Walking this morning along the beach, we see a woman in her 70s getting out of the water with her Boogie Board.
She has that lost look in her eyes, “I had to get out before I had to crawl out.”
Her face showed how stoked she was on her time in the water, eyes in that other place you can go in the connection with the ocean.
The coast is a time as well as a space.
Moon setting over Hanalei Bay, Kauai.
Anthony de Mello, (1931-1987) is a Jesuit Priest known for his belief in awakening through detachment. What follows is an excerpt of his words on the subject.
DETACHMENT by Anthony de Mello
“The only way to change is by changing your understanding. But what does it mean to understand? How do we go about it? Consider how we’re enslaved by various attachments; we’re striving to rearrange the world so that we can keep these attachments, because the world is a constant threat to them. I fear that a friend may stop loving me; he or she may turn to somebody else. I have to keep making myself attractive because I have to get this other person. Somebody brainwashed me into thinking I need his or her love. But I really don’t. I don’t need anybody’s love; I just need to get in touch with reality. I need to break out of this prison of mine, this programming, this conditioning, these false beliefs, these fantasies; I need to break out into reality. Reality is lovely; it is an absolute delight. Eternal life is now. We’re surrounded by it, like the fish in the ocean, but we have no notion about it at all. We’re too distracted with this attachment. Temporarily, the world rearranges itself to suit our attachment, so we say, “Yeah, great! My team won!” But hang on; it’ll change; you’ll be depressed tomorrow. Why do we keep doing this?
Do this little exercise for a few minutes: Think of something or someone you are attached to; in other words, something or someone without which or without whom you think you are not going to be happy. It could be your job, your career, your profession, your friend, your money, whatever. And say to this object or person, “I really do not need you to be happy. I’m only deluding myself in the belief that without you I will not be happy. But I really don’t need you for my happiness; I can be happy without you. You are not my happiness, you are not my joy.” If your attachment is a person, he or she is not going to be very happy to hear you say this, but go ahead anyway. You can say it in the secrecy of your heart. In any case, you’ll, be making contact with the truth; you’ll be smashing through a fantasy. Happiness is a state of nonillusion, of dropping the illusion.”
Story is where we find it.
It is in our postures, the way we hold ourselves and the ways we interact.
They say we earn the face we have after a while.
Our face is our story,
And if we try to hide it?
That becomes another chapter of our story.
With the camera, there is a story I tell myself.
With each affirmation, with each exposure, I remind myself that the beauty of truth lies within the connection.
This is where the story begins and ends, in the interaction with a place, with a person.
It becomes my truth.
The photographs, the scribbled notes, are the fading reminders of that connection.
On the north shore of Kauai, Hawaii.
Sanskrit Proverb by
Kalidasa, Fifth Century A.D.
Look to this day,
For it is life,
The very life of life,
In its brief course lies all
The realities and verities of existence,
The bliss of growth,
The splendor of action,
The glory of power.
For yesterday is but a dream,
And tomorrow is only a vision.
But today well lived,
Makes every yesterday
A dream of happiness
And every tomorrow
A vision of hope.
Look well, therefore,
To this day.
A friend sent me these words by Richard Rohr,
“In the second half of life, people have less power to infatuate you, but they also have much less power to control you or hurt you. It is the freedom of the second half not to need. Both the ecstatic mirroring of my youth and the mature and honest mirroring of my adulthood have held up what I needed to see and could see at the time; they have prepared me for the fully compassionate and Divine Mirror, who has always shown me to myself in times and ways that I could handle and enjoy. I fell many times relationally, professionally, emotionally, and physically in my life, but there was always a trampoline effect that allowed me to finally fall upward. No falling down was final, but actually contributed to the bounce!”
RULE ONE: Find a place you trust, and then try trusting it for awhile.
RULE TWO: General duties of a student – pull everything out of your teacher; pull everything out of your fellow students.
RULE THREE: General duties of a teacher – pull everything out of your students.
RULE FOUR: Consider everything an experiment.
RULE FIVE: be self-disciplined – this means finding someone wise or smart and choosing to follow them. To be disciplined is to follow in a good way. To be self-disciplined is to follow in a better way.
RULE SIX: Nothing is a mistake. There’s no win and no fail, there’s only make.
RULE SEVEN: The only rule is work. If you work it will lead to something. It’s the people who do all of the work all of the time who eventually catch on to things.
RULE EIGHT: Don’t try to create and analyze at the same time. They’re different processes.
RULE NINE: Be happy whenever you can manage it. Enjoy yourself. It’s lighter than you think.
RULE TEN: “We’re breaking all the rules. Even our own rules. And how do we do that? By leaving plenty of room for X quantities.”
HINTS: Always be around. Come or go to everything. Always go to classes. Read anything you can get your hands on. Look at movies carefully, often. Save everything – it might come in handy later.
To be a dog chasing sticks at 84 or 96 years old,
Now that is something worth striving for in this life.
Happy Birthday, Sammy!
Lemongrass in our garden is all it is.
I love it when friends remind me to love this moment for all it is.
A friend sent me this poem by Billy Collins.
by Billy Collins
As I drove north along a country road
on a bright spring morning
I caught the look of a man on the roadside
who was carrying an enormous scythe on his shoulder.
He was not wearing a long black cloak
with a hood to conceal his skull-
rather a torn white tee-shirt
and a pair of loose khaki trousers.
But still, as I flew past him,
he turned and met my glance
as if I had an appointment in Samarra,
not just the usual lunch at the Raccoon Lodge.
There was no sign I could give him
in that instant-no casual wave,
or thumbs-up, no two-fingered V
that would ease the jolt of fear
whose voltage ran from the ankles
to my scalp-just the glimpse,
the split-second lock of the pupils
like catching the eye of a stranger on a passing train.
And there was nothing to do
but keep driving, turn off the radio,
and notice how white the houses were,
how red the barns, and green the sloping fields.