Monthly Archives of: September 2018

Post

Insights or Non- (Part 5)

16 comments

 

 

True wisdom has great wholeness, expanse, and vastness; indifference is of limitation and is confined.

Often dying psychologically to “thinking” is alive, harmless, and highly intelligent.  Constantly reacting as mere symbolic thoughts is cadaverous.

Ignorance often does not recognize its own ignorance.  Wisdom often goes unnoticed and unappreciated by those who have little wisdom.  

Nonsensical behavior often makes excuses.  Behavior that is prudent is honest and compassionate.

Many need to make-believe about some heaven or magical domain in the future (that was fabricated by make-believers); escaping what “actually is” is ignorance. (The aforementioned words are not at all meant to deny true eternity or sacredness.)

Wisdom naturally goes beyond superficial values and superficial behaviors.  

 

 

 

Silver-Spotted Skipper Butterfly Up Close … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

 

 

Post

This is the Poem that came out of the grave

18 comments

 

 

This is the poem 
that came out of the grave
to tell you what death is.

Everyone has avoided the answer
but here is the answer:

Death is indifference;
Death is mental fragmentation;
Death is accepting immorality;
Death is accepting mortality;
Death is belonging to separatist organizations that
one thinks are “right,” 
and death is the limited space surrounded by boundaries.

 

 


It is very rare to see two Ambush Bugs together with a victim like this.  

Two Ambush Bugs with their Bumble Bee victim on Thistle Plant … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

Post

What the Finger Said…

15 comments

 

 

One finger said
to the other finger,
“I want to be close to you!”
The other finger said,
“I feel that we two are
very close.”
Then they passionately wrapped around
each other intertwining.
A somewhat distant finger (away from
the other two) pointedly said,
“You two seem as if you were made for each other!”

Then, after a considerable time, fingers
of a supposedly separate 
hand jealously came attacking,
and total war broke out.

A real fact is that,
in war,
the winners are the losers.  

 

 

Illinois Meadow Wildflower … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

 

 

 

Post

We’ll Miss You Gab

43 comments

 

 

You were the best dog ever
and you are with us always
Most people don’t have a clue
about what eternity really entails
but we don’t have that problem

 

 

****************************************************************************************************

Our wonderful, little dog, Gabby (who was over 16 years old), passed away on Monday.   Marla and i really miss her!   Since we don’t have human children, this hits us especially hard.  That little sweetie was perfect in every way.   
We still have a number of other pets, including a Miniature Dachshund, Lola, (who is also quite a sweetie).  

 

Gabby … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

Post

Beyond Limited

33 comments

 

 

Let’s pull some forever out of a hat
      mail a kind letter back to oneself
and sit again wisely where always sat

Allow tears to flow back into red eyes
      and dream again of flying as a child
beyond cold gravity… blue skies

 

 

 

Getting ready to fly… Male Clouded Sulpher Butterfly … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Post

Insights or Non- (Part 4)

13 comments

 

 

Silence is not an achievement that is the result of your reaction;  true silence is when conflict ends.  

Lucid, insightful wisdom doesn’t take time… but sequential, symbolic thought does.

Compassion isn’t the left arm hating the right arm and thinking it is separate.

John Lennon was right:   “Living is easy with eyes closed… misunderstanding all you see.”

Each of us is responsible for getting oneself and the world right.  Oneself includes — and is — the world.

Don’t think with a prefabricated mind, with a handmedown, archaic mentality; look at things beyond the ways you were taught.  

 

 

Wood Boring Crane Fly … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

Post

What are they feeding us?

30 comments

 

 


They provided us with delectable ideas

which our minds assimilated like gluttons.
We, of course, became hungry for more.
Our ravenous appetites drove us
to the next serving… and to the next.
One palatable idea after another
is what we craved; anything other
than facing the starvation of the
emptiness within.
True intelligence can only, for a
limited time, feast on the illusions they
provide.  After

that limitation is reached, real
sustenance breaks free beyond
their insipid inedibilities.
Will habit continue to feast on delicacies
of disorder?  Even the supermarkets are
full of the artificial.
It’s good to eat healthy, whole,
nourishing food.
It’s not so good to allow oneself
to be conditioned to merely
swallow a lot of mindless crap.

 


[Note:  These are not the kind of eggs that you can purchase at the supermarket.  These are 1 millimeter insect eggs on a leaf.   Note the orderly patterns in which they were laid.]

Tiny insect eggs on a leaf… Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

 

Post

Praying Mantis

36 comments

 

 

As if he crawled
      out from M.C.Escher’s Dream Woodcut
      he watches the camera 
      and the camera manipulator
      waiting for
      the aloneness
      that he cherishes and lives by 
      beyond mere supplication

 

 

Praying Mantis Hanging Around… Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

 

 

 

Post

Depression and Sorrow…

19 comments

 

 

Many people suffer from depression and sorrow. Many take pharmaceutical antidepressants and regularly go to clinics to receive therapy.  Of course, for some, it may involve issues based on heredity and diet.  For many, it entails accumulated psychological problems.  Most, when they were much younger, did not have such issues; in youth, they were filled with wondrous curiosity and inner vitality. Many, as they age, become jaded and unhappy, bored with the same-old-things and with the monotony of it all.

A large part of the problem lies in wrong education. Most, throughout their education, were not encouraged to be keenly aware of their own minds… to be aware of the essence of thought and thinking and to explore beyond the realm that thought and thinking manifest as. Most, from society as it currently is structured, were taught to cherish and exclusively dwell in the process of thinking… in mostly math and reading and such, and not so much with wholeness and integrity.  Few were encouraged, in their youth, to question everything and to be free from mere standard ways/procedures. These days, almost all of us are immured within the walls of thought/thinking. Most exclusively dwell in (and “as”) thought/thinking… and very few value going beyond that domain. Most have put all of their eggs into that one basket; in that, they dwell.  That basket is like a small, limited prison.  Many minds are imprisoned (i.e., deeply embedded) in dogmas, beliefs, presuppositions, antiquated systems, and isolating boundaries.

As one has said so many times before, thinking is always symbolic, always second-hand, limited, and merely representational. Yet so many cling to thinking and unquestionably exist almost exclusively as what it is. Even when most of us look at things, we are looking with (and through) the screen of thinking; such thinking involves labeling, categorizing, classifying, identifying, and pigeonholing. When most look at things, they are primarily looking with the memory bank (i.e., through retained knowledge). Such a memory bank is from the past and is always old, always of stored data. They look with (and from) the stored (old) past… and they inevitably get bored while they feel stale and full of the mundane. With this situation, antidepressants and clinical so-called experts can only help so much.  One of the functions of the human mind is to be of order and to transcend sorrow; transcending sorrow is, in itself, order.

A mind of deep awareness can often look at things without merely using the storehouse of old and stuffy memory. To perceive without relying on the storehouse of dead memory (and stale patterns of remembrance) is a living art. There is no method to this art. It does not involve old patterns that you can absorb or practice to improve yourself over time. Using thought when it is necessary but often going beyond it, the wise mind sagaciously realizes that profound bliss is not a mere remembrance. Profound joy is not labeling everything and then looking at everything through (and “as”) dead labels. To perceive without the burden of the past is real living. Real living is not the past perpetually relabeling things (with endless symbols) into the present and future. The mind that goes beyond “perception through mere symbolism and fragmented mental constructs” is a liberated, whole, free mind full of joy. 

 

All Tied Up In Knots… Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

Post

Some Plants in Illinois have Eyes! (Two-Photos… for Your Eyes Only)

41 comments

 

             If you don’t like to be stared at,
don’t come to rural Illinois!

There are some rare plants here in rural Illinois
that are sensitive to the touch and that are quickly evolving.
             At first, besides their sensitivity to touch,
they began being sensitive to the sunlight.
Then, gradually over time, they developed 
photoreceptors that could better detect sun-
light and let them know when to fold their leaves for the evening.
           Now these photoreceptors are further evolving
into legitimate eyes.

      Some plants that i know have
      better response and better perception than
      a lot of the humans out there!

       I am a vegetarian,
       and i certainly am not going to eat these plants
       while they stare back at me!

 

 

Chamaecrista fasciculata, a wild plant of Illinois with an eye on each branch section and with leaves closed for the evening… Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

Chamaecrista fasciculata, a wild plant of Illinois with leaves open in daylight for photosynthesis…. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

 

 

Post

Oh, Lower Case “i”!…

25 comments

 

 

As Grover on Sesame Street
      — not that i ever watch it
      with our pet parrots —
      says:  “Oh, lower case “i,”
      you are so cute with your
      little dot!”
      Grover is right!  It is a 
      marvelous letter and helps
      to represent what i am
      (even though it really isn’t
      what i am whatsoever)!

 

Two Pearl Crescent Butterflies… Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

 

 

 

 

 

Post

Insights or Non- (Part 3)

28 comments

 

 

Deep passion — to find out about the whole of existence — goes far beyond details and fragmentary parts.

There can be a holistic awareness, not merely of the five “separate” senses that one “has,” but rather “as” the holistic senses working together harmoniously, as one, without thought/thinking constantly interfering, separating.

When one was young, one mustered up all of the energy that one had to perceive the truth and the whole.  That’s the only way to be!

Order comes through understanding and perception… not via rigid, limited ideals which bring about conflict.

Many animals value life just as we do… maybe even more so.

Look beyond the learned patterns; see beyond the limited, learned symbols.

True wisdom goes beyond perceived borders and is therefore truly compassionate and caring.  

 

 

Scarlet-and-Blue Leafhopper …Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

 

Post

Lo Zu and the Truth… (another short Lo Zu tale)

29 comments

 

 

A number of young men and young women in Lo Zu’s village gathered around him
one day and one of them said, “Many people, even from other villages, say that
you are a great sage, a man of vast wisdom who carries the truth; please show us
how to carry the truth with us.”

After a considerable length of silence, Lo Zu stood up and said, “If you want the truth, follow me and do exactly what I say, but it will be a very arduous journey with many difficulties.” Then Lo Zu took his meandering cane and began walking, and all of the youth eagerly followed him, with excitement and expectation in their eyes.

He walked through a very large meadow, often bending down to examine the beautiful wildflowers and
insects (while deeply enjoying them). The youth all followed. Then he walked into a thick forest
containing many creeks harboring extremely slippery rocks. All of the youth were somewhat afraid,
but they continued to follow him. After a couple of hours, they came out of the forest
and began climbing a small mountain, all following Lo Zu carefully and diligently. When they
finally reached a very lofty height, Lo Zu stopped walking and began carefully placing large
rocks in each of the youths’ hands. As he placed the large rocks in the hands of each of the
young followers, he said, “These are very special, sacred stones of truth; please carry these back to the
village very carefully, without dropping any; please do not drop the truth.”

Each of the youth carried a number of stones. They followed Lo Zu down off of the mountain. They struggled on their way through the dark forest; it was very 
perilous and difficult with the weight of the stones making their journey all the more excruciating.  As they walked through the large meadow, back toward the
village, many of them were aching with pain from the tiresome journey and from the heavy weight of the stones (over time).

When they finally reached the village, Lo Zu told them to place the stones in a large pile. It was the end of the day, getting dark, and everyone was extremely exhausted (except for Lo Zu who did not carry any stones). Lo Zu asked them, then, to stand in a circle around the stones.  Then Lo Zu remarked to them all, “Here is the truth you worked so diligently for.  These stones are absolutely worthless.  They are not any different from any other stones that one can find. You believed in me, hoping for the truth to be handed to you.  Out of your confusion, you decided that I always held the truth (to give to you). Many people, out of confusion, choose high-ranking “others” to lead them to the truth; out of their confusion, they choose! They go to temples and ask the temple-keepers to give them the truth. What the temple-keepers generally give, however, is as useless as these rocks. Nevertheless, people blindly and devotedly adhere to what they say, just as you have done with me today. It is evening, and you may be disappointed to find that you have wasted your whole day. Do not feel too wronged by this. Many people have wasted their entire lives in carrying the worthless stones, burden, weighty images, and so-called sacred statues of others, and it isn’t evening at the end of it for them; it is the time of their death. They wasted not a day but their entire life, and the sacred eluded them.
Therefore, do not cling to any groups or authoritarian leaders who claim to give concrete methods toward the truth; instead,
find living truth within, without using taxing systems or time.
The first step and the last step are one.”

 

 

Magnificent Eastern Tailed Blue (in a meadow, of course!)… Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

Post

Christianity and the Historical Christ

28 comments

 

My wife and i were at a relative’s funeral, a number of years ago, and my older cousin was in the church pew in front of us.  At the end of the mass, she turned around and said to me, “It’s too bad that you are a heathen.”  I did not reply anything back to her.  (By the way, i had undergone a profound Timeless/Enlightenment experience long before this occurred, though don’t just believe that; “experience,” by the way, is not a very good word to use for this; no word is sufficient.)

I have always been profoundly interested in spirituality and in the philosophical aspect of things all of my life.  I do not belong to any organized religion because, like separative countries, organized religions tend to divide people and (to a large extent) tend to be a form of tribalism which leads to conflict and war.  Though i am not one to put any credence or reliance into “belief” — since belief tends to be the crude result of a blind acceptance of presuppositions, conclusions, or group acceptances — i am very interested in investigating into truth and holistic order.  I probably had read the New Testament, by the way, many more times than my brazen cousin did.  Years ago, when i was quite younger, i hung around a lot with Professor David Bohm, talking one-on-one with him often about the deeper aspects of truth and reality.  David Bohm was a co-worker with Albert Einstein, by the way.  Einstein loved Bohm and called Bohm his “spiritual son.”  I’ll never forget the wonderful discussions that we had.

As far as the Bible goes, most biblical scholars agree that most of what was handed down over the years has been grossly distorted over time from what the historical Christ actually said (i.e., distorted by mistranslations and intentional, self-serving additions by others).   However, probably if one is truly wise, one can — to a large extent — tell the difference between the weeds and the wheat.

One of the many sections that i find interesting starts at Matthew 13:10:

Then the disciples came and asked him, “Why do you speak to them in parables?” He answered, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. For to those who have, more will be given, and they will have an abundance; but from those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away. The reason I speak to them in parables is that “seeing they do not perceive, and hearing they do not listen, nor do they understand. With them indeed is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah that says:
‘You will indeed listen, but never understand,
and you will indeed look, but never perceive.
For this people’s heart has grown dull,
and their ears are hard of hearing,
and they have shut their eyes;
so that they might not look with their eyes,
and listen with their ears…'”.

So, here, in this alleged saying, Christ seems to be saying that he will be telling special things (or even secrets) to those that are close to him, who really care.  He also seems to be saying that the masses get parables but not the direct, significant, straight teachings.  As in ancient times, most people do not inquire into what such special teachings may have consisted of; most did not inquire into what such special messages were about.

The ancient Gospel of Thomas was discovered in an earthenware jar in 1945 in a desert by a poor farmer who was digging for fertilizer.  Additionally, Greek fragments of the gospel were found in ancient dump heaps.  The Greek fragments were an even earlier example than the 1945-discovered Coptic version, and were likely a more pristine version of the gospel (and likely are less distorted).   I hope someday that a full, early Greek version of Thomas is discovered!  Many prominent biblical scholars maintain that the Gospel of Thomas was written before any of the four (previously oral) gospels were written.  There is much evidence — and books have even been written on this — that the Gospel of John was written as a rebuttal to the Gospel of Thomas.  Ancient people who were appreciative of the Gospel of Thomas were all butchered and killed by the ancient Bishops and their followers, long after Thomas was written.  The Gospel of Thomas is not full of weird miracles and tons of parables but, instead, contains more direct, simple wisdom sayings and suggestions to look within (rather than to intermediary priests in temples).   Do you think that an early gospel  — though it was dearly accepted by many early in the history of all of this — would be tolerated by the self-appointed religious, orthodox “authorities” while it suggested that one look within, while it condemned the temple leaders?  The Pharisees, the strict, orthodox, temple-attending people at the time of Christ, were often referred to in a negative way in Thomas (and in some of the other new testament gospels).   Jesus was, at first, a follower of John the Baptist, who despised the “high-ranking” Pharisees and Sadducees, the religious leaders (of organized religion) in Israel at the time of Jesus; John got as far away from the temples as he could… (into wonderful, beautiful nature) to speak to the people, away from the orthodox priests/rabbis.  It was likely these religious leaders who had John the Baptist terminated, and it definitely was the leaders of organized religion who had Jesus killed (as well as, later on, all of the admirers of The Gospel of Thomas).   Do you know what they did with popular iconoclasts in the distant past?  They nailed some of them to dead trees; and, very possibly, if they became exceptionally popular, they twisted around and distorted what they had said to suit their own power-hungry ends.

Prelude and a few select sayings from the Gospel of Thomas:

 

 

 These are the hidden sayings that the living Yeshua spoke and Yehuda Toma the twin recorded. 
 
(1)
And he said, 
Whoever discovers what these sayings mean 
will not taste death.

(3)
Yeshua said,
If your leaders tell you, “Look, the kingdom is in heaven,”
then the birds of heaven will precede you.
If they say to you, “It’s in the sea,” 
then the fish will precede you.
But the kingdom is inside you and it is outside you.
When you know yourselves,  then you will be known,
and you will understand that you are children of the living father.
But if you do not know yourselves,
then you dwell in poverty and you are poverty.

Sayings 61, 62, 66, and 67: 

(61)
Yeshua said,
Two will rest on a couch. One will die, one will live.
 
Salome said,
Who are you, mister? You have climbed on my couch
and eaten from my table as if you are from someone. 
 
Yeshua said to her,
I am the one who comes from what is whole.
I was given from the things of my father.
 
Salome said,
I am your student.
 
Yeshua said,
I say, if you are whole,  you will be filled with light,
but if divided, you will be filled with darkness.

(62)
Yeshua said,
I disclose my mysteries to those who are worthy
of my mysteries. 
Do not let your left hand know
what your right hand is doing.

(66)
Yeshua said,
Show me the stone that the builders rejected.
That is the cornerstone.
 
(67)
Yeshua said,
One who knows all but lacks within
is utterly lacking.

(The aforementioned excerpts were taken from the Nag Hammadi Library Marvin Meyer Translation of Thomas.   http://gnosis.org/naghamm/gosthom-meyer.html

A good book to read, if you are really interested in this, is “The Five Gospels: What Did Jesus Really Say? The Search for the Authentic Words of Jesus” by Robert W. Funk.
However, I feel that what is most important is to not rely on past writings or sayings of others — especially rather antiquated ones — but, instead, to perceive freshly and find out for oneself (without dependence on organizations and handed-down beliefs).

***************************************************************************************************************************

This is a male Snout Butterfly.   The males have four legs and a pair of unusable anterior legs; those unusable, anterior legs can be seen in the photograph.  The females have six usable legs.  

Male Snout Butterfly… Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

Post

Rollie Pollie from the Ancient Past…

37 comments

 

 

Similar to miniature armored tanks
from the prehistoric past,
you scurry along like ancient,
deep sea Silurian Period trilobites
(with shielding exteriors) 
to be envied by soft, fragile, vulnerable we.

 

***************************************************************************************************************************

Much like M.C.Escher’s famous Curl-up Prints — these crustaceans probably inspired him — Rollie Pollies (or Pill Bugs) are capable of rolling up into protective balls, just like trilobites did many millions of years ago in the deep oceans.   This particular species looks to be more like a Sow Bug so is likely not able to fully roll up like an almost similar looking Pill Bug can.  Most Rollie Pollies live up to two years.  They are the only crustaceans that can spend their entire life on land.  They mostly eat dead vegetation.  They breathe by means of gills, which necessitates needing to be in a humid air environment (such as under logs).

 

Sow Bug from the Past… Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018