"People from a planet without flowers
would think we must be mad with joy the whole time
to have such things about us."
~Iris Murdoch, A Fairly Honourable Defeat

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Worry, worry, worry...

I realized this morning that I sometimes have these moments of brain overload. Yesterday was one of those days.
I'm usually able to focus on all the important things that I contain in my head ,which is usually way too much, but I think the stars weren't aligned properly yesterday and until I got THE PHONE CALL.... I was basically a basket case.
Thinking about too many things at once and not staying in the moment can cause Monkey Mind. The FEAR monkey is the worst one and does the most damage.
Our sweet daughter-in-law, Robbin, went into the hospital yesterday morning for an operation. She had a tumor removed and a complete hysterectomy.
Our son called us late morning and told us that she made it through the operation OK. He didn't have any other information. That was enough to hear right now. We will wait to hear the lab results.
I will be going down on Saturday to stay for awhile. I wish I was there now, but I will be needed more when she comes home. The "beans" will need Noni to take them to the park and keep them out from underneath their parents feet, as much as possible... and bake cookies.
 I love this daughter in law of ours. She's a lovely, loving woman and she's the mother of our grandchildren for which we are eternally grateful.
I know she will be fine, but please keep Robbin in your thoughts and prayers.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Winter Weed with Diamond Raindrops

Life is so mysterious.
It is filled with drops of exquisite beauty and barbed moments of pain.
Sometimes there are signs in the mud that something is coming or has been there... waiting to bring chaos.
There are trails that are slippery and steep and we don't know if we should try to use them.
 We get caught in our lives and we feel that we are the only ones who are dealing with this pain and confusion.
We don't understand how others could live their lives as if everything is all right.
We isolate ourselves in our houses...
 
  And fear the "wild river" that we can't seem to contain,
where life moves swiftly over stones unseen.

Until ...
We see the evidence before us.
 Plain truth... without thought.
It's not here.... on a old sign post, 
 fighting the possibility that something is coming... bringing suffering with it... trying to protect ourselves from what hasn't happen yet.
But it might be here...
 Or here... in the grateful eyes of animals... and friends, and relatives.
And even here...
Because life is everything and each being has an assignment that we need not interfere with.
So I will try to let go of tomorrow and busy myself with the moment at hand.

My first resolution of the year: 
Life is an impermanent experience that I will try to accept and understand, but also try to see without being afraid.... without fighting or misunderstanding the experience.
I love this analogy... ( from "It's Easier Than You Think" by S. Boorstein)
She writes:
The Familiar image is a children's cartoon character, like Daffy Duck, walking along freely and suddenly stepping into taffy. In a hasty, awkward attempt to extricate himself, he might fall forward and backward and eventually be totally stuck in the taffy. Even children see a better solution.
The best solution would be the nonalarmed recognition, " This is taffy. I didn't see it as I stepped into it, but I felt it after I got stuck. It's just taffy. the whole world is not made out of taffy. what would be a wise thing for me to do now?"
I will try to not get stuck in fearful things that haven't happen. I will try to be less frightened about what my mind creates.
Finally... a few more resolves:
I will not get trapped in my "story" and  live my life with regret.
I will suffer. I wish I didn't have to, but I will.
I will be kinder to myself.
I will not cling to my own suffering.
I will start a journey of happiness at any moment of the day.

It's a beginning...



















Sunday, January 29, 2012

What does all of this mean?

The Gadsden flag , coiled and ready to strike, on the back of The Prospector's truck is a symbol. It's fiercely American but provocative.
It's nothing new...
 The Rattlesnake as a symbol has been around for a while. It was a symbol for the colonies when our country was fighting in the American Revolution.
I don't think the symbolism of this threatening snake has disappeared, but I don't know who the snake is anymore.

I watched and listened to the news this morning and it made me wonder what is really going on. A group of Occupy "revolutionaries" in Oakland , California were protesting again, and this time my reaction was different. It made me angry.
I'm not sure what it is they are doing. I'm not sure what they want besides chaos, anarchy and the ruin of a good American city. They don't state their case as a whole. They don't have a focused protest, that I can see, except to destroy downtown Oakland.

Here is some of what happen...
OAKLAND (AP) – About 300 people were arrested Saturday during a chaotic day of Occupy protests that saw demonstrators break into City Hall and burn an American flag, as police earlier fired tear gas and bean bags to disperse hundreds of people after some threw rocks and bottles and tore down fencing outside a nearby convention center.
""These demonstrators stated their intention was to provoke officers and engage in illegal activity and that's exactly what has occurred today,"
The group assembled outside City Hall late Saturday morning and marched through the streets, disrupting traffic as they threatened to take over the vacant Henry Kaiser Convention Center.
The protesters walked to the vacant convention center, where some started tearing down perimeter fencing and "destroying construction equipment" shortly before 3 p.m., police said.
The protesters walked to the vacant convention center, where some started tearing down perimeter fencing and "destroying construction equipment" shortly before 3 p.m., police said.
Police said they issued a dispersal order and used smoke and tear gas after some protesters pelted them with bottles, rocks, burning flares and other objects.
The number of demonstrators swelled as the day wore on, with afternoon estimates ranging from about 1,000 to 2,000 people.
A majority of the arrests came after police took scores of protesters into custody as they marched through the city's downtown, with some entering a YMCA building
AND THEN....Michael Davis, who is originally from Ohio and was in the Occupy movement in Cincinnati, said "Saturday was a very hectic day that originally started off calm but escalated when police began using "flash bangs, tear gas, smoke grenades and bean bags."
"It was very emotional. I thought it was a very good day for the movement because it brought us back together," Davis said. "We all were here in spirit and everybody actually helped everyone today."
"What could've been handled differently is the way the Oakland police came at us," Davis said. "We were peaceful."
( Thanks to USA Today for the info. The whole article is at: www.usatoday.com/news/nation/story/2012-01-28/occupy-oakland-protests/52852280/1 )
A VERY GOOD DAY FOR THE MOVEMENT?
I can't figure out who the "rattlesnakes" are here.

I think that I will stay right here on the mountain and deal with the rattlers that come and go,  usually one at a time. They are pretty specific about their motives... food, water, survival. They were here first and I respect and understand that. I think I'm a rather intelligent person that lives a fairly mobile and productive life.
I understand that there are folks out there that are angry and feel that their lives are unequal, unjust, unfair, inaudible and incurable, but is this kind of protest the answer? Who is provoking who?
Mahatma Gandhi said, "Be the change you want to see in the world". 
Is this the change that some folks really want? Is this really "non-violent" protest? Is this the protesters "means to an end" and is it a valid one? I don't think I'm seeing the true picture here?
I'm trying to see this whole event in the right light.  I'm trying not to say all the trite things about this, like so many others...
"Why don't they get a job.",
"They are just professional dissenters." and 
"If they don't like this country... leave." 
...the easy and unintelligent answers to a growing unrest.

I'm reminded of Metallica's lyrics... 
"... Liberty or death, what we so proudly hail,
Once you provoke her, rattling on her tail."

 I wonder if anyone knows what they're doing.

I need to take a walk and think on this... here, right now, the rattlesnakes are sleeping for the winter.