netpositive: (firehand)
A genuine work of art must mean many things.
The truer its art, the more things it will mean.

-George MacDonald
    This afternoon I stood in the yard in the rain.

    There was earth and stone, cool wind and breath,
    water in drops and blasts and broken sheets.

    And small -- so small - sparks of fire, burning
    like navigational stars in a lost universe.

    And there are still flower petals on the car,
    after the deluge, as the storms move on.

    The divine should not be somewhere out there.
    The divine should be in here.

    Come back to me.
    Or let me go.
    Or find me here, and take me there.
"How should I turn back, with no boat,
here on the edge of the world?"
"This the edge of the world? No, that is
farther on. We may yet come to it."

-Ursula K. LeGuin, _The Farthest Shore_
netpositive: (Default)
My feet travel five, seven, five.
My hands hold a book, an iPod, cold blood, and keys.
My heart is so very far away.
    Earlier heard birds.
    Now, sere silence of dead grass
    Scratched by vehicles.

    Bobcats squat in mud,
    Yellow screaming against brown,
    Clawed wheels churned deep.

    The sober of cold
    Stays outside blue neon bars
    Not drinking it in.

    Shelves filled with shiny
    things I do not want to buy;
    I do turn around, and leave.

    You level and build
    Metal trees and plastic wood
    Over life's underground.

    You sweep your streets free
    of the broken and feral --
    no place for me, here.

    Beware the beast, then,
    Prowling civilization
    With no affection.

    Later, sun through glass
    redeems one moment -- but a
    window remains closed.
Trying to live in the moment
may be necessary but is not always beautiful.
Sometimes all one has is understanding what is.
netpositive: (Default)
3 is not the same as double.
Adjust your expectations.
Make lemon juice tart.

Friday - contra dancing and Antero Alli.
Saturday - classical musicians and Django Reinhardt.
Sunday - bookcases and hellburgers.
Monday - pizza and intravenous fluids.
Tuesday - sinuses and video archiving.
Wednesday - "That's different. I'm trustworthy."
Thursday - "Listen, I'm not kidding. This is my job!"

Need to step it up a bit?
Ten things a day.
Per room.

You, make me a better person.
You, make me a bigger person.
You, make me a thoughtful person.
You, make me think.

Still need that blue sky, though.
netpositive: (Default)
Been feeling a lot more like myself lately.

A lot of me. And then some.

Kinda nice.

Meat and salt, and juice for me.

A pair of roller skates, and a brand new key.
Perhaps I have the universe. Or maybe it has me.
netpositive: (bluebells)
So in between the B/W Parkway and West Park Drive,
there's this moment in time and space:


Empty space in your head next day
Memories have come and they have gone
Open your eyes can't get back to sleep
Though it's the earliest crack of dawn
There's a nagging something
You can't quite put your finger on...

-Tracy McDonnell
    Do I feel better because I take the vitamins,
    or do I take the vitamins because I feel better?
    Or maybe the vitamins take me.
    Whatever. Just take the vitamins.

    Easy games can provide a sense of accomplishment.
    It may seem like a "false" sense because the game
    is not "real". But you, and your play, are as real as.

    Try asking for what you want. It's hard to hear nos,
    but at least you're speaking for yourself when you do.

    More honey than vinegar. But vinegar can bring the tart.

    Let's face the music -- and dance.

If you want to build a ship, don't drum up people together
to collect wood and don't assign them tasks and work, but rather
teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.

-Antoine de Saint-Exupery
netpositive: (firehand)
The most beautiful thing we can experience is
the mysterious. It is the source of all true art
and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger,
who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe,
is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.

-Albert Einstein

While gaining physical and then psychological self-confidence over time,
I seem to have lost emotional self-confidence along the way.

Sometimes learned behavior still doesn't help.

Please connect me with something.

In and out quick, a cowboy.
-a character in the Illuminatus! trilogy
netpositive: (firehand)
You reach a point where you can either
do something or be somebody.

-Major John Boyd
    How do you free yourself, even momentarily,
    from being somebody in order to do something
    instead (or as well)?

    Looking to do something with a meaningful
    connection, not as defined by anyone else
    save this silly goose trying to dissolve
    her bottle.
Sometimes when we are generous in small,
barely detectable ways it can change
someone else's life forever.

Margaret Cho
    Working on recycling or disposing of more.
    Trying to take less in.
    Been Freecycling a few things.
    (Even some books.)

    Back to studying language CDs in the car.
    Revised a year-old short story.
    Trying to eat less.
    (Or at least less junk.)

    Reading around the occult world a bit, more
    as an interested tourist than a participant
    (for the time being).

    Need sleep.
    And dreams.
I got into a friendly argument with a colleague about
“appropriate” uses for churches. It started with an
observation he made about how St. Bart’s in Midtown
over-advertises its cafe - and why does a church have
a cafe anyway? He advocates separation of uses, and
deplored as an example, the proposal to turn a church
into a nightclub. I believe instead that churches are
gathering places - in a whole host of different ways,
whether they are cafes, nursery schools, night clubs,
or anything else....

Much of our disagreement was wrapped up in our conception
of these places and activity that is or is not perceived as
illicit. I don’t thinking [sic] drinking and dancing or
listening to music late at night, say at a night club, is
such an illicit activity that needs physical separation from
the observance of spirituality.

_This Place Is..._
    Not sure if there is any combination
    of community and spirituality out there
    which would apply to me.

    Dancing comes closest at the moment, but
    I'm not sure anyone else finds in it
    what I do.

    Many of my friends have found some community,
    but I'm not too sure that I belong.
    (If I even should.)

    I guess. I guess I'm just not sure. If I were...

    Soul ISO: immanence, rather than transcendence.
Time is the dominant parameter. The pilot who
goes through the [Observe Orient Decide Act] cycle
in the shortest time prevails because his opponent
responds to actions that have already changed.

-Harry Hillaker
netpositive: (firehand)
You're not supposed to settle for okay.
You're supposed to want to be the best.

-an unidentified voice in my head
    Well, not entirely *inside* my head, but from
    not too far away. Normally I can pin down from where
    (or whom) a particularly distorted viewpoint is coming...

    This feels externally imposed, and of recent vintage.
    As if I've been watching too many reality/game shows,
    and partially been internalizing the wrong values.

    In my own space, I've been circling around and finally
    landed on top of an important insight about my overall
    sources, levels, and efforts of creativity which can
    flippantly be summarized as "I write most when I'm bored."

    More precisely: the types of work I'm doing most within
    my current, half-chosen profession, require much the same
    type of perspectives that I (would) utilize as a writer.

    Unfort, I am not one of those people who is 100% immersed
    in a single consistent mindset, and so I can see one reason
    why I have the longing to write, but not the performance --
    I have been using up much of what I do have, doing my work.

    Now what to do about that, is still under consideration. :l

    Dear Tir'na na Nogth,
    Was it necessary to be so literal in my latest dream by
    having my car fall into a sinkhole and I escape upward
    to the light without being touched once by the mud? If
    that was supposed to be a nightmare, it actually failed.
    Though I don't think that was your intention. Sorry if
    I missed a cue to go on a spirit quest or something...
    I'm a little dense these days, but you know I'm working
    on being a less material being in a more spiritual world.

People living deeply have no fear of death.
-Anais Nin
netpositive: (firehand)
Adjust your circumstances to suit your nature.
-Cary Tennis
    Over the weekend, I had a moment of connection with
    the divine.

    What, you think that makes you special?

    I have had them, though they've been too rare recently, and
    generally been achieved with effort rather than spontaneous.

    Shouldn't it just happen? If you're trying, maybe you're trying too hard.
    Or maybe you're just imagining things.


    This one, though, felt a little different than the others.

    Granted, I was in a position where it was possible to happen.
    But that is often the case, as I seek out things that nourish
    me when I struggle. So: I was outdoors, with music and a book,
    in a crowd but separated enough. Still, I wasn't trying at all.

    Instead, I felt the universe *trying* *around me*. I felt it
    nudge here, shift there, and click into place for a moment.

    How incredibly ego-centric of you.

    I'm just saying that instead of random or forced, it was...
    "Welcome back. Visit more often. I'm here waiting for you."

    Come on. The universe is blind.

    How can it be blind, when it sees through so many eyes?

    If spirituality is one's personal, private experience
    of the divine, is religion that same experience shared
    across a community? Does the communal always change (or
    destroy) the personal, or can it actually enhance it?

    Since then, cheerfulness, competency, learning, usefulness
    mixed up with tired, grumpy, boredom and lack of ambition.
    Typical material existence ups and downs.

    No, not that special. You wouldn't know me if you saw me;
    I look just like everybody else.

    But value any glimpse of a world outside -- world ahead.


    Thanks for the half-nightmare, Tir'na na Nogth.
    So: if the T-shirts are labels, and I had
    trouble getting them on and off, and I never
    found the one I wanted in time for the start of
    my Masquerade entry... how can I change my script?

Books I am reading right now:
_Memoirs of a Spiritual Outsider_ by Suzanne Clores
_Border Reminiscences_ by Randolph Marcy
_The World of Shamanism_ by Robert Walsh
_This Business of Concert Promotion and Touring_ by Waddell, Barnet, Berry
netpositive: (frenchy)
That's me in the corner,
That's me in the spotlight, I'm
Losing my religion

-R.E.M.
    I already knew, but it was also the very first thing
    I heard on the radio as I got into the car.

    Driving home tonight was about as creepy a trip
    as I've ever taken. Lights were all too bright,
    cars were far too close. I had to turn the radio
    down twice, and then completely off.

    It seemed like people were driving worse than usual.
    Then I noticed the 14th Street Bridge goes over water.
    I'm so used to going over it, it seldom registers now,
    but it did tonight. And the disabled cars, with people
    standing so close to traffic doing 50+ mph. And planes
    flying low overhead. And... and...

    And my chest is hurting because I'm still breathing,
    but barely, head and heart both arguing with lungs
    and intestines. Long pauses between short breaths, and
    a painful pit in the bottom of my stomach, telling me:
    "And someday, you know, that will be you. Someday."

    No, it's not me. Not yet. I'm still alive, for now.
    But you never know, do you. Who, what, where, when.

    So often, I don't know how you other people do it.
    How do you live daily with the terror that someday,
    you'll die? Feeling that there is no one standing
    between you and eternity? Worrying there is never
    enough time, and seeing what you've already wasted?
    Knowing that whenever life stops -- then you lose?

    I hate being so afraid of death, what feels like
    all the time. Sometimes I feel like it goes away.
    I go days, weeks, months without dwelling on it.

    And then something happens, to bring it all back.

    Or worse. And yes, this is about me, but it's also
    me thinking about death and anger and grief and loss
    and how you handle it. And me mourning the tragedy of
    someone I met in person for a brief moment years ago,
    but whose work I have admired for over two decades.

    No, I don't want to be just waiting here for death.
    Yes, I do want to live. And I don't want to die.
    But sometimes, I find myself losing the way.
    And so often, I'm so scared.


R.I.P.
Daniel Benoit, 2000-2007
Nancy Daus Benoit, 1964-2007
Chris Benoit, 1967-2007
netpositive: (frenchy)
Right Where You Are Sitting Now
-title of a book by Robert Anton Wilson
    I don't like being told what to do.

    Who do you think you are?

    But if I don't put it on my to do list,
    it may not get done.

    I don't like telling people what I want.

    Does it matter?

    But if I don't say anything, no one can know
    if I want connection.

    I don't like talking about myself.

    What if you find me narrow, or boring?

    What if I tell you too much? Is that worse?


    But if I don't share, what does that say?

    Sunshine in the backyard. How fleeting it is.
    The softness of belly fur on a burrowing nose.
    I now own two necklaces and a jeweled hair clip,
    but I'd trade them all to get my only ring back.
    Music makes me feel better, you can't even imagine.

    And I don't want to be too old to dance. Please.

"Becoming an Inner Environmentalist."

... Visualize your inner environment.
Is it cluttered with the debris of
old pain, impossible expectations, or
devaluing assumptions? Is it polluted
by the stench of resentment, envy, or
self-condemnation? If so, begin to
take out the trash! In your mind's eye,
dispose of unwanted and outdated
emotional rubbish in ways that feel
most freeing to you, even to the point
of tearing down and rebuilding the
entire garage if that seems to be the
right thing to do.

-Sue Patton Thoele
netpositive: (firehand)
Hafiz says,
"That sounds wonderful, just
Wonderful.

Someone please - start writing
Some great
Lines."

-Hafiz
    The broken escalator going up
    takes more energy than
    the one going down.

    The broken escalator going down
    takes more skill than
    the one going up.

    When the escalator breaks,
    use your feet and hands.
    If someone helps you along,
    gratitude is not an evil.
    images and text behind cut )
    Ah, don't ask too much of me, or
    I might actually tell you.

I appear as a steady mountain
Yet bit by bit,
Toward that tiny opening
I am going.

-Rumi
netpositive: (firehand)
Just for today I will know my own spirit,
and take hold of all my own personal power.
Tomorrow will come. Today already is.
    Why do I not -
    Why do I knot -
    Y do I knot -
    How do I untie?

    Breathe, oh, breathe, oh, breathe.
    Breathe when you're asleep.
    Breathe when you're awake.
    Breathe as though your heart is breaking.
    Breathe as though your love is waking.
    Step up into the light and cast a shadow;
    step up into a shadow and remember the dark.
    Breathe with each step, and breathe between.

    I close my eyes and I can see so much, my
    dreams filled with details, but no faces.
    Yet I know you all, the quick and the dead.
    And you know me too -
    well, only if you care to.
I choose to move through difficulties,
disappointments and apparent defeat
by using them to move forward and
develop all my qualities. My final success
will be even greater than I imagined.
netpositive: (firehand)
We either make ourselves miserable
or we make ourselves strong.
The amount of work is the same.

Don Juan Matus
    Ah, I must have a very full life,
    if adding just a little bit more
    makes it overflow so.

    New wave and heavy metal.
    Tae Kwon Do and lindy hop.
    Social work and reading alone.
    Design and testing.
    Housecats and cheetahs.
    Regency romances, Civil War history,
    all the science fiction I can stomach,
    and all the fantasy I can stand.

    more text and some images behind cut )

    "Well... he tends to promise the moon,
    but then too often he tries to deliver
    a medium-sized asteroid instead."
    -me

    If I'd only had a spoon, I could have turned
    that sweet corn cake upside down, for you.
    But there is no spoon, yet.

You are the Sun in drag.
You are God hiding from yourself.

-Hafiz
netpositive: (firehand)
... grant us, in our direst need, the smallest gifts:
the nail of the horseshoe, the pin of the axle,
the feather at the pivot point,
the pebble at the mountain's peak,
the kiss in despair, the one right word.
In darkness, understanding."

-Lois McMaster Bujold, _Paladin of Souls_
    I am grateful for the smallest gifts.

    Grateful for my health, my strength, my balance,
    my talents, my interests, and my core values.

    Grateful for patience and thoughtfulness.

    Grateful for the little black and white cat with
    the kink at the end of her tail, who crouches on
    my leg with her claws lovingly sunken into my knee.

    Grateful for a new year to live more life in.

    Grateful for those many people who have shared, or
    will share, their own sound and vision with me.

    Grateful for salt and gold, for drumbeats and tea,
    for books and music, for nighttime and sunshine.

    Grateful for the gift of laughter. And of touch.
    For the memory of fulfillment, and even of longing.

    Ah, she's moved now. Or is it I who is moving?

Oh soul, you worry too much
-Rumi
netpositive: (firehand)
Stretch within your limits.
If you can't move your arm,
lift your fingers. Never devalue what is
currently possible for you to do.

-from _Stress Reduction for Busy People_
    Take a deep breath.
    Move when you need to.
    Stand still when you have to.
    Start moving again when you can.
    Act with high intention and
    purposeful awareness. Embody.
    images behind cut )
I savor every moment given me.
I plan for the future, but
I live for the now. I open myself
to the gifts the Universe holds for me
and value all my connection to the divine.

What beautiful teeth this animal has.
netpositive: (iconnerific)
My soul is from elsewhere, I'm sure of that,
and I intend to end up there.


images and text behind cut )
I didn't come here of my own accord, and I can't leave that way.
Whoever brought me here, will have to take me home.

-Rumi
netpositive: (Default)
Breathe shallowly into your throat.
Breathe as if the air is sweet.
Breathe quietly.
Breathe in one nostril, out the other.
Breathe in and out.
Breathe out, then in.
Breathe as if the air is earth.
Breathe only through your mouth.
Breathe as if the air is water.
Breathe deeply with your lower diaphragm.
Breathe as if the air is fire.
Breathe slowly through your whole body.
Breathe as if the air is spirit.
Hold your breath.
Breathe as if your lungs are missing.
Breathe up and down.
Breathe as if you are someone else.
Breathe loudly.
Breathe raggedly.
Breathe for me.
Breathe.
Don't forget.
netpositive: (firehand)
I think about what is right and working
in my life. I focus on all the positive.
I acknowledge shadows in seeking light.

I am always connected to the divine.

    Walked around taking pictures yesterday evening.
    Nice to see the changeover from afternoon to dusk
    to evening to night, and all the lights coming on...

    Image behind cut )

If I find that I am constantly cheerful,
full of brightness and hope, or deeply contemplative
in the presence of a particular person, I know I am
in the presence of a gracious spirit, and I am echoing
the gift that is being given to me. It is as if
the lesson of the echo contains the secret
to understanding the space between us all.

Kent Nerburn
netpositive: (firehand)
If you are irritated by every rub,
how shall your mirror be polished?

-Rumi
    If it looks like a duck,
    water runs off its feathers.
    If it sounds like water,
    rivers flow downhill, over rocks.
    If it feels like a rock,
    jewels and glass both reflect light.
    If it acts like a reflection,
    polish it and see what lies within.
    Sometimes you can only see your own image
    by looking into the still waters of another.
    The flaws in your own glass are too close.
    Ruffled feathers may need to be smoothed down
    before one goes swimming -- or flying.

    A week in the life - a view of the soul.
    A lot of meetings going on. Some are productive,
    some clearly still rehearsals for breakthroughs.
    Digging through steamed crabs for the sweet meat,
    and the guts.
    Learning to draw, to doodle, with both hands.
    A sampler of Spanish cheeses, glasses of sangria.
    Walking home hot-blooded in the pouring rain.

    I appreciate my rewards, no matter how small.
    I appreciate the goodwill of my good friends.
    The gift of time is far greater than it looks.

    Pictures behind cut )

When you list the things you want
out of life for yourself and for humanity,
you can’t help but focus your attention on
spiritual matters. It’s a reminder of your core
values -- what you really believe is important.

Rabbi Max Weiman

A goal is a dream with a deadline. But do
dream first. Then worry about the details.

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