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Transcending Clinging to Old Traditions… (and Transcending Prejudice against some of Nature’s Fine Creatures…)

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Tradition has seemed to keep us safe up to a certain point.  Many of us cling to tradition in one form or another; most cling to many forms of tradition.  Many of us have our own special religions, nations, customs, leaders, priests, gurus, and methodologies… and to these, we ardently cling.  It has seemed to give us comfort and security by doing so.  With traditions, you don’t have to think much; tradition will have done that for you.  Most people really like that; it is far easier to let others do the thinking for you.  These others, however, have done the very same thing… (absorbing old habits from those whom they’ve similarly copied).  What we’ve inherited may be — unless we prefer to stick our heads in the sand as so many do — a lot of primitive nonsense that tends to separate and divide people globally.  (Where is the real security in that?!)  Each one thinks that his (or her) traditions, systems, ways, and areas are so very special and so much better (than that of the “others”).  We do this and end up with conflict, divisiveness, and wars.  Again, where is the real security in that? We become so comfortable that we allow the bureaucrats to continue polluting the world with fossil fuels, pollute our bodies with junk foods, and our minds with hate, fear, and antiquated ideas… while we don’t peacefully request change and don’t partake in significant alternative action that is beyond conflict and mere reaction.   Profound enlightenment never occurs to the mediocre mind that remains in the rut that indoctrinated others have dug. 

Besides these outer traditions, we cling to (and “are”) inner traditions.  When inner, crude, primitive traditions are warped, distorted, unbalanced, awry, common, and fractional… they reflect this disarray into the world.  Then we overpopulate it, abuse it, and mindlessly contribute to conflict while this fragile world and the beautiful animals upon it suffer the consequences.  We can do better.  However, the old ways are deeply ingrained in us (and “as us”), and the time for change is long overdue.  On a brighter note: We — some of us, at least — can change, blossom, and transcend all of the mediocrity.  

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[Note:  The nights have been getting cold, and this young Bullsnake came through the front door into our house.  I took it near the river bank on the property and released it in an area with a lot of fallen leaves (where it could dig into to find needed warmth).  However, before releasing it, a few pictures (of course) had to be taken.  (The second photo is with me holding the snake in one hand and taking a photo of it with the other hand.)  Steven Irwin, whom i miss dearly (since he passed away), was a superb naturalist who often (on his excellent television nature series) would reveal his deep love of nature.  He often shared the same sentiments that i have concerning snakes: They are beautiful and spectacular creatures if one looks at them without prejudice and old-fashioned beliefs.  Steve’s premature passing was a loss to nature; he was a true champion of nature.  Bullsnakes may look a little bit like Rattlesnakes, but they are non-poisonous and they do not have a rattle at their tail end.  Many people thoughtlessly kill them when they see them, which is a real shame.  All you have to do is grab one a little way up from the tip of the tail and take it to where you would like it to be released.  They are beautiful creatures that eat mice, rats, voles, and other pests, and they are totally harmless to man.  We’re so glad that our little friend stopped by!]

Bullsnake. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2016

Bullsnake. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2016

Holding a Bullsnake. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2016

Holding a Bullsnake. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2016

 

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My Blog primarily consists of close-up nature photos (that I've taken locally) combined with original mindfulness sayings and/or poetry that deals with mindfulness/awareness. I love nature and I love understanding the whole (not merely the parts and the details). I'm a retired teacher of the multiply handicapped. I have a number of interesting hobbies, such as fossil collecting, sport-kite flying, 3D and 2D close-up photography, holography, and pets. Most of all, I am into holistic self-awareness, spontaneous insight, unconventional observation/direct perception, mindfulness, meditation, world peace, non-fragmentation, population control, vegetarianism, and green energy. To follow my unique Blog of "Nature Photos and Mindfulness Sayings" and for RSS feeds to my new posts, please access at: tom8pie.com (On my regular Blog posting pages, for additional information and to follow, simply click on the "tack icon" at the upper right corner... or, on my profile page, you can click on the "Thomas Peace" icon.) Stay mindful, understanding, and caring!...

38 Comments Join the Conversation

  1. You are completely right about traditions, Thomas. I don’t really know if it is only because it’s so easy to follow them without thinking or it’s because some generations have found out that it was better to act in a special way. But just think about a path in the forest. Who wants to leave that path and wander through the scrub? It’s not so comfortable on one side but on the other side you could find a snake or a beautiful orchid in the scrubs. Maybe most people think “Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t.” Hope your thoughts will change some people. Much success. Regards Mitza

    Reply

    • Interesting thought about the paths, Mitza! Paths in the forest can be useful and good to use. However leaving them can be (as you pointed out) fruitful and beneficial too. Some traditional things that we do are wonderful and should be retained. However, some are very barbarous and separate us and divide us globally. Additionally, there is no path to truth and profound insight. There is no dead path to the dynamic and living. However, there are plenty of groups who claim to have and be a true path. I’m not one to be into Gospels, but in the ancient Gospel of Thomas (which is closer to the historical Christ than the traditional 4 and is more a collection of wisdom sayings than a typical Gospel), in saying 107, Jesus tells the one sheep that leaves the safety that all the rest have found together as a herd or flock… that he loves it best.

      Reply

  2. Gorgeous photos… I am always delighted to find other folks that like snakes. I keep a dish of water out for my snakes all summer long. In the late afternoons in particular my dogs and I meet one or two coming from the well!

    Reply

    • How very nice of you to leave water out for them, Sara! We live on a river, so no need to put water out for them. I’ve been watching a lot of Jeff Corwin’s nature stuff lately. Just last night i was watching one where Jeff was capturing very venomous coral snakes for milking anti-venom purposes for an agency that helped save his life with anti-venom many years ago. On his last week of field work for his graduate studies, he was bitten and almost died. The anti-venom saved him! (This particular species has enough venom per snake to kill 15 men. They are rare and are only in remote Costa Rica jungle areas.) Steve Irwin was really into the beauty of snakes (which i always saw even as a kid). I cried for days after Steve — from a sting ray — passed away at a relatively young age.

      Reply

      • How heartbreaking to lose such a friend and yet aren’t you carrying on this work through your beautiful photography? I think you are…
        By the way, I live on a brook so I was sort of amazed when so many snakes took up residence in my little garage…they like nestling in the wood. And I figured they might be thirsty after they started moving around in the spring. The brook is about three hundred feet from the garage and it’s shaded down there. That’s how I got started giving them water!

      • Steve Irwin’s daughter, Bindi, will be doing a lot of what he was doing; but she is still young. We all need to advocate for nature, environmentalism, and compassionate regulation of human population (at levels that are getting way out of hand and harming nature).

        Brooks and rivers are so wonderful in the way they attract many species of animals! 🙂

  3. Great capture of the bull snake! Well said about tradition. Thank you for sharing your insight, as always. Have an enjoyable Sunday, Tom.

    Reply

  4. Excellent message about traditions and our tendencies along those lines. Also, glad you were kind in relocating the bullsnake, as I don’t think many would have done this.

    Reply

  5. Bull snakes are a friendly snake… except when they are eating our chicken eggs! In that case a trip to the woods for relocation is necessary! Also.. I appreciate your words of wisdom, Tom.

    Reply

  6. I read this post and commented while I was taking a trip. I guess it didn’t go through wifi… Sorry about that.

    Reply

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