All Posts Tagged ‘Illinois


Free Will




No doubt, a large number of people will dismiss this or merely become irritated by it.  Very many of us — most all of us, really — assume that we have a free will that freely does whatever it “wants” to.  Suggesting otherwise tends to offend people, annoy people, and ruffle their feathers.  However, the decisions we are involved in are all largely governed by the chemical processes in the brain, the physiological/biological/neurological networks and systems.  Conditioning — by past sociological structures, such as education, religion, and other social networks — also, of course, plays a big part in this.  It may be that your decision to read this blog up to this point was as inevitable as hydrogen and oxygen combining at a certain point to form water.  Billions think and feel that they have free will.

It may be that any thought or any manifestation of thinking that one exists as, no matter what it is, is inevitably involved with conditioning.  So, where is freedom in all of this and is there any chance for true freedom?   Real freedom, perceptually, may come when the mind is of a stillness, a wholeness, that (at times) is beyond the sequential patterns and frameworks of thought/thinking.  It involves awareness beyond what was merely taught or absorbed.  It is of a newness that shatters all conceived and preconceived patterns.  When it occurs, there is an intelligent cessation of thought/thinking; without inevitable, conditioned thinking, there is no learned, false center as the “me” or “I” being projected.  Regarding true freedom, one cannot merely “know” that one is involved with it.  Only a healthy brain can allow it to manifest but it is not what depends upon a healthy brain.  It is not yours or mine; it is of a vastness that transcends all borders.  



Royal Catchfly (Silene regia)  This red blossomed plant is a very rare wild plant of the United States Midwest; it is very endangered in Illinois, for example. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2019


What the Finger Said…




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





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



             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




What Makes the Muskrat Guard His Musk?




What makes a King out of a slave?
Courage! What makes the flag on the mast to wave?
Courage! What makes the elephant charge his tusk, in the misty mist or the dusky dusk?
What makes the muskrat guard his musk?
Courage! What makes the sphinx the seventh wonder?
Courage! What makes the dawn come up like thunder?
Courage! What makes the Hottentot so hot? What puts the “ape” in apricot?
What have they got that I ain’t got?
(All Four):
Then you can say that again!         — Words from the timeless (and indubitably immortal) Wizard of Oz


Muskrat carrying leaves to his underwater den…(Photo taken last spring) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018


The River we live on is Flooding! & Update



Our home is right on the Iroquois River and, currently, the river is rising to a record high.  It is going around 23 feet above normal, and we are due for even more heavy rains.  Flood stage is 16 feet above normal.  The engineers have said that if it rises 8 more inches — which is possible, as it has not crested yet — the cement bridge (that we live adjacent to) could float away.  We are lucky so far, as we are on very high terrain… but the water is getting precariously high and close; neighbors, to the south especially, are lower down; unfortunately, they are getting inundated.  

A little humorous poetry from Art Carney (from the Honeymooners Show many years ago) cheers me up a bit at this dangerous time:

When the tides of life
turn against you,
and the current upsets your boat,
don’t waste tears on what might have been,
just lay on your back and float!

Update (at 8:47PM Central Time, Feb.24th):

Thank you, everyone, for your heartfelt concern, good wishes, and comments.  The river remains very high.  According to charts, it has crested and is supposed to be receding very soon.

Last night, i spent a lot of time getting the container — that our sump pump was in — better situated; plus i drilled a lot of holes into side of the container (higher up towards the top).  Our crawl space was dry — you can’t have basements with living on the river — but there was water in the sump hole about seven inches from the top of the gravel.  Today, we had company coming over (including my mother-in-law… it is mother-in-law’s birthday, she is 93).  However, i noticed a patch of water in one (apparently) low section of the crawl space some distance from where the sump pump is.  Before the company arrived, i was busy frantically digging a trench for the water to flow to where the sump pump was.  I put some PVC piping into the trench by the sump to help with the flow.  It worked!  The crawlspace is mostly bone dry… and the small wet areas have subsided well.

Our elderly neighbor — whom i take the mail to, since she cannot make it to the rural mailbox — said that her son stated that an elderly couple who lives not far from us, by an old iron bridge, was surrounded by water.  They refused to leave.  Their kids (now adults) called 911.  Rescuers used a boat to try to get to them but couldn’t get through due to tons of corn stalks blocking the way.  A man with a better boat was contacted and he managed to get through.  However, the husband refused to leave!   Only his wife evacuated.  The next day, the husband changed his mind and they had to go in again to get him!  Geesh!

My posting for Sunday will still occur.  I schedule my blogs (and usually am about a month ahead).

Thanks again everyone!  (We all need to do way better with the environment!  Weather conditions are going bonkers, worldwide.  When are we going to finally wake up?!  When it is too late?)


Flooded River (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

Flooded River (2) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018


That’d be not ignoring the health of the environment…



These isn’ts and aren’ts

           care not beyond what they were taught

which(by the way)wasn’t worth mentioning


These can’ts and nevers

           trapped in sorrow’s mustn’ts and measures

never really move(though free they think they are)


When’ll “wouldn’t have a clue” ever transcend

           shouldn’t’s dominance?

Mightn’t hasn’t’s pain 

           be why’s responsibility?


Where’ll we be when we transcend mankind’s empty should’ves

            to,instead,keep nature’s ’tisn’ts always from happening?



Great Blue Heron (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2017

Great Blue Heron standing on one leg. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2017