Thursday, March 28, 2013

The main struggle of being an artist

reflections on "success"
from my art blog

a post of mine from facebook transfered here

Reader Warning : if you don't like political, religious, or personal comments on Facebook, then don't read any further.

In light of the discussions that have come up around the Supreme Court hearing arguments about homosexual issues the last couple of days, something became clear to me.

The people who already have well defended rights are not the owners of those rights and so therefor can dispense them to others whom they deem worthy. They are not their rights to give, just because they already benefit from having them. Rights are not an exclusive club that you gain membership to because you know a member and that member will recommend you to the board.

The impression of having to ask the very people who don't think I should have those rights for permission to have those rights, to have to justify against their prejudices towards me why my right to rights supersedes their opinion of whether they think I qualify for them or not is not only insulting but degrading.

I qualify because I am human. Because those rights are my rights by birth : to define for myself who I am, what I want, what I know to be right for me, free from the opinions of others. I do not have to first prove that who I want to be is acceptable to everyone or even a majority of everyone, before I can be given the rights. I have to prove it to no one but myself (and to my maker). (and) I have the right to be wrong.

If there is a god, I will have to face him myself, alone. I was given a mind, a heart, a soul, so that I can weigh those things for myself. I believe that God doesn't make mistakes, and that he loves each of us exactly the way he created us. It is for each of us to listen deeply to ourselves, for the truth that is within us, to uncover that truth and to bring it forth to the world. Whether another human agrees or not has no relevance. I will not stand before any of you at the end. I will stand before that which made me. I am completely at peace with that even though I make HUGE mistakes. I have always strived to do what is right by myself and by others. I do not believe that I will be judged for being perfect or not, but for having done the best I could with what I was given. In the end, to discover love for myself, in the true understanding of who I really am, because true love for "other" comes after discovering love of self.

Monday, January 7, 2013

The meaning of life...

After years of searching for the true meaning of life, I finally have come to the conclusion that there isn't any. The universe is completely and utterly neutral. It simply is. There is only that which we bring to it. If we want there to be good, we have to be the good. If we want there to be love, we have to be the love. Joy... Peace... We are the meaning of life, if we chose to be. There isn't already one out there waiting for us to adhere to, to discover, to understand. We have to bring it out of ourselves as a voluntary act of creation. A choice.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

a poem from long ago, today


   and I
    a love
    for you
    as deep
    and as sweet

as a cool lake
under a mountain's wait
and a hatred as dry
and scorched as
desert bones

vast and calm -
the edges of how
   far I extend, when
I close my eyes

never so limitless

and a damp northwind
across a flat unknown

oct 1999

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

TIL 03 - beyond dychotomy

There is a certain amount of common wisdom that humans are either rational or they are emotional.  Intellectual or feeling.  And for a long time in our common history, intellect was considered the "better" of the two.  (See :  The Age of Reason - it's even written in capitals) (I don't recall their being an "Age of Feeling." Maybe there should be.  - just thinking out loud :)

I propose that there is a third and more important element, that, when accessed, supersedes these two.  Call it intuition or experience.  I call it "body knowing," because I feel it in my stomach, in my bones. 

The number of times I have gotten myself into all kinds of trouble because "I thought that..."  (you can even get a lot of people to agree or disagree with you, when you come from this place).  The intellect can be fooled and be off-base all the while looking completely like it is right - and can defend its position.

I am a very very emotional person, and my emotions have gotten me into more trouble than I can tell you. Knee-jerk reactions, hurt feelings, anger, even passion and happiness.  And from there, my reactions to my intense emotions almost always made things worse for me.  Not to mention that most emotional reactions come from my inner child of three years old or from family or from cultural patterns that don't really have anything to do with me.  I just pass them on, because that is the way it has always been.  (And there is a great deal of comfort in the familiar, even the painful familiar).  These reactions certainly don't come from my adult being.

My gut feelings about situations or people are never wrong.  When I hear the answer inside myself (apart from thoughts and feelings), it is always clear and sure.  What is there is rarely easy to explain or justify (rationally) and it can make me feel uncomfortable, but there is a sureness in it.   I "know."

The problem is that it's not always easy to hear it or to distinguish it from the "I know" of habit, thought or feeling, especially when I am "polluted" by emotion or am being positional.

When I have listened to that voice in me, then things have turned out well.  When I haven't, then situations have always gotten more complicated or painful or simply gone less smoothly.

Note :  Going to a calm/sure place inside myself, is the way I access this place in myself.  Calming myself down, centering myself in my body, allows me to hear more clearly this truthful voice inside me.  (See TIL 1 below for learning the method I use)  

Left brain - right brain, right - wrong, feeling - reasoning, black - white, them - us, etc... they are all dychotomies and, for me, if it is an either/or siutation, then it all comes from the same place.  It all is the same thing.  Conflict, separation, suffering are all hallmark symptoms that one is coming from the world of dichotomy.

For all my life I have been trying to understand a conflict, or an emotion or a problem, and hope by understanding it better that I will better be able to have influence over it, or, if I am honest with myself, have control over it.  My experience though is that one doesn't resolve conflict by following conflict, one resolves problems by accessing a place where this conflict doesn't exist, to a place "outside" it, where this conflict doesn't matter, where it doesn't touch me, where it has no relevance and from there find a solution and bring it back to the situation, or simply realizing that the conflict is an illusion, a false conflict.  

From that place, I am free, truly free, even from my own opinions/feelings (see "right" above) which seem arbitrary and without meaning, once I am "centered."  From there I can see the whole situation more clearly and without prejudice, therefore coming-up with solutions adapted to the problem and not just adapted to my neuroses.

I have never been able to resolve a problem from the viewpoint of the problem.  Doing so has only made the problem worse and given more energy to it.  Solutions that come from there seem to always end-up being part of the problem.  They often make things worse.

Arriving in this place, "being" here is new to me, and feels odd, because it doesn't have all the familiarity of my emotional landscape of the past.  Gone are the land-mines the gail winds.  But being here, coming from here, making my decisions from here, looking at the world from here, I can't see conflict.  I can't see disappointment.  Well, not exactly true.  I see them but from a (safe) distance.

It's like the happiness I felt before was a shadow or an impostor of what real happiness feels like, now that I have found it.

In realizing that I am alone here in myself, sounds like it would make me lonely, but loneliness disappears here.  It doesn't have meaning.  Time doesn't have meaning.

For the first time in my life, I am not antsy and wishing I were somewhere else, someone else.  I am where I am.

I find myself laughing more.  Listening more...  Crying spontaneously more.

And from here, even the events that triggered me into emotive reactions and habitual obsessive patterns just don't seem to have any importance.

sometimes, I "rise" to the surface and start judging, wanting, feeling, (btw, all of these things don't go away, there are still there, I just am not locating myself in them.  I am locating myself "beneath" them in a calmer surer place), and I can tell you, the suffering is right there as it always was.  So now, I breath, bring myself back into my body, back into my core, and from that perspective, the suffering doesn't go away, but I'm simply not inside it, not using it as my place of reference.

Note : I am not "against" thinking and feeling.  They are not things to be gotten rid of.  They are integral necessary parts of our make-up and functioning.   I am only against the idea that they are the only reality and that all experience should be derived from them.  One main reason, apart from the fact that, for me, this system doesn't work, is that if you use either feeling or intellect as a reference, then you are automatically prone to favor one over the other.  We are all hardwired with different degrees of each. And in favoring one over the other, one inevitably makes oneself right and the other wrong.  More division, more conflict, more suffering.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

TIL 02

Thought of the day :

I can't control my emotions, but I do have control over myself and how I react to my emotions.