Thursday, August 30, 2007

... unravelled? no, not quite!

Thursday, August 30, 2007
Dante graciously acknowledged my need to write this post ... and so, here's another interlude from the Dante series ...

Not quite, but almost. Unravelled, I mean. I stemmed the tide, by my simple awareness of its existence, I stemmed the tide of emotion that threatened to drown me right there, in the cafe. Here's what happened ...

I stopped at my favourite cafe on my way to school late this morning. I met a woman who had her dog tied up just at the cafe's entrance, near an old wooden bench that had a skirting around it, to prevent anyone from seeing underneath. I remembered thinking to myself that I, when my dog lived, would have decided against leaving him anywhere like that, for fear that another would take him. And ... wouldn't that just serve me right, for leaving such a prized gem out there, for anyone to take.

I digress ... the woman ... in the smoking room, she talked about her very mischievous dog ~ the same sort as Trout ~ to whom our beloved she/k9/chickory belongs. She told us how her dog liked to get into her clothes - particularly the underwear, and wear it like a hat on her head, and prance about the house. She told spoke of the challenges of raising such a dog ~ one so smart ... that conventional training methods (most of which involve manipulation of the power-dynamic) simply have no efficacy on such a clever creature. And how ... she, as a dog owner, felt so unprepared for such. The dog required constant engaging ... so smart, that dog.

And then ... the lady left the smoke room. Completely coincidentally, I left shortly thereafter. And just as I stopped to fuss with my change purse, etc., prior to exiting the cafe, I heard this lady scream. She screamed a scream that got everyone's attention. She screamed a scream that moved me so much, to call it any emotion would merely diminish what she screamed in that scream. I felt the torment of all the souls in hell, in her scream. Why she screamed really has little bearing to the story. Briefly, I'll just say, she thought her dog had gotten stolen, when in fact, she did not see him cowering under the skirted bench.

The point I want to make? My acute reaction to that scream. I knew immediately ~ her dog went missing ~ what triggered the scream. I knew that despair, that anguish. I caught myself, on the precipice of sanity. For a moment. Until I remembered ... THINK. What's going on? What was going on? My heart raced, my core shook, and I could not grasp the coins I sought to count in my change purse. I felt a tidal wave building ... of what emotion I cannot name. Something .... which my brain threatened to manifest as tears. Why? Why did I feel this way? No reason, really. And just that very thought process allowed me to experience the feelings I'd apparently channeled, without immersing myself in them ... without drowning in them. I did not cry. I did not suppress the urge to cry. I disarmed it.

And so, shaken, but not stirred ... like a dry martini I walked myself out of that place. And contemplated the lesson. I feel my feelings. They do not feel me.


interlude ~ about choices

~EDIT: it occurs to me that this discussion, which man has conducted with himself for centuries, about free will and determinism, really hinges upon one's thought (and hence, personality), patterns, as well as one's philosophical point-of-view. The issue of free will, how much choice we have, and how much of our existence relies on the pre-destinated ... it's an issue which Thornton Wilder attempted to tackle in one of his most famous works.

So whether you take a more catholic philosophical perspective, or a calvinist one, will really influence your opinion with respect to the notion that humans have free will versus whether we exist in an entirely predetermined realm. Remember, also, that if you subscribe to the notion of kharma, then you implicitly subscribe to the notion of choice. Kharma makes no sense when superimposed upon predeterminism. Consider the notion that free will and determinism can co-exist: click here ... and here~

I have given Dante a break, just for this one post, to write about choice. Luxie wrote a post about choices ... and the notion of happiness as a choice. Susan also recently wrote a post about choice ~ the choice of love ~ using the story of Eurydice and Orpheus. Given my current reading material - Dante - I am swimming in thoughts about free will, intellect, and choice. And what it all means to life and living.

Susan's post, in particular, led me to ask, do we choose love or does love choose us? The discovery that many, many people believe themselves impotent to a mighty force called love ~ met with my surprise. The notion of choice seems so clear and obvious to me. How can we have intellect and reason, and not have choice? Do we only consider it a choice, when the alternatives seem pleasant and agreeable to our eyes, and hearts?

I have trouble conceiving of love as something which compels us to act. Can we really call this love? Perhaps we should name that sensation desperation. Desperation at the realization that we cannot impose our will ~ our desires ~ upon the will of the universe? Do we fail to see a choice as a choice, simply because the alternatives presented us seem less than optimal, or downright repugnant? Would we rather tell ourselves we have no choice, because we loathe the pain of letting go (which, in some cases may present itself as one of the alternatives)? The notion that we have no choice seems somewhat hedonistic, from my perspective. Whomever said anything about living pain free? Or making pain-free choices?

The most painful choice one makes, I think, involves choosing against making a choice ~ I call it the cowardly escape. I wrote a poem, more than a year ago, in which I reflected upon a relationship I had with a destructive man many years ago. I had given my feelings for this man so much power ... I felt like this ...

it caught her and ravaged her ...
the same way a leg hold trap
ravages a wolf's unsuspecting leg.
her young, tender soul
could not escape its grip.

I think we give carnal/corporeal love too much power. And, when seized by the feeling, we fail to consider the full ramifications of doing so. I allowed myself to feel for this man, despite knowing and feeling he was no good for me. I recall the juncture, in fact, at which I felt myself making the choice. It felt like taking a drug ... and I felt the same sensation of I have no choice ... in fact, what makes me think it wasn't love is that I do have love now, and its nothing like that ... and that the destructive thing of the past, that thing felt more like relief from withdrawal ~ i.e getting that next hit of one's drug of choice ~ than the warm embrace of love.

The creator has set things in motion ~ we happen to be those things in motion. Free will means we choose ~ who enters our lives, who stays, for how long, and to whom we cleave. For all of us. However ... the alternatives presented us may not seem optimal to us ... and so we tell ourselves we have no choice ... when in fact, we do. Regardless if we like to options laid out before us ... we do, indeed, have a choice. We find the notion that we have no choice ... easier to stomach. Both for us ... and for the object of our affection. Why? I suppose then, we can delude ourselves into believing we should not bear any responsibility for the choice - explicit or implicit - we made. For, if someone or some force indeed compels us to act, then, we cannot really assume responsibility for our own acts, can we?

So ... do we choose love? Or does love choose us? If indeed, we have no choice then the notion of fidelity really seems illusory. I mean, how can we reconcile this powerful, compelling force we have here labelled love with the notion of faithfullness and fidelity? If we, indeed, have no choice, how do we differ from that pack of rabbits or dogs, who act purely on instinct? If they could speak, they would tell us they had no choice, that they were only acting as nature intended. Wouldn't they?

Like it or not, we all expect fidelity in our "carnal love" relationships. We see ourselves, perhaps, as having no choice, but somehow attribute the capacity of choice to the object of our affection, from whom we expect fidelity. Do you doubt this? Then, dear reader, ponder, how you would feel if your partner loved another and you found out about it ... and then, when confronted replied, 'I had no choice.' Despite our attempts at shirking the responsibilities of living, we still must account. And when it comes to love, that undoubtedly means fidelity. and, when said fidelity gets challenged, we grow quite angry, despondent, sorrow-filled, and enraged.

So .... at the risk of nauseating repetition, I ask again. Do we choose love, or does love choose us? Out of my experiences, my heart tells me, YES. I CHOOSE. AND I MUST LIVE WITH THOSE CHOICES. Still, that's a difficult and painful reality to grasp. Our finitude, in the darkest of hours, however, prevents us from fully seeing that choices always lies in our grasp. Our vision does not reach that far. Particularly when anguish presents itself as one of the options ~ as the only alternative to what we perceive as love. We, perhaps, tell ourselves we have no choice because we fear the anguish. Its easier to think of that way. Its easier to live with that way.

As for love ~ its so mighty and mysterious, residing on the sacred convergence of the biochemical and the spiritual. I wonder if we really know the face of love. In some respects, I think we don't ~ for many of us see love as a tool for our own happiness. And not a path to some higher meaning.

For those of you who have not read Dante, you may not see his heavy influence in this post. For those that have ... forgive me. I have, perhaps, failed to give him the rest I promised at the beginning of this post. Still, he's there. Just like the face of choice. Saving the one you love most from taking his own life makes one painfully aware of the fact that choice ALWAYS lies within our grasp.

I've decided, also, that much of the dismal state of the world has a direct relation to the illusion we've concocted that we have no choice. That's why I see this as so important.

I, for one, tire of hearing that cop-out: 'But, I had no choice.'


Wednesday, August 29, 2007

17 and 39

Wednesday, August 29, 2007
"hello, my pet," he called from the far room.
her heart jumped to her throat.
he always surprised her like this.
she never knew when
he would show up at her door.

in his absence -- the long periods of time
he would just drop out of her existence --
days. weeks. months at a time ...
she grew languid. limp.
lifeless and cut-off. passive.
a tormented, hungry soul ...
aching ... aching.
and -- paralyzed of will
to extract herself nonetheless.

and so it went.
undulating -- passion, sorrow, shame.
oppressive: her longing for him.
it caught her --
the energy of their union.
forbidden union.
it caught her and ravaged her ...
the same way a leg hold trap
ravages a wolf's unsuspecting leg.
her young, tender soul
could not escape its grip.

at times, she felt as though
a faerie for his amusement --
he: a middle-aged, worn man,
suspending her in front of his gaze,
holding her daintily by the wings,
watching her writh, struggle
and then surrender sweetly - wilting
under the weight of his
desperate, empty lust ...
he loved to slowly crush her spirit ...
feel it disintegrate into his own.

she -- an enchanting, beguiling creature
a young, virginal female spirit
perched on a cusp that sits
like a delicate, stilettoed spire
between girlhood and womanhood

shame. and unrelenting sorrow
lurked there, like slivers, embedded
into the deepest corners of her heart
her shame - secret and dark -
melted into the soothing warmth
of his voice, and
the gentle strength
she felt in his fingertips

she-an innocent, unripened green shoot
with angular boyish curves
and a child's flat and meager bosom -
she loved him ...
loved him to the point
of pain

reality -- it showered her heart
like acid poured onto living flesh --
a reality that she and he
would have NO future
still ... her heart loved his
with a florid devotion
naive ... sublime ... divine
17 and 39


Monday, August 27, 2007

Dante's wisdom ~ Inferno (part III)

Monday, August 27, 2007
{find part I here, if you want}

{find part II here, if you want}

Having crossed the sixth circle of Hell, I have arrived upon round one of the seventh circle ~ eternal residence for those who have rendered violence against their neighbours ~ Canto XII. I had failed the consider the metaphorical significance of the structure of Hell, as presented in circle six of the Inferno. Recall, everything means something here. Dante spends two Cantos at the circle of the Heretics, the entrance and the first circle of Lower Hell. Still, the full significance of it all eluded me prior to falling asleep last night (Saturday night). And then, the last words I recall hearing in the dusk of my slumber, just prior to awaking this morning: "...the insurmountable wall of Hell..." What does this mean?

Well, having pondered these words since Saturday (its now Monday evening as I write this particular added line here), it seems to indicate that reason doubts itself ~ knows its limits wrt abyssmal darkness. Evil - the darkest of evils - can seem quite simple, until one stares into its depths, and sees there, its frighteningly intricate structure and detail. Believe me, dear reader, I have felt this very sentiment. What do I mean? Despair wears many faces. And ... we must learn to recognize them all ~ lest we come upon an imposter, whom we allow to dupe us with her easy words.

The suffering of the damned souls increases dramatically as Hell descends into itself. The Wall - the Gate of Dis - denotes that we, along with the poets - have passed into the part of Hell reserved for those whom rejection of God and goodness underlie their offenses. We see, for the first time, Virgil's anxiety at the increasing insidiousness of the Evil which resides here, in the pits of Hell. Dante seems a rather impotent figure ~ fearful of wandering the underworld alone, without the guidance of Human Reason. The suffering souls of the damned present, to the poets, the most powerful expression of sin's repugnant nature.

Dante and his guide, Human Reason, face the Furies and the Gorgon. Symbolic reminders that the soul will suffer insurmountable paralysis in the face of remorse and despair, without the intervention of divine grace ~ here represented as the Divine Messenger who descends to disperse the remorse and despair, unlock the Gates of Dis to allow Dante's passage, and then ascends without a word. As we descend lower into Hell, we witness a transformation in Dante's perception of the suffering sinners. Where, at the start of his descent into Hell, Dante expresses sorrow ~ almost pity ~ for the damnation he witnesses, now he expresses rising indignation. Once again, this draws me back to my earlier point ~ that one must remain guarded against Evil, particularly the most insidious types, which perhaps, we may fail to see. Fail to see, in the darkest of darkness ... without aid of the light.

I fear I may have lost some of the meaning in this sixth circle ... for, it feels to me like there's more to tell you ... however, words fail to get what I intuitively feel across. Or perhaps, its that I have made my point, in fewer words than anticipated. Expand the post to see some snippets that emphasize concepts and sentiments which stood out for me. My next post will discuss the seventh circle of Hell ~ all three rounds: eternal damnation for those who commit violence.

on patience ~ waiting in trust

"...'Yet surely we were meant to pass these tombs,"

he said aloud, 'If not ... so much was promised ...

Oh how time hangs and drags til our aid comes!'..."

on facing the darkest despair

"...'Turn your back and keep your eyes shut tight;

for should the Gorgon come and you look at her,

neer again would you return to the light,' ..."

on replacing God's will with our own

"Why do you set yourselves against the Throne

whose Will none can deny, and which, times past,

has added to your pain for each rebellion?"

on lacking sight/self-absorption in the darkness of suffering and despair

"When things draw near, or happen, we perceive

nothing of them. Except what others bring to us

we have no news of those who are alive."


Saturday, August 25, 2007

Dante's wisdom ~ Inferno (part II)

Saturday, August 25, 2007
{find part I here, if you want}

I have arrived upon the sixth circle of hell ~ Canto IX ~ Torment of the Heretics. I put down the Comedy last night only immediately upon putting myself to bed. Currently its Saturday morning here. My entire night's sleep has involved a dialogue with someone (Dante, himself, perhaps?), in the dreams of my psyche, of the great wisdom embedded within the Inferno. Everything means something here. The journey which Dante travels ~ this symbolizes the journey which all souls and psyches must take, in order to reach their destiny ~ Divine Light and Love. The rough and wrinkled terrain, dotted with clefts and crevices, resemble to me the terrain of the human cerebral cortex - that wrinkled surface of the brain which plays a key role in the execution of complex brain functions. And of its structure ~ as one travels deeper and deeper into the brain, one finds its core, connected with its funnel-like brain stem: primitive cerebral elements which live in the darkness, but which define and bound corporeal existence.

One must traverse that mysterious and unpredictable passage in order to reach the Light. Human reasoning generates a light of its own, to illuminate our uncertain and frightening path. However, the cortical brain has limits, does not extend all the way to the Light. For, human reasoning, alone, simply cannot carry us to completion. Along the path we encounter Evil, Evil of such destruction and force that we cannot behold or experience it without certain damnation. We, alone, cannot find our way to the Light in abject and murderous darkness. We must appeal to the guidance of Divine Light, for safe passage beyond this frightening and destructive Evil. Fear blinds our eyes and our souls and diminishes Human Reason to a point at which it loses its effect. One must travel one's life road ever-aware of the temptations of the crevices which line our passage. And the ease with which one can certainly slip, or stumble, into these. And the divine ardour we must grasp, and with which we must hoist ourselves from such a fallen state. And the humility, with which we must seek assistance, when we find we have fallen from grace, into the darkest crevice.

Expand the post to view the snippets that spoke to me. Perhaps they will speak to you, too.

on abandoning oneself to the temptest of passion

"...And she: 'The double grief of a lost bliss

is to recall its happy hour in pain.

Your Guide and Teacher knows the truth of this' ..."

on observing the souls in torment

"I see new torments and new souls in pain

about me everywhere. Wherever I turn

away from grief I turn toward grief..."

"And he to me: 'Look to your science again

where it is written: the more a thing is perfect

the more it feels of pleasure and pain."

on the perversion of hoarding & wasting

"And he: 'In the first life beneath the sun

they were so skewed and squint-eyed in their minds

their misering or extravagance mocked all reason...'

'...In their sordid lives they laboured to be blind,

and now their souls have dimmed past recognition ...'

'Now may you see the fleeting vanity

of the goods of Fortune for which men tear down

all that they are, to build mockery.' ..."

on that lady of chance, Dame Fortune, who dances upon the path of life

"...'No mortal power may stay her spinning wheel.

The nations rise and fall by her decree.

None may foresee where she shall set her heel:' ..."

on facing the purest Evil

"My Guide then, in the greatness of his spirit:

'take heart. Nothing can take our passage from us

when such a power has given warrant for it.

Wait here and feed your soul while I am gone

on comfort and good hope; I will not leave you

to wander in this underworld alone.' ..."


Friday, August 24, 2007

Dante's wisdom ~ Inferno (part 1)

Friday, August 24, 2007

I have reached Canto IV ~ Limbo, the first circle of Hell. What's struck me so far? Despair, seeing her presented as a virulent and hungry beast. Fear, seeing how she shrewdly and unceasingly hunts us down, and preys upon our frail souls. Faith, presented as akin to the botanical process of embracing the light ... of striving toward the light, and therefore, as necessary to flourish and grow. Hell and Evil, seeing these as manifestations of the power of the Supernal being. Therefore, one who denies the existence of Hell and Evil also denies the power of the Supernal - the One who resides in the empyrean sphere.

Something BIG happened late last weekend in my personal life. As in, life or death heavy duty stuff. It jolted me. As in, suddenly, things that seem to hold such importance really seem so trivial and obtuse. As in, I know ... and I no longer doubt (perhaps I have travelled the road to Damascus?). As in, it fuelled my search ... I seek wisdom of some kind. And in my search, I heard the call of Dante. Something that humanity has revered for 700 years must contain a plethora of golden wisdom, right? Indeed, it does. More than any human can imagine. I had no idea. The journey which Dante makes in The Divine Comedy seems so allegorical and so parallel to my own.

Expand the post to read the snippets that have so far grabbed me. And take out of them what you will. You will likely need to return here and re-read them several times. And each time you do, a new level of wisdom will avail itself to you.

I have written further posts ~ as I continue my journey with Dante, I will continue writing about it here. Another post waits, in the wings, actually, held back.

on the virulence of despair ~
"...a starved horror

ravening and wasted beyond all belief.
She seemed a rack for avarice, gaunt and craving.
Oh many the souls she has brought to endless grief!

She brought such heaviness upon my spirit
at sight of her savagery and desperation,
I died from every hope of that high summit.

And like a miser--eager in acquisition
but desperate in self-reproach when Fortune's wheel turns to the hour of his loss--all tears and attrition

I wavered back; and still the beast purused,
forcing herself against me bit by bit
till I slid back into the sunless wood."

on the hunger of despair ~
"...that mad beast that fleers

before you there, suffers no man to pass.
She tracks down all, kills all, and knows no glut,
but, feeding, she grows hungrier than she was."

on fear, that shrewd predator ~
"...'your soul is sunken in that cowardice

that bears down many men, turning their course
and resolution by imagined perils,
as his own shadow turns the frightened horse.'..."

on faith, embracing the light ~
"As flowerlets drooped and puckered in the night
turn up to the returning sun and spread
their petals wide on his new warmth and light--

just so my wilted spirit rose again
and such a heat of zeal surged through my veins
that I was born anew..."

on denial of hell as denial of the Father's power ~
"I am the way into the city of woe
I am the way to a foresaken people
I am the way to eternal sorrow

Sacred justice moved my architect
I was raised here by Divine Omnipotence
Primordial love and ulitmate intellect

Only those elements time cannot wear
Were made before me, and beyond time I stand.
Abandon all hope ye who enter here."


Tuesday, August 21, 2007

the moon comforts the night?

Tuesday, August 21, 2007
... so many things arrived upon me today ... here ... and ...

the moon

it is the moon
that has come to comfort
the night,
singing of the mysteries
that lay a moment away
in the days to come,
where even the shadows
are glowing

~simcha wasserman


Sunday, August 19, 2007

mute monday

Sunday, August 19, 2007
theme ~ food & drink


Friday, August 17, 2007

my fever-addled brain

Friday, August 17, 2007

massacre of the innocents by giovanni pisano

that's the sort of visions a saw last nite (thursday), whenever i closed my eyes, in the throes a surreal, fever-driven panic. fever + panic attack = bad night. its weird, how one moment you feel only as though 'coming down with something' ... and then the next, you feel as though someone has dragged you into the 5th circle of hell. one has awareness of one's illness ... however, when the full impact of sickness strikes, we cannot feel prepared. and ... what a wonder of physiology - pyrexia. a simple matter of a few degrees hotter delineates the line that separates sanity from insanity. feeling simultaneously hot and cold. feeling abject terror and sadness ~ at once. but those visions ... and accompanying voices ... nothing worse. each time i grasped sleep, the visions, voices and then the panic elephant awoke me. i felt like i had an elephant sitting on my chest. it took me at least an hour, and every pillow in the house, to build a pillow tower on the sofa so i could sleep sitting up. alas, i only wanted to put my head down. but the panic made my soul wanna jump out of my body. i fell asleep with the rosary in my grip. i can't remember having a worse night. really. talk about the dark night .... grrrr. me hates being sick.

yeah. so ... roxanne has some weird pneumonia.


Monday, August 13, 2007

free will, fate and soul collection

Monday, August 13, 2007
morgan pym sold his soul to the devil to save the woman he loved from death by the bubonic plague. seized by despair that clouds one's judgement, he gave in to tempatation in a moment of weakness, absence of faith. of course, in a moment of dark hunger, one fails to consider oneself and the consequences of ones actions with clarity. and so, a deal with the devil to change an unpleasant fate sounds like deliverance from one's own gruelling reality. the devil presents morgan with a reality he wants, (not necessarily the one he needs) and so, he buys it without question.

of course, no one said anything about the devil's honesty: the devil does not tell his clients that deals all have a 10-year limit. after which time, the universe demands repayment for the imbalance which the deal created. redemption of the damned soul involves correcting the balance with the individual who suffered the misfortune which the deal created (manufacturing good fortune where none exists necessarily means manufacturing misfortune to balance it out). damned souls get two days' warning of their deal's expiry ~ the devil savours in watching man squirm with anguish. when morgan pym's deal expires, the devil grants him immortality and makes him a collector of damned souls ~ the damned souls of all those who made dealings with the devil. and so begins the tale of the collector, a tv series here in canada.

i find this show fascinating, on so many different levels. however, the extremely cliche notion that the devil derives pleasure from human suffering, i find tired and tiresome. on the whole, though, i appreciate the philosophy of the show. the notion of the interconnectedness of humans ~ and that we affect the fate of others ... even those whom we do not know, have never seen, with whom we share no apparent connection. and so, to me, it underscores the importance of striving for self awareness, and seeing beyond the boundaries of oneself. it also underscores the whole mystery and mysticism surrounding free will, sin, temptation and the role of g-d and the devil in all of these matters. do we see g-d and the devil as sort of conspiring, playing some supernal game of chess, using humanity as their pawns? ... or ... do we see our existence as an extension of creation, and creation as a self-contained entity in constant motion? an ever-moving, ever expanding entity, whose course determines itself ... and whose course defies concrete alteration? where does that leave us, then, with respect to our comprehension of g-d, the devil, free will, and fate? well, it leads me to the realization that humans possess only a crude and primitive understanding, at best, of the mystical knowledge embedded within the universe. morgan pym reminds me that humanity does not know what it does not know. that knowledge exists, always, awaiting discovery. that our comprehension and capacity to grasp the universe exists as a continuum. an infinitely proportioned continuum. on that continuum, our position barely represents getting past 0 on a positive number line of infinite length.

does free will necessarily mean power over one's fate? does it necessarily mean the power to alter one's future path? how could it possibly? if one considers a giant function, involving an infinite number of variables, could one ever guarantee the particular, specific outcome of said function's action statement, based only upon changing one of those infinite variables? it sounds scientifically silly. and so, analogously does it seem silly to think that free will necessarily means the power to change fate's course. as i exercise my judgement, so, too, do billions of other cognitively independent agents. so, morgan pym reminds me that free will exists at a more sophisticated, and insidious level of reasoning. free will exists synonymously with suffering. to have free will means to know both the 'right way' and 'the wrong way' ... and to exercise one's choice based on that knowledge. free will hurts ~ because it involves stripping away the false veil of the corporeal, to which we so violently cling, to see reality as it exists. free will hurts because accountability and consequentiality inevitably follow, as the price of said free will. accountability and consequentiality which have their roots and origin in the immutable, absolute laws of the corporeal ~ of nature.


just say no to buying anything online

remember that painting i had commissioned, in memory of my late afghan hound? i have not received it, despite paying for it. know why? its apparently LOST IN THE FUCKING MAIL!

how does this happen? i am so fucking upset right now, i just want to cry. in fact, i'm quite sure tears and sobbing lie right around the corner. i have mourned this dog, so intensely, its felt so lonely. i looked so forward to finally bringing the painting home, after almost an entire year of waiting to be able to 'afford' paying it off so i could have it send to me, finally. and i find out i should have this painting by now.

and i don't. i have checked to mailbox daily. nothing. what is with this fucking shitty world, when people just can't do what they're charged to do ... what they assume responsibility for doing? why do the postal companies have a monopoly on the mail, since they clearly do not possess the competence to deliver on their service guarantees?



Saturday, August 11, 2007

a dream ~ white blindness

Saturday, August 11, 2007
i could see her. what she looked like. her blonde hair. feathered, and spilling over her face. covering the left side of her face, in fact. including her eye. which, somehow, i knew somehow no longer sat in its socket. something terrible, horrible had happened to her, causing her to loose her eye. and somehow, her other eye did not see. i knew this, without knowledge of how i came to this knowledge.

it felt strange ... oddly strange ... looking at this creature, who seemed as real as if in real space and time. i have never seen her before. she did not look familiar.(i often dream about people i don't know) and then ... suddenly i found myself in her. inside her. inside her eyes. and ... trapped. behind the eyes that could no longer see. and ... of course, being roxanne, i panicked. and fought the blindness. i reminded myself this blindness did not belong to my eyes. this blindness ~ a mere illusion. still, i could not see. and i felt the oppression of powerlessness. it surged through my psyche. and i tried ... with all my might to open my eyes. and then ... i awoke. in a complete and cold sweat. night shirt absolutely soaked, sticking to me.

i'm guessing that this dream somehow has a connection to a news feature i saw on blind golfers last night. one man told the story of how he lost sight in his left eye, when a puck hit it and then went to work a few days later with the damaged eye patched and then lost his right eye in a work-related accident (d/t the loss of depth perception, no doubt). stories like this weird me out because i empathize. like, that's an understatement. i feel people. yes, feel them. its trippy. i suppose its partly why i don't like them touching me. that's trippiness beyond my tolerance capacity ~ touching makes the connection more intense. my soul felt a chill when i heard this man describe in detail the events that led to the loss of his right eye. like, i could almost feel it happening. i fear loss of sight and control of limbs over all else. even over loss of life. caring for and even thinking about those afflicted by these events humbles me ... in that devastating way ... that way that reminds us what nothings we are, in the universe. how traumatic to feel this, really feel it.

and so, hence the dream. i mean, that's how my eccentric psyche processed the event.


Friday, August 10, 2007

on suffering

Friday, August 10, 2007
a fellow blogger asked, recently, “Is not our pain as much a part of our existence as our joy?” Well, IMHO, yes. and i do see pain as sometimes correct. i really see this as neither good nor bad. just … the nature of existence. and so, we do learn to live with scars, and many do never mend completely, instead laying dormant like the varicella virus. once again, such is the nature of existence. i suppose the lesson i have taken away from the darkness of suffering involves seeing pain, not as something from which we need escape, but rather as a tool ~ an entity which carves us into being.

my blogging colleague also spoke of ‘win[ning]’ against pain and suffering. honestly, not being flippant, but, i wonder. how does one win against pain? it seems as likely as conquering death ~ makes oneself prisoner when one seeks to escape. one must understand and internalize one’s suffering. however hard this feels for us, who live in a society that feels entitled to an exclusively pleasure-filled existence.

pain, i think, seems necessary. for example, how do we know something requires our attention? ~ because we feel pain. in fact, that we feel pain means we can use this awareness to heal ourselves. if we have no awareness of said wound, as it continues to grow and fester, then … the results will inevitably lead to disaster. i’m thinking here on a physical level, from a clinical perspective … but … i think this can be extrapolated and applied to the non-physical realm.

pain seems like the universe’s way to invoke change … to get us to attend. it seems like a harsh attention-getter, at times. alas, its the only message many of us hear …i suppose a lesson of life, then, involves not eradication of pain and suffering … but what one does with (i.e. how one reacts to) this pain and suffering. and the life path thru which it leads us …

to feel no pain at all ~ this could lead to disaster. think of heroine addicts - when they get so high they no longer feel physical pain … and this can result in some nasty wounds … that also could become gangrenous if unattended. most pain, in a metaphorical sense will lead to some sort of rot, if unattended. or perhaps pain seems more like fire to some ~ mind those burning embers! at any rate ~ you have the right idea - awareness … living involves awareness, when we mostly would rather not have awareness.

and now, somehow, this makes me think of that question from the matrix ~ red pill? or blue pill? society wants us to swallow the blue pill … some, like me, refuse. i will NOT go quietly into the night with that little blue pill. i will go kicking and screaming ... i'll bite, gouge, and spit if i have to ... but i will NOT take that blue pill. EVER. EVER.

Another blogger says "scars remind us what we learned in life." indeed. so ... what about scars? they're the mark of suffering ... the signature of pain. by definition, scars can never heal completely. methinks. sure, new ’skin’ grows, replacing what’s been damaged … but the afflicted ’tissue/skin’ never functions the same as it did before. i suppose now we are talking about adapting … to new realities. and development ~ growth ~ real growth of new arteries in the vessel that is the Self.

"Affliction [i.e. suffering] compels us to recognise as real what we do not think possible.”

~simone weil


Wednesday, August 08, 2007

how'd they do that?

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

how'd they get the computer in there?

meet the newest member of the mac family ~ the imac. that's it ~ a space-aged thingy that looks like a tv screen or a pc monitor, a mouse and an aluminum keyboard! holy fuck! where'd they put everything? how'd they get all the nerdy components in there? i lurv mac!


Wednesday, August 01, 2007

peace ~ the elusive

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

for millenia humanity has struggled to achieve peace. and failed, largely. it seems we cannot sustain that contemplative state of soul suspension known as peace. it seems we need the abrasive action of friction to feel alive. why, i wonder? how can one ever reach peace if one cannot bridge one's own's purpose with one's own will? when i contemplate this spiritual struggle for peace, my thoughts invariable turn toward jacob and his struggles against despair. plagued by doubts, anxiety, and shame jacob leaves home to embark on a long lonely journey. at this time, jacob's life has bottomed out. but he resiliently pushes off the floor of his despair, to begin the long climb upward. he reaches out to g-d at his moment of greatest need - and g-d answers.

from the bottom of the abyss comes the voice of salvation. the black moment is the moment when the real message of transformation is going to come. at the darkest moment comes the light.

i currently spend a great deal of my existence searching for my own ladder, to help me raise myself from the despair that sails toward me on the winds of the passage of time. trying, and maybe failing, to make peace between my the world and purpose. its a mind-blowing and lonely journey ~ to push oneself off the floor of one's own despairs means leaving one's wounds behind. it means transcending one's ego ... or, really, emptying ... or perhaps both. it means piercing the seeming impregnable wall of powerlessness which descends upon the wounded psyche. it means embracing wisdom which the experience of despair brings to our souls. the struggle of all souls involves striking a balance between the compulsion to fulfill its corporeal purpose and the desire, as the breath of g-d, to cleave to its source. this struggle defines the action of existence. the key, perhaps, lies in bridging the gap between the corporeal and the divine. therein lies peace.