Can Anything Ever Be Owned By Anyone?
The Less-traveled Paths 1 0f 4
Writings by Sha’Ra On WindWalker
(in collaboration with Sha’Tara EarthStar)
Copyright (©) 2016 Cocoons to Butterflies Publishing
Published by: Cocoons to Butterflies Publishing
Chilliwack, B.C. Canada
Cover pictures by; Top: Michael & Christa Richert
Bottom: Eva Schuster
Cover pictures found on FreeImages.com.
Space Picture: ESA/Hubble
Next Series: What the River Taught Me
I hope you enjoy these writings. Feedback is welcome.
[+ Life -- An Endless Question +]
These books represent a varied collection of remarkable “outside the box” thinking (and subsequently, writing).
If you are one of those trammeled and importuned by strong beliefs that won’t let go, this could be your chance to break free. I’m not asking you to believe what is written therein—I can’t say I believe all of it myself—but it makes for an interesting “other than” perspective. Reading these books can be compared to painting by numbers. You have this standard picture outline and between lines are colour numbers. You match the numbers to the colours and eventually you have a painting. It’s not great art, of course, and everybody knows that but it gives you the impression that you did it yourself. We all know that is how the System operates. It gives us a number of colours and our life is laid out and numbered, from cradle to the grave. There isn’t much we can do about it, it seems. It’s the System.
Ah, but there is something we can do about it. We can ignore the numbers. Use random colours and mix them. If “3” is green, we do pink on one of the “3” sections and arbitrarily use orange on the next, and so on. Pretty soon the System doesn’t know us anymore and guess what? We discover what real freedom can be. It begins by breaking the rules; by daring to violate those imposed beliefs. Here’s one for you: Did man ever land on the moon? Of course they did, you will say. You saw it on TV, or you saw the videos and read the reports and documentaries, right? Ok, fine. But that is not the point since landing on the moon or not did nothing to change the way people interact with each other. So the point? The point is to paint a different colour on the “moon landing” section of your life’s canvas. A “fake moon landing” colour. Now really go into this idea. Break the template here, convince yourself it was all faked in some studio, for whatever political reason. Then proceed to prove to yourself that it was so. Study this bit of history; look at the clues. What happens in the end? In the end you realize it doesn’t matter at all whether they landed on the moon or not. What matters is, you dared question it.
The material in here questions “taken for granted” ideas, sometimes seriously, sometimes with humour.
You know, it’s hard to think these days, when everything is handed to us via TV and the Internet. Everything tells us how to think, and does so in the blink of an eye. We don’t have to wait for the President’s state of the union speech, or the preacher’s rant on a given Sunday. We Google!
Can a mind atrophy? You bet. Look into these booklets and think about thinking.
I will go out today --the River beckons as she rises from her Winter bed to kiss the grasses in lower meadows.
I will encounter her myriad life and rejoice in her wild abundance to taste the exuberant bliss of Spring.
I will go out today --burning with the fire of my passion for life: I will dip my arms in the River's icy water sand feel the pain of cold's needles in my skin --it will remind me I'm not of her world, though I ride on her swollen belly as if I belonged there.
I will go out today --already in my mind's eye I see the path to take: up along the darkened banks under cottonwoods, across the wide channel near the big Island and into the willows where a narrow channel cuts and emerges miles upstream.
I will go out today --I will see new life and blend it into mine. Earth may not be my home, this I know too well, but there is an understanding between us: she allows me to roam quasi-freely over her face and I, in turn, give her a voice.
I will go out today --and perhaps, once more, I will return from the waters to speak to you of all that I have seen in green. Or perhaps not. Perhaps the unquenchable fire that burns within will be my funeral pyre today.
I will go out today --out on the River once again, away from cares and away from all the responsibilities accrued just for being and interacting with life --away for a brief moment of power-filled sanity.
Ere I return, this is goodbye.
I allow my pain to freely beat
its own special rhythm
until it flutters gently away,
landing softly upon the earth
to become the origin
of precious new life.
This life I nurture,
holding it with tender hands:
my tears give it water,
through my eyes it reaches the light,
until its own expanding soul
can give light,
can give strength,
can fill the void
within the questing heart.
In my heart grows a wish as it agonizes over this point, that in this universe there are problems too numerous to be solved, problems which as yet have no solutions. And what is this deepest wish? That I had begun the journey, following a path where one walks without footprints.
Or perhaps the journey began long, long ago, in some past or some future, for in my dreams I see the path as a crossroad, and I seem to cross and re-cross, from left to right, north to south or east to west and vice-versa. And if the journey began in that long ago past-future, and if it leaves no footprints, then how do I find myself on such a path? Before one can become alive, one must know the possibility of becoming alive.
Movement alone is not proof of life. A leaf falls from a tree to be blown about by the wind, comes to rest upon the surface of a river, flows downstream… a grain of sand is blown by the wind into the same water, swept into a dark turbulence perhaps all the way to the sea, comes to rest in a sand bar.
It is not so difficult to look at someone else’s path, admire their footprints and say, ‘Ah yes, that is what I wish to be;’ to read pieces of Earthian history; to remember past lives; to seek therein one’s place on this crossroad path seen only in spirit. How difficult is it to be a follower? A sycophant? A worshipper of unseen forces, real or imagined? To follow images, ritual and ceremony? Not difficult at all. These are the popular paths and the Powers encourage all to find their completion in them.
But what comes of such vision, or visions? All visible things, all thoughts, words and acts become thoroughly corrupted by time – all of them, even those written in books. For words change their meanings and many are those who make their living or find their power by re-interpreting the old writings to say what they want them to say. Those who rely on such input and support are not yet alive. They are, as pointed out in the movie, ‘The Matrix,’ the mindless flesh that feeds the Succubus, the Powers.
So where does one look then? Within, for only within is found the permanence of new birth: new ideas, new words, new ways. But there is a price, there always is. To understand the path that leaves no footprints means to be truly re-born. Complete detachment of all the things that trace, mark, etch, the old path upon the sands of time. One must become as a shadow, outcast, hidden.
In some of the so-called ‘old’ writings it is written: ‘There is nothing new under the sun.’ How comforting that is, to know that no matter how much things seem to change they really never change at all. But this comfort is more than a curse: it is a lie.
There are those we call the Time Lords who will do anything to prevent real change from happening. They call it ‘Abomination’. The interpreters of Time ceaselessly hunt for that which would create such a change. They destroy it before it has a chance to impregnate. Many are the beliefs, the stories, the legends, of those who ‘preceded’ us to bring about change. Look not just to history, but to the outworking and ask yourself if it truly worked. Did it really create the change it is taught, or preached, it did? In the light of harshest honesty?
What re-shapes a world? Newness. A force the world has never experienced. When that force impinges on it, everything within that world experiences that new power and begins to change. Such a change is irrevocable. Some changes are wrought by people with real vision. Visions based on compassion, perhaps. Perhaps even upon greater ‘virtues’ not yet invented, or thought of. Do not look for real change in old prophecies, in promises, in ‘visions’ bought with money; in natural events or disasters. Do not look for it to be handed down to you from above: that is the most disempowering stance.
Look within. Find out if there is something new there, something you did not know before. If you find it, keep it hidden for now, but know this: you have become alive and a change agent. If you choose to hold on to this new thing, prepare for your greatest joy, and your most terrible sorrow, in that order.
‘Recognizing the essential instability of our universe, one must learn to make it one’s own creation.’
(Children of Dune – Frank Herbert)
Beside a crystal stream,
I sit and wonder:
why feel so unsure of self and life
on verge of entering a new path?
A gust of wind, a moving treetop
and in deep blue sky an eagle soars;
it seems we touch in mind -
in whispered thoughts he says -
“Everyone feels unsure, afraid,
thrusting out into the unknown:
try jumping from a nest with wings untried!
Just remember you asked for this path;
that your poetry would soar above the clouds.
New paths, new experiences, new feelings,
strange faces, foreign tongues, unknown lands,
altogether overwhelming sensations:
be sure of this: all who fly stood where you stand!
I, Spirit Eagle, watch over you.
I understand your desire to fly
coupled with the fear to try.
When everything says: “Impossible”
know that the goal is within sight.”
Let’s all be willing today
to take off our shoes
and walk barefooted
in the morning dew!
Let’s learn to enjoy
the tickling of earth’s skin
beneath our tired feet
kissing the earth gently,
leaving no permanent mark
from our reverent passing
and new life may spring
even in a human footprint!
Let’s even dare to run nude
under undulating branches,
enjoying a morning shower,
laughing with the birds
as leaves gently caress
our tingling skin!
Let’s learn to respect
our earth as a lover
and we will always return
from this experience with life,
cleansed, refreshed and wiser!
Let’s ask ourselves, today,
why we are so fearful
of enjoying a life
so freely given?
The planet Arrakis, more commonly known as “Dune” by its native inhabitants, the Fremen, is a desert world. There are no clouds in the skies, no rain ever falls; no open water to be found anywhere. Yet people live there, even in the deep desert: a hellish place of violent temperature changes; of blowing sandstorms whose winds can spin to a rate of over 350 kilometers per hour throwing sand with such violence that metal is pitted; flesh is stripped from living creatures, leaving only bone skeletons buried in ever-shifting dunes. Also the deep desert is the home of the terrible roaming sandworms, giant creatures that can grow to a length of 400 meters and even more: the mighty Shai-hulud, the quasi-god of the desert, honored and even worshipped by the Fremen because Shai-hulud protects them from spice hunting space invaders or Outworlders. Shai-hulud also provides the spice by transforming sand and trace elements within its internal fires, then belching out the results onto the sands. The spice is the most precious and valuable substance in the entire universe; a substance known to extend life and give limited prescient vision. Addiction to spice mélange makes it possible for the Spacing Guild to train navigators to fold space, to travel to any part of the universe literally without moving.
But nothing grows on Arrakis. Or so it seemed until a “mad” imperial ecologist (or rather, planetologist), a Dr. Pardot Kynes, began to question the assumption that there was no water on Arrakis. His efforts are mentioned in the Dune book, of course, but what I am about to quote is from his son, Dr. Liet Kynes. “Growth is limited by that necessity which is present in the least amount. The least favorable condition controls the rate of growth.”
The Law of the Minimum—From “Lessons of Arrakis”
For those of you who have never read Dune or the following five manuscripts by Frank Herbert that comprise the Dune series, you will have to be satisfied with my short introduction above to understand this analogy. And what is the least favorable condition for growth on Arrakis? The total lack of water accessible to plants so they can anchor themselves to the shifting surface of sand dunes with deep water-seeking roots.
Switching abruptly now from that long, long ago future Dune to today’s earth.
Every world is dominated by a “law of the minimum.” Something must create a “braking effect” to control growth and prevent entropy; some mechanism must be present within the planet’s ecological system to keep life from destroying or engulfing itself. Earth, of course, has such a law as well, and it is in effect. But something happened to the planet a few hundred thousand years ago that changed everything, setting the planet upon an accelerated course to entropy. A new creature was loosed upon its surface, a creature whose mind was not bound to the patterns of its adoptive world, a predatory and competitive alien mind that expressed itself through what I call the “law of the maximum,” violating the natural cycle of its world and destroying it wherever it became successful.
Note: This week (of October 30, 2011) marked the official birth of the 7 billionth Earthian. There’s a fine number for those who love to play with statistics.
Quote from a bumper sticker seen recently on the back of one of those modern over-sized shiny-black crew-cab pickups with the thrumming-rumbling illegal (but officially ignored) exhaust systems: “Better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.” Now that’s stating the “law of the maximum” with bald face hubris; with total disregard for any conflicting interests anyone or anything other than the owner/operator of that vehicle may have. And that speaks volumes about the reason earth is currently undergoing so many crises in living space, resources, social unrest, and of course, financial meltdown. I think that bumper sticker should be preserved as man’s epitaph.
It doesn’t matter who you are: god, demon or man, you cannot, with impunity, violate natural laws, whether such laws are stated as such or sensed through logic and observation. Earth is a finite organism, an ecological system, a living entity and also a machine, a factory. For such a machine to function properly there must exist a working balance between giver and taker. Can anyone find such a balance today? Again quoting from Dune, “There is in each of us an ancient force that takes and an ancient force that gives. A man finds little difficulty facing that place within himself where the taking force dwells, but it’s almost impossible for him to see into the giving force without changing into something other than man.”
Man’s nature is to take. His roots on this world are tenuous. He accepts earth as his world, not because his instinct tells him it’s his world but because he is stranded here with no map, no remembered route and as yet no access to the space lanes that could take him away from this adoptive world and out in space where he may find his way back to his place of origins, or places of his origins or perhaps find other worlds more resilient than earth, more able to counter his impulsive, competitive nature. Perhaps… but I cannot see this possibility.
Man therefore, having decided that he could live by the “law of the maximum,”—that he could take and take and take without dire long-term consequences despite all evidence to the contrary, chose to ignore warning signs arising from his depredations and trespasses upon planetary life, and upon his own species. By living this “law of the maximum”—a necessary belief if the current ruling elites are to hold on to their power—man becomes more than a taker, more than an insatiable predator, he becomes an egocentric genocidal madman. His desires rule the day and woe to those who object. They are invaded, blown away, crushed, suppressed, driven into submission and enslaved. Nothing is permitted to stand against his wishes; his believed entitlement to what the world must give; what can be extracted; what can be exploited. The very planet is increasingly subjected to violence for possession of its depleted resources. Where fields have died due to over-cropping, chemical fertilizers and poisons are spread and sprayed to force new crops to grow. Where forests were replanted, ever younger trees are harvested to satisfy the profit machine. Mountains are stripped of their growth to make way for new housing developments and others are blown up, their rocks crushed to make aggregates for building materials. In marginal places where too much was taken too fast, the dead land disappears under an ever-spreading desert. Sand covers green fields and fills ravines where rivers once flowed. And the greatest rivers become little more than vast open sewers taking their poisoned sludge to a dying sea.
It does not take a college or university degree to see this. But the earth is caught in a juggernaut between corporate greed, a dwindling consumer middle class and the necessity of survival for the dispossessed billions. There is no place left for either to grow, man having far exceeded his limits to growth. And yet, this drive to destruction will not stop; it cannot stop. The System, that mindless machine that drives man’s thinking cannot see because it cannot care; cannot understand what it is doing. And the man creature is bound, body and soul, to this machine: his sacrosanct System.
With current computer technology as the upstart global dictator it becomes evident that the madcap drive to eat up what’s left will only speed up exponentially. Recently I sent out a short article about individuals called “Quants”—financial geeks who use computer technology to quantify everything on the planet, reducing it all to a numbered balance sheet and moving those numbers across the world at the speed of light. And what’s wrong with that, some may ask? Just this: that these numbers bear less and less resemblance to the real world. The speculated price of a ton of wheat may go from New York to Peking in less than a heartbeat but the real wheat whose beautiful heads of unripened grain still wave in the winds of vast prairie lands continues to grow at its own pace. Nature continues to play a role over those fields. Late rains, early snows, early frosts or an unexpected blight can wipe out entire crops, especially where the same crop covers thousands of acres.
But the financial wizards and their greedy employers no longer can wait to find out if their investments will produce their grain. They want the profit now so they make it happen by disconnecting the rules of their game from the actual natural base that provided its reality, its actual value. The game played by the money traders is entirely based on the “law of the maximum” whose arbiter is man’s greed whereas the value that would legitimize the game is based on the “law of the minimum” and the arbiter of that law is nature, not man.
Before I close this essay, I want to relate an incident of a few days ago. A friend of mine sent me a link to a You Tube video describing the destruction of foreshore riparian habitat on the Fraser River by hordes of mindless off-roaders. I was annoyed at this because the email I received gave no indication what the “video” would be about. All I received was a single sentence saying, “What do you think of this.” and the Internet link. What annoyed me most was the lack of personal involvement by the sender, as if just making a video and posting the problem somehow constituted a solution of sorts.
I’ve been involved in many an issue during my sixty-five plus years on this stupid world and I know that “advertising” is not how you solve crises: it’s how you cleverly veil them while making yourself feel better about it all. Crises are tackled by total, individual, personal involvement. You get your hands dirty. You lose nights of sleep preparing and organizing –whatever! –be it media appearances or demonstrations, or spending week-ends on the homemade “cardboard recycling” project, or you do the door-to-door thing and you run for office and offer workable alternatives to your community. You do research and you teach yourself how to communicate with the people you hope to reach. If necessary, you go to jail. Well, that was our way. Sometimes it even worked. Sometimes we saw a bit of success, if only to see it all overturned for those of us who lived long enough to see it.
I made my friend aware of my annoyance and the reply was so typical of today’s attitude, I use it to make a point: “I wrote a letter to the mayor and I made the local paper aware of this problem. Also I posted this on Facebook and I don’t need to tell you how much exposure that gives it.”
Have we all become “Quants” that exposure to numbers is synonymous to education and commitment to a cause? Will a million Facebook members be miraculously moved by my friend’s little YT video lost among millions of others, and spontaneously organize to raise hell against the hell-raisers on his river frontage? Of course not. People are swimming in a sea of YT videos. You could spend a lifetime going through that miasma and come out of it dumber and more confused than when you went in. This is a case of the “law of the maximum” – those who believe they can do whatever they want even when it is illegal – and the “law of the minimum”—the naturally controlled and operated machine—coming face to face.
Man will not win this game because the middle ground (time, space, natural resources) between the two conflicting forces necessary for a meaningful truce has been conquered and annexed (absorbed) by the “law of the maximum” faction. The war of man versus the planet will, of necessity, be waged to its bitter end. There are no innocents anymore and there will be no reprieve for anyone.
During those days men will seek death, but will not find it; they will long to die, but death will elude them. (Revelation 9:6)
Why does the capitalist business sector affectionately dubbed “the Corporation” have so much power in today’s world? A hundred and fifty years ago that monstrosity hardly existed. The corporate power brokers up ‘til then were religion and government, having been so, basically unchanged, for thousands of years.
The first thing that comes to mind, of course, is the serendipitous, if not magical, appearance of what we call technology. Particularly the aspect of it that deals with people control and mind-manipulation through mass-communication; these made possible by the manipulation of numbers at the expense of philosophy, rationality and common sense. This “change” was given a great boost when the computer became the mind of the world.
But which is responsible for which? Each one’s success and growth is totally dependent on the other’s success and growth. Why did the high-priesthood of religious leadership, for example, so suddenly give way to the scientific fraternity and its acolyte, engineering, the concept known as technocracy?
Technology is not responsible for the bloated growth of the Business Corporation predator. When such a cancer develops (and this one is eating the entire world) we have to realize it is the inevitable result of a lack of balance within Earthian societies. It is in the same league as exploding mega-cities that find their energy to expand by eating surrounding towns and countryside and by devouring its own guts, namely the poorer segments of its human populations. It is in the same league as the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction capable of total obliteration of life on this world.
If such a development did come about because of a lack of balance, what can we point the finger at for the failure to maintain a balance? Forget organized religion or government – these have proven over and over they are no better at ruling a world and they never really provided balance, unless one would call it a balance of terror. The proper term to describe these controlling forces has to be “Unaccountable Totalitarianism.”
The lack of balance made itself felt when a large majority of people began to lose faith in their old religious and governmental institutions. Unrest from growing populations, new lands in far-flung empires promised to the adventurous and increased repression at home created sudden changes the old orders were not equipped to deal with. Old churches split and fractured into various sects; governments, confused and weakened by half-baked ideologies of democratic ideals were overthrown and all over the world upstart lesser powers appeared. As unrest grew so did disorganization. Large movements became popular revolutions, these replacing old tyrannies with new tyrannies.
And that’s it. People sought for change but without any realistic vision of anything that could truly be called new. Example, communism despite its massive appeal was doomed as a political force before the ink dried on the first copy of the Communist Manifesto. Why? Because it offered nothing new. It only re-worked and re-wrote old ideas loosely based on a poorly defined concept of socialism. Then it plunged itself in guaranteed failure, the ultimate boondoggle: a “dictatorship of the proletariat” through an endless struggle against private ownership (capitalism) to be managed by a totalitarian central government. Not only did it become the ultimate contradiction, it became the mirror image of capitalism, emulated every aspect of it and in the end, was eaten by it. So it was in the USSR, so it is in China.
What would have prevented the Corporation; that mindless profit-seeking predator, from taking over the planet? A shift in the wind. A real new age.
All that was needed was for individual Earthians to dream, then implement, a new way of relating to one-another and to the rest of their world. To implement the kind of relationship that acknowledges the worth (in every way except in monetary value) of every type of life on this world. To think in terms of giving rather than taking. To stop worshipping and praying (preying?) and start doing that which benefits “the other” – always, in every way. To take responsibility. In a nutshell, to exhibit compassion.
What’s the payoff? Where compassion rules there is no need for enforced law and order. No need for government or religion. And certainly, there is no need for money. In one move the old chessboard is cleared of its competitive factions, folded and put away forever. A new game begins, a game of sorrow and joy dancing together hand in hand in the streets until, perhaps, one day, sorrow will give way entirely to joy and still life will find itself in balance. When all things are shared, not through barter, but through simple giving, balance is achieved.
Life on Earth is short-lived. The point of that is to demonstrate the idiocy of living for basic survival. No one survives. So we may as well determine to learn how to simply live and live simply. We need to unlearn the concepts of assaulting (making war), plundering and pillaging for any reason. We need to unlearn the teachings that say “me first” and seek the greater good of “the other” regardless of personal costs. We create a new world by turning the old one upside down.
We need to learn first hand the One Law: “You shall cause no harm to come to Life.” That is the path upon which the “higher life” is found and embraced. Once on that path there is no desire to turn back.
Now then, a “new year” means nothing. Just an arbitrary measurement of time. Yet, we must know that it could mean something. If I make it mean something other than just a greeting. If I make it a year long event. And this brings up a new idea. What if we turned our days around, that “New Year” would be every day except the first day of the year, Remembrance Day would be every day except November 11; Christmas would be celebrated every day except on December 25th, when we would attempt to take a break from it… and find we were now hopelessly in love with the concept of giving ourselves away and wouldn’t even notice that date as it passed by.
The Upside Down Planet. Someone “out there” might take notice and come for a closer look. Perhaps that is how we can entice the good ones among our neighbours to come and take a look at us, perhaps even stop for a visit.
Is your heart troubled
by ancient thoughts, angry, confused, dark?
Is your heart cold
to the pain that surrounds you, discordant, disconnected,
as if not of your own heart?
Do you still look upon your world
as something other than yourself, separate?
Does your mind
desire to strike out in anger, in violence, in me-eaness
giving back hurt for hurt?
A long time ago, you learned that way
man’s old way,
claiming, taking, fashioning, raping, never creating:
the way of endless death…
It seems right, when no other is known
but now, you’re at the crossroads:
your love for me brought you here
and now, you must understand, choose:
accept -- or reject.
Look into my eyes
if your heart is troubled, unable to decide:
I show you the very first way
as the worlds were made from what seems not,
from love, and nothing else
for we had nothing else to work with then
and we still refuse to work with anything else:
Look into my eyes
and absorb my wisdom, my love, my life
join me in my cosmic dance: come
cry with me, laugh with me, die with me
child made for joy!
conveys this thought:
“Length and breadth
of mountain roads climbed
do not frame life’s final image.
How high above confusion
did you say you reached?”
“Experience: the best of all teachers…”
My Yearly Harrison Lake Kayak Run – Late June 2010
It was not an auspicious beginning for this yearly kayaking run to Harrison Lake and back. In the early morning the sky was quite grey and although it was not raining, it looked like it sorely wanted to. We’ve had a rather wet and cold spring and now it’s summer but still quite undecided. If the days are warm, or sunny, it’s almost unbearably muggy. If it’s raining, it’s also muggy-or it’s cold. Today was all of it, but amazingly there was little or no wind! Winter or summer, I’ve never been out on the open waters of Harrison bay, or the Chehalis delta, without a stiff breeze blowing and white caps tossing the kayak around and washing over it. Good thing for me today, as you will read later.
The run itself is challenging, taking place on many different types of water surface. First two miles are on the Hope river, and that’s pretty mild. Then north on the Fraser River and as far as current conditions go, that’s the most challenging part. When the waters are at their peak as now, I can choose to paddle at least part of the upstream jaunt through flooded islands, following the swollen streams that are dry gravel or sandy gullies the rest of the year. You encounter pretty tough currents here too, but less so than on the open River. These woodland channels are full of smells, sounds and colors. It is worth putting up with the mosquitoes and branches that slap your face or grab the kayak as you thread the needle through overhanging boughs of willows, blackberries and red-osier dogwood that gracefully arch over, or dance, in the flowing waters.
As the clouds dropped ever lower it became so dark in these streams that I could not see anything except the swirling brown water, the shrubs on the edge of the streams and the ever-present flitting swallows. I thought of a jungle in the Amazon, or Mirkwood forest of Tolkien lore, as I heard deer stomping and crashing through the bushes and beavers (and possibly bear cubs) trudging away from the shore, disturbed by my passage. Periodically a wood duck or mallard female would do its broken wing or wounded bird routine to draw me away from the young perfectly, quietly, camouflaged among clumps of swaying grasses along the banks. As for the colors I mentioned, they became quite muted in this strange “legend of sleepy hollow” semi-darkness.
While the weather has not been conducive to the return of large numbers of birds to the area this year, I did see a few of the regular ones, and certainly heard their calls: cedar waxwing, brewers and red-winged blackbird, black-headed grosbeak (my favorite singer), marsh wren, song and white-crowned sparrow, solitary sandpiper, blue heron, bald eagle (very raucous today: young ones must have just come out), osprey, turkey vulture (buzzards for you Americans of the wild West-and interestingly every year we get more of these), common loon in its usual haunts on the Chehalis river delta, common merganser, and… since it was raining: vaux and white-throated swift. If you’ve ever seen a white-throated or a black swift shooting over the waters in the rain, you’ll know why they call them “swift”! Amazing acrobats. Before I leave off about the birds I must mention that I saw the highest flying blue heron ever. He was so high he was just a speck in the sky, but you can’t mistake the curved wing pattern and wing-beat of a blue heron even at that distance. No, definitely not an eagle. Eagles circle at high altitudes but a blue heron’s flight path is straight. Heron with a goal in mind.
After about eight miles of tortuous meanderings pushing through head-on or cross-currents and interminable whirlpools; after crossing the River (again!) you “gradually” enter the Harrison river at its T-junction to the Fraser. This is an area of powerful currents as these mighty rivers crash into each other and try to make peace of the chaotic waters each brings to bear against the other. The Fraser is a brown river, carrying mud and silt from half-way up the province as it cuts away at its banks and its tributaries bring in their contributions from clear-cut mountain areas. The Harrison is a clear green river as it drains Harrison lake through an area of broken stones from volcanic activity and a bed of very coarse dull white sand.
I always steer clear of the main conflict area between the Rivers as the whirlpools created there would swallow my kayak as easily as a piece of grass. Once past that foreboding place, I am now on the Harrison proper. Almost anywhere now you can see clear to the bottom through icy-green waters. Unlike the Fraser, the Harrison is a silently flowing river, rather predictable (if not always friendly) along its entire length. The fast parts are fast, the slow parts, slow and always the same. You don’t encounter the changing “violence” of the Fraser. I usually refer to that part of the journey as “the boring stretch” although the boring applies only to the paddling. The areas surrounding this river are anything but boring. One could write books on the geology alone, more if one were a geologist! And the beauty of it is beyond words, and even beyond the ability of a camera to record.
This river has many “moods” and changes radically from place to place, depending on the time of the year. Now, of course, it is in flood and stretched out all over, from Harrison bay all the way to its restricting mountain wall channel that finally leads to the lake. Here it can only go up or down, not sideways or every-which-way!
On the way north you pass under a CPR (Canadian Pacific Railway) swing bridge, then past a provincial park with a beach of yellow-white sand. Young families and older folks frequent this park in the summer. Although sparsely populated today due to inclement weather, there were children playing among driftwood logs brought in by the high waters.
Now an anecdote to the “people part” of my journey which I must relate. During the last few years they have developed a kind of high-powered jet-pump type boat fishermen (I call them fish-snaggers or fish torturers) have been buying. They are perfect for these creatures: ostentatious, hard on gas, noisy and positively ugly, to go with their similarly endowed crew-cab pickups. There were few of those out today because the fish, surprise, surprise… is gone. But as I rounded up the last leg of the park’s small beach, three of these boat, operated by the usual brain dead types came roaring up from the south, tearing up near the beach and throwing up a serious wake. There was a little girl sitting on a dry log near the water. She was staring at the water when the waves hit the log and drenched her. Her mother was near by and caught her as she lost her balance.
Of course the ignorant louts in the boats were too close to shore-but there are no buoys to keep them off, so why not show off their stupidity, ignorance, and crass materialism? “Hey, look at me, I can make noise with my machine, and it’s powerful and can throw up water on your beaches. I can wreck your environment, pollute your air, even drown your kids given half a chance. I represent the best this society has to offer. Admire me!” I realize, of course, they could not think that: they don’t have the brains for it. They truly are the blind, deaf and dumb; the mentally deficient in a dying civilization. They have no idea that what they do is detrimental to everything they touch, including themselves, because “we are having fun” and “if it feels good, do it!” So this society plunges deeper and deeper into its inevitable demise day by day. It’s observable, it’s palpable. To me, it’s not even sad anymore: at this point, it could not happen fast enough.
Past the park, now turning east, another “boring” stretch of water with log booms tethered to pilings on both sides of the river. This is a log dump and sort area. Then you pass under another bridge, the Harrison River bridge, also a swing bridge. They built these bridges to open during high water so fishing trawlers (remember when there was fish in the rivers?) and tug boats hauling log booms could pass through. After the bridge, you pass the fancy Sandpiper golf course and for a time, a hiatus from displays of Earthian stupidity. Now comes the broad expanse of the Chehalis river delta, flooded gravel bars covered with hardhack, dogwood, willow and a variety of grasses I can’t identify. They are beautiful, that’s all I know. One could paddle around all day in this veritable paradise, and had I not had a specific purpose in mind for passing through I would have explored it.
The mountains close in somewhat in this area, squeezing the clouds in and predictably it began to drizzle. I had to put on the spray skirting, wool toque and rain jacket. As luck would have it, the elastic band on my skirting broke and I could not anchor it down. I just laid it on top to fend off the rain and carried on. Had it been windy… ah well, nothing for it: I would have had to turn back and hug the shores to avoid being swamped by waves. From a steady drizzle, the rain turned to pounding downpours, shower after shower. The kind of rain that pounds the surface of the water and creates bubbles on it, then seems to amuse itself by bombing each bubble to create a new one. The hammering of rain on the tensile surface of the water is loud, but this is a natural sound and rather pleasant, unlike the man-made machine noises we are assaulted with daily amongst the you-know-whos.
I am two-thirds of the way to my destination now. I can give up and return home, or I can continue, getting soaked and cooled down to borderline hypothermia (I know that from experience). I choose to continue simply because I can. This is not something I am forced to do, it’s something I can truly choose to do, and on my own terms. I paddle through the delta, past a newly erected wildlife observation blind conspicuously sticking up out of the waters, then push through point after point of flooded grassland, choosing to thread the kayak through the grass to avoid the faster counter-currents on the open waters. When I finally arrive at the shore line and boat launching area of the Chehalis Indian Reservation, I stop for a short break, to stretch, chew a granola bar and take a drink. It is more comfortable (and gives quicker rudder response) to kayak barefoot, so I’m walking around in the washed up debris, branches and broken tufts of grass when I realize I’m walking on broken glass as well.
As I look around more closely (I had to take off my glasses earlier because they fogged up in the rain) I see the area is littered with garbage, much of it beer cans and collapsed cartons. Around my feet I see shattered glass and shot-gun shells all over the ground. Ah, I think, another piece of “man world.” It never ceases to amaze how diligently the fun-seeking types make it their duty to ruin and spoil everything they touch. Here I am, standing in one of the most beautiful places on this planet, and guess what the local Earthians choose to do to it, with it. No, I did not cut my feet. They are quite tough, and that is certainly not the first time I’ve been barefoot on broken glass. Spiritually and mentally my entire life has been spent thus: barefoot on broken glass. This planet has become a place of broken glass. Broken hopes and broken dreams. Anyone who comes here thinking to make a good life will fail. Either they will land in a place where oppression, extortion or genocide is “in” or else among the types whose sole purpose in life (if they could construe of such a thing as having a purpose, that is) is to destroy anything that could be called “good.”
Soaked and getting increasingly colder, I finally make it to my destination: Harrison lake. I head for the one place I can land the kayak for another break, stretch and eat my apple. It’s a tiny little beach jammed between two cliffs, and not much beach left at high water. I had always thought of this place (“Whippoorwill Point”) as a kind of natural preserve, where the people who come to Harrison Hot Springs for the beaches, hotels and bars, could take nature walks through the old trails, past the sulfurous smelling hot springs to land’s end where the lake empties into the Harrison river. Well, no. There’s a large billboard there now stating “Private Property. Future development by Kinga Developments – 116 acres” And it shows a map that takes in the entire point. When it comes to a choice between money and people, guess what wins? But then, the “people” deserve what they are served. They don’t care, and invariably, some way, they buy into the money thing and will continue to do so until it won’t mean a thing. Then, what’s left of them will tumble or stumble onto other things, equally mindless. I think of planet Earth as the sinking rat ship. The rats on this ship have a problem however: they can’t abandon their ship because there isn’t any other ship nearby to invade and despoil, nor is there any shore they can swim to. I am thankful for that.
The rest, as they say, is history. I turned back and a trip that took over six hours to complete against the various currents was done in reverse in just under three hours. The rain was so insistent and heavy that I took very little time to admire the scenery on the way back. My neck muscles were screaming and my arms just didn’t want to push/pull that paddle shaft any longer.
Wish there was more time to describe the beauty of the late spring flowers along that varied shoreline, or the sweet scents that filled the air everywhere. But this is already way too long!
"Every man and every woman has a course, depending partly on the self, and partly on the environment which is natural and necessary for each. Anyone who is forced from his [or her] own course, either through a lack of self- understanding [sic], or through external opposition, comes into conflict with the order of the Universe and suffers accordingly." [Aleister Crowley)
So much trouble
turmoil of soul,
and questions unanswered…
What is right, what is wrong?
soon I will reach the gates;
they will not yield to
nor the greedy,
but only to the pure of heart:
and how can I know
I truly hold this precious key?
How can I know
this, that I hold,
is not just an imitation?
A lie I’ve grown comfortable
Who will answer
this final question?
Waves roll gently upon the white sand,
soothing my weary, questing soul;
heat and light from the morning sun
inexorably disperses the mists
and a new path unfolds before my eyes
leading away from this roundabout shore:
yes, the time has come to leave
the tattered shelter of old memories
and to resume my life’s journey
following it’s unchartered path.
Why did I not see this before?
It is impossible to enter the wrong path
in life’s travels, for wherever I turn,
whatever highway or wild trail I follow,
that is exactly what I had determined
I should do, before I ventured forth,
and the mystics are proved right once more.
It is foolish and utterly futile
to worry about, or try to predict,
the outcome of this particular journey.
Step forth bravely; step forth freely
and enjoy the whole of life!
“Only by walking the unchartered path
will you find your new horizons.”
If I truly had faith
as prophets of old
crying at the gates;
if I had davidian courage
to face self-confident men
who rule the world;
if I had solomic wisdom
to read the hearts of men
…and the love of Christ:
if I truly cared
as I say I do
I would meditate this sign;
ponder the fate
of a dying world -
would gather my spirit
and all its guides
to work the wonders of the light
in deep darkness.
I would embark upon the final quest,
boldly seeking audience
with all the rulers
of all the kingdoms
and when received
(for they too wonder)
I would come before them
and seeing there
but utter confusion
the need of love and compassion
I would kneel and bow
in total humility
in complete truth
the planet’s plight
into their ears-
from my open hands would flow
images of doom and hope
for their eyes to see:
as their senses opened to the truth
they would suddenly realize
all the right and all the wrong
of all the doings in the earth.
all was finished;
all was seen -
all was understood
as it really is
with no chance for
the most powerful
of all the rulers
his golden and marbled
signal haughtily to his guards
and point at me:
the dagger would penetrate
deep in the heart.
Thus would the final quest
my body lying
at the foot of the last
throne of man
and I could then rest
in peace for eternity.
Last day of school. Last day of formal training. Jerry Colmack, ignorant of most current political trends and protected from the endless wars they engendered, did not fully understand the reasons that had forced him to become a professional dreamer. From his viewpoint, it had just been an easy way to avoid boring and confusing calculus, physics, geometry, not to mention the hated regimented sports and enforced military training. Not that he wasn’t thoroughly versed in all the sciences, particularly astronomical physics and space navigation, but this knowledge had been absorbed subliminally to impinge upon his consciousness while in out-of-body flight as a unit of superconscious energy…
Nevertheless, as his Mentor was fond of saying, in life there’s no free lunch and now, just when he was developing an unabashed admiration for the fairer sex, he was likely to be chosen to explore for habitable planets. Damn! he mumbled, then rebuked himself. After all, TRAVEL was what he had trained for since the age of nine, his great dream.
But there hadn’t been girls in his dreams then; and now, there were! Particularly, there was Sylvia—lithe, dreamy, with laughter as clear as a mountain brook, black eyes reflecting life’s effervescence and long dark hair worn straight and free, henna and apple-spice, tickling the cheek, filling the air when she bent over you to examine your work, share ideas or whisper… Sylvia…
“MISTER Colmack, may I have your attention, PLEASE!” The voice thundered, shattering his mood. The Mentor was a large man with a voice to match.
“Uh, sorry Mentor, I was dreaming.”
“There is a time for dreaming and a time for listening. All right, everybody. This is your last day together. Soon, you will be assigned your respective duties. Don’t fail your school.” and in a gentler tone: “Don’t fail yourselves… Jerry!”
“Please come with me. The Inspector wants to see you.”
As they crossed the main corridor, he saw Sylvia leave the Inspector’s office. As she stood to attention with her back against the row of green lockers, she bowed low to the boy’s Mentor and stared at Jerry. Her face registered that she wanted to see him urgently. He even felt her trying to mind meld but he shrugged helplessly and discontinuing the effort, she turned away down the hall towards the main exit door.
An old man stood by an open door, holding its shiny brass handle as if for support. He waved them in a Spartan office.
“Inspector.” The Mentor bowed low. Jerry did the same.
“Mentor; graduate.” He gave a short bow of acknowledgment then turned a piercing gaze upon Jerry. “Graduate Colmack, your reports are highly favourable. As there is so little time, I am going to acquaint you with your first assignment in the quickest possible way. I need not go into details. Your preparation and training will fill in the gaps.” He handed Jerry a thin folder. “Memorize these instructions before your departure.”
Departure! He trembled involuntarily. This was it! The culmination of years of training, of enduring the taunts of those who knew nothing of dreaming. “Hey, dreamers, when you gonna get a real job? They should burn down that fancy bedding place of yours! What are the chicks like in sex dreams? What’s space like, spaceball? Bullshit, hogwash! Waste of tax money!” He had heard every kind of derogatory remark, been physically abused and made to feel as if he was responsible for the mess the world was in. Scapegoats, that’s what he and the small select group of his peers were. But it was worth it. He held his orders. He would TRAVEL!
The old man continued, “We now have our cryonics facility fully functional and totally self-maintaining, safely installed one mile underground and served by a fusion generator brought to peak efficiency by the newest computer advances: a combination of chemistry and biology; sentient software. Your shells can now be preserved indefinitely. We are ready to send out our first seekers. You know the task: to locate proper colonizing planets for those who want to leave and start new colonies where there is fresh air and space to grow.” He looked at the smoke floating past the stained windows and sighed. “Graduate Colmack, are you ready to enter upon your greatest adventure?” The question, to Jerry’s surprise was neither rhetorical nor condescending. He really was asking!
What could he answer? He didn’t want to sound too eager… or frightened, and he was indeed ready. He would take the jet lift down and enter the cocoon which would hold his physical body. While in deep sleep, prompted by auto-suggestion, his etheric body or ‘consciousness’ would rise out of his physical body and the sealed cocoon to float unimpeded to the surface. With the power of pure thought, he would leave the earth’s atmosphere. Using a technique developed during previous experiences in super-conscious travel, he would fling his energy consciousness across the time/space boundaries that had confined his race since it had come to inhabit the solar system. Out—into the great void, and to other worlds, other star systems, perhaps even other galaxies, probing, searching, for that one special world. Alone? Would he have to do this by himself? “Yes sir.” he answered simply, and added, somewhat self-consciously, “although I thought that perhaps I would have had a few days to see my family again…”
“I am sorry, Colmack, but your family at the moment is behind enemy lines, so to speak. Revolutionaries have cut communications between this sector and the Van-Mond hills. Perhaps when you return, things will have settled a bit. Listen, Colmack. We need you now. Earth, as a sustainable eco-system, is dying, understand?”
“I think so. Must I attempt this by myself, sir?”
“Shall we tell him, Mentor?” He thought he saw a twinkle in the Inspector’s eye.
“Yes. It is time.”
“Your file indicates you have developed a psychological bonding with a female member of the Institute. Give me her name, please?”
Jerry reddened, fumbled with his folder, uncertain. Had he committed some sort of indecency, violated some rule? Was this a trick to test him, or embarrass him? What about Syl? Had she been grilled about their feelings for each other? For that matter, what were her feelings? At seventeen, he knew practically nothing about girls, and in many ways, Syl had proved experientially his senior by years, even though she was his age… What did the Inspector really want?
“Her name, Jerry?” His voice had softened.
Oh, what the hell… “Sylvia Domona, sir…”
“Thank you, Jerry. You’ve just confirmed our choice. Sylvia is already on her way to cryonics. She will precede you in space by some twelve hours. You will locate her, join your consciousness with hers and together, we hope you will accomplish the miracle we will be waiting for. To avoid explanations and possible embarrassment for her, she was not told whom we would be sending up with her. It will be up to you two to make the adjustments and develop a mutual plan of action. Now remember the basics, boy. In so-called ‘space,’ your pure consciousness will link up with every part of the universe. You will ‘feel’ the stretching and gradually lose sense of self until you find your target and re-enter the ego-field. Remember the law: If you find a suitable host body on a habitable world, you must wipe all memory of your temporary presence from its mind before you withdraw. You must cause no psychological or physical damage. Your presence must remain undetected by the sentients. You must find such a world, one preferably younger than earth by about 500,000 years, without life harmful to humans, you understand? You possess more than ample knowledge to determine this, if you hold tightly to the disciplines taught at the institute and practiced in your brief training excursions within the solar system. Maintain your current physical sexual orientation at all costs. Enter only a male-type host. Sylvia has been likewise cautioned. Do not attempt a mind-meld with a hermaphroditic sentience. Man may have been such in his earlier stages of development but cannot return to that evolutionary period. Establish the ‘base,’ as per your instructions.
Remember: you are under oath to return to earth, and your earth bodies… whatever your feelings. Likely, you will soon find life in pure consciousness superior to life in the physical shell and will probably not want to return, but keep in mind that once your task is fulfilled, you will have that choice in any case. Do not forget us, son. You are our only hope.”
He cleared his throat. “A couple more things. You have already encountered other disembodied entities or forms of consciousness. You know they will try to attach themselves to you or try to sway you to join with them. That is one of the reasons we decided to have Sylvia accompany you and vice-versa. If the attraction between the two of you is strong, you will be able to tear away from the seduction of these creatures, if we may call them that. You will remain aware that only upon your return to earth will you be able to fulfill the physical attraction burgeoning between you and the girl.” He looked keenly, though not unkindly at the embarrassed teen-ager and continued. “Miss Domona rates the highest of all her peers in psychic awareness and intuition and your powers of observation and rationalization are unmatched, making you the perfect pair to attempt this preposterous, though I believe, not impossible, task—space travel and colonization using only the pure energy of the cosmos to carry individuality in consciousness throughout the universe.
“We’ve done everything we could to eliminate danger, loneliness and fear and to ensure your safe return after successfully locating at least one suitable world. Now, if I may express an old earth saying: God speed to the both of you.”
For the first time, Jerry felt a kinship to the old Inspector. He looked at the lined face and into the deep-set blue eyes under thick, graying eyebrows. His eyes involuntarily watered as he extended his hand to the man who had been responsible to single-handedly convince the Ruler, the ‘Max’(assassinated two years ago by his nephew who now held a shaky reign threatened on all sides by vindictive revolutionaries led by the Max’s son) that dream travel was not an aberration deserving mind re-orienting, but could become an opening to the planets of other star systems, under proper guidance, instruction and containment.
With reluctant authorization and funding from who knows where, he had founded the Institute, recruited trainers and trainees, and been instrumental in developing the biological computer that would “man” the cryonics facility. Yet, in the beginning, his plan had been but a ploy to save the minds of young children who registered out-of-body experiences and were being rounded up to have their minds re-trained for possible use as spies.
Of this and other political tricks and risks, Jerry remained blissfully ignorant by design. His task was not to resolve earth’s surface problems, but to open an escape route to habitable worlds in far-flung star systems within the Milky Way, the greatest adventure ever attempted by man.
As he walked boldly and proudly to a waiting heli-craft, all he could think of was the line borrowed from an ancient sci-fi anthology: “Tomorrow, the Stars” and he added “and Sylvia!”
How fitting that man’s new quantum leap in evolution would be harnessed to the greatest motive force known among the race: romance as expressed by the mutual attraction between a man and a woman. Would a planet in the Tau Ceti system some day possess a sacred book that would speak of its Genesis, and remark upon the beginning of its human race via a “Jerry and Sylvia,” with its God represented as an old Inspector in rumpled gray suit, striped tie and twinkling blue eyes under bushy eyebrows? The answer to that question is even now out there, in the stars…
Stones do have a language of their own:
they have been heard over time,
under rubber heels, crunching,
under the wheels of a car,
when waves wash a gravelly shore
and reluctantly retreat: who hasn’t heard
the stones speaking?
It’s not that stones are mute,
or that they say too much;
it’s just that humans are not open
to communication in sound,
when not exactly verbal… it’s called noise.
Yet should that surprise anyone?
They cannot even understand one another:
human speech is often little more than confusion
passed off as erudition
in places of so-called learning.
Humans fail to hear their world in stone,
because these communicate only in truth:
no anger, lies, or innuendoes;
no swearing, yelling, accusing;
no fear, greed or other worthless expectations.
Yes, that would be difficult
for the average human to decipher,
how much more to attempt to understand.
as a child of God
to all that is good
that it was time
I asked for the
I want love.
there are so many
I ‘d get confused
it must be quite obvious
that only God
the One who made you
the One you hate
to hear about?…
can give that love
I seek so brazenly
I went to Him
and asked for love:
what do you think?
that He was angry with me,
sinner dying hunk of flesh
that he held his nose
and rolled his eyes
at my temerity,
and threw a thunderbolt?
or pretending to sleep
ignored my plea?
No, he didn’t.
Of those who would simply live life
as she offers herself moment by moment,
thought by thought, event by event;
who believe in the inevitability of karma
and the relentless wheel of destiny;
in set pasts and in an unknowable future
jealously guarded by the ancient gods:
of those she will demand nothing.
Of those who would plumb her depths
to understand her and to know her ways;
who would probe her darkest secrets
and experience her wildest joys;
who would openly gaze upon her beginnings
as she took her first steps in the cosmos;
who would see the future in her mind’s eye:
of those she will demand everything.
twisted from birth
the leg drags
the climbing street
pierces my heart
tears fill my eyes
—love is not blind—
What makes life exciting? What gives it that power to draw us in and push us on, even in the most horrible of conditions; that brings us back to the fore life after life? The endless question, naturally.
Of course, for those who have abandoned the quest in favour of a “safe” future, either in choosing annihilation at physical death or to spend some eternity in a nebulous heaven jealously guarded by an exclusive God, then what I’m attempting to relate here won’t grab. Just words. How can anyone who has all the answers in the bag ask any more questions? What would be the point? Any new existential question would only disturb the still waters.
What a sad place to be. No wonder there is so little joy on earth, and so much dissatisfaction. So many trusting in fate or some God to possess all possible answers to all the unasked questions!
Eve dared partake of the forbidden fruit. Pandora dared open the box. The still waters of an essentially male dominated world were stirred forever. Damn those women, eh?
Life expresses itself as a question. We are a question and as we come to know ourselves, we receive our answer. Ah, that is what I am? No, only in the moment. Every answer leads to the next question. That is how creation happens. We keep questioning the chaos and every answer is a bit of order we put together. Like fording a stream over stepping stones. Not all are always visible. Sometimes you have to wait for the current to change before you see the next logical one and step there. Then to the next because if you stay on that one it will submerge again and you will lose your footing.
A question that has been foremost in my mind since I began writing the “Antierra Manifesto” or trilogy of the Stacked Worlds as it pertains to a world called “Malefactus” and that is, simply, “What is a woman’s purpose?” I’m not speaking of position, function or role, but purpose.
Much of what passes as history, divine revelation, philosophy and mores comes from the “male factor” on earth. Did you ever wonder why the injunction against “coveting your neighbour’s wife” did not also contain the injunction to the woman not to covet her neighbour’s husband? Pretty obvious when you think about it. The woman was not considered able to understand such things. She could not really understand the law, for it was from a male God to man, although interestingly enough she’d be the first one punished if she transgressed this male law. In all ancient literature and carrying on in today’s world we find the same conundrum.
Throughout history males have determined the woman’s place. Her function or “usefulness” to the male manifesto which states basically that in any top-down power system, the male must rule though some rare exceptions can be made for a female to have that power as regent; in some temporary capacity. Another exception can be made if the female exhibits enough male values to do the job as a male would.
That’s been beaten to death and whatever answers anyone may have come up with – such as “allowing” women to vote; or “allowing” women to inherit property; or “allowing” women to keep their own names in a marriage; or “allowing” women to get equal pay for equal work; or “allowing” women to become police officers or grunts in the military – now there’s a promotion to exclusive male power – none have managed to make a dent in the Earthian reality.
The question asked here is, what is a woman’s purpose? Could it be it’s to bring forth life because life is female?
I have a vision of a perfect Woman,
I have yet to encounter;
every morning I stand
at the edge of the thundering sea
calling out her name,
yet it seems nothing ever comes of this:
she never comes into existence,
and the sea’s waters blend with my tears:
what will it take for her to hear my call?
Should I give up this foolish quest?
Is it the impossible dream?
Is this my fate -
to always dream, never receive?
Fate is like faith: what people rely upon
when the unknown and the future threaten;
when feeling helpless; unsure of their way --
so they say, “That is my fate.”
or they say, “It is God’s will.”
No B never will fate determine my life,
I would be my own proof
that if I keep searching for something
burning with desire; fired with passion,
such will come to pass; must come to pass.
And I will turn around and see
what my dream has helped me create.
The key to it all?
Never surrender to the too easy ways,
for what have they to boast of?
Forget writing poetry;
accept our 101 ways
of making t-shirts in a factory!”
That pretty well spells common wisdom.
But… say there were no factories
manufacturing ‘goods’ (and bads?)
few of us need;
say there were
no enforcement of guilt and shame
(it’s called advertising and peer pressure)
upon those who don’t drive the latest cars;
purchase the hottest gadgetry;
wear the latest fashion joke…
what would there be?
It’s now imagination time:
no smog-making factories;
no paved-over miles of vital soil;
no monster trucks ripping up the hills;
no towering high-rises housing fear
and planners of expendability.
lush green forests,
sparkling lakes and crystal streams
reflecting a pristine wilderness;
birds perched in swaying branches
singing the rebirth of Earth?
Some may think
this is not possible,
the seed of reality:
and such seeds create choices.
Which will we choose
for tomorrow’s child?
The world stands gasping for breath. The years of heedless expansion are now behind, never to return. Known resources upon which technology is dependent are running out. Human populations have mushroomed only to arrive at their dead end – too much of them – not enough of everything else.
A side effect of this has been, for some at least, longer life expectancy. This however has not been the boon it was supposed to be. Younger generations have to make room for older ones that should no longer be here, taking up space, food and other resources once available to the young. Worse, the old ones have more money than the young and they squander that on geriatric and medical services and copious doses of drugs to keep themselves going. These (however questionable) services are thus less available to the poorer young.
In a few months, I qualify for the first level of retirement: I’ll be 60 years of age. As an observer of life, I can see how my continued presence, if I am no longer “productive” for the Earthian “tribe” would make me a burden, not an asset. And I choose not to take up space and resources needed by the young. But that’s a personal choice and we shall see how I go about doing this.
If we understood about healing, however, we would know that it isn’t about keeping bodies alive, but in restoration, rejuvenation and empowerment. A healthy 120 year old person can be more “productive” than a 20 year old, simply because of the wisdom and skills garnered from the living experience.
But where does such an understanding of healing come from? According to a lesson I got in my Christmas dreams, it comes from forgiveness.
Diseases and death are caused by stress – not age. “Old” age is not a disease! Stress is a combination of fear, anger, hate and their companions, greed, selfishness, hedonism. Forgiveness is the first necessary step to healing. Any procedure or drug administered in a system that holds grudges are but band-aids. They work for a time, cause more complications and finally fail completely.
In the first generation to choose forgiveness over medical procedures or drugs, we may not find any improvement in life. We may even find that diseases proliferate and people die younger. That should be expected and accepted. It takes several generations to change paradigms as deeply rooted in the mind as those of disease and death.
Many things will have to change on earth before healing becomes natural. Wars must end. As must all other forms of conflict. As must all competition. Equitable sharing based on available resources must become the norm. Killing, for any reason, must be banned. The predator/prey concept – even as practiced among nature, must be rejected. (Not to worry, the animals will sense this quickly when man’s mind is turned to respect of all life. They too will understand the need for change.)
The major problem with forgiveness is the tendency to confuse it with forgetting. I was given two instances of personal conflicts I had dealt with many years ago. That I had yet to forgive entirely showed up on “the chart” – my latent feelings about those events. I protested that I had forgiven, but my feelings said otherwise. So I had to do it again. This time, I had to take the individuals involved and bring them into myself as a part of me. I had to use compassion and blend them into my very beingness – forever. It was difficult to do.
It might be easier to do these things if we could forget. But we are not made that way. We remember everything, consciously or subconsciously – forever! Any stressful passage remains to eat at our heart and mind; combines with others and this combination makes us sick and kills us. That’s how it works. There is no forgetting – there is only forgiveness.
Forgiveness can only be unconditional. Another of those concepts that cannot be faked. Words are utterly useless when it comes to forgiveness. Only our feelings tell the truth of the matter. If I can remember an enemy with joy then I know I’ve forgiven. If I remember with the same old feelings I had during the encounter (the event) then I have not forgiven and I am harboring a poison within that will become a disease, or a series of diseases and that will surely kill me.
Insecurities would still hinder
the walker exploring the unknown;
prowling, ember-eyed, in the shadows,
crouching, growling, around blind corners,
the mind repeating: what if… what if… what if…?!
But despite bitter experience, she knows
she can keep walking life’s less-traveled paths…
Meandering on… regardless of the past.
They’re not as strong as they used to be,
those thoughts of weakness casting spells of fear:
for what is fear made of but previous fear?
Why cling so rigidly to what is no longer?
Why follow rules which only serve the makers?
If the past is really “the good old days,”
why is it riddled with unchallenged fears,
whose endless judgments destroy serenity?
So she pondered her life as she walked
the less-traveled paths above the cities;
so she realized her goddess power,
unleashed her love, let go of inhibitions,
entered the doorway the gods labeled ‘freedom,’
broke free of man-made boundaries,
flew from her gilded cage!
If I know the food I eat is clean
it cannot hurt me
but this is true only of those
whose thoughts are pure.
If I believe what I eat
is “not good” for me -
(and there are so many
“unclean” foods out there!)
then ingesting such foods
will make me sick
for my mind will register the fear
and send its dire warnings
to every part of me!
But how does that explain
someone who gets sick
of food poisoning
if they did not know
the food was bad?
We pay little attention to what we know,
trusting instead in advertising
or fancy menus in equally fancy restaurants.
Some even trust their taste buds -
We always know
what will or will not hurt us -
back to the beginning – again:
If I know what I am eating
is pure for me -
it has no power to hurt me!
Faith you ask?
No. Faith is of no help here.
that’s what I am talking about!
“Then all this strange land belongs to him?”
“No indeed!” she answered, and her smile faded. “That would indeed be a burden,” she added in a low voice, as if to herself. “The trees and the grasses and all things growing or living in the land belong each to themselves.”
[Goldberry, companion of Tom Bombadil, to Frodo – Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien]
Everything belongs to itself alone. No one can ever possess anything other than oneself – and even that is questionable. Even power cannot be owned, though it may be harnessed for good or ill depending on the conditions.
But there can be created an illusion of possession. And it is all a matter of power wielding. Whatever is not self-empowered lives by belief systems and is de-facto a slave to whatever it believes in. It will forever live in the shadowy illusion of some kind of need and will always seek for a master (or lover!) to fulfill those needs.
To own something -- or someone -- is an even greater burden than to be owned. Those who live by the illusion of ownership, or seek to possess, or control, bring about great harm and grief within those worlds where the illusion of possession is "God."
This brings up the subject of the qualities of “good” and “evil”. Rare are those who would say they have yet to encounter too much evil. Non-existent are those who would declare they have encountered too much good.
If evil is truly evil and if good is truly good, then why is it that intelligent beings who know this; who realize that they would much sooner receive good than they would evil, entertain even the slightest shadow of evil in their hearts towards others?
These books contain a form of free verse poetry, essays, short stories, thoughts, opinions based on observation, and some humour and imagination, engaging the heart as well as the mind. A critical look at many current issues intriguing and plaguing man. Spirituality, interaction with nature and environment, social changes, dwindling resources. Well worn issues now, indeed. But the poetry and other works in these books gives this subject a different perspective. I daresay that here we can find a "higher" vantage point from which to look at ourselves within the cosmos.