Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Monday, March 29, 2010
Friday, March 26, 2010
You are never lost. It takes some longer to remember than others, but in the end all will remember.
Thursday, March 25, 2010
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Monday, March 22, 2010
Friday, March 19, 2010
Thursday, March 18, 2010
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Monday, March 15, 2010
I am certain that each of us in our own way constantly searches for ways to express the divine within us. We do so through the gifts and talents we exhibit in life.
If we believe that The All-ness known by many names created us then it follows that the breath of love, the spark of life is inherent within our being and seeks expression.
Some people find divinity in individual appreciation of natural beauty, such as a sunset, a flower, or a pastoral scene. Others find the divine in creating works of art through form and music. People manifest their creativity in sculpture, photography, painting, textile, jewelry, sound and other mixed media and fine craft.
Divinity is expressed in infinite ways through talents that blossom in everyone through their choices. I remember a woman once telling me she had no talent, yet she was a nurturing Mother of five children and kept a peaceful, productive and loving household. That’s talent.
People who conceptualize are using a personal talent, scientists, philosophers, and mathematicians. So do gardeners, pilots, and street sweepers. They are all using talents that were uncovered and honed by their life choices. Each in their own way inspires awe and appreciation when the diligent practice of skill lets others benefit from a discovery, a flower garden, a safe landing or a clean street.
Appreciation of both simple and complex skills should mitigate the illusion of superiority in any individual, race or religion. In the realm of appreciation there is no difference between a great work of art that engenders awe and the healthful and scenic benefit of a clean street.
Isn’t the divine magnificent?
Friday, March 12, 2010
Since I’m here in Nova Albion for a few more weeks before driving back across country to the east, it is interesting to note some of its history.
Back in the middle 1930's, Beryle Shinn, a San Francisco store clerk was picnicking on the beach north of the Golden Gate Bridge. He found a corroded brass plate measuring five by seven inches. There was some old writing scratched on it.
Shinn sent the piece of brass to Dr. Herbert Bolton at the University of California. He carefully cleaned it and read it. It was dated June 17, 1579. In old Elizabethan English it read in part: "...in the name of her majesty Queen Elizabeth of England and her successors forever I take possession of this kingdom now named by me and to be known unto all men as Nova Albion." It was signed Francis Drake.
Historical accounts of Drake's travels put him in what is now California in 1579. Drake reported he landed near "white banks and cliffs". There were no landmarks like that near where the brass plate was found.
Scientific and scholarly analysis eventually authenticated the plate as real except where were the "white banks and cliffs".
Enter William Caldeira. He convinced authorities he was telling the truth. He said he found the plate four years earlier at Laguna Beach, thought it was Chinese writing, kept it for awhile and eventually cleaning out his car, threw it away near where Beryle Shinn found it.
The place where Caldeira found the brass plate is called Drakes Bay. It has white banks and cliffs.
Thursday, March 11, 2010
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Things I remember on a rainy thoughtful morning:
Having school clothes and play clothes.
Having to get up from the chair to change the television channel.
The Fuller Brush man.
Five and Dime stores.
ESSO not EXXON.
Three channel televisions.
When summer seemed endless.
78 rpm and 45 rpm records.
When penny candy was a penny.
When movies began with cartoons and a serial.
You could repair your own car.
Teachers had the authority of parents.
Most houses didn’t have garages.
Space travel was science fiction.
Men wore hats everywhere.
Pennies were steel.
The washing machine had rollers on top.
Each house had a clothesline.
Air conditioning was open windows and doors in the summer.
Alaska and Hawaii were territories.
People dressed up to travel.
You walked or rode your bike to school.
One gear bikes with big tires.
Each house had a coal bin.
Doctors made house calls.
You picked up the phone and an operator said, “number please”.
Route 66 was the main road across America.
The refrigerator was called an icebox.
Lawns were mowed with push mowers.
Camping in a Baker tent.
Paint was lead based and nobody knew it was harmful.
My Mother would say, “Think of all the starving kids in China”.
Al Jolson, Orson Wells, Jack Benny, Milton Berle, Lowell Thomas.
Leftovers were always eaten.
Outhouses at my uncle’s farm.
Monday, March 8, 2010
Friday, March 5, 2010
Thursday, March 4, 2010
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
I heard the other day of a sadness from an adult child of very good friends, friends who go back nearly 40-years. Our kids were raised together in a bedroom community near a big city. With that criterion I do have an emotional attachment to a positive outcome since their kids are my kids too.
The issue, as I am told, is about “falling out of love” with a spouse of twelve plus years and young children are involved.
Divorce is a possibility!
I’m not a counselor of any kind, especially marriage, but I am one who chooses to see the inner picture of life without the emotional constrictions of ego, expectation, worry or the fear of change.
The daily creative opportunities that choice brings us are both profound and painful and we often choose the easy way out by listening only to ourselves, rather than integrating the “other” into the oneness of who and what we are.
Commitment is an important component into sustaining a loving relationship; next comes COMMUNICATION. Without the communication of shared conversation and mutual respect on the mundane and profound issues of family life, love cannot exist beyond the physical. Initially the physical is important, but it diminishes unless spontaneity, romance and innovation keeps it fresh.
No marriage, no relationship will sustain itself unless each partner is willing to be in the shoes of the other and to ask three questions each day with humility and without argument until it is time for the other to ask the same questions:
Question one: “Should the relationship continue?”
Depending on the answer to that profound question…
“What is it that you think I do or don’t do that is helpful and harmful to this shared relationship?”
“What is it that we can do together to repair feelings and actions so that our initial commitment is held sacred?”
Aside from failure to communicate, I think that one of the biggest detriments in sustaining today’s family relationships is the “busy-ness” of 21st century life. Making a living needs attention, oftentimes too much,but necessary. Children have needs, as we adults perceive them, and they can be a drain on family time unless their needs and joys are shared by both parents. We often encourage our children to participate in too many activities that separate us rather than bring us together as a family. Spouses and children live together, but often don’t interact and laugh together because we are too busy. Interests are separate, but not shared. Shared activity is the glue of family continuity.
I don’t know where these good young people will end up. I hope it is together. If each decides that their family unit is worthy of continuing then they each must do so with respect, with tolerance, and with appreciation of the other’s needs and interests.
If any marriage is to succeed it needs attention and communication. It does not demand, nor demean. It neither constricts nor controls. It honors each in the separateness of our oneness.
It is never perfect!
Monday, March 1, 2010
Observations living in the desert.
Technology and the ingenuity of humankind have transformed a scrub and cactus desert into a comfortable and expensive paradise.
Palm Springs and Palm Desert, California and all the communities in between and surrounding these two cities are tailored, manicured mercantile cities with a pristine climate. They are filled with golf courses, boutique shops, artist’s lairs, restaurants, gas stations, beauty parlors, car dealers; low-rise office buildings fill in the blank spaces.
A city's character, however, comes from its people. Here they skew older, wealthy and conservative. There is nothing wrong with being conservative as there is nothing wrong with being liberal, but there is something wrong when the mind is closed to listening to alternative considerations; that’s not only just here, it is everywhere in the world.
Thinking about considerations that may change our minds and hearts are amongst the most difficult choices we will ever make. It means being open to blind possibilities and unknown challenges and be willing to think about the altruistic greater good. Change is the only constant in our lives. Change can be small or large, but it is constant.
Back to desert observations:
I love nature. I like standing silent in an eastern forest or sitting next to a brook and just listening. The western desert has different sounds. You can hear the heat and cactus breathe if you open your inner ear.
An Eastern forest has its leaf rustle of deciduous trees. A palm-speckled desert has a unique sound too. The palms don’t rustle; they clap their fronds in a desert breeze as if applauding the profound performance of All That Is.