Psychologically, the one who perceives something is not (to a large extent) separate from the perception; so, a man or a woman who is discussing something with someone who is standing in a bed of flowers is — in a very peculiar but real way — conversing with the flowers.
(A favorite excerpt from a very special movie):
I could while away the hours Conferrin’ with the flowers Consultin’ with the rain And my head I’d be scratchin’ While my thoughts were busy hatchin’ If I only had a brain
I’d unravel any riddle For any individ’le In trouble or in pain…
The dictionary defines Nirvana as: ‘(in Buddhism) perfect bliss attained by the extinction of individuality.’
And the following — which may reflect the above definition — may be one pristine part of the bible that managed to get through without being adulterated much over time by those with mythological propensities:
35 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ 37 Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? 38 And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? 39 And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ 40 And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers,[a] you did it to me.’
The deepest truth exists far beyond the limitations of time and searching.
To look without the background of what others poured into you… may be of pristine clarity and wholeness beyond description.
We tend to cling to groups (involving separative countries and religions) and are afraid of standing alone on our own.
When we were young, they taught us that doubt is a very bad thing; on the contrary, doubting often involves the beautiful awakening of true intelligence and wisdom.
The human body is a miraculous, delicate, balanced instrument. We must take precise care of it with tremendous care, concern, and natural, healthy processes… not abuse it with thoughtless neglect and misuse. A healthy body can nourish a healthy brain.
To holistically perceive without separation may bring real compassion and wisdom.
A very beautiful mind inwardly… perceives beyond the dull limitation of symbolic words, fragmentary thoughts, and habitual acceptances.
It’s very comfortable to remain entrenched in traditional beliefs and groups, but it may not at all be wise, noble, or highly intelligent.
[Note: The two large fangs (i.e., chelicerae) of this spider can be seen here. The lower one (of this tilted arachnid) is more in shadow, but the upper one can be seen a bit better. It extends from just under that little red-orangish area to where it curves (fang-like) to the right and backwards.]
Awareness, in terms of mindfulness and meditation, is not a calculated escape into some kind of fabricated domain beyond what is all around you. The world is largely a big mess right now, chiefly because of man and the disorder that man propagates. The world of nature basically has a beautiful intrinsic order. Awareness perceives this order and also perceives the disorder (primarily involving man). Again, awareness is not some kind of escape into some kind of domain (fabricated by the mind to, supposedly, exist in a utopian, blissful state). Awareness is not sitting with one’s legs in a lotus position, thinking that one is achieving something extraordinary. That is usually a form of self-hypnosis, and there is nothing extraordinary about that.
Deep awareness remains with (and “as”) what is, but that “what is” is not merely the result of what one was molded and trained to see. Merely looking at things through a mental screen of words (which are mere symbols) and isolated images — in a separative, pigeonholing, divisive kind of way — is just a continuation of mindless, limited conditioning and, therefore, is not deep awareness. Deep awareness shatters through stale acceptances, worn-out systems of looking at things, dead traditions, and preconceived iron-clad concepts, and bursts beyond these mere reactions. Deep awareness is not mere reaction, it is action. Deep awareness acts and ends disorder. Again, deep awareness is action, not mere reaction. Deep awareness exists beyond effort; effort is always for a limited goal — in time — and is of reaction. Reaction is mechanical, robotic, rather dead, unalive, ordinary, and it comfortably fits into the current rotten society just fine.
Leafhoppers are not often seen because they are savvy enough to perceive a person approaching them and they subsequently quickly move to a portion of the plant, that they are upon, that is not visible to the oncoming individual. They are very visually and vibrationally perceptive, which is a limited type of awareness.
And while he observed the diminutive insect gazing out from the base of the leaf, there was no immediate labeling, there was no separation between the leaf and his consciousness, there was no separation between the insect and what he was. (They taught him that he was separate, but he didn’t listen.)
The dictionary describes “oblivious” as ‘not aware or concerned about what is happening.’ Many are neither concerned about the environment, about stopping the current virus from spreading, nor about curtailing the injustice and discrimination going on in the world. Looking with the mechanistic brainwashing that was likely poured into you in your youth, is not awareness. True awareness transcends the mediocre, conditioned, superficial platform that society tends to educate its children with. Words are symbolic patterns, virtual reactions, and to merely look at the world through (and “as”) symbolic patterns and conditioned reactions is not real looking and is not real awareness.
The dictionary describes “narrow-minded” as ‘rigid or restricted in one’s views; intolerant.’ Many humans have rigidly clung to the restricted and limited educational patterns that were poured into them. They go through life, looking at things in pre-molded, pre-planned ways — set up by organized bureaucracy — which isn’t really “looking” at all. No wonder then, that there is much indifference and callousness taking place in (and “as”) their minds. Of course, there are a good number of people out there that have noble arrangements or professions that really help people (and animals) but the world needs far more of such people. Indifference, rigidness, and unconcern are far too rampant.
There is no rule or method to follow that enables one to truly go beyond mental superficiality and rigid methodologies. One must do it with the heart in a way that goes beyond the mere symbolic patterns of words, learned patterns of separation, and self-concepts. The true living heart has no boundaries and does not cling to man-made limitations.
If you happen to have a physical handicap, ailment, or disorder, one does not think that it would be prudent to take it out on, or blame, some “higher power.” There is a sacredness that exists, but one does not feel that it interferes much with the natural, organic occurrence of things. If it did, there would be no end to the multitude of illnesses and physical problems that needed fixing and if it fixed everything, for example, we would be living in a cartoon-like, plastic-plant-like world where things were disgustingly artificial.
My wonderful wife, before she passed, had all kinds of physical problems (and handicaps). I, more than once, advised her not to take it out on that higher order and vast intelligence. By the way, things happened in the past, such as adult neighbors getting in front of my wife with their car as she was walking down our rural road for exercise, and laughingly mocking the way she walked, stopping their car in front of her to block her walking. This kind of thing is unbelievable, especially from adults. (By the way — and this is not mere politics — i was not at all appreciative of the way Trump, in the past, openly mocked and disparagingly imitated that poor man who was handicapped.) There are some people out there with no hearts. It is very sad.
I was a teacher for students with multiple handicaps, and i occasionally would talk to them about their situation. Some were as intelligent as you or i but, for example, were quadreplegic, not being able to move their arms or legs with coordination and not being able to feed themselves. Yet we got them to laugh often and feel good about themselves. Let me tell you, when anyone of us humans (including animals) suffers… the whole world suffers in a way and (in a way) shares in that suffering. We can help each other and all do better; all of us are like the fingers of one hand, and although the fingers seem separate, in reality they are not separate.
If you happen to have handicaps, keep your head held high; do not feel inferior; please do not blame that sacredness. Let’s face it, in a big way all of us humans have some kind of handicap(s). (Many of my students, while being severely handicapped, smiled more often and were kinder and far more caring than a lot of the ordinary, so-called normal businessmen that i met in the outside world.)
The dictionary defines “discrete” as, ‘individually distinct, separate, discontinuous.” For most of us, our education primarily taught us how to function with separate, discontinuous things (in ways that helped one to be triumphant and successful). For millions of years, we have been functioning largely on the basis of performance and manipulation involving separate things. The fact is, however, that not one thing in our existence is truly distinct, truly separate. Such distinction and separation is only illusory and unreal. It is like the left hand thinking that it is separate from the right hand; it is like you thinking that you are separate from the people in another so-called country.
We distinguish things by making distinctions according to their attributes and properties. That is a function of the thinking process. However, the thinking process is geared toward survival, pleasure, individual success, and fulfilling essential needs; it is not geared toward perceiving the truth, perceiving the whole. In a truly wise and intelligent person, thinking occurs when it is necessary for fulfilling basic, essential needs, but it is often left in the background while deeper, holistic perception occurs. (There is no legitimate technique or man-made method — that involves time — that can take you to that pristine, timeless dimension.) Deep perception exists beyond the cold, fragmentary nature of thought/thinking. (Mere thinking basically sees things in only piecemeal ways.) With deep perception comes intense compassion, caring, and the lack of indifference.
The elderly Lo Zu walked through a long, beautiful meadow and came near to the local village. He saw a group of youth sitting near a fenced garden and ambled near to them while holding on to his sinuous, meandering cane. As he walked, he smiled at the majestic, wonderous blue sky and at the beautiful trees dancing in the light breeze that he was not (in any way) apart from. Many of the young people looked rather bored, and excitement and wonderment were missing from their eyes. Lo Zu said to them, “When i was your age, i too sometimes would get bored; I too found myself lacking in exciting things to do. Now, in my elderly age, there is no boredom; there is only harmony and bliss.”
“What is your secret?, one of the youth asked.
Lo Zu then said, “One went beyond what all of the others said about life, self, and consciousness. The root of suffering was discovered and perceived.”
Some of the youth inquired, “What is the root of suffering?”
Lo Zu replied, “The ‘I,’ the ‘me,’ with all of its pretense and chicanery. The ‘I’ or the ‘me’ helps create a space between what is considered a “center” and the rest of the world (even including between a thought of a supposed center-controller and thinking). However, for example, thoughts and thinking are what consciousness is (as they occur), including the concept of ‘I’ or ‘myself.’ There is, though, a beautiful intelligence beyond and much greater than mere thoughts and thinking. Such intelligence is of a wholeness and transcends the petty concepts of ‘I’ and ‘me.’ Such intelligence transcends psychological suffering/boredom, mere words as labels, and gross limitation; what is whole and immense is not dominated by what is false and limited. Mental suffering is false and limited. Only when one clings to the limited is the intelligence of the whole not apparent. Look at everything beyond fragments, symbols, and images… and perhaps that intelligence will manifest. Clinging to what the ordinary, every-day people tell you… may be like clinging to garbage. Even clinging to ‘collected experiences’ (robotically) is childish and unnecessary. Cling in that way if you wish, but as for this elderly being, there is too much bliss here to crave what is fundamentally of the dead past. See the living beauty of life and nature in each instant (without merely always labeling and remembering). Question things, be appreciative of life, perceive with wholeness, and go beyond the ordinary. “
The group of youth thanked Lo Zu and asked him to stop by to visit them again.
As he walked away, he heard one of them say, “He is not like the other elders; he is different; he seems magical. When he looks at you, it is as if he can see right into you.”
The following is not meant to offend those who pray. If you are into “praying,” please read this as objectively as possible.
Praying is still what a lot of people do. Why do people pray and what does praying involve? We must be careful not to overly or subjectively analyze it, since (psychologically) the analyzer is not something truly separate from the analyzed.
People who pray will tell you that they are praying to God, to what they consider or think/feel God to be. Fundamentally, in all actuality, they are praying to an image (of what their thoughts consider God to be). This image is a protrusion of their thinking process. It is a product and fabrication of thought/thinking. One of the associative feelings or suppositions regarding this projected image, regarding what “God” is considered to be, involves attributes of power, dominance, (and all of this with a heavily anthropomorphic bent). In other words, this image of God — within people, constituting part of their minds — consists of human (often fatherly) attributes; these images, for instance, tend to be formulated of human attributes involving such things as great strength, power, endurance, fortitude, fairness, awareness, and keen judgment. (Most people do not harbor internal images of a lazy, indifferent, weak God. Most brains do not harbor associative constructs tying images of God to inefficiency, indolence, and to a complete lack of awareness.)
Many ardently cling to this image involving domination and power — whom they call “God” — and will insist that it is more than a self-projected image that they carry. Curiously, if one examines honestly, there is another image that they carry that (coincidentally) also involves great domination and power. Do you realize what it is? It is the image of the self. It is the image of the “I” and/or the “me.” However, most of us do not see it for what it is (i.e., a projected, concocted image); most of us see it (or feel it) to be the permanent, separate, central orchestrator and core regulator of all of the other thoughts. Most of us see it as what has true domination and power; it (to us) is what is having domination and power over the “other” thoughts (and is separate from them). (So there exists domination and power regarding “God” and domination and power involving the “I” or the “me.”) We don’t see the “I” for what it really is… another protrusion of thought/thinking that (in reality) is neither powerful, dominant, nor truly central. However, most all of us cling to this psychological structure because it fits in well with what everyone else has absorbed and accepted as legitimate. We evolved from primitive hominids in an environment where domination and power were critical and extremely important. Following leaders of power — or forces of power — was critical and necessary way back then, wasn’t it? We haven’t dropped those old-fashioned ways.
A few additional points: So when people pray to God concerning things that need to be done for others, for instance, are they pointing out things that this God may be negligent about understanding or that this God is not quite fully adequate at being aware of? If mentally handicapped people and animals are not gifted enough to pray to what may involve dominance and power, does this mean that they are largely plum out of luck? When a person prays, may it be that that person feels that he or she is involved in a direct pipeline to something considered powerful and dominating (i.e., which — let’s face it — is that person’s image of God) with, all the while, this pipeline being something considered special? And could it be that the previous question implies that psychologically imagining that one has such a pipeline, in oneself, nourishes a form of self-aggrandizement, blowing up the ego of the one so imagining?
Personally, one does not pray in the traditional sense. One rolls up one’s sleeves. My prayer — if it is any form of prayer at all (which it really isn’t) — is the “doing.” I worked throughout life with the handicapped, with the mentally disadvantaged, and with those in real need. If we perceive with real intelligence and understanding, then compassion is there, the sacred is there. But it is not of dominance and power, and all of that traditional, projected, nonsensical crap.
My beloved wife Marla passed away on 10/07/20 due to complex complications from Wilson’s Disease. Her Hepatologist at the University of Chicago Medical Center said that it was amazing that she lived as long as she did. This makes me feel that i succeeded rather well at helping her with her illnesses. Marla was very brave and went through a lot of suffering. She was born with Wilson’s Disease, an autosomal recessive genetic disorder rendering the body to be unable to eliminate excess copper naturally. She had an auto-allergic reaction due to the penicillamine medication that she was on for Wilson’s in the past; penicillamine has a lot of very bad side-effects. At that time, she almost died from ARDS and ended up with only half-lung capacity. She suffered from dystonia — a strong tightening of the muscles involuntarily — and had to have Botox injections deep in her neck every two to three months. Due to the chronic dystonia of her neck, she had to have 8 cervical vertebrae replaced with titanium implants. She then lost the ability to swallow and had to (permanently) eat via enteral feeding (i.e., by a tube going into her stomach area). Before i retired, i was a teacher for the multiply handicapped, and — for decades — helped with enteral feeding (i.e., stomach feeding tubes) with some of my students; so i was very experienced with helping Marla with hers. Marla then had to have shoulder surgery… and then reconstructive shoulder surgery. She had Elastosis perforans Syndrome, a skin disorder (on her thighs) caused by having been on the penicillamine for years before getting on the better (less intrusive) new zinc therapy. She often told me that she had a low threshold for bearing pain but she was way more brave and stalwart than i could have ever been. Despite her pain and struggles, we had a whole lot of great, joyful times together.
I fell in love with Marla largely because of her warm and compassionate heart. She always put others first and was always thinking of others. She often made things for others, like quilts, fancy embroidery things, and homemade lotions. She was a nurse and often would take her elderly mother to the doctors. Everyone who met Marla loved her radiant, caring personality. I am so honored to be her husband.
The following is one of the E. E. Cummings poems that i read at her beautiful outdoor memorial service along the Kankakee River:
i carry your heart with me(i carry it in my heart)i am never without it(anywhere i go you go,my dear;and whatever is done by only me is your doing,my darling) i fear no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet)i want no world(for beautiful you are my world,my true) and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows (here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows higher than soul can hope or mind can hide) and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
To be fundamentally wrong is one thing. But to be fundamentally erroneous with regard to the basic framework or essence of one’s whole psyche is extraordinarily significant. From the day that you were born, they coddled you with warm words that supported the imagery of a center… a central dominating “controller” that is at the core of consciousness dominating and running everything. However, as we’ve mentioned in past blogs, scientists have split the brain (via splitting the corpus callosum) and have created two separate fields of consciousness. The center is fictitious (yet everyone believes in it).
The repetitive operation of a fictitious center — that is not really central at all — creates much mischief; it is separative, illusory, fragmentary, and power-oriented; it depends upon separative borders; it creates a circumference around itself. It, additionally, is a waste of time and energy. Little wonder why there is so much human havoc in the world. We operate with distorted (mental) equipment. Most humans are “off the beam.” Look at the world around you. Look at the narcissistic, sociopathic leaders in America and the world.
How can stability and harmony deeply exist if the essence of consciousness is based on a false premise? We say things like, “I’m working at improving my memory.” You are your memory… and there is no you separate from memory (using it from a distance). Then we surmise that without a center, we will not be secure in eternity. On the contrary, it is the very clinging to a dominating, illusory center that negates the full and comprehensive understanding of beautiful eternity. Distortion cannot perceive the fundamental nature of eternity clearly.
A true love of nature stays local as much as possible and avoids using deadly fossil-fuel jet planes and fossil-fuel road vehicles to travel world-wide to go to “exotic” nature places; such worldwide-sight-seeing (and picture-taking) is not loving nature; nature is not a Disney Amusement Park. Our globe is very delicate, fragile, and we have been brainwashed and conditioned to think nothing of traveling long distances for mere amusement purposes. Aircraft emit staggering amounts of CO2, the most prevalent manmade greenhouse gas. If you love nature, stay local.
A kind of postmortem examination was done on him long before his actual physical death
because unfortunately, his brain became quite un-alive after the innocent age of childhood.
Miseducation, brainwashing commercials, propaganda-oriented news networks, and being satisfied with remaining in one dull routine after another
all contributed to his cadaverous pseudo-existence. He often watches television and, of course, likes sports. However, the little birds who nest in his yard have far more compassion and life than he ever did.
Red House Finch Eggs … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2019
If one is merely a marionette, repeating what others poured into you, then what you say and do will usually be rather robotic, quite puppet-like… though it will seem quite pleasant and socially acceptable to you (while you feel quite unique). There are so many standardized lemmings out there. To question things fundamentally, deeply, with substantial passion, takes great intelligence. That great intelligence (naturally) is largely constituted of immense vastness, which inherently includes compassion. Compassion acts beyond many of the limits of ordinary perception. It perceives beyond all of the mundane, superficial, circumscribed borders. It is not tethered by stale, dinosaurian, antiquated beliefs. Such intelligence (i.e., such profound, penetrating insight) is extremely rare in the world as it now exists; miseducation has a lot to do with it. Acceptance of mediocrity has a lot to do with it.
Instead of being images “about things,” can the mind perceive beyond all of the absorbed mental patterns and labels that it has accumulated? In actuality, most minds are a result of the accumulation; (i.e, they actually are the accumulation). This “accumulation” often intrinsically involves “looking at things via separation” as one of its core attributes.
Perception beyond mere pigeonholing can take place. (We are not suggesting that one should not label things; we are suggesting that one need not always be doing it habitually. It takes dynamic intelligence to go beyond robotic habit.) Real perception, beyond the mere separation between subject and object, can take place. However, it takes real innocence, real simple-purity to do that and, unfortunately, the masses are (for the most part) incapable of that. (However, corruption does have its trivial perks.)
The associative patterns of the mind, what are their functions? Do they exist merely for us to acquire, accumulate, attain things (including food and shelter), and differentiate with (and from) an element of separation? Do such patterns dictate — to us — what we see?
We usually look at things through labels, through images that we have learned. A person often distinguishes things (at a distance, separate from himself). The patterns that we hold dictate what we see. However, we are these absorbed patterns; we do not actually hold them; they are not separate from what we essentially are. Real wholeness, real integrity, real love, may involve looking beyond the patterns, beyond the old, stuffy mental accumulations, beyond the labels, beyond the mental separative distance.
Once, there was a burly man who carved things out of wood. Many people in his village would each ask him to carve something special for them, and he usually would, with great pride. The man would often boast about what he could expertly carve. Then, one day, a little girl — who had never asked the man to carve anything whatsoever — asked him what the best wooden thing is. “I am not sure,” said the man, perplexedly, “Maybe it is the large horse that I once carved for Mr. Hayes.” “No,” said the girl, confidently, “It is that large, beautiful, living Oak tree that grows in our yard.”
Very young Oak tree sapling just beginning to get there. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2019
Makes a living by searching for nectar Sleeps where it eats Doesn’t have to pay taxes Doesn’t have to worship at stone temples that replaced nature Doesn’t need to propound fancy opinions Doesn’t ruin the environment by traveling in fossil fuel vehicles
Is a pacifist and has no crazy leaders
Common Blue / Spring Azure Butterfly and a scrawny caterpillar … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2019
Quietness and awareness often go together, like a sweet aroma and a flower. A mind that is constantly chattering to itself, repeating what it has learned or absorbed… and then merely habitually re-repeating such things in (remembered) altered mental arrangements and recollections for itself, does not have the pristine energy to look freshly and directly beyond the known. The known is the past — as stored, old patterns of memory — and the beauty of real “newness” cannot take place when mere repetition from (and of) the memory bank takes place.
One cannot practice awareness any more that one can practice real quietness. A profound and living awareness/quietness is never the mere outcome of repetitive, learned procedures or known systems. Profound innocence can occur when one is not filled with what others have taught you to do. It is a motiveless looking, and most people, unfortunately, merely look with (and from) motives. Most are caught in a cause-and-effect framework; they live that way, they work that way, and they are programmed exclusively in that. Real joy seldom occurs in a mind trapped in such repetitive cause-and-effect oriented motives. In the sequence of things, the cause becomes the effect and the effect becomes another cause. To merely be one conditioned after-effect (after another) throughout life (in such a robotic sequence)… may not be real living whatsoever. (It would be wonderful if we could easily disinter such rather cadaverous minds out of the conditioned quagmire that they are in but, alas, it is not easily done.) Of course, we must engage in (and “as”) cause-effect occurrences often; however, to merely be stuck in that mode is a shame. An innocent (naturally quiet) mind can look beyond the crude sequence of things and that is when wholeness (beyond mere ordinary effects) and love really blossom.
Beyond the crude sequence of things… small Eastern Gray Beardtongue wildflower on the forest floor. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2019
“I love you in a place where there’s no space or time.” — Kodi Lee
We saw the extraordinarily talented Kodi Lee the other night on America’s Got Talent. Kodi reminded me of a lot of the very fine and wonderful students that i used to have when i was a teacher for the multiply handicapped (before i retired). Seeing Kodi perform brought tears to my eyes. The students that i had were a delight to be around. Some were very gifted. When i was a teacher, we had students, for example, who were very mentally handicapped but who could play the piano flawlessly. One fellow could be shown a complex scientific book (or complex passages on whatever subject); the book could be opened at any section, with both pages flashed (even upside down) in front of his face for a fraction of a second. He then would recite the entire content — from memory — of both pages… word for word, perfectly.
Kodi has autism and autism is increasing worldwide (especially in developed countries) at alarming rates. The adjuvants in vaccines, increasing pollution, fragmented-unhealthy GMO foods, and food additives are possible contributing factors to autism’s increase, i think.
For many years, our classrooms were situated right within the elementary school building and it was a good thing for so-called “normal” children to often interact with those who had severe handicaps. Such a close relationship between these two groups of children benefited those who were handicapped and helped the so-called “normal” population develop empathy, compassion, and understanding concerning the handicapped. Some of my students, by the way, had regular IQs but, because of very severe physiological problems, were quadriplegic and could not control their arms or legs whatsoever. (Real meditation is not merely sitting around being quiet. Compassion is a vital component, and if you don’t have it, the sacred — that timeless enormity that man has sought after for eons — will never visit you.)
My wife and i went to Navy Pier, in Chicago, a few years ago, and we saw and heard some visiting classroom of kids making fun of (and taunting) some other children who were there (who happened to be handicapped). Such callousness is sad and disgraceful. The so-called president of the United States — before he was elected — in his ugly callousness, hateful nature, and typical nefarious manner, mocked and made fun of a gentleman who happened to be mentally handicapped. (Google that!) With his neglect for others having misfortune, and with his gross neglect about the health of nature and the environment, Donald Trump’s behavior is a disgrace to humanity.
(See the short video of Kodi below.)
Gifted Sweat Bee going after the gold while surrounded by tons of adoring fans … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2019
[Note: My wife, Marla, is still in the hospital — getting strong antibiotics through a PICC Line for the serious infection that has been occurring in her shoulder, following her recent shoulder replacement surgery — so my online correspondence will continue to be limited for the time being.]
Do you feel small in this huge cold world? Don’t feel large. Don’t feel small. Just express warmth… the warm of compassion.
That’s all that really matters.
Golden Skipper Resting … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018
Looking is easy. Anyone can (and anyone does) do just that. They can easily look at separate things…. things at a distance. But seeing is another matter. Seeing — real seeing — involves perception beyond all of that separation that you genetically inherited over eons of time (i.e., generations of experiences) or obtained from storing what was personally learned; it exists beyond what was gathered from accumulated learning. Seeing is not from accumulation; it surpasses and is phenomenally much more than what mere accumulation can offer. Most people look at what they were taught to recognize. Seeing cuts through barriers, surpassing them. Seeing puts the unfeeling, obtuse notion of “me” separate from “everything else” aside. But a lot of people are afraid to feel. They don’t have the courage or the moxie to feel. Real perception melts away the self and allows compassion to flower (beyond a dead consciousness). Real living involves real seeing… real perception.
Looking is easy. People, who merely look, throw bombs. Real perception — instead — is deeply compassionate.
Don’t be just anyone.
Silver-Spotted Skipper with extending proboscis … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018
When there is the negation of what order and love are not, perhaps love will be there. There is no “you” that wills that negation, for the very self itself (i.e., the “I” or the “me”) must be part of that negation… not merely controlling it from (or “as”) a distance. Of course, we are not suggesting harm to the body in any way; such harm would not entail love. Love is not merely measurable (i.e., not merely of measure), so one cannot merely “know” that one has it. Thinking and time are of measure and a mind that is merely caught up in thinking and measurement (in and “as” time) cannot love deeply (though it can easily think that it can). Clinging to an isolated concept of “me” (apart from all of life) requires distance and a measurement of opposites. Psychological distance and measurement create the “I” and the “I” would not exist without such psychological distance and measurement.
A lot of people say “I love you” very easily (as if one knows that one “has” it… as if it entails an absolute separate subject and object). Is there really an “I” that is separate from what the whole world is? Is there really an isolated “you” — that is looking from a (learned) distance, an accumulated psychological space — that is separate from what the whole world is? Psychological separation, isolation, and conflict depend upon limited thought/thinking, and without limited thought/thinking, such separation wouldn’t exist.
Our minds are often so very distorted and not whole. The grocery stores, these days, are chock-full of fragmented, over-processed, pseudo-foods. And, in the United States, for example, there is more obesity and more cancer (and strange, deleterious syndromes popping up) than ever before. Too few of us eat real, whole foods like our grandparents did; we assimilate garbage both mentally and gustatorily, and we don’t mind being normal (and swallowing it all) one bit.
Yellow Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018
The separation of the inner from the outer involves standard perception which largely involves misperception and barbaric acceptances. Such misperception involves conflict, separation, isolation, and distinct borders. A prudent entity who intelligently transcends mere inner-outer frameworks of perception is not a dull mind that walks into walls or that steps into busy traffic. Rather, such a person exists beyond old and cadaverous viewpoints and worn-out, primitive perspectives. Only such a person can be of real order; only such a person can be fully genuine, deeply compassionate, and of vast integrity and virtue. (By the way, idealistically saying that one is “one with nature,” which is all the fashion these days, is not it! A limited, fragmented mind can easily identify itself with anything, but it still remains a fragmented mind.)
Thought and stored memory feed the separation of the inner from the outer. Too many of us worship a false inner and are indifferent about the vast outer. A separate perceiver cannot be the complete understanding of the whole as long as the fragmentary self-projected images and thoughts of an isolated, independent observer are maintained via learned effort. Any state of opposition, such as what a concocted, separate “0bserver” brings about, further nourishes indifference and isolation. Thoughts and “image making” form the perceiver, and without thoughts and mental images, without repeated effort and psychological struggle, the perceiver would not be. The psychological ending of the so-called separate perceiver is not something to be frighted of; the true ending of limited images, symbolic patterns, and accepted barriers is not frightening; rather, it is liberation and involves profound insight. Holistic insight does not occur often for conflict and misperception.
Katydid Nymph and Ladybug… Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018
Sensibility implies the capacity to feel. Most of us can react according to the ways in which we were miseducated to react; not as many of us, unfortunately, really (fully, independently) feel. Deep feeling usually does not take place when the mind is imprisoned in limited labels, categorizations, systems, and robotic practices. The aforementioned patterns tend to dull the mind, rendering it more programmed and less likely to feel. Psychological borders, such as those that take place between the observer and the observed, also tend to render dullness in the mind, making it far less likely for things like profound empathy to take place.
A truly intelligent mind that is beyond superficial borders, childish beliefs, and “learned patterns of separation,” may be capable of profound feeling (which is far beyond crass indifference).
The mind, for many, is incessantly measuring things, comparing, acquiring, accumulating and labeling. Can the mind, without a continuing effort — which isn’t laziness — simply perceive without all those things habitually going on mentally? Measuring and labeling have their place but there is also a time when they are not necessary and, if still used, are merely habitual and robotic in essence. Total separation, between the “perceiver” and “that which is perceived,” demands measurement, requires a type of psychological wall and resistance. Resistance occurs as an opposing force. If you separate yourself from all other life forms, that is a form of resistance, a manifestation of conflict. Indifference and conflict go hand in hand; there is so much of it in the world these days.
Perceiving without separation is not what most people are involved with. Perceiving with (and “as”) the standard norms (that were taught), because of the conflict, because of the resistance, because of the robotic repetitiveness of it all, leads to depression and psychological suffering; then many turn to drugs or alcohol as an escape (which really is no escape at all). There is an order that goes beyond all this. Mere measurement does not take one to that order. It is not within the realm of accumulating or acquiring, (yet so many are willing to pay money for instructions or systems to get there).
Its beauty includes its being beyond mere accumulation and “getting.” You can’t obtain what is beyond mundane getting, having, and measuring. Real love is not merely a product of accumulation; however, if one is very fortunate, non-fragmented, and serious, it is there (beyond measure). If one merely remains within the mental realm of getting, having, and measuring, one will stay miserable and secondhand (though one may erroneously think that one is doing marvelously). Deep awareness and profound psychological transformation are not a matter of time. Measuring and accumulation take time.
[A variety of crust fungus, Milk White Toothed Polypore (Irpex lacteus) seems to have “teeth” that, in actually, are tubes or pores in the spore-bearing surface which break apart with age and become tooth-like. This is a very small fungus; it was on a small, dead tree branch; the pictured portion was around one centimeter long.]
Milk White Toothed Polypore Fungus… Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018
A lot of people use the word love. Popular songs, needless to say, are riddled with the word. It is a word that is so easily dished out; however, its profound depth of meaning may have been long neglected or absent in human culture. If love, for an individual, is tied to self-interest, or motive, it is likely not actually deep love; then, in such very numerous cases, it is involved with (or “is”) desire. If self-motive is involved, then it usually is mere desire, relish, and craving. Deep love is not what is mere desire or what involves self-motive. If one says one loves one’s nation or immediate family, for instance, but does not deeply care for all humanity and all forms of life as a whole… then that so-called love may just be a form of self-gratification or motive for security (out of fear).
Profound love goes far beyond mere sensation, far beyond mere gratification from stimuli. A merely greedy, avaricious mind cannot be of it. It may be that few people (on this little globe) truly have love. It may be a rare jewel that one cannot cultivate or exploit. Like humility, one cannot program it to occur or make it happen; additionally, one “of it” would not “know” that one is imbued with what it is. Though it cannot merely be cultivated or manufactured, it may occur in a very perceptive mind that is deeply aware of internal and external relationship. Most, unfortunately, perceive with (and “as”) separation; this negates love via innumerable limited psychological walls and barriers. Does one really love another, or is it an image (or set of images) that one’s set of internal images are associated with and fixated upon? Is — in the mind — one set of images that cling to another set of images what profound love is? What is limited, self-centered, and small cannot — by natural law — deeply be in harmony with the whole. The limited (mind) will cause conflict (internally and externally), friction, wars, turmoil, pollution, and suffering. In awareness that is not the product of the separative images and patterns that others cling to in limitation, the free mind is of an untethered vastness that largely transcends what causes suffering, friction, and prejudice. Such a mind has no borders and, therefore, love is possible.
Mating Butterfly (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2017
Mating Butterfly (2) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2017
[Note: If we ruin the environment and casually let callous, pigheaded politicians ruin our environment… (while doing nothing about it), we will be forever etched in time as the cadaverous indifferent… and we will be the malignant enemies of all life. Period.]
Strolling with the kids (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2017
Strolling with the kids (2) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2017
In watching, there is (ordinarily) the watcher and the watched. The watcher, as he or she was taught, feels separate from what is being observed. This also occurs when psychological/emotional phenomena manifest… as when one thinks that one “has” jealousy, but thinks that one is not the actual jealousy.
In profound awareness, the so-called central “I” or “me” does not — as the learned image that it is — exist. Then, an altogether different relationship may manifest… wherein there is no separation between the watcher and the watched. Then, an ingrained, inherited kind of friction and conflict ends. Then, there may be real integrity without any piecemeal disorder. For such integrity to take place, there must be instantaneous transcendence beyond the ordinary and mundane. When one looks at a bee, for instance (in beautiful nature), one is not, of course, actually the wings and the antennae; however, the patterns and the image (and, perhaps, the essence) of the bee are not at all separate from what one is. One need not always robotically label the bee (or whatever creature it is) as per what species or type of organism it is, but may look without mechanical memory and separation. Love transcends separation and mechanical categorization.
Transcending separation (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2017
Transcending separation (2) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2017
Profound love is like humility… one cannot know that one has it. One can suspect that it may be there, but considering (in depth) about oneself “having love” is a bit of a narcissistic action and, as such, negates love; additionally, love is not a possession (so is not what one can merely “have.”) Real love is not (whatsoever) what is measurable; love has an essence of immeasurability.
Unfortunately, the so-called love that many are involved with pertains to images that they have about others (and about other things). These images, however, are what composes their minds from patterns absorbed from the past (and held as the accumulated past). Love, involving absorbed and learned images, is usually very superficial and limited. Profound love is not, for example, a learned and absorbed image (called “I” or “me”) subsequently associating itself with another image called, for instance, (her). A relationship between two learned, fragmentary images is not much of a relationship at all. Love goes beyond the fabricated walls of mental images and psychological symbols. Love is not possession, attachment, nor identification. Profound love may exist when the ego (the image of self) is not. Merely identifying the image of self with other living things is not love. Profound love transcends fragmentation, is eternal, and is beyond the ordinary patterns in time (and of time). Timelessness is an immeasurability beyond self-fabrication.
There were two entities. One was rather crass. It merely went on as an extension of society… immoral, indifferent, separate, closed, common, compulsive, stale, rather indifferent about nature, respectable. There was another entity. It was open, compassionate, aware, whole, moral beyond the ills of society, in close relationship with nature, global. Highly spiritual, it did not care to belong to any separative government nor religion that (separates man from man contributing to war). It was a danger to all separative elements of the false.
One of the entities was often bored. It would frequently need to find escape in all kinds of entertainment (and with various forms of drugs). It was often composed of recurring fears. It depended on walls of isolation for its very existence (isolated existence). The other entity was often content in and of itself. That self, however, was nothing to be measured, for no limited walls defined it by limited space nor limited boundaries. Perceiving that it was not separate from the fears, the fears were understood and quickly dissipated; either that or they never existed (or needed to exist) in the first place. Limitation breeds fear. Limitation is of measurement and recognition; (recognition is a form of measurement).
One of the two minds continued to go deeply beyond itself to where there was no measurement, no time. The other mind measured constantly. Its essence mostly involved time and measurement. Measurement takes (and is) time. One of the minds was satisfied with superficial things; one of the minds went far beyond the superficial. One of the minds (without the measurements of equations) understood all about existence, time, and the timeless. One of the minds did not care about anything much other than about small details and banal experiences; it understood little of time and nothing concerning the timeless. It, unfortunately, was never visited by anything immensely beyond the mundane.
Merry Christmas to all of you two-legged, four-legged, and six-legged friends! 🙂
Santa is real… real love and giving! Anyone can be the Santa of others.
[Interesting how Santa, when we were very young, was something to get excited about and cherish. Then, as we get older, many see Santa as being something rather spurious and unreal. This has connotations that spill over into spirituality and religion. Many people do not (really) feel that anything truly mysterious and magical (as a sacred phenomenon) can exist. Deep inquiry, in this regard, is often considered to be a waste of time by many. Disbelief can be as blinding as mindless belief; insight goes beyond these.]
To function only as mere secondary after-effects… what is that? Most of us always function as responses to stimuli… one response (or set of responses) after another. Thinking about things involves responses to stimuli. Recognizing things constitutes responses to stimuli. These responses are reactions. They are much like the reaction when the leg jerks after the knee is tapped with a soft mallet. Most of us are conditioned responses in a cause/effect continuum. Conditioned responses (as effects), occurring in (and “as”) a sequence, is time. Thinking is time; thinking and time are not two separate things.
Can consciousness function without merely always being one series of reactions (in sequence) after another? Can the mind be aware without merely reacting, recognizing, labeling, and without merely seeing from an image of self? Can a wise mind exist without constantly being a myriad of effects due to a myriad of causes? To answer these questions adequately, what will one do? Will one answer them by way of reaction?
Can thought, when it is not needed — and, oftentimes, it is not necessary — not habitually function in (and “as”) the mind? If it is thought that merely answers the aforementioned question, is the question being intelligently answered? Does love go beyond mere thought and time?
If one’s love is a mere reaction — formulated to get something in return, contrived to get some kind of result for one’s personal self — is it partial and, therefore, not profound and not very substantial at all? Love exists when the image of self is not. It takes time and thought to concoct an image of self (with all the associated desires and fears). Profound love is timeless.
Six-legged Santa! (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2016
Six-legged Santa! (2) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2016
Love is not of limitation. It is endless; as such, it goes beyond the rather false boundaries concocted by man. In its vastness, love permeates (and includes) all apparent things. Love dissolves and shatters all boundaries… and then — rather magically and profoundly — so-called separate things are no longer separate (and, hence, are no longer just things). Being limitless, love goes beyond definitions. Those who are stuck in (and who merely perceive by) definitions and labels… tend to be oblivious regarding profound love. A mind that is intelligent enough to go beyond being immersed in (and “as”) mere abstractions, learned separations, and inherited perspectives, may luckily move parallel with that immense movement beyond cold boundaries.
Up close and personal. (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2016
Up close and personal. (2) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2016