Saturday, July 21, 2018

open readiness

What would help?

Maybe, a BOLO alert, (be on look out) for, truth.

It seems to have been abducted.
Donald Trump’s behavior in Helsinki was not just shameful and disastrous. It was also, on a deeper level, clarifying. Trump has always acted as a “strongman” in his bullying leadership style, and he got away with it in his world of real estate, reality TV, and beauty queen pageants. But now he is the President of the United States. Trump has been a liar his whole life — a word that the media commentators are only slowly getting comfortable using to describe a president. 
But Trump is more than a liar. He has always tried to change what people believe about the truth — suggesting that there actually is not really any truth, and people should just believe whatever Trump says. Listen to him, and hear him in any situation trying to change the truth to whatever he says it is. This goes all the way back to day one of his presidency, his inauguration day, when Trump said the sun was shining though it was continually raining. It has been raining on democracy ever since. 
The false strongman whose strength is based upon the undermining of the truth will get stronger in coming days, unless there is courageous political opposition against him. 
As Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King said, in another time of crisis, “We’ve got some difficult days ahead.” 
We can’t control all the politics, but we can decide what we will do. 
It is time for Christians lift up the truth over falsehood, as a way of life. To defend public service over political tyranny. And to always protect the increasingly vulnerable. 
It is time to reclaim Jesus.
(--from, Helsinki Was … Clarifying,  By Jim Wallis 7-19-2018, Sojourners Magazine) 
I've come to terms with the world. It tells me lies and I do not accept what I'm told to be anything other than lies.

Mr Trump is now only one more liar. He joins those who've said "Trust me" then proceeded to steal, rape, or murder.

The thing about a liar is that they cannot, ever, be believed. They simply do not dwell near truth or integrity.

I know what it is like to be a liar. Trust me!

Hence I know Mr Trump. Takes one to know one. Or, in this case, it takes a nobody to know a nobody. I am nobody.

Jim Wallis suggests reclaiming Jesus. He asks What About Jesus? and suggests we think about the question.

Truth, I suspect, is what remains when we are exhausted by the not-true, when all the lies that fill the not-true sit down to rest after unrelenting proselytizing and laughter at the suckers they've bilked.

Truth has rope-a-doped -- and nearly fallen from -- the punishment of venal, blatant, and unscrupulous punchers intent on eliminating its very existence.

The story tells of a man who was said to be the truth. He was, it says, killed with lies and denials and self-serving aggrandizement. It's hard to imagine any reclamation coming from a murder scene fraught with sorrow and defeat.

Still, they say, there's an invitation to take the next step -- stepping off from bloody earth of dashed hope, stepping on to new patch of soil and next step, and next, in open readiness for what could emerge and rise up from earth underfoot.

Friday, July 20, 2018

a Friday hierophany nearing naming

“God” is what is not yet coming to be.

Or, reframed:
God is
What is
Not yet
Coming to be.
And so, we step forward in trust.

To the question, “ Do you believe in God?” the response: “As I take my next step, as I do the next thing, as I think my next thought — I give myself over to what is there.”

go on

If mind is feared, so too reality itself. If mind is aired, each breath is what reality is coming to be.
In this world of onrushing events the act of meditation—even just a “one-breath” meditation—straightening the back, clearing the mind for a moment—is a refreshing island in the stream. Although the term meditation has mystical and religious connotations for many people, it is a simple and plain activity. Attention: deliberate stillness and silence. As anyone who has practiced sitting knows, the quieted mind has many paths, most of them tedious and ordinary. Then, right in the midst of meditation, totally unexpected images or feelings may sometimes erupt, and there is a way into a vivid transparency. But whatever comes up, sitting is always instructive. There is ample testimony that a practice of meditation pursued over months and years brings some degree of self-understanding, serenity, focus, and self-confidence to the person who stays with it. There is also a deep gratitude that one comes to feel for this world of beings, teachers, and teachings.  
No one—guru or roshi or priest—can program for long what a person might think or feel in private reflection. We learn that we cannot in any literal sense control our mind. Meditation cannot serve an ideology. A meditation teacher can only help a student understand the phenomena that rise from his or her own inner world—after the fact—and give tips on directions to go. A meditation teacher can be a check or guide for the wayfarer to measure herself against, and like any experienced guide can give good warning of brushy paths and dead-end canyons from personal experience. The teacher provides questions, not answers. Within a traditional Buddhist framework of ethical values and psychological insight, the mind essentially reveals itself.     
(—Gary Snyder, Just One Breath, the practice of poetry and meditation, Fall 1991, Tricycle)
Perhaps Being and Reality are not the same thing. Maybe Parmenides and Heraclitus continue to argue on sun porch about their intuitions of being and becoming. I listen.

Being is, becoming is not-yet reality.

Is ‘is’ what is whole and entire?
Not-yet reality is the presence of absence felt at edge of ability to grasp.

Can what is whole and entire have an edge that is not itself? Not in addition to itself, but itself beyond comprehension and beyond realization.

As, some say, God is in this world.
As dreams are when guitar on railed winter sleigh is stepped on by herd of cow and Mexican children run away as if they were the ones who smashed the wood, and you with one xeroxed map page and one page returned test result look for Economist reading inmate now dispersed.

Reality is the question asked but not yet answered.

Don’t ask and reality is nowhere to be found. Ask and what is revealed is nothing to take to the bank. Only spare change falling coin by coin to tabletop each end of day.

Spare change reality is what we’re given and what we’re left with.

Every street beggar is zen master asking us the question “Spare change?” And we thinking it means something else.

It doesn’t mean something else.

It means exactly what it asks.

It is what reality comes to be.



The beyond come and gone in excruciating touch and go. A sumie brush stroke barely grounded and gone as we wonder what it is that has taken place and moved along out of sight.

As Snyder writes: "A meditation teacher can only help a student understand the phenomena that rise from his or her own inner world—after the fact—and give tips on directions to go."

And what are we...meant to do?

Go on!              

Thursday, July 19, 2018

simple questions

July political disturbance

Does not touch

Fact that each will

Someday grow old

Become sick, and


With such awareness

What matters?

And how does this

Knowledge change

Minds or hearts?

sam u el

                      (a haiku remembered at matins)

“God for you,” man on

white sofa said; one “o” gone

reading Mark Twain’s Luck

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

res ipsa loquitur

No longer any need to ask if there is a God. Nor wonder if the American president is a fit or fallow fellow to responsibly be in office. Neither is there cause to think ones life means anything in an existence both absurd and obtuse.

It is, arguably, only silence and stillness that satiates imagination in spiritual matters.

Like yesterday’s first psalm at matins, the acrostic poem of Hebrew letters that was written about 1000bce. If time is a conceit, an elaborate metaphor for present reality undistributed, then David’s words were written today for today’s concerns.

Psalm 37 New International Version (NIV)

Psalm 37[a]

Of David.

Do not fret because of those who are evil
    or be envious of those who do wrong;
for like the grass they will soon wither,
    like green plants they will soon die away.
Trust in the Lord and do good;
    dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
Take delight in the Lord,
    and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord;
    trust in him and he will do this:
He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn,
    your vindication like the noonday sun.
Be still before the Lord
    and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when people succeed in their ways,
    when they carry out their wicked schemes.
Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
    do not fret—it leads only to evil.
For those who are evil will be destroyed,
    but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land.
10 A little while, and the wicked will be no more;
    though you look for them, they will not be found.
11 But the meek will inherit the land
    and enjoy peace and prosperity.
12 The wicked plot against the righteous
    and gnash their teeth at them;
13 but the Lord laughs at the wicked,
    for he knows their day is coming.
14 The wicked draw the sword
    and bend the bow
to bring down the poor and needy,
    to slay those whose ways are upright.
15 But their swords will pierce their own hearts,
    and their bows will be broken.
16 Better the little that the righteous have
    than the wealth of many wicked;
17 for the power of the wicked will be broken,
    but the Lord upholds the righteous.
18 The blameless spend their days under the Lord’s care,
    and their inheritance will endure forever.
19 In times of disaster they will not wither;
    in days of famine they will enjoy plenty.
20 But the wicked will perish:
    Though the Lord’s enemies are like the flowers of the field,
    they will be consumed, they will go up in smoke.
21 The wicked borrow and do not repay,
    but the righteous give generously;
22 those the Lord blesses will inherit the land,
    but those he curses will be destroyed.
23 The Lord makes firm the steps
    of the one who delights in him;
24 though he may stumble, he will not fall,
    for the Lord upholds him with his hand.
25 I was young and now I am old,
    yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken
    or their children begging bread.
26 They are always generous and lend freely;
    their children will be a blessing.[b]
27 Turn from evil and do good;
    then you will dwell in the land forever.
28 For the Lord loves the just
    and will not forsake his faithful ones.
Wrongdoers will be completely destroyed[c];
    the offspring of the wicked will perish.
29 The righteous will inherit the land
    and dwell in it forever.
30 The mouths of the righteous utter wisdom,
    and their tongues speak what is just.
31 The law of their God is in their hearts;
    their feet do not slip.
32 The wicked lie in wait for the righteous,
    intent on putting them to death;
33 but the Lord will not leave them in the power of the wicked
    or let them be condemned when brought to trial.
34 Hope in the Lord
    and keep his way.
He will exalt you to inherit the land;
    when the wicked are destroyed, you will see it.
35 I have seen a wicked and ruthless man
    flourishing like a luxuriant native tree,
36 but he soon passed away and was no more;
    though I looked for him, he could not be found.
37 Consider the blameless, observe the upright;
    a future awaits those who seek peace.[d]
38 But all sinners will be destroyed;
    there will be no future[e] for the wicked.
39 The salvation of the righteous comes from the Lord;
    he is their stronghold in time of trouble.
40 The Lord helps them and delivers them;
    he delivers them from the wicked and saves them,
    because they take refuge in him.