the power to choose, therefore we are creators in our own right. As far as I know, we are the only life form having the ability to choose and to create according to our whim. We create our tomorrows by the thoughts and actions we take today, both individually and collectively.

God didn’t create this chaos we live in, we did. Instead of ignoring negativity, we embraced it and made a place for it in our world. By doing so, we have created a state of dualism.

Positivity/Negativity are battling for dominion and it seems the latter is in the lead. It will continue to grow, nothings going to stop it until, we as a whole, stop struggling to be amongst the ‘chosen’ and get down to the business of being our brothers keeper.

I’ve often wondered why we were given this ability and can only figure that God/Life is also evolving. That nothing is stagnate, but forever growing, even God. Where are we going? Well, that remains to be seen. I don’t have a clue, but I’m convinced the teachings of Jesus, as well as others, are paths leading us to the next step in our evolution.

Today I see God everywhere, but especially when I’m alone walking in the woods out of the earshot of men and their constant jabbering.

Walk softly upon the Earth and you will hear His still, small voice quietly floating upon the breeze. Study the miracle within an acorn. Listen to what He has to say concerning the joy of simply being a part of it all, as well as to the futility involved in claiming personal ownership to any of it.

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Knowing Tootsie

I recently had an epiphany of sorts from a movie my daughter, who likes to catch people in awkward positions, made for me concerning last years trip to the beach.

First of all, I must say that even at the age of 75 I ignore the mirror and see myself as being muscle packed and fearless . . . probably always will. The truth, though, is a far different story. I have arterial sclerosis and a whole slew of other stuff I stubbornly ignore.

The other day after watching the candid camera kid’s movie I was mesmerized by the old man I observed in the movie. I know of course it was me, but I had/still have a problem reconciling that image with my own.

I am not that doddering old man, nor will I ever become him because now I am convinced without a doubt I am something or someone entirely different than any kind of physical presence real or imagined. I, the REAL me, am not at all a physical being, I merely present myself as one out of necessity.

So in the real world, though I am an old man physically, I am still a youngster at heart . . . and when that old physical body returns to dust I, the youngster, shall remain. I’m not sure how, or what form I will be in . . . (although I see no heaven or hell in my future) I KNOW I will remain vibrant in some form or another.

Anyway I saw this video and that’s the thought that came to mind. Because I have always been a bit like Dustin I have to wonder how many wonderful people I have passed by because they didn’t meet my physical/social/economic criteria. . . . far too many, I am sure. . . and our physical presence is the least aspect of who we are, it’s a shame that for most of us that’s all we ever see.

 

Betrayal

You said that I betrayed you
I can’t tell you what that did.
Once again I’d been defeated
By my impulsive id.

So I languish here within my soul
I ache in grievous pain.
While I watch that scene before me play
Again – and again – – and again.

What could I do to break the curse
What could I do to change
That sorrow filled face
Held together by grace
What could I do? . . . please what could I do?

I have mood swings every day
That have nothing to do with you.
I say and do things
I wish I’d never do.
Cruel things
Mean things
Cloaked in colored garb.
A joke
A curse
A barb.

I have mood swings every day
What more can I say?

And the devil played a lively tune
And the wise man danced along
And the tune was sharp and sweet and funny
And it’s rhythm very strong.

But the devil’s tunes
They are not free
And the time will come to pay.
And unless the wise man wise’s up
it’s not so far away.

JW

My Old Friends

myoldfriendsIt seems I do more of it in the winter, but regardless, as I get older I spend a lot of time day dreaming. I usually wake up about 5 am, make coffee and, being retired and having no place to go, sit in my chair in the dark drinking my coffee and dreaming about the past. A rather pleasant time, I might add.

Now I have been to a lot of places and done a lot of things, but the things and places have become mere backdrops, places to hold the faces and memories of the many people I have known and the friends I have made over the last 72 years that I have lived on this planet.

As I begin to think on a place and time the faces are soon to follow. These faces pop into my mind like a worn out jack-in-the-box. Crank the handle and up pops Joey Sirgo or Gunner Thompson, or Tommy One Nut, Pissball Pete or just plain Joe . . . . . (It’s amazing how many of these guys have slang names and how often that’s the only one I can remember.)

Then the fun begins as I sit and reminisce with these guys over all the exciting times we had together . . . and a few of the sad ones. Seems the good and the funny always float to the top first though. I have to dig a bit to get to the bad, so as I hate shoveling I mostly leave that part alone.

To all the girls I’ve loved before. I remember your eyes, the lift of your breasts and the swing of your hips, but my Band of Brothers meant far more to me than trying to figure you out ever did. You ladies have a special room in my heart, but not this one. This room is filled with bar girls, one night stands, and short time hookers.

The “old boys club” door is locked to the finer female. You wouldn’t like it in here anyways cause the room stinks of old cigar smoke, cordite, and bull shit and the floor is littered with trampled peanut shells, dried blood and dog hair. A place only one of my old friends could love.

I always figured when I got old I would be sitting in the park with the rest of the old goats like they did when I was a kid. Maybe the old project crowd still do that, I don’t know because I lost contact with them at 15 when I had to move.

Today I live a life of seclusion. I spend my days reading, or goofing on my computer or driving my wife crazy, but rarely if ever do I spend time with friends, cause although spread out over half the world, they are not here.

Once I was in a Portland City jail cell with the walls covered in graffiti. I found an empty spot and wrote my own little tale of woe, “I’ve been alone since birth, I’ll remain alone till death, then I’ll have a friend”. Kind of a downer, but how else would you feel being stuck in a two man cell with a guy coming down off heroin?

I do hope that quickly thought verse will prove itself to be true though cause I’m getting closer to D day each time I go to sleep at night and it would be really cool to wake up on the other side and see a large table of my friends gathered around it to greet me. (and my many favorite dogs lying under it)

Jesus and God would have to wait for a while then because first thing I want to do is drink some good Old Crow and hang out with the guys again for a season . . . or two.

I think Robert Service said it all about guys like us. Guys our women just can’t quite understand:

The Men Who Don’t Fit In

There’s a race of men that don’t fit in,
A race that can’t stay still;
So they break the hearts of kith and kin,
And they roam the world at will.

They range the field and they rove the flood,
And they climb the mountain’s crest;
Theirs is the curse of the gypsy blood,
And they don’t know how to rest.

If they just went straight they might go far;
They are strong and brave and true;
But they’re always tired of the things that are,
And they want the strange and new.

They say: “Could I find my proper groove,
What a deep mark I would make!”
So they chop and change, and each fresh move
Is only a fresh mistake.

And each forgets, as he strips and runs
With a brilliant, fitful pace,
It’s the steady, quiet, plodding ones
Who win in the lifelong race.

And each forgets that his youth has fled,
Forgets that his prime is past,
Till he stands one day, with a hope that’s dead,
In the glare of the truth at last.

He has failed, he has failed; he has missed his chance;
He has just done things by half.
Life’s been a jolly good joke on him,
And now is the time to laugh.

Ha, ha! He is one of the Legion Lost;
He was never meant to win;
He’s a rolling stone, and it’s bred in the bone;
He’s a man who won’t fit in.

But . . . those of us who have walked this path would have it no other way.

Cygnus

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
 Is an F-tyscience-toruspe main-sequence star located in the constellation Cygnus approximately 454 parsecs (1,480 ly) from Earth. In September 2015, several astronomers published a paper, as part of the Planet Hunters project,[1] analyzing the unusual light fluctuations of the star as measured by the Kepler space telescope,[1][6] which observes changes in the brightness of distant orbiting stars in order to detect exoplanets.[7]

The star’s large irregular changes in brightness are consistent with a large mass (or many small masses together) orbiting the star in “tight formation”.[6] Some hypotheses have been proposed to explain the star’s unusual light profile.

The star received intense media attention in October 2015 over speculation that its unusual light curve could be signs of activity associated with intelligent extraterrestrial life.


This information is floating all over the web . . . I was particularly interested in the fact that this star is in the Cygnus constellation because I am currently reading a book called: The Cygnus Mystery by Andrew Collins. Subtitled Unlocking the Ancient Secret of Life’s Origins in the Cosmos. . . . from the distant past and a far off star comes a revelation to change all we know about who we are, where we come from, and where we go from from here.

Coincidence? . . . or double witness?

Marijuana . . . Devil Or Angel

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Highly Recommended


Marijuana . . . Devil Or Angel

By Steven Wishnia (excerpt) People around the world have been smoking marijuana forever, for medicinal purposes as well as just to feel good. The Chinese cultivated it as far back as 2000 years B.C. and used it in their practice of herbal medicine. It was brought into the United States sometime around the turn of the last century by Mexican immigrants looking for work in the American southwest and quickly spread across the country.

Regardless of the fact that pot was now illegal in some states it grew in popularity and increased in usage, mainly among musicians and artists who found the herb helped them in their creative endeavors. The drug grew in popularity until the white majority took a moral as well as a financial (and the fact they were just downright lied to) stand against it . . . then along came Harry Anslinger the perfect political puppet for the anti-hemp cotton cartel. Continue reading

The Projects

laundryThe Mellet Homes housing project was built smack dab in the middle of Ozzie and Harriet’s middle class America, purposefully to house the influx of workers needed to man the local steel mills gone full bore into the war effort. Each building, containing six small apartments and lying parallel to another, sandwiched a narrow black topped sidewalk traveling down the center was closely knit to fifty or so others onto a thirty five acre tract of land.

It was a noisy place, full of clotheslines, screaming kids, crying babies, and cars. We even had our own school for awhile because they wanted to keep us riff-raff segregated from Harriet’s little darlings.

I can only imagine how happy Harriet was to see a slum arising in the midst of her beloved neighborhood, but what the hell, the war was on and everybody had to sacrifice for the cause. Ozzie went off to kill Germans while Harriet stayed home and tended her victory garden. And when the vegetables were ripe, project kids stole and ate them.

The project was a great place to grow up. We played Cowboys and Indians with enough kids to field two armies. We played War and Kick the Can well into the night without the thought of perverts or gunslingers. We played football, baseball, basketball. We fought bare knuckled when we were mad, boxed with the gloves on when we weren’t. We wrestled in the mud in the rain. We played doctor with the girls in the woods by day and used their cover by night as a staging area for our vandal raids onto Ozzie and Harriet’s turf. We lived under a pecking order where everybody knew their place. If we messed with the older kids we got beat up. All the adults looked out for us and didn’t mind giving us a slap when we deserved it either.

There were no knives, guns, drugs or any of that stuff. The men would occasionally get drunk and get into fist fights, but no one ever got killed. The women would get into shouting matches sometimes, but all that noise just added a minor chord to the living melody and made the tune all the more interesting.

Nobody got much for Christmas in the projects, (I remember Tommy Yoho getting only a pair of socks one year and how we laughed and teased him) so we would get up Christmas morning, see what we got and go around to all our friends places to barter and exchange until we ended up with something we wanted. ( I’m sure Tommy always kept his socks) Man, we had it all and were living the dream. We were happy because nobody ever told us how poor we were.

The projects was always a beehive of activity. I remember when the ice man would deliver large blocks of ice by hand to feed our refrigerator. I remember the rag man with his cart walking down the street yelling, “Rag man!…….Rag man!” and people would come to buy a clean one or drop their dirty rags in his cart. I remember when the milk man would come and deliver milk. Us kids would steal orange drink out of the ice bin in the back of his truck while he was gone. We’d ride our bikes alongside a pop truck on route 30 and help ourselves to a Coke when ever he stopped at the red light. The driver would yell and threaten, but he could never catch us and we knew it.

Nobody had a TV in those days so we used to listen to movies on the radio. Amos and Andy was my favorite, and who could forget The Shadow. When TV came out there was only one family in the whole projects who could afford one. Us kids would gather quietly around their living room window after dark and peek in while old man Bear and his wife sat on the couch on the inside watching our favorite show ‘Lights Out’. Wonder if they knew we were there? Can you imagine that happening today? We would have set off an alarm the minute we bent a blade of his fake grass in today’s world.

I think I was about nine when mom finally bought me a TV. I still remember coming home that evening from the YMCA (where I practically lived) and seeing Sgt. Preston of the Royal Canadian Police playing in my living room . . . WOW one of the happiest days in my life to that point.

In the projects the walls were so thin that if the guy next door sneezed you could hear it.We had these medicine cabinets in the bathroom with a slot in them where you dropped razor blades after they were used up. Well, if you looked into the slot and the person in the other apartment had their cabinet door open you could see into their bathroom. Robyn, my girlfriend, would accidentally on purpose leave her door open when she took a bath. I would turn out the light on my side and open the door to watch her. Really exciting voyeurism for a guy my age. Ha! I still remember that stuff . . . Robyn I will always love you, wherever you are!

I moved from the projects one cold, windy day in the winter of 1957 with tears streaming down my cheeks. I was forced to leave Berry Davis, the love of my life, and my many friends. I was a very unhappy camper when my mom got remarried and forced me to move. The one place where I could feel at home in those days was in the projects among my friends.

The projects were in existence until 1965 or so when they were torn down to make room for a shopping center and a parking lot. The new Wal-Mart now sits directly on top of the spot where I once lived, kinda poetic justice I suppose since I had practically made a career out of stealing from those kind of stores. (much smaller versions of course) In the end we all lose. I lost big time the day my mom made me leave the projects and even today after all these years and all the different places I’ve lived, I am still a child of the projects.

The Eternal Tao

http://www.youblisher.com/p/799445-Tao-Te-Ching-Revisited/
tao cover

The following article was written by Tor Matson @ http://www.wakingtimes.com . . .

When I first read the Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu, I didn’t understand it, and that bothered me, particularly when I read about the three types of men.The first type is the inferior man, and when he hears the Tao, he laughs, because he is a fool, and wisdom seems like foolishness to him.  The second type is the mediocre man.  When he hears the Tao, he is troubled, because he recognizes both the elusive wisdom of the Tao and his own incapacity to fully perceive it; he knows there’s something to it, and he knows he doesn’t fully understand, and so is troubled.  The superior man, upon hearing the Tao, laughs like a fool but for a different reason; the superior man immediately recognizes the truth of what is being said, as well as appreciating the irony that the only people really able to hear wisdom are those already past any need of it.  Laughter is the only possible response… Continue reading

Individual Initiative

Earth-provides-enough-to-satisfy-everyA society built upon individual initiative is best . . . but only if the individual works towards strengthening the whole and not himself . Otherwise, gain becomes greed and the American Dream reveals itself as a nightmare.

The Fine Art Of Bullshitting

imagesNow if you think bullshitting is not an art form just take a look at the present presidential race and you can see openly just how important this art form is to these politicians who must, through long hours of intense study, become masters of their trade. The canvas of dreams they paint before the admiring throng is truly amazing. Glib tongues lay stroke upon stroke to reveal the contrast of their opponents deep shadows juxtaposed their very own brightest of lights while true believers prostate themselves before their chosen idol and pay homage to their canvas of dreams.

It seems the only time you get the truth, or even an honest opinion from this breed is to listen to these people AFTER they leave office. Generals, Senators, all the way down to the local member of the school board are so steeped in spinning bullshit during their career you just can’t trust a word they say.

Hillary knew this art form and used it well. She is a Master at her trade. Obama’s emotionally charged campaign centered on hope. His first opponent, John McCain, a Master in his own right, chose a different emotional theme for his canvas. McCain centered on fear. More people responded to hope than fear so Obama won the bullshit (tell them what they want to hear) election in spite of the fact most people who voted for Obama probably instinctively knew he couldn’t keep most of the promises he had painted for them. His promises were, in the light of current events, wishful thinking at best.

I personally believe he was far to busy just keeping the ship of state afloat after the disastrous eight years of George Bush to do much else. Hell man, we were lucky to have a monetary system at all by the end of Bush, let alone enough cash to do anything much to help the poor and needy middle class in this country. So how does this all pertain to our personal survival?

Ask Romney about telling the truth . . . He tried . He died . . . on the field of public opinion while Obama kept his presidency alive even after he had proven himself without a doubt to be an insane bullshitter. America is just too gullible to glibness to make a difference in how they vote. . . . and now we have Hillary in the wings. YIKES!

Truth is that a man who understands the nuances of bullshitting can and will survive longest among his fellows. He knows it is far easier to convince an enemy than to kill him, especially if he is out gunned and outnumbered. He knows instinctively if he practices faithfully and becomes an adept, the sky is the limit. He knows a good line of bullshit and a glib tongue can get him shelter, water and food even when outnumbered and living amongst his enemies. Even when facing certain death the true and fearless artist can sway his captors into his camp by merely corralling them with his tongue.

A great bullshitter has to be in charge of his own mind. He must be intelligent and wise to the ways of man and of the world. He must not just control the room, he must own it. People must love him. They must look up to him. Want him to lead them. He must be a chameleon shape shifter able to capture the essence of a rainbow for them. He must be like the apostle Paul “all things to all men.”

The greatest, the most satisfying, the loveliest words that the truly masterful bullshitter can ever hear is for his following to say with heart felt conviction. “Our leader speaks the truth.”

Follow Your Bliss

follow your bliss3Joseph Campbell was being interviewed by Bill Moyers on the PBS “Power of Myth“ series when I first heard his phrase “follow your bliss”. In his viewpoint this undertaking must happen if a man were to experience fulfillment in his lifetime.

Joseph Campbell was a very wise man, but just what does it mean to follow one’s bliss? Well, in my opinion it means merely to be balanced enough to know your gift and be willing enough to work towards bringing it to fruition.

An artist creating a work.

A business man creating a new business.

A teacher creating wonder and hope in young minds.

A philanthropist in the creative stage of giving.

On an on it goes, different for each individual yet having the same affect on all of them by bringing purpose into their lives. Did you catch the major theme through all this dream following?

Creativity. Being a creative human being is what it’s all about. After all what are we if not creators? Followers.

Now, following is not bad nor necessarily wrong. Without leadership we would be living extremely chaotic lives on this planet, and in all reality would probably have gone extinct some time ago. But there is a balance that must be maintained while following or else you may just deny your gift and ultimately lose yourself in another’s cause.

What’s your dream? (it is normally tied into your gift) Everybody who has not been beaten down or brainwashed by the society he lives in has one. What do you need to do in order to fulfill it?

I would say also that in order to follow your dream you must be realistic in your goals. Otherwise a man will spend his valuable youth chasing after someone else’s dream, be he/she a scholar, a movie star, a musician or a magician, it doesn’t matter.

He will merely be living as a copy cat who will never be as good as what he copies. Why? It’s not his. He is just fantasizing it is. Has anybody ever made Mozart’s music as good as Mozart himself? No, of course not. He may be good enough to copy and be almost equal to Mozart, but never will he surpass him. It’s impossible.

My gift is not in the music field and I know it, yet I still enjoy playing an instrument. Nor am I a painter, yet I enjoy painting a picture. We can do a lot of really cool stuff without activating our gift. Those who excel, the gifted ones who seemingly are heads above the rest of us, these guys are the ones I’m talking about.

I know my gift and when it’s working I am in another place. A place where nothing can touch me, nor harm me, spiritually speaking anyways. When I am in my gift, I am at one with the earth. That’s the best I can explain it. I’m sure Joseph could do better.

I fundamentally believe that each person born into this world has a gift of some sort programmed into his DNA and his goal, in order to be happy, is to find that gift and use it to the betterment of himself as well as his fellows.

The problem I see, at least in this country, is that in order to create anything of value you first must follow a learning curve of dedication, commitment, discipline and practice. All the things that seem to be out of vogue in this “hurry up I want it now!” society we live in.

As a practical matter we need to have a place of quiet solitude where we can meditate upon these questions and resolve them in our own minds before we even begin. Then we need to move forward to practice them.

Thich Nhat Hanh (a Vietnamese Buddhist monk) is a great example of a man following his bliss.

In the midst of the Vietnam War while the Americans were bombing the hell out of his country, he and his organization were busily rebuilding bombed villages, setting up schools and medical clinics, and helping through non violent means all he could to alleviate the plight of the citizens of his country.

For doing that he was ultimately forced out of his country and banned from ever returning. Nothing stopped him however and he remains practicing peace to this day in Plum Village somewhere in France.

Hopefully as/if things get worse for you in this country nothing will stop you either because what takes place on the outside is nothing to be compared to the power within once you find and follow your bliss. . . . Go for it! You’ll be glad that you did.

The Tao Of Coffee

shackTwo scholars had spent the better part of the morning in a local Portland Starbucks arguing over Evolution versus Creationism. Getting nowhere, they decided to drive to Cannon Beach where an old sage named Chung Lee, who reputedly had the answers, lived.

After a pleasant one hour trip the two arrived at the old man’s shack. Spotting a lone figure sitting atop a nearby hill, they exited the car and climbed up to where the old sage sat facing out to sea. Upon their arrival the old man turned, directed his eyes upon them and asked, “Where’s the coffee?”

The two became puzzled. “Sir, One said. We were told you could help us with the greatest philosophical dilemma of our age . . . perhaps even give us some insight into the theories of which we are about to speak.”

“Yes, of course.” Chung Lee answered. “But go now, next time you come, bring me a cup of Starbucks coffee, then we will speak of your theories.”

The following morning the two checked out of their motel at the crack of dawn and returned to the hill. This time one carried a large cup of Starbucks coffee. After greetings, he handed the old sage the cardboard tray. Both sat in the sand and opened their portfolios, each anticipating a quick and decisive victory.

Chung Lee, while sipping his coffee quickly went over each theory, handed the papers back, looked out to sea and finished the coffee before beginning to speak.

“The two theories are mere disciplines, and although seemingly opposing views, upon deeper reflection are one and the same. The difference lies in your interpretation and in your desire to understand the mystery. But alas, the mystery cannot be contained within a theory, so you are both beating your learned heads against a brick wall.”

Going on he said. “Each theory is merely a doorway, and being so can never explain the goings on within the room. You need theory to find the doorway, but once opened this very same discipline becomes your stumbling block. Theory will never reveal truth, only the pathway to it.

The two looked at each other, excused themselves and walked back to the car.

“This is a wise man?” One asked the other. “”He sends us for coffee, then he comes up with this gibberish?”

“Yes, it is strange,” answered Two. “Yet his reputation is such that there has to be something we are missing. Let’s give him a chance to prove himself.”

The two went back to where the old man was sitting. “Sir, excuse us, but neither one of us understands. What are we missing?”

The old man held up the empty cup. “This cup will always contain a mystery, but as you smell of it, sip of it, and enjoy the taste of it, you one day realize you don’t really care HOW Starbucks made such a good cup of coffee, you are just glad they did. And thanks be to the mystery, as long as there are people like you seeking to understand it, I will never have to worry about getting my morning cup of coffee.”

The old man dismissed them with a smile and returned his gaze to the sea.

The Joy Of Playing Music

guitar playerI first fell in love with music back in 69 or so when I was living in Portland trying to be a hippie. The affair started one day while I was getting stoned in some girls apartment and I heard an angels voice on the stereo. It was Joan Baez. At that moment I fell in love with her and as a result of her voice I fell in love with music also.

Up until then music was a good backdrop for whatever inanities I found myself doing, but I never really got into it much cause (maybe) in the 50’s projects you got your ass kicked for even thinking of being a musician. Well, I’m much older now, it’s winter and I’m starting to think about playing music again. This is something I’ve done off and on for the last forty years or so ever since I fell in love with Joan.

I have a music area in my library where the two (electric/acoustic) guitars live . . . and the cello . . . and the piano . . . alongside, let’s see, my rebuilt mandolin, two hand made American Indian flutes, a hammered dulcimer, a regular dulcimer, two sets of African bongo drums, a (no shit) digereedoo, a tin whistle, various little things like a kazoo, a jaw harp (the real harp I made I gave away . . . as well as my old fiddle)

Anyways you get the picture, I have lots of instruments on which to play music plus piles of books, sheet music etc. to compliment them. If you were to walk into my library and look around you’d swear I was a damn virtuoso, or a one man band.

Well, I’m a one man band house building machine, but as a musician I suck. I have little natural talent, a voice like a fog horn and I hate to practice. “Forget about Mary Had a Little Lamb. I’ll start out with the Jimi Hendrix version of the Star Spangled banner thank you.”

So, forty years later, I still grab and beat up my guitar the same old way running everybody out of the house with the same old worn out bad-to-begin-with melody following an equally bad out-of-sync base line. Then one day, not long ago . . . I fell in love once again.

It all started at the flea market where I used to peddle my access wood. I walked over to the table of a guy who was setting up late. He was not a regular, had just cleaned out his garage and was gonna sell the stuff he didn’t want. Leaning up against his pickup was an old guitar case. Knowing by the looks of it that it wasn’t one of those Chinese cheapies I asked, “Can I see the guitar”?

“Sure” said he.

He lay the case on the table and opened it up to reveal a lovely little folk guitar that had been made by Fender sometime in the early sixties. He was the original owner. After a bit of small talk I bargained him down to about 100.00 U.S. The remainder of the day I pedaled wood while anticipating the time I could take off to lick and tickle my new love in the privacy of our own home.

Last year I listened to a guy on Utube named Pierre Bensusan teaching and playing his guitar in an alternate tuning called DADGAD. Wow! I grabbed the old folk guitar messed around a bit trying to re tune it till I finally got out my tuner (cause I’m tone deaf) and did it right.

One brush over the strings and I was hooked. It was like playing a dulcimer, kinda mountainy and mysterious. The first (base string) played open can be a drone to a treble melody. . . and it’s all easy as hell, an absolute necessity for me cause I get bored real quick. Later you can improvise to your hearts content using chords, melody lines etc. . . . anything you can do in EADGBE you can do in DADGAD if you play alone like I do.

If you have a guitar and your intercourse is getting boring, give her a different tone and she may just perk up and play you a lively Irish jig . . . or go all soft and mysterious like a deep forest rain. . . all dank, wet, and dripping.

If your heart is strong give DADGAD a try.

I would advise everybody to pick up an instrument, learn to play it . . . and RELAX. This following short video proves my point . . .

What Is Spirituality? . . . What Is God?

“The great sadness is not the passing of a people; it is our failure to remember, our failure to bring forward the knowledge, our failure to consecrate the wisdom and so redeem the sacrifice of those who came before us.” Paul Myburgh – The Bushman Winter Has Come.

Conversation

The quality of listening determines the quality of speaking . . . and modern man has forgotten how to listen. . . Paul Myburg

When no one listens to the other we end in chaos . . . and guess what?

Rethinking Cancer (part 1)

T_dealing_cancer1Being light complected, skin cancer is a concern for me, as it should be for any other guy who has been burned by the sun a zillion times in their past. I’ve already had a couple pre-melanomas taken off and I am due for another visit soon.

On the inside? At my age only God knows what’s eating away at my guts/bones/or brain.

So what do I do about it now? How do I defend myself from an environment that has gone toxic beyond that which my body can contend?

Does anybody else out there think about these things? . . . or prepare for the possibility of getting cancer in some form or other during their life time?

How do you feel about chemo and radiation?

Now’s the time to find out, not when your Dr. tells you you must have it or die. Then, even if you have reservations, it will be too late, fear will line you up to take your poison just like all the other patients who are walking the ‘super sick highway’.

Watch these videos, have a discussion with yourself and make some decisions as to what to do on the day you hope will never come . . . that day when Mr. C comes knocking at your door.

http://www.veteranstoday.com/2014/12/07/rethinking-cancer-treatment/

PS . . . I find it interesting that the last video on Gerson Therapy is “not available in the US” I wonder why? Anyway I found this one on youtube that will explain the process . . .

In part 2 I will speak about alternatives and our immune system . . .

Ferguson

Why is it one group sees the cop at Ferguson a killer while the other group sees him as being justified? What causes black people across the country to think and act like they do? They don’t know whether the young man was shot charging the cop or whether he had his hands up any more than I do . . . and yet they are convinced beyond a doubt that the kid was murdered. How can two people look at the same thing and come up with an entirely different viewpoint from that same evidence?

Distrust and disrespect . . .

The black man has been raised on a foundation of distrust and disrespect ever since the days the white man stole him out of his homeland and brought him to these America’s in the hold of a ship. He has been beaten down ever since.

In todays world various civil rights laws help him a bit, but I don’t see the foundation shifting or changing beneath his feet all that much. . . especially since the white corporate bosses packed up their factory jobs and left them, as well as the poor and middle class whites, holding an empty bag. If I were black . . . angry would be my middle name.

But I’m not black. My foundation’s entirely different than my black brothers foundation is . . . therefore I see a lot of things differently than they do. And in some cases I bought the white man’s con far easier than they would have.

I grew up in an all white lower class neighborhood. I don’t remember ever being around black kids, but basically, mostly because of our elders, us white kids didn’t like the blacks. I rarely ever saw one during my school years unless he was on the opposing football team.

In the early sixties I went into the military where I was forced to integrate and train with blacks. Once overseas we spent a large part of our time in the bush living in very close proximity to one another. We shared the same sleeping spots, ate the same rations, sweated and bitched about the same things.

I quickly found that in spite of my negative teaching, and though it was the rioting sixties, these guys were a lot of fun to hang out with. We were a small unit and quickly became like brothers.

Because of this experience I am no longer a racist. I have found many times I have far more in common with a lot of the “different” races of people than I have with those of my own race. Whites are so uptight they make me nervous. Get together with white guys and all they talk about are their portfolios and bank accounts and watching sports. I long for some of the good old time jaw jacking I used to get from the blacks.

Personally I would rather spend all my time amongst ALL the races, maybe have dinner one night with a black athlete and a Vietnamese artist and an Arab poet. (leave the religions out though cause I’m way sick of that stuff). Wouldn’t that be a lively evening? Wouldn’t that open a whole plethora of really interesting conversation?

I understand why the races distrust us . . . and why they think as they do. This thing at Ferguson has very little to do with the rule of law and a whole lot to do with perception based upon experience. I believe the actual incident is a secondary issue to all that.

So what are we going to do about it? Pass some more laws? Stand up and clap when race baiters like Al Sharpton come to town? Get all worked up and riot and ultimately settle back to the ‘same old shit different day’ routine in life we always do?

How about we ALL work on these distrust issues? . . . and these disrespect issues? . . . and bring back the jobs and balance the scales a bit before we judge each other. Nothing changes until we do.

Trust has no color . . . respect has no color . . . money does though . . . and those high white Wall Street/Politico war mongers who own it all? Now there’s a race of folks I truly DON’T trust . . . nor have any respect for.