I read Zelulon's blog this morning and I see even more clearly that not every place in the country is yet experiencing this glorious spring. The blossoms are like cotton candy.
I lift this from his blog. It seems like the way to begin and continue the day.
If you want to identify me, ask me not where I live, or what I like to eat, or how I comb my hair, but ask me what I think I am living for, in detail, and ask me what I think is keeping me from living fully for the thing I want to live for. Between these two answers you can determine the identity of any person.
I ask myself these two questions. What do I think I am living for? What is keeping me from living fully for the thing I want to live for? I will take some time with this today. For some, the answer may be right there. I need time to contemplate.
The WSJ yesterday reported on a study that shows that daylight savings time wastes energy. No wonder Bush made it start earlier and last longer. Let's use more energy, not less. Maybe the study will reverse it. I prefer natural time.
I'm refreshed this morning after a wonderful dinner last night with my friend Karen. I walked down to meet her at Frantoio, and sat on a bench and watched a sunset beyond anything I could ever have imagined. The colors are still with me as I enter in to this day.
I post a picture of a sunset, as the light bursts forth, wildly clear today.
Karen mentioned last night how much the following post was helpful to her, and I realized that sometimes I post and forget to honor my own advice, so I am placing it here again, and may keep pasting it here, until I feel my breath is fully honored, and my diaphragm knows the bequest to rise and fall with the ease of jellyfish in the sea.
"Being aware of your breathing takes attention away from thinking and creates space. It is one way of generating consciousness. Although the fullness of consciousness is already there as the unmanifested, we are here to bring consciousness into this dimension.
Be aware of your breathing. Notice the sensation of the breath. Feel the air moving in and out of your body. Notice how the chest and abdomen expand and contract slightly with the in - and out breath. One conscious breath is enough to make some space where before there was the uninterrupted succession of one thought after another. One conscious breath (two or three would be even better), taken many times a day is an excellent way of bringing space into your life. Even if you meditated on your breathing for two hours or more, which some people do, one breath is all you ever need to be aware of, indeed ever can be aware of. The rest is memory and anticipation, which is to say, thought. Breathing isn't really something that you do but something that you witness as it happens. Breathing happens by itself. The intelligence within the body is doing it. All you have to do is watch it happening. There is no strain or effort involved. Also, notice the brief cessation of the breath, particularly the still point at the end of the outbreath, before you start breathing again."
The universe is abundant. Couldn't all moments be ones of self-care?
I now have a clearer picture of what is going on with Kara, and I request more prayers. Let's really blast the universe with prayers for 12 year old Kara, and while we're at it, let's throw in 6 year old Sydney, and everyone else, too. I think we could all use some prayers said in our behalf.
The world is beautiful, and painful, too.
- Frank X. Gaspar
And so I swam out to where the turtles live,
about a half-mile off shore where the bottom
is lava and coral and struck with canyons of white sand.
The turtles are green and as big as the wheels
on an automobile or a truck. They like to glide
about twenty feet down, where they are sovereign
and agile and untouchable, but I was raised on the ocean
and I still know how to go down deep and stay there:
You float for a minute and go limp, and you breathe deeply
through the tube you hold clenched in your teeth.
Then you let everything out and slip under.
You move with the languor and sorrow of turtles.
You practice their ease, their cumbersome grace.
What is the mind of turtle? In one moment I saw two
come together and appear to kiss. I guess they were saying,
Come on down, let's see if you've got anything left. I kicked easy.
I blew the pain out of my ears more than once. I chased
one in simple play, in a spiral, tighter and tighter. Maybe
they were amused. Maybe they wanted to kill me.
An old bull came by, aloof, a beard of barnacles on
his hangman's head. How many times down for me? Ten?
Thirty? How long like a stick on the choppy water?
Well, I admired how the turtles watched me over their shoulders,
I appreciated their curiosity and their disdain. When you are
down like that, you get two signals. The first is a quick
need to breathe. You let that one go, blow out a little,
and the urge passes - or you get used to it. Then you
are empty but touched with dementia. Then you can speak
with the god of the sea in his crown of weeds or his goddess and
her many shells. Then you are amphibious and immortal and you
can join the turtle dance again, or just hold to a piece of coral
and hang like a tail of kelp in the eddies. When you
understand that you are in your home and need never leave,
you'd better look up. Then you can see how far that old world is
and how much work you have to do. And so
I pulled my way up from the deep, kicking and kicking,
and the turtles just watched, not caring much. I lay
on the surface and breathed and rested until I could lift
my head to see where the current had set me.
The sun was red and swollen and low behind me,
and the long clouds were purpling under their hems and edges.
Now there was so much I had to leave.
And now there was so much I had to get back to.
The beach was a blur of tiny palms, the ocean was windy and warm.
And so I stroked, slow and easy. And so I kicked and kicked.
From the New Yorker I learn that Tupperware parties have been replaced by Taser parties. Though the woman organizing the events and idea, says that being shot with a Taser is "the worst pain I've ever felt," she still seems to think we each need to be carrying one, right next to our cell phone. Oh, good, another little pocket in our purse.
There is an article in the New Yorker by Margaret Talbot on immigrant-detention facilities in America that house families. I suppose we would not have had Charles Dickens, if he had not had to go to debtors prison when his father went bankrupt, so perhaps we are creating future writers, but putting innocent children in jail in this country is unfathomable. The article is astonishing and deals with a great deal with Hutto, a private prison company.
I thought the writings of Charles Dickens changed things. Who would have thought we would be back there again. The article is horrifying.
Maybe I will just quote a little. "Children were regularly woken up at night by guards shining lights into their cells. They were roused each morning at five-thirty. Kids were not allowed to have stuffed animals, crayons, pencils, or pens in their cells. And they were not allowed to take the pictures they had made back to their cells and hang them up. When Hutto opened as an immigration-detention center, children attended school there only one hour a day. Detainees, including children, wore green or blue prison-issue scrubs."
This prison is built for profit. The children are innocent, and their parents may be too. How is this not torture, and how can it be allowed?
Charles Dickens. We need you now.