Wednesday, April 4, 2007


So here I am, sitting at my computer. There is a direct sensation within the body; there is the sense of breathing; there is this truth of being that rises up from the solar plexus and connects to some of the centers in the upper part of the body. Of course this is just one of many important connections that can take place. This is the particular connection that is taking place now, for reasons that it understands better than I understand it. My role here is as an observer of this phenomenon, not the orchestrator of it.

There is a fundamental failure in me to understand that my role in most areas is one of observer. I have been educated over the course of a lifetime to believe not only that I can animate and orchestrate, that I should aspire to being an orchestrator, and that in fact the only meaningful thing to do in life is to orchestrate.

We are all educated that way. Civilization and society are all about the exercise of control. It's rather laughable, when you think about it, to realize that nobody controls anything, least of all themselves, and that almost every enterprise man engages in careens off into unexpected directions, to create unexpected disasters, which call for further unexpected solutions.

Everything is unexpected, including the unexpected itself.

So here I sit, once again, observing myself as I comment on observing myself. The act may seem to be redundantly reflexive, but if we inhabit ourselves in a place that is a bit quieter, perhaps in a place that is balanced between the connection of several centers, which ever ones they may be, there is nothing redundant about it. It is not an exercise in philosophy; it is an exercise in organic satisfaction as we receive the impressions of our lives. I do not do this all day long, or even a part of it, but I do do it a little bit every day. Every time I am fed in this way I realize that attending to the inner work of the centers has a much greater value than the things that I do with materials, with money, and so on.

Some years ago I realized that in its highest form, art consists solely of perceiving. A man who has a real relationship within himself, who simply perceives his environment, his circumstances, his being, is a work of art in itself that is so supremely consummated it can never be expressed and in fact cannot even be communicated. Of course we try to -- here I am, offering these clumsy words -- but in the end, this particular understanding of art is too radical to deconstruct, no matter what tools one brings to it.

In some ways music brings us closest to this, because it begins without words, and the structure of its vocabulary speaks to our emotional part, reaching down into us to awaken organs we have forgotten we possess. Much has been made recently in the sciences about the connection between music and language. One of the books I read about this was called "The Singing Neanderthals,"or something along those lines. The book made some good points, but it was written by an academic and ultimately turned out to be stultifyingly boring. It was surprising to me to see something as beautiful as a connection between language and music reduced to a list of facts. Too much of science is used to sterilize life in this manner. Maybe that's why religious people are in such a strong reaction to it a lot of the time.

To understand without words -- that is an idea that music leads us to. Ellen Dissanyake, who wrote the book "Homo Aestheticus," is another academic (a scholar of aesthetic criticism) that spoke about this question of words in a different way. She is also highly technical but has a livelier matter to her work. She argues that the written word has actually gone further towards destroying what art really means than just about any other instrument man wields. One would have to read her book to understand just what she's getting at, and I suggest you do so if you want to really understand something new about what art means to man. I think the point here is that although we worship words as our gods, they have seduced us and have become our very devils.

On my last CD, I included a song entitled "Words are the Enemy of Truth." The inherent irony here is pleasing to me.

Words are created by our breath, but cannot touch it. Words can describe what we see, but they are blind. One of the songs on my next CD -- a song I have not even begun to write yet -- will be called "The Color Blue, to a Blind Man."

My whole life blue has been my favorite color, but I don't know what the color blue is. My life is "blue," and I am blind to just what that means. It is only by searching for a new connection within my sensory organs, beginning with the inner organs, that I can receive anything that might lead me towards an understanding of what this favorite thing, which I do not know the real color of, is.

Oops. There I go again, indulging in my penchant for poetic imagery and metaphor and so on.
Perhaps because it's a rainy day, and the water invites a melancholic fluidity.

Or perhaps it's because I, like all the rest of you, am a dreamer.

Until tomorrow,

may your trees bear fruit, and your wells yield water.

2 comments:

  1. .

    You have a riveting web log
    and undoubtedly must have
    atypical & quiescent potential
    for your intended readership.
    May I suggest that you do
    everything in your power to
    honor your encyclopedic/omniscient
    Designer/Architect as well
    as your revering audience.
    As soon as we acknowledge
    this Supreme Designer/Architect,
    Who has erected the beauteous
    fabric of the universe, our minds
    must necessarily be ravished with
    wonder at His infinite goodness,
    wisdom and power.

    Please remember to never
    restrict anyone's opportunities
    for ascertaining uninterrupted
    existence for their quintessence.

    There is a time for everything,
    a season for every activity
    under heaven. A time to be
    born and a time to die. A
    time to plant and a time to
    harvest. A time to kill and
    a time to heal. A time to
    tear down and a time to
    rebuild. A time to cry and
    a time to laugh. A time to
    grieve and a time to dance.
    A time to scatter stones
    and a time to gather stones.
    A time to embrace and a
    time to turn away. A time to
    search and a time to lose.
    A time to keep and a time to
    throw away. A time to tear
    and a time to mend. A time
    to be quiet and a time to
    speak up. A time to love
    and a time to hate. A time
    for war and a time for peace.

    Here's what remarkable men
    have asseverated about the
    world's bestseller:

    "I believe the Bible is the best gift
    God has ever given to man. All
    the good from the Savior of the
    world is communicated to us
    through this book."
    -- President Abraham Lincoln

    "For we must consider that we shall
    be as a City upon a hill. The eyes of
    all people are upon us. So that if we
    shall deal falsely with our God in this
    work we have undertaken, and so
    cause Him to withdraw his present
    help from us, we shall be made a
    story and a byword throughout the
    world." --John Winthrop, Governor
    of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, 1630

    "It is impossible to rightly govern the
    world without God and the Bible."
    - President George Washington

    "The Bible is no mere book, but a Living
    Creature, with a power that conquers
    all that oppose it." - Napoleon

    "That Book accounts for the supremacy
    of England." - Queen Victoria

    "If there is anything in my thought or
    style to commend, the credit is due my
    parents for instilling in me an early
    love of the Scriptures. If we abide by
    the principals taught in the Bible, our
    country will go on prospering and to
    prosper; but if we and our posterity
    neglect its instructions and authority,
    no man can tell how sudden a
    catastrophe may overwhelm us and
    bury all our glory in profound obscurity."
    - Daniel Webster (Founding Father)

    "The Bible is worth all other books which
    have ever been printed." - Patrick Henry
    (original member of the Continental Congress)

    "The Bible is the anchor of our liberties."
    - President U.S. Grant

    "It is impossible to enslave mentally or socially
    a Bible-reading people. The principals of the
    Bible are the groundwork of human freedom."
    - Horace Greeley (Editor)

    "That Book is the rock on which our Republic
    rests." - President Andrew Jackson

    "In all my perplexities and distresses, the Bible
    has never failed to give me light and strength."
    - Gen. Robert E. Lee

    "Bible reading is an education in itself."
    - Lord Tennyson (Poet)

    "So great is my veneration for the Bible that the
    earlier my children begin to read it the more
    confident will be my hope that they will prove
    useful citizens of their country and respectable
    members of society. I have for many years made
    it a practice to read through the Bible once
    every year." - President John Quincy Adams

    "The existence of the Bible, as a Book for the
    people, is the greatest benefit which the human
    race has ever experienced. Every attempt to
    belittle it is a crime against humanity."
    - Immanuel Kant (Philosopher)

    "The New Testament is the very best Book that
    ever or ever will be known in the world."
    - Charles Dickens (Author)

    "All human discoveries seem to be made only
    for the purpose of confirming more and more
    strongly the truths contained in the Sacred
    Scriptures." - Sir William Herschel (Astronomer)

    "There are more sure marks of authenticity
    in the Bible than in any profane history."
    - Sir Isaac Newton (Scientist)

    "Let mental culture go on advancing,
    let the natural sciences progress in
    even greater extent and depth, and
    the human mind widen itself as much
    as it desires; beyond the elevation
    and moral culture of Christianity, as
    it shines forth in the Gospels, it will
    not go." - Goethe (Author)

    "I have known ninety-five of the world's
    great men in my time, and of these eight-
    seven were followers of the Bible. The
    Bible is stamped with a Specialty of Origin,
    and an immeasurable distance separates
    it from all competitors."
    - W.E. Gladstone (Prime Minister)

    "Whatever merit there is in anything that
    I have written is simply due to the fact that
    when I was a child my mother daily read
    me a part of the Bible and daily made me
    learn a part of it by heart." - John Ruskin
    (art critic and social commentator)

    "The Bible has been the Magna Charta of the
    poor and oppressed. The human race is not
    in a position to dispense with it." - Thomas
    Huxley (Author & Scientist)

    "The whole hope of human progress is
    suspended on the ever growing influence
    of the Bible." - W.H. Seward (Secretary of State)

    "America was born a Christian nation. America
    was born to exemplify that devotion to the
    elements of righteousness, which are derived
    from the revelations of Holy Scriptures. Part
    of the destiny of Americans lies in their daily
    perusal of this great book of revelations.
    That if they would see America free and
    pure they will make their own spirits free
    and pure by this baptism of the Holy Spirit."
    --President Woodrow Wilson

    For Christians, the life and death of Jesus
    are the ultimate expressions of love, and
    the supreme demonstrations of God's
    mercy, faithfulness, and redemption.
    Since Christ's miraculous Resurrection
    on Easter, more than 2,000 years ago,
    Christians have expressed joy and
    gratitude for this wondrous sacrifice
    and for God's promise of freedom for
    the oppressed, healing for the broken -
    hearted, and salvation. --President
    George W. Bush

    "It cannot be emphasized too strongly
    or too often that this great nation was
    founded, not by religionists, but by
    Christians; not on religions, but on
    the gospel of Jesus Christ. For this
    very reason peoples of other faiths
    have been afforded asylum, prosperity,
    and freedom of worship here."
    --Patrick Henry (original member
    of the Continental Congress)


    God designed humans to want to
    believe in something. That's the
    image of God that is in us. But as
    G. K. Chesterton famously put it,
    when we reject the God of the
    Bible, we don't believe in nothing;
    we believe in everything -- including
    Little Green Men. - - Chuck Colson


    I am trying here to prevent anyone from
    saying the really foolish thing that people
    often say about Jesus Christ: "I'm ready
    to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher,
    but I don't accept His claim to be God."

    That is the one thing we must not say.
    A man who was merely a man and said
    the sort of things Jesus said would not be
    a great moral teacher. He would either be
    a lunatic -- on a level with a man who says
    he is a poached egg -- or else he would be
    the Devil of Hell.

    You must make your choice. Either this Man
    was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman
    or something worse .... You can shut Him up
    for fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a
    demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him
    Lord and God. But let us not come up with any
    patronizing nonsense about His being a great
    human teacher. He has not left that option
    open to us. He did not intend to. -- From
    Case for Christianity, by C.S. Lewis



    "Let every student be plainly instructed and
    earnestly pressed to consider well the main
    end of his life and studies is to know God
    and Jesus Christ which is eternal life (John
    17:3)." - - - The Laws and Statutes of
    Harvard College in 1643


    "All scholars shall live religious, godly,
    and blameless lives according to the rules
    of God's Word, diligently reading the Holy
    Scriptures, the fountain of light and truth;
    and constantly attend upon all the duties
    of religion, both in public and secret."
    - - - Two central requirements in Yale
    College 1745 charter

    If you stop believing what your professor
    told you had to be true and if you start
    thinking for yourself you may come to some
    conclusions you hadn't expected. You may
    find the Bible makes more sense than you
    thought or were told to think. Allow yourself
    to be ruined, ruined with regard to what you
    always thought could be true. Can you believe
    what you don't understand? You and I believe
    everyday what we don't understand unless it
    comes to the issue of salvation.
    - - - Dr. Woodrow Kroll

    There is simply no historic foundation for the
    position that the Framers intended to build the
    'wall of separation' that was constitutionalized
    in Everson. The 'wall of separation between
    church and state' is a metaphor based on bad
    history, a metaphor which has proved useless
    as a guide to judging. It should be frankly and
    explicitly abandoned. - - - Chief Justice of
    the US Supreme Court, William Rehnquist

    In 1796 the US Supreme Court issued this
    ruling, "By our form of government, the
    Christian religion is the established religion,
    and all sects and denominations of Christians
    are placed on equal footing." Some 57 years
    later, after Congress was petitioned to separate
    Christian principles from government, in 1853
    the House Judiciary Committee issued their
    formal report, including these words: "In this
    age there is no substitute for Christianity.
    This was the religion of the founders of the
    republic, and they expected it to be the
    religion of their dependents. The great vital,
    conservative elements in our system is the
    belief of our people in the pure doctrines
    and divine truths of the gospel of Jesus
    Christ." - - - Dr. Gerald Beavan


    "It is the duty of nations, as well as of men,
    to own their dependence upon the overruling
    power of God and to recognize the sublime
    truth announced in the Holy Scriptures and
    proven by all history, that those nations only
    are blessed whose God is the Lord."
    -- President Abraham Lincoln


    Trust in yourself and you are doomed to
    disappointment; trust in money and you
    may have it taken from you; but trust in
    God, and you are never to be confounded
    in time or eternity. - D.L. Moody

    Faith and love are apt to be spasmodic
    in the best of minds. Men and women live
    on the brink of mysteries and harmonies
    into which they never enter and with their
    hand on the door latch they die outside.
    - - GK Chesterton

    Best wishes for continued ascendancy,
    Dr. Whoami

    P.S. Here's some blogs that I found
    of interest
    as I negotiated my way
    through cyberspace:


    Every Student
    Religion Comparison
    Around the Well
    Danish Cartoons
    Arabic Cartoons
    Muhammad or Jesus???
    Answering Islam
    Is Jesus God?
    A Short Look At Six World Religions
    God's Word in different languages...
    How to become a Christian
    Who Is Jesus?
    See The Word
    Watch The Jesus Movie
    Spanish Cartoons
    German Cartoons
    Chinese Cartoons
    Italian Cartoons
    Greek Cartoons
    Japanese Cartoons
    Portuguese Cartoons
    French Cartoons
    Hindi Cartoons
    Russian Cartoons
    'Thought & Humor'


    Only one of these is amalgamated with me -
    can you determine which one??? Tell me
    sometime what your thoughts are about
    all this:O)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I have no arguments with Christ. Fortunately for all of us, he has no need of me as a salesman.

    I current work under the guidance and auspices of Mary, which is a different issue. I don't discuss this in the blog too much. But I may have mentioned it in earlier posts.

    ReplyDelete

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