Category Archives: Quaker

Logos: Pre-text, text, post text. Word!

An essential point of agreement – the obscenity of wealth distribution. Some of the wealthy are waking to their responsibility to others and enjoying their good works… its a start. The system is set up for some to have so very much more while others have desperately not enough, and nature is shafted; waste a way of life – we either change this, and have a better hope of ourselves and our next generations living in some sort of modern comfort , or we let it all wash away, be blown away, .. let nature take care of the blight selfishness is. We are one life force around the planet, one web of life. Those who cannot live with this as a guiding principle, cut themselves off from life. That will result and is resulting in their destruction. I live in the joyful knowledge of life in me – I regret that humanity might be wiped out by nature before our natural evolution – but that is what keeps me alive – the desire for humanity to live our full natural potential as celebrants of life’s wonder. I know you love so much of nature around you;  we just regret together that we are part of the human problem. Greetings friend reader.

The image is an exercise – take lined paper make three columns. Write words of significance in any order, randomly in all of the spaces. Allow your mind to jump from one word to another, writing as you go. Whenever you reach a pause in the flow, change the type of word – philosophical, topics of interest, important people – whatever.

Closing your eyes, touch the paper and record the word. Repeat two times.

Now you have three words.  Let a riff of thought follow and connect these words. I want to explain mine then record the word flow that resulted. I believe that Logos – word – is “god” . i.e. the human mind names and creates its world. The stories we tell ourselves create our life.

Mariette, my beloved friend,  aged eighty something, was killed by a car,  returning from  an evening lecture, walking from the bus stop to her home. She was a wonderful alive person and her faith in her Jesus was intense and personal.

Richard, my man, is deeply affronted by religion which he sees as causing much of the trouble in the world. It has been inflicted upon him by persons he could not avoid, including me. I want to show him the religious story I tell myself is not the one he cannot stand. I cannot stand the old man in the sky as anything other than a heuristic ( teaching device which simplifies complex concepts) either.

I think WWJD – what would the putative Jesus do – is a great question and i attempt to live my life by it. That is to do as the Quakers do – look for that of light in each person. Judge not that I be not judged. Love one another. Value and work for Peace. See myself as one tiny part of my concept of the divine – for me that is Life Force.

The words I happened to touch upon were Ego, Mariette, Jesu.  This is my word flow.

Mariette – dead, Jesu – dead. Ego – death to egoic blinders.

One and the same LIFE. Now they have my eyes, my hands, my thoughts. I commune with them and they with me. I imagine. I mage [magician]. I create. I story. My story – mystery unveiled. Weep and wail, gnash teefies. The dis-integration is frustrating. I know it. I live it. [ that we are one life force, one conscious biosphere, here from the beginning and here after humans evolve or die out, divine ]. The world I grew up in does not believe it. Cognitive dissonance. Headache.

I stand in my truth     with the sad heart of Ruth     in tears amid the alien corn,       I choose to be born again    as one and the same      with Him=my ideals.      My dreams, my childish screams     as they took away my right to play in the fields of the Lord   in the joy of the word…

THEY DID NOT  [ my dead in my head reject that blaming]

They just said grow up! Be Yourself! Know that what you know and are and see and feel    is your reveal for YOU     its true for You.     Dont make yourself blue     that you cannot prove this true.      Truth needs no defense,   it will out in the end.

Trees are alive, trees are my friend. My love there, solid and strong, frail enough in their own way, but singing my song. We are one. I AM one. I am fun…..[ doubtful sometimes]

My Richard is tall and strong like a tree, and I like a  squirrel unable to be as he    MUST see how his way is true for him – he is the balance of me, let him be, let him be !   See solidarity with those who feel free.  In time life’s unity will be seen again, we will befriend nature and others and learn how to groove    how to move   tall and strong like the tree that lets others be and does its own work, doesnt shirk, not a jerk.  Sees and believes in itself if I may, say so and so say.

SO what is MY work?  It is this ! It is bliss. It is logos expressing Joy in my song. It is Logos regressing. It’s taking to long    to go nowhere. NOW HERE !

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I record this rubbish and post it as a blog because I want to encourage others who feel cognitive dissonance between what they were taught and what they feel,  who still feel that they have not really got on with what their life is meant to be, to trust their feeling of what they are meant to be doing. And its NOT about money.  Writing feels like life blood to me. I can hear the wiser voices saying, “Sure, but dont give up your day job.”

Comments welcome;

my website  http://www.elizabethmitchellstudio.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Quaker Meditation 4 – TWIjaysus.

Quaker Meditation 4

My divine mind tells itself
“God does not exist” and laughs coquettishly.
Hen cackling in neighbors yard,
another egg.
Meditating, eastern spine cross legged,
feeling like AnansiJesus, I sit, my fingers touching,
my mind Bhakti – a devotional Je t’aime repeating to itself.

No separation is the same as no ego existence. Theoretically and insanely possible, interesting, alienated, able to be loved.

It was the third day. Jesus sat up in the sepulchre, put his cloth around his shoulders and sat cross legged to meditate as He did every morning.

He, aka Twi, walked away from there to here where, for many, the cross symbolizes only 2000 years of Christian history.

That Which Is, Twi, had lived as Mohammed, who with Khadijah sought justice for people. Khadijah’s wise female influence was taken from him. He became more militant than Jesus who with Mary, Magdalen or Mother, tried the quaker pacifist route. Muslims know they are part of the past 2000 years of struggle for justice. No peace without Justice.

“My mind is an empty birdhouse, in which my Zen Buddhist and my Quaker Pacifist sit”. Twi breathed out as she wrote. Ancestral spirits drank Lethe waters dry.
Re – membering.

Beauty mind in beauty way finds itself here where moon can still be seen through a tracery of oak at dawn.

Bistro Morandi, Bottle wall

Image: Bistro Morandi/Bottle Wall. By me – elizabeth mitchell. under contract.

http://www.elizabethmitchellstudio.com Tampa Fla. Art and silk painting classes. Philosophical yoga instruction, Sivananda and Iyengar lineage. HoustonHubbardJudith seed.

 

Quaker Meditation 2

I am Jah Lib
If Haile Selassi is Jah Rastafari, so am I .
Human sized Jah, Jesus, aha
I AM, a man and aint i a woman
a human a hueman a wombman
Persona Universalis
one with you
Hypocrite lecteur.

My mind. I mind. I Jah mind.
( god renames itself Jah)
Is it impossible to identify with the writer ?
I call myself the moving finger tho i know I am / that is fate.
I write and have not writ it is too late.
The past is perfect, finished, done.
The present is feeding itself into the future.
Econiche is not much fun right now.
Much death of species, species, coin of the realm

Earth populates with all her forms, we are her human mind, Terra her skull and cross her terror.
“War on Terrior! ” the hand painted sign said.
Here where love is dead.

Love lives in me
I’m free to tell my tale
the weep and wail
the gnashing of teeth
are here around us,
7th heaven too.

Where are you in your mind?
my Quaker mind
knows how to silence and breathe.
I breathe in the silence of those in my head
in paradise, my dead and my absent,
i love them all, they teach me and challenge me and oftentimes i fall and now get up.

Our mind is Paradise when infused with Love
which sees past our story.
We are part of the glorious narrative.
We grow it and evolve it here,
Questioning and questing
our souls never resting ….
TIme Out to take breath and breathe.

One in the silence of meeting, whether inside or outside my head.
1700’s, 1900’s, the cohorts of Quakers,
of ancestors, thousands of years,
and this one here.

Ano Dea – [this] year of our goddess; Te Deum, tedium; and me.

Kundalini goddess

Quaker Meditation

Quaker Meditation

I enter the silence of the meeting. I sit with my finger tips touching and my back straight in good eastern cross legged position.
I focus on the Inner Space. With my eyes closed i feel as tho the space behind my eyeballs is one with that in which all the others present also exist.
The space outside my eyeballs and the space inside my eyeballs are the same space, shaped by the material presence of me and others. The inside is unified, the outside is an experience of separate identity.
Look up into a tree. It shapes the space which is and is not the same space within the branches and beyond the branches.
I focus on the ball of space created between my hands. It has a separate identity from the rest of the space and yet is the same space.
I feel the presence of the greater space surrounding me, the meeting house, the city , world, universe. Always my mind experiences boundaries which both contain and divide.
This paradox applies to time also.
The present moment contains distant past and far future. In the past I was not but space was. In the past humanity was not but space was. In the future I will not be, but this space i experience will be the same as now. In the future humanity will know itself to be more than physical and/or it will have ceased to exist.
All material forms cease to exist. Space is energy, Inner Chi, consciousness – wordless, quiet experience of being. Joy, bliss and radical acceptance.
The meeting is over and we become ourselves with little lives to live. I am glad to experience the peace which is possible.dove

You’re so in Love…

You’re so in Love …

“It doesn’t matter what you say”, said Karen. “You’re so in love……”
She stopped speaking. I made the namaste gesture and thanked her for her kind words.
It was after Quaker meeting. In the silence of the hour long meeting, people so inspired rise to speak words they feel, after silently considering the matter, have a wider relevance. This spontaneous outpouring of communication is heard and allowed to settle in the silence.
I had spoken of No Separation. Some such effusion as this:
“I AM god. I am what god is and so are you and so are we all. I am the consciousness that observes this marvelous earth. I am one with all life. I am eternally here because eternity is outside of time and ever now. “
I had sat down again. My eyes, closed throughout this speaking, remained tightly shut as my own words echoed in my own head. The living silence restored itself.

Karen, being one of the most excellent people in the world, was a major part of the reason I had started to attend Quaker meeting. I had met her on a protest march in the 90’s and learned about Quaker’s FCNL – the Friends Committee on National Legislation. This citizen lobbying group in Washington DC, present well researched position papers on issues such as why War is not the Answer, the implementation of just solutions for native Americans, effective climate policies and so much more.
(https://www.fcnl.org/about/policy/issues)

About 10% of Quakers are unprogrammed Quakers. That is to say – meetings are silent. There is no preacher. Those who feel so inspired can speak. Sometimes there are several “messages” and sometimes the meeting is a silent meditation. The experience of meditating together can greatly intensify the feeling of being part of that greater whole – the unified mind. The dear and brilliant human mind throughout time.

Later I wondered if Karen had been going to say You’re so in love with yourself – with the affectionate look one might give a ten year old.
Or perhaps she meant You’re so in love with spirit.
Or perhaps she meant You’re so in love with the world.
Nah true?! I might have said with a Jamaican twang – for all those are true.

 

Jamaica

When I was 28, I landed in Jamaica. I met Pun, a rastaman, who lived with his two daughters, in a one room wooden house on about 1/8 acre in the hills above the town of Lucea. The yard was a slope of hard, swept dirt, separated by vegetation and a gate from the rough track which descended from the winding road through Dias village. DIas consisted of a bar, a sundries store and some other casual window shops where owners would put out vegetables or what other supplies they had been able to get from the market. Sweetened condensed milk, and a golden yellow cheese were the kids favorite supply, but nothing could be relied upon. Locally grown greens, coconuts, bananas, ackee, spring onions, hot peppers and beans supplemented the “chinee rice” for most meals. Ital, cooked without salt, over a wood fire on the ground in the lean-to cook shack, and eaten from a gourd bowl, was memorably delicious.

When thunder rolled, Pun would say “Tell ‘em Jah Jah”. Pun would say, “Jah inna de waterfall” – when we visited beautiful wild Dunn’s River Falls before it was tamed with wooden walk ways, and tourist amenities. “Jah guide!” Pun would call as, I headed off for an adventure. “Give t’anks”, Pun would say in gratitude for every blessing.

One time our motorbike got a flat tire. “Give t’anks” , said Pun. “WHY ?” said I.” This is a pain”. He explained that we dont know what might have been waiting for us had we continued – maybe a truck drive into us, maybe a car taking a corner too wide wipe us out – give t’anks for every little t’ing. Everyt’ing always Iree.

Oh, with Pun, I gained a perspective that completely revivified the moribund Anglican faith I had deserted overnight after getting confirmed at age 13. My secret thoughts of being a nun vanished with first communion. There was nothing there.

“You are de living bible,” said Pun. “You know de trut’ in your heart’.”
“Burn Bible!” said Pun. “Word, sound and power!!”. He would have nothing to do with that book, tho he did not object to me reading it cover to cover. He knew the power of words to create and he believed in freedom.

Isaiah: “Surely God is in thee, there is none else.” God = Jah = O = cosmic egg of all potential, materialising and dematerialising here on earth.

 
God = Jah = 0

Rasta see Haile Selassi as Lion of Judah – the messiah. Anyone can see that if Haile Selassi is Jah, so am I and so are you.
In the teachings of Buddhism, I learned of non-duality. I see that I AM “god”. I am a little part of everything as the drop is ocean. I am Jesus – in this sense:
The likeness we bear to Jesus is more essential than our notions of him.
~ Lucretia Mott, Quaker. 1793-1880
I think ‘What would Jesus do?” is a great question and it is by this leading that I live.

Humans project our ideas of perfection on to some God figure of our own choosing, or some star, or some ideal notion of a human being. I believe with the atheists and humanists that humans have, what I call divine, potential. That together all our consciousnesses make up the divine godlike consciousness which is beyond our understanding. It has been here on earth since the beginning and is the cosmic “egg of all potential” which is eternal, outside of time, learning to know itself in the mind of human the destroyer; and wombman the creator. Male and female create we ourselves.

“There is something of God in every man, let us affirm it more certainly than ever, but surrounded as we are by millions of new-made graves and with the voices of the hungry and the dispossessed in our ears, let us not easily accept the impious hope that the natural goodness of ourselves is sufficient stuff out of which to fashion a better world.”
~ Gilbert H. Kilpack, 1914-1999

The above quote, returns me to humility. Evolutionarily, humans create their stories of gods and goddesses and these evolve. We need to evolve our story, to know it is a story which can only hint at a greater truth. That truth is coming to light in scientific discoveries – matter is energy, space is not empty, life is a miracle. We do not create matter. We are ( part of) life force – we do not create life. We can destroy ourselves. By destroying our ecological niche which is forever changed by the melting of the ice, we have set ourselves on a challenging course and we will need to tell ourselves a story of peaceful, joyful co-operation to survive. I see it everywhere I choose to look.

 

 

Confirmation Bias.

Believing is Seeing. I am 66. I listened to a Ted talk. The speaker asked, Do you want to win the lottery? My answer of course affirmative. The speaker asked, ”do you buy the ticket?”. My answer, “no”. She explained that our belief affects what we do. For the last 40 years, I have tried to write a book. She showed me why I was failing.

Barbara Marx Hubbard says, “What we focus on, we get more of – so focus on what works!!!”
I remain informed about politics, I vote in every election, and work for local candidates but I do not listen to the news of the current insanity which I am unable to affect. I listen to programs about new science, about inventions that ameliorate pollution, that create non-fossil power sources, that solve third world problems one village or one local issue at a time…

I see that humans are destroying nature’s bounties, overfishing the seas, maltreating food animals, cutting down the forests which are the planet’s lungs. I know the human population cannot double and survive the way we are living. I know there will be massive extinctions. I know my body will die.

“There is nothing good or bad but thinking makes it so.” A gift of twentieth century science is the realisation of relativity. Which aspect of ourself is thinking?

In the 16th C, when there was a great overturning of accepted notions, and the global expansion of western thought and hegemony – paradox entered the picture. Western world view absolutely contradicted the first people’s world view. Paradoxically, both are correct within their own frame of reference. The cultural brilliance of the west goes along with an expansionist and exploitative methodology; the natural balance of the first people goes along with a stability that does not lead to a separation from nature and the invention of industrial mechanisation. And in the East, the strength of tradition stifles freedom such as is found in the West.

 

I believe in evolution. I celebrate evolution. Evolution creates what is new and not before seen. Breathe in and rejoice in being.

chipmunk screaming

Chipmunk Screaming, is an art work of mine.

http://www.elizabethmitchellstudio.com