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Saturday, January 25, 2014

Hey, You

Henry David Thoreau said, "If you advance confidently toward your dreams, and endeavor to live the life which you have imagined, you will meet with success unexpected in common hours.   You will pass through invisible boundaries.   You will engage new and liberal laws.   And you will live with the license of a higher order of beings."

Goethe said, "Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it.   Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now."

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Tiny Houses

Tiny houses on trailers cost $3,000. They are insulated. They have toilet and shower and a comfy sleeping spot or two and most typically have approximately 100 square feet of space. If someone gives the householder permission to park,  no land ownership is required. 

It's kind of a cool idea, isn't? Think of what becomes possible if your housing is essentially not a cost. This is not a universal solution to the housing crisis in the industrial world. We're talking about a solution for certain people willing to make trade-offs of minimal real estate space, in exchange for freedom.  It's probably a little too small to contain a todler-sibling fight over Legos. Even a couple seems kind of a large grouping for a 100 foot house. But imagine: Your significant other could get one right next door and there you go--the joys of companionship as well as the wonders of solitude--like a Rilke poem come to life. You could also bring the trailers to different places when you wanted, not quite as flexibly as one might with an Airstream trailer, but, doably--more like moving a piano long distances. (Though I'd have to find a suitably poignant farewell song to play on the Steinway upright that would be unlikely to make the pared -down essential possession list when going into a house less than 1/10th the size of the current living space.)

I think this is an intriguing idea. The doubts come up. What the heck, I declare a "there are no bad ideas" policy for without jumping to any conclusion for at least one day. My mind fills with questions that open up new questions (as well as a sense of excitement): What do you live your life for if you aren't primarily focused on making money to pay for housing and vehicle and medical care? You would definitely have some flexibility. And in the flexibility you could find a purpose that serves the greater good of others and your own creative energy. At some point that might really be what your life story could be about. Why not? What actually makes more sense than that?  Definitely this is an idea that seems worth daydreaming on a little more.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Writing about Wind

The site "" invites people to set a timer for 10 minutes

and use all 5 senses (plus the sense of kinesthetic movement and body self awareness) to write about the "Word of the Day".  Today's word was, "wind".

Here's my entry:

On the hill the wind blows at first moderately, swaying branches, the lower branches, pulling them a few inches, and releasing them and then pulling them again. At the end of the branches, the maple leaves wiggle and wave. Sometimes the wind swells and branches wave. The branches seem to know how to wave, to allow a certain amount of motion as if to say, "Yes, I see your point. I give you that. You're right, there." The waving of tree branches in the wind is a kind of empathy with the active forces by a thoughtful and receptive creature, the tree. The wind chills the cheeks. Put your hand on the cold cheek and it feels wet from the dampness in the air as well as the cold. Wind pulls at your hat. You clamp your hand on your head and walk forward into the torrent of invisible air. Wind has a sound, a suffocating whistling encircling the head. Wind flattens your face, everything that's loose in your face, pressed with it's pressure wall. Wind won't let up, won't quit. It's annoying! Wind wants to rip the steel roof off a building, it wants to tear your shirt open, catch in your coat like a sail and pull. The texture of wind is thick though yielding like whipped cream, like clouds, like gelatin. Sometimes wind embeds little particles and pieces of dust that sand blast your face and occasionally embed themselves in your eyes or nostrils demanding that you shut your eyes so tears can pool and float them out.
Wind, oh enemy of calm, enemy of relaxation. Princess of drama.

What's happening by doing this every day, is that my writing mind habit is to narrate the associative images that form as I reflect on words. This is good news if you want to write in ways that bring people to experience, thought and feeling--you have to give them experiences, which have embedded in them feelings. Thought is just the arranger that figures out the editing and arranging.

Try this thing. If you are a regular reader of this blog, I don't think you've heard the last about it.

Here's a useful thought/kind reminder

Live Out the Best of Your Life (words of songwriter Sloane Wainwright) at some point today. You'll be glad you can steal 20 muntes to  set out down that alternate reality wormhole path.


Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Something I Realized During a Time I Was Feeling Pressured to Freak Out, But Didn't

Here: Play this while you read:

From time to time, I get an afternoon or morning or even a whole day of this really good place where I trust myself in whatever comes up, and I trust my intuition, I trust that my undefended first reactions to things are appropriate and will lead to happiness. I'm kind when this is happening, and I'm funny. It usually happens when I'm feeling affection and appreciation for something, or someone, and everything is like being at the beach. I wish this would be all the time,  the laws of thermodynamics say nothing can be all the time, and chance is not interested in making your life easy--that's your job--to figure out how to keep your boat upright get to where you're going in constantly changing conditions, sailor.
But self-acceptance combined with readiness to appreciate everyone and everything in your awareness can be like a gyroscope that resists toppling over. It doesn't matter what happens, on a deep level, on the level of unconscious reaction, the presumption is kindness, and for the best-ness. This attitude is fantastic and allows for things to happen that are fantastic. When this is going on, I sometimes  think of Zora Neale Hurston's phrase:

"I love myself when I am laughing. . . and then again when I am looking mean and impressive.”

Getting to that place is like having super powers. It can be done, pretty much independent of circumstance (*Note: given that you can be in a place where physiological rest is at least possible).

We could actually choose to make this more likely, but it requires intentionality about redirecting habits and temptations. When we have the experience of being afraid and overwhelmed early in life, the habits of blame and attack and self-criticism and despair can become well established and automatic. A new, alternate channel of habit can be created, but it is like an Army Corps of Engineers project--you fill in an old channel and open a new one.

The one that you open is a flow of realization that even if you are sad or overwhelmed it is possible for the situation to be unchanged and you find yourself grateful and excited about things once you wish someone well in an unconditional way, independent of what you get from them or what they are willing to do for you, you just like what you like, and someone could pay you a million dollars not to and you still would.

From that place it's like you are on top of a fire tower looking out over the Cascade Mountains, and everywhere you look is beautiful, and you are beaming appreciation in 360 degrees, wishing everyone well digging everything, the green in the hills, the shape of the mountains, the flying birds, the cloud shapes, the glow of sun on a warm fabulous day, and of course feeling that coming out of you, so you are the very eyes, heart and soul and sentient center of a loving world that you love.

That in all possibilities, you can imagine something you would love to happen and honor and recognize what's lovely in someone, in something.

This has a kind of transformative power that you didn't see coming necessarily (for example, instead of being enemies with someone, you might find you have great affection for them and understand them), and it feels really good.

Instead of being afraid, you can be busy helping, be busy offering love to something or someone that can use it, and you won't be afraid then, you won't be despairing then, you'll be feeling warm and appreciative and excited about what is possible. That makes stuff move that you didn't imagine could move. It can even make time and life and even death irrelevant. Once that's the case, how can fear hold you back?

Well these are just words, what can we actually do physically to help bring ourselves there?
I got this information from a website. I'll quote it below

  1.  place my left hand on my heart and my right hand on solar plexus is in the center of the body between the rib cage. The heart represents current life and the solar plexus represents the higher self (infinite life). During the meditation  run a figure  8 (the infinity sign) around my hands (i.e. a circle around the left hand, and then a circle around the right hand, over and over again in a figure 8 ) so that what appeared to be happening is that current life integrates with higher self under your hands.  
  2. Testimonial:  "It feels good would feel this warm, peaceful, happy glow in my center even when in times of challenge and I was feeling scared, sad, and disconnected from loved ones. Then a moment or so after I acknowledged this warm feeling, I noticed that I would get a new insight, or some sort of inner guidance–guidance that actually helped me resolve specific problems I had in my life at the time. The warm, intense feeling definitely got my attention. It helped me at a time when I wasn’t yet confident with my ability to correctly distinguish my true inner guidance from my mental conditionings or imaginations. It also helped me to recognize which inner guidance was extremely important for me to follow."
  3. Placing your hands on your body as I described above while lying down actually helps to calm you, to reconnect you to your higher self, your true self. (Try it for a while and see for yourself.) This kind of meditation also affirms (and helps your mind get) that your power is within you, not outside of you, and that the source of your power is your direct connection to Source (to God)–which I believe will be extremely important and useful in the near future.
More at:

Monday, December 23, 2013

West End Blues

Here:  Play this before reading. . .

Listening to Louis Armstrong “West End Blues”

In New Orleans at the funeral,
the band sadly jazzes down the street
people celebrate but in melancholy not just for who was lost
--not just for the sadness of the family
but for everyone’s shared sadness that the things we love, the things most beautiful to us
come, get known to us,
and leave just as sure as the days arrive and steadily transform into night
and then change to give us some other new day
Oh mama, only your love has been here throughout
and holds steady through the steady comings and goings
the way the notes of jazz flow on,
stopping only to give the fellas a break
to change the reeds