Today At Meetingbrook

Saturday, January 25, 2014

unfinished justice, lost sanity


Thinking about 9/11.

Thinking about the US invasion into Iraq. Thinking about Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, Wolfowitz, Pearl, Ashcroft, Powell, Tenet, et al.

It is a curious world where so much can happen that is filled with poisons.
At the root of human misery, Buddhism sees three destructive impulses: greed, anger and foolishness, which it terms the "three poisons." These are the essence of all the delusions and negative workings of life that impede the realization of our full potential for happiness and creativity. 
Of the three, foolishness is most fundamental, as it facilitates greed and anger. Foolishness here means ignorance (passive or willful) of the true nature of life. It is blindness to the reality of our interrelatedness--not merely our connectedness to and dependence on each other, but the connectedness of the unfolding of each of our lives to the unfolding of the very life of the universe; the fact that each of us is a vital component of life itself and a nexus of immense possibilities. Because it obscures life's true, enlightened nature, this ignorance is also referred to as "fundamental darkness."
(--from, Three Poisons --The Source of the Problem) 
http://www.sgi.org/buddhism/buddhist-concepts/three-poisons-the-source-of-the-problem.html 
So many dead. So many crippled. So many dispossessed. So much suffering and unfinished justice.
What has been the cost of the Iraq War? In strictly American terms, 4,486 U.S. military personnel died there (plus another 318 from Coalition allies); the dollar tab for the war is reckoned in the trillions. And in Iraq—how many people died as a result of the American-led invasion? That’s a harder question than it might seem. 
A new study with a controversial back story attempts to provide a good answer. Writing today in the journal PLOS Medicine, the University of Washington’s Amy Hagopian and 11 co-authors estimate that roughly 461,000 Iraqis died as either a direct or indirect cause of the war and subsequent military occupation. But reflecting the tortured effort both of getting good numbers from a war zone and the history of controversial past counts, by the time all their calculations had settled the researchers put their “confidence interval” for possible excess deaths between March 2003 and June 2011 at between 48,000 and 751,000.
(--from, A Better Stab at Estimating How Many Died in the Iraq War, by Michael Todd,, October 15, 2013, in Pacific Standard, The Science of Society)
 http://www.psmag.com/navigation/politics-and-law/better-stab-estimating-many-died-iraq-war-68419/  
How will we ever return to or find sanity again? 

God is: No idea; felt, in fact.


I place hands together and bow when passing cemeteries.

Time, you could say, does not have anything to do with that which is out-of-time.

The dead have just died. Always, just died. I greet them as they are transitioning through that timeless portal between now and now.

I say to them: God be with you!

I greet them in their new acclimation.

At Existentialism conversation Friday evening Willow said, "God is 'experiencing reality'."

No idea; felt, in fact.

Or, seen differently: Reality is no ideal felt in fact.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Too cold


Just too cold.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Coming back with very cold fingers


When walking mountain is too cold for nerves and bones in face.


Brook closes into itself.


January stands like yurt at turn of water -- empty and alone.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

building dwelling mercy

Poets think being into existence.

Words become disclosure of existence.

Says Heidegger:
It is language that tells us about the nature of a thing, provided that we respect language's own nature. In the meantime, to be sure, there rages round the earth an unbridled yet clever talking, writing, and broadcasting of spoken words. Man acts as though he were the shaper and master of language, while in fact language remains the master of man. Perhaps it is before all else man's subversion of this relation of dominance that drives his
nature into alienation. That we retain a concern for care in speaking is all to the good, but it is of no help to us as long as language still serves us even then only as a means of expression. Among all the appeals that we human beings, on our part, can help to be voiced, language is the highest and everywhere the first.
What, then, does Bauen, building, mean? The Old English and High German word for building, buan, means to dwell. This signifies: to remain, to stay in a place. The real meaning of the verb bauen, namely, to dwell, has been lost to us. But a covert trace of it has been preserved in the German word Nachbar, neighbor. The neighbor is in Old English the neahgehur; neah, near, and gebur, dweller. The Nachbar is the Nachgebur, the Nachgebauer, the near-dweller, he who dwells nearby. The verbs buri, büren, beuren, beuron, all signify dwelling, the abode, the place of dwelling. Now to be sure the old word buan not only tells us that bauen, to build, is really to dwell; it also gives us a clue as to how we have to think about the dwelling it signifies. When we speak of dwelling we usually think of an activity that man performs alongside many other activities. We work here and dwell there. We do not merely dwell-that would be virtual inactivity-we practice a profession, we do business, we travel and lodge on the way, now here, now there. Bauen originally means to dwell. Where the word bauen still speaks in its original sense it also says how far the nature of dwelling reaches. That is, bauen, buan. bhu, beo are our word bin in the versions: ich bin, I am, du bist, you are, the imperative form bis, be. What then does ich bin mean? The old word bauen, to which the bin belongs, answers: ich bin, du bist mean: I dwell, you dwell. The way in which you are and I am, the manner in which we humans are on the earth, is Buan, dwelling. To be a human being means to be on the earth as a mortal. it means to dwell. The old word bauen, which says that man is insofar as he dwells, this word barren however also means at the same time to cherish and protect, to preserve and care for, specifically to till the soil, to cultivate the vine. Such building only takes care-it tends the growth that ripens into its fruit of its own accord. Building in the sense of preserving and nurturing is not making anything. Shipbuilding and temple-building, on the other hand, do in a certain way make their own works. Here building, in contrast with cultivating, is a constructing. Both modes of building-building as cultivating, Latin colere, cultura, and building as the raising up of edifices, aedificare -are comprised within genuine building, that is, dwelling. Building as dwelling, that is, as being on the earth, however, remains for man's everyday experience that which is from the outset "habitual"-we inhabit it, as our language says so beautifully: it is the Gewohnte. For this reason it recedes behind the manifold ways in which dwelling is accomplished, the activities of cultivation and construction. These activities later claim the name of bauen, building, and with it the fact of building, exclusively for themselves. The real sense of bauen, namely dwelling, falls into oblivion.
(--In Basic Writings, Martin Heidegger, pp.348-350, from "Building Dwelling Thinking" in Poetry, Language, Thought, trans Albert Hofstader, 1971)
I heard a young woman yesterday speak of the "outlaw" point of view. How the belief that one or two or dozens of the imperfect members of the human race who are chosen to be our leaders and tell us what we can and cannot do -- how foolish we to believe they are actually for all the members of the human race who invite them into office, or even those they limit their attentions to. Governors, government, and governesses are there at the bidding of those who pay to protect private interests, property, and power. The unmonied and unpropertied are not to be trusted. Their protest and free speech is more and more seen to be dangerously unpatriotic and threat to the new narrow definition of national security -- anyone who disagrees with those who make the rules and have armed protection against those who disagree.

So much to think about.

So many poems to sit with.

So curious we are in such an atmosphere of fear, repression, and preparations provoking the populace into inauspicious unintelligent panting after the inappropriate as permanency.
Si culpare velis, culpabilis esse cavebis;
Dagma tuum sordet cum tua culpa remordet. 
(If others you wish to blame,
Take care you have no cause for shame;
Your dogmas are filthy and thin
If your own crimes gnaw you within.) 
(--p,96, from Passus 10, Piers Plowman {c.1367-1385} by William Langland, Wordsworth Classics, 1999)
As for temporary solution? Bach: Mass In B Minor, BWV 232 - Kyrie: Kyrie Eleison 1.

Mercy -- for everyone! 

Monday, January 20, 2014

Happy (for us your) birth...


... day (is celebrated), Martin!

Step, step, turn, step


At practice table last night we found a way to describe the tension satori brings between samsara and nirvana.

Nirvana fuses.

Samsara confuses.

In the first, one is in one and all alone as one.

In the other, each is in one together, bewilderingly so.

Or: I have no feet; versus: Did I just step on your foot?

When snow stopped falling...it revealed nothing in no new way


Why not poetry?

Why not zen?

        Not, adv.
In no way; to no degree. Used to express negation, denial, refusal, or prohibition: 'I will not go. You may not have any.'
-- the Free Dictionary

Poetry says nothing well.

 Zen is no way to be.


Sunday, January 19, 2014

It's just a passing thing


The organism is fragile.

Pain diverts attention.

Eyes narrow and droop.

This, too, passes.