No Mind, No Attachment

Wu_nothing

The Mind in its dimensions is broad and great, like empty space. It has no sides or limits, it is neither square nor round, neither large nor small. It is neither blue, yellow, red, nor white; it has neither upper nor lower; it is neither long nor short. It knows neither anger nor pleasure, neither right nor wrong, neither good nor evil. It is without beginning and without end. But good friends, do not, hearing me speak of emptiness, become attached to emptiness.

Shin’ichi Hisamatsu, from The Characteristics of Oriental Nothingness

 

#ofthejournals

 
 

Advertisements

Screwed

Did thine Savior truly say,
Blessed are those who do not doubt me,
Ere His mounting upon that skull-shaped hill?

If so, then needs must be to Him I pray
On a bended and shaky knee
Begging for Him to bless me, still.

For, while I have no doubt today
That the Son of God is He,
Tomorrow, without a doubt, I will.
 

#ofthejournals

“The Way” of Technology

Well, my bold Westworld binge-watching bonanza proclamation turned out to be nothing more than a bunch of ballyhooed BS…

I only got through the fourth episode before running out of time.

Consequently, I can’t provide anything much in the way of a review. But I can provide a bit of feedback that might mean something about its watchability

Which is… I kept falling asleep while watching it.

Now, full disclosure, I’ve taken some of my best naps during what turned out to be some of my favorite shows so my inability to stay awake while watching Westworld in and of itself doesn’t mean that much.

As for what I was able to stay awake for… I really like what it is trying to do in concept; however, its execution…

Continue reading ““The Way” of Technology”

Military Uniforms versus Religious Uniforms

WARNING: This post attempts to make a bit of humor over various religions’ garb requirements


When I joined the US Navy in 1983, sailors were still allowed to wear beards. However, with the military, prompted by the dictates of its Cold War Warrior Commander-in-Chief and President Ronald Reagan, in a fast-paced process of snapping out of its ragtag and drug-laden Vietnam War Police Conflict low-standards hangover, the navy outlawed full beards in 1984.

After which, many o’ Old Salts requested to Go Ashore permanently, as they would rather quit or retire from service than retire their beards.

I was just a young “Boot Camp” of a wog at the time who could barely grow even a little patch of peach fuzz let alone a full beard, but I still remember how passionate my Senior Chief was about keeping his beard.

And this passion of his and other bearded Old Salts like him was stirred simply over a style choice and tradition, so I can only imagine how one must feel about the importance of keeping one’s beard as a religious requirement, which is exactly the passion three enlisted servicemembers who are of the Sikh religion must be feeling right now as they petition the military for exemptions to be allowed to wear their religion-required beards and turbans.

 

If I remember correctly, I believe the primary reason the Navy gave for no longer allowing full beards was that they did not allow for the proper donning of gas masks, which created a health and military readiness risk. Another, and probably a more driving reason, was that beards did not allow for the professional military appearance that the Top Brass was striving for.

My position on this has evolved over the years, as it has on many social issues.

Now I’m like, meh… the military makes many exceptions for many situations so why not these?

For example, many servicemembers are allowed to wear beards under a doctor’s order. This is common when, typically a male, is prone to get in-grown hairs from having to shave his face so often.

And as for turbans and other religious requirements…

Now, I’ll admit, all the various grooming and wardrobe requirements that all our various religions place upon us is, in my opinion…

Stoopid.

I mean, c’mon. All the goofy hats the Pope wears (hence the sarcastic saying in response to a obvious/stoopid question: Does the Pope wear a goofy hat?) is enough to outfit a circus show, not to mention all the goofy hats all the other religious leaders and religious wannabes insist on wearing.

CLICK THE IMAGE FOR ATTRIBUTION









Obviously I’m a bit skeptical about any religion that requires one to dress a certain way in order worship its god, so obviously I sympathize with the military and its position of restraint when allowing exemptions for, what I’m sure are way too many, all of the various religions’ various garb requirements and impositions.

Besides, the military, and especially the navy, is doing just fine with all its goofy hat requirements, as is evidenced by the hat that young “Boot Camp” of a wog who can barely grow even a patch of peach fuzz for a beard is wearing in that ancient picture on found on the sidebar…

However, as our nation is, and is quickly becoming much more, diverse, I can foresee it becoming harder and harder for the military to not allow for more and more exemptions in the future.

Besides, doesn’t this Royal Air Force officer look striking and professional in his militarily accommodating military garb?

Sikh Royal Air Force Officer / Wikimedia Commons


 

HAVE YOU SEEN THIS?

 
 

And Especially A Time To Sleep…

A Time To Sleep
Zeno and Aurelius practicing some of that Old-Time Religion

 

Ecclesiastes 3

1   To every thing there is a season,
and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
2   A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant,
and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
3   A time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
4   A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
5   A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6   A time to get, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
7   A time to rend, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
8   A time to love, and a time to hate;
a time of war, and a time of peace.

 
 

I AM GOD I AM

I AM GOD
 

And God spake unto Moses,   I Am That I Am!

And I speak unto thee,   Well then, so am I!

I mean, seriously, that That in the name of God has to be the most ambiguous pronoun in the history of pronouns…

I mean, seriously, that That’s antecedent can be literally anything…

And yes, I do mean “literally”…

I mean, seriously, we are talking about God here, right?

Right.

Ergo, if that That in the name of God can mean anything at all within the expanses of the endless and infinite universes – those of the past, the present, and the future – then that That in the name of God can surely mean me.

Right?

Right.

Ergo, if God Is Me He Is, then it must mean that I Am God I Am.

Right?

Right.

Now, after reading this, I’m certain (and not just because I’m God) that some of you are beside yourself right now and are literally, yes, literally, damning me (not Me) to Hell for all of infinity right about now.

Well, all I have to say in response to your damn damnation is…

May God bless you.

And I do.

 
 

Nebula Cultus no.5

Nebula Cultus no.5

During that half-measured beat of our lives
for Heaven, we look upward to Sky
for Hell, downward to Earth

All while desperately, dependently, desirously
existing within an infinitely expanding Universe –
our One Song Eternal – a Rhythmical Void void
of Direction
of Time

A Void where that which we seek
be it that Heaven, or that Hell
can only be found within
that Composition of our
Mind

 
 

Of That Which Is

The That Of God

Where does It come from
The Matter of Science
The That of God

We think we know
We believe we know

But we’re wrong
And we’re right

You think
I don’t

I believe
You won’t

The Matter
The That

Forever trapped We are –
within our thoughts
within our beliefs
within an
eternally
transcendent
irreconcilable
bliss

 
 

Finally! A Relating to Humans Archive System

Like I am currently in the process of doing for my taxes, I had until recently also been procrastinating heavily on setting up an archive system for the Relating to Humans feature.

However, yesterday, I finally got my proverbial butt in gear (I would really really like to know who came up with that saying…think about it…butts…gears…yeah, weird) and set up all the required archive pages and moved all the submissions to the feature that were out of cycle (You may recall from the Submission Guidelines that submitted work will stay posted on the feature for three-month cycles, after which time they will be archived. This allows the feature to stay fresh, so to speak, with new content.) and now we finally have a proper archive system.

So, if you submitted your work to the feature more than three months ago you will now be able to view it on its appropriate archive page.

This is a one-man operation here so I cannot guarantee that posts will be archived exactly at three months; but they’ll get moved somewhere there abouts.

Now that I finally got my you know what in gear, you’ll find that we are in need of some new work. Consequently, I encourage all of you to consider submitting your talents to one of the Feature’s features, if you know what I mean.

There’s a lot going on in our pretty but oh so petulant world for us to discuss and I would love to know what your thoughts are on all the major issues.

And please let me know if you have any suggestions for how we can improve the feature. I would truly appreciate that.

That’s all for now; however, there will be some new and interesting (at least to me) things going on soon so please stay tuned for future updates and announcements.

Now, if someone could please tell me what gear my you know what needs to be in for me to get the motivation up enough to complete my taxes…???

A Meditation on an Introduction’s Opening Passage as found in “Nature” by Ralph Waldo Emerson

Our age is retrospective. It builds the sepulchres of the fathers. It writes biographies, histories, and criticism. The foregoing generations beheld God and nature face to face; we, through their eyes. Why should not we also enjoy an original relation to the universe? Why should not we have a poetry and philosophy of insight and not of tradition, and a religion by revelation to us, and not the history of theirs?

Here we find Ralph Waldo Emerson, in the opening passage of his introduction to his seminal essay “Nature,” bemoaning the distance he and his generation are from anything Original and True as compared to preceding generations. As he sees it, only through the firsthand experiences and the tales of our forefathers and foremothers have we been able to learn our life’s lessons and traditions. The gleaming highest highs our civilizations are able to reach are only because of the solid foundations built from and with Nature’s sacred mud by the caring and calloused hands of those to whom have gone before us and who now uplift us still.

If the great Emerson, a transcendental man, perhaps the Transcendental Man as he was in possession of a most extraordinary ability to focus and perceive that which the eye of most mortals miss, is shocked by such a revelation, then it seems to this less-than-transcendental and exceedingly mortal man just how far we find our present selves from those God beholding foregoing generations would bring about the death of fright to such a perceptive and feeling man as he.

And it is not just a distance in generational time I am referring to, but also, mostly, a distance in understanding, as perhaps the same could be said of Emerson’s meaning; though as far as he felt his generation was from an understanding of the Original and True, just how much farther away from understanding we of the present are is too hard for me to imagine.

Just what does our generation know of Nature? of God? of the Universe? Just how many more countless sepulchres have we built and how many more countless biographies have we written? Surely we know greatly of nature and of god and of the universe through the words and misdeeds of our spawning and splintering sects and religious disorders, and through the kaleidoscopic lens and the equations of the material, the physical, carried out to the farthest nth of a degree, accessible to only but a few of our most scientific of brains. Yea, ours is but a weak and plastic generation with hardly one of us finding even a germ under the nail let alone a fleck of sacred earthen mud, so far removed from Nature and Her Elements are we.

Like the everlasting trees
Of the most symbolic

Our ancients bare green before us
Full in their lustrous branches
Roots firmed in their foundation
While with the passing breeze
Our limbs naked and thin
We waive

Lo! but look at me. Look at me, me with my naked, thin limbs waiving away my right of birth to ancient spirits more alive long dead than I whose blood still courses hot will every be. I whose blood still courses hot but whose heart has grown cold and without passion for the Original, the True. I lie content each night having yet let another day slip away without once baring my feet and stepping into the grass; without once feeling the raw moonglow on my rusty skin.

But it wasn’t always so. I wasn’t always so distant from the Original and the True. And neither were you, for we were all born of and from the Original and of the True. It is who, in essence, I am and who you are.

We just forgot, that’s all.

We just allowed each passing day to take us farther and farther from who we were born to be.

So much time has
passed since then,
since I last felt raw
moonglow on
my rusty skin,
that I have forgotten
how the breath of night
can upturn a sallow face.

Long ago,
when I could still remember
how to pause,
and how to listen,
and how to breathe,
for more reasons
than just to breathe,
I knew fields
and wood,
and calico aster;
I knew how to kneel,
and how to observe,
and how to bring myself to quiet.

And I knew,
without knowing,
that if I lay
on my back
beneath the reeds
and remained hushed,
as night clouds
floated by,
shadowed and silent,
that my Self
would simply fall
away.

Step Into the Grass, an excerpt
from Poems from the River

As romping youth we did not have to be told how to meditate, how to pray. We just knew. We had no need for such technical terms as spirituality or epiphany or satori, for it was in our unknowing that we were able to truly know them. And now that we know them, we know nothing.

I suppose the question is, then, can we return to our essence? Can we, in our knowledge and understanding, return to the bliss of ignorance, to the wisdom of youth, so that we can come back again, if even just a little closer, to the Original and True.

Are we able to do that, knowing what we know?

Tonight
I’ll bare my feet
and step old and aching
into the caliginous balm
of the cool redemptive night.


Join our Newsletter Love Emerson, First Commitment
Must be a subscriber to participate
Edition 003-15 germane

 

TOTAL WAR OR TOTAL PEACE – A Relating to Humans Political Issues Feature

I do not have much to say as an introduction to this powerful topical essay by Paul Xylinides, our IABS&R Volume 2 selectee, other than to compel you to go take a look at today’s headlines. There you will unfortunately witness once more what brutality we humans are willing to inflict upon other humans in an effort to further our own goals, be they political, religious, or whatever cause it may be that motivates us into a frenzy of fanaticism and murderous hate.

My prayers are with Pakistan as I mourn the lost lives of all the innocent children.

Paul will also be contributing a guest post for us tomorrow.
– 8:00pm (EST), Wednesday, December 17, 2014


TOTAL WAR OR TOTAL PEACE
by Paul Xylinides

The concept of total war has been especially widespread in execution in the twentieth century. It means just what it says, that is, the decision by one or both sides in a conflict to use all and every means in order to prevail. War crimes become unavoidable and are a matter of course under these scenarios. Moral and legal concerns are completely set aside. Intended to prevent or, at best, minimize carnage directed towards the innocent, the rules of war are effective only so long as one side enjoys vastly superior capacities and thus the luxury of choosing how to conduct itself in an engagement. Recent comments by Vladimir Putin as to his country’s continued possession of a nuclear arsenal illustrate what recourse a threatened nation feels justified to employ. Today, the United States is able to act militarily within the rules of war. Should the day come that a figure such as the present Russian leader were to carry out his veiled threat, it is not conceivable that the United States would not respond in kind.
Continue reading “TOTAL WAR OR TOTAL PEACE – A Relating to Humans Political Issues Feature”

As It Relates Thus Far To Our Relating to Humans Feature

The Relating to Humans feature is seeing steady growth so I just wanted to thank all who have contributed thus far.

As I’ve pleaded expressed in the past, this feature is near and dear to my happy heart so it would mean so much to me if you were to contribute some of your original work to it.

And while I solicit your work, I also solicit your participation as a reader and observer and I ask that you take the time to visit the feature and acknowledge those authors and poets and artists and musicians who have already contributed. It would be great if you would stop by the sub-features and reply to their submissions and give them direct feedback; or maybe visit their site and follow them so you can keep in tune with what’s on their minds; but at a minimum, it would be awesome if you would stop by and let them know you like their effort by hitting that magical little “Like” button. Funny how that little star lighting up can get the ol’ heart a flutterin’…

Can you please do that for me please?

Great.

And to make it easier for you to let your fingers do the walking to all that is going on at the Relating to Humans feature, I thought I’d go ahead and list all the submissions here, all Table of Content like.
Continue reading “As It Relates Thus Far To Our Relating to Humans Feature”