The Hard Fucking Work of Living with the Pain and Fear of this Life

Last night had the craziest dream about a gravitational anomaly eating a hole through the earth.

It was depressing and scary.

I kept trying to get further away from the anomaly but the water kept coming and then I was in this giant whirlpool that was spitting the earth into space.

So damn real.

My fear woke me up, I wanted out of that fucking dream.

I heard the ocean waves on my sound machine when I woke up and the central heater was running and I felt like there might be an ocean outside the window.

Sounded like it.

It turned out a military project triggered the event in my dream.

The mind is just amazing.

Since I stopped smoking pot I can remember my dreams incredibly vivid now.

I never thought I’d stop smoking pot, but I stopped drinking and smoking a bit ago and I can tell a big positive difference.

Switched to a vegan diet, started exercising more.

Feeling good, clear.

Got my shovel out and started shoveling the shit, put my back into it.

I was letting my body go.

But my heart and body brought me back.

I’m going to volunteer at hospice I think.

I have a knack helping people let go of their fear.

Maybe I can be of a little service to some before I shuffle off this mortal coil.

I’m 50 now and feel like I’ve lived four different lives.

Maybe I’ll read them poetry and shit like that.

Been working on my writing, can’t say it’s getting much better, but I’m keeping at it.

For I have found the best in life is incommunicable.

How bout that?!

Been writing about the folks I’ve come to know and love through their art, but want to know them deeper.

I want to know their pain and joy. Ralph Waldo Emerson has some good shit to say about that. He says know that all in history thought and felt as you did.

I’ve been digging deeper everywhere and have to say I’ve never felt more alive, focused, productive, calm, in love.

Had a surreal day on Saturday.

Very existential, was just accepting of the whole damn mess of this beautiful life.

Had some serenity I guess.

It was nice.

Had some fun and not so fun interactions with some folks on Reddit and FB.

Peeps are angry.

They don’t like their lives.

Downright miserable.

I like to swim out into the deep water with people.

Can’t say I’m very patient with misery.

Fuck that shit.

Recently even stopped fighting with my wife so much.

I love the girl, she’s crazy about my ole smelly 🐐 ass.

Been talking to my Brother more who I’ve never really talked much with

Been really nice to bond over our pedophile father and insanely religious family, haha.

What a fucked up family we got, let me tell you.

The brother of my sister’s husband killed himself.

Found out that fuck molested my niece years ago.

Found out my dad molested her too.

I hope it hurt when he died.

It’s tough not to wish my dad the pain he inflicted on others.

But I can’t judge anyone.

I never hurt a child, but I inflicted plenty of pain.

God only knows how many people my asshole Father hurt.

One reason my sister, mom and niece turned to Jesus.

The only man who wouldn’t hurt them they dream.

That is what makes them so mad at me.

Cause I turned my back on their savior.

I dared to kill my god.

But I tried to tell them, Jesus met me as a brother and friend, not god.

You can’t love your neighbor until you love the worst of you and the worst you find in life.

They can’t hear me at all.

I’m over their shit, I’ll tell ya.

Heartless bitches, but they are just in great pain.

Unbearable pain almost.

Almost killed my niece before she sobered up.

They hate me more than my puke dad.

How fucking ironic is that shit?!

My brother doesn’t understand it.

I kinda do.

I think I’m gonna write a bit more about my father and my old religion and those bitches.

I remember when he got his belt out and beat us the other day.

He must have hated himself.

He took it out on us.

Probably partially what made me such an angry asshole I guess.

It’s good when you know that fucking child disease is not in you.

My brother and I been going deep together.

We share these inner depth sounding experiences.

I feel like a big brother now.

I feel like a husband.

I feel like a friend.

Took me awhile to hit my stride, but I fucking did.

No, I’m not going to leave my marriage again like I did in the past.

I don’t quit shit anymore.

I follow through.

I won’t give up until I’m dead.

I wasted enough time in my life.

If I had known Plato and Socrates and Diogenes, I would have just had a beer with them and talked about the shit in life we all have to bear.

One thing I can say all us humans have in common, we feel this shit.

Deeply.

All these people in prison, destroyed children, terrified and hardened.

It hurts a lot.

One thing I have is some fucking deep emotions.

I’m very close to them now.

Not letting that pain twist us into monsters is the great work and art of living and dying.

Transmuting the shit of life into gold is godly I find.

I dunno, guess I worked my shit out.

But there is always more shit to shovel.

I’ll get back to it.

Walt Whitman and William Blake: Madmen, Artists, Mystics

Walt Whitman is a mystic poet, one of my favorites. One can be transported in the incredible words of Whitman in “Leaves of Grass” and the poem contained within, “Song of Myself.” One can see he was seeing the totality of life and is filled with a glowing Light and great power, as in Blake. Whitman saw everyone as an expression of the whole. Each a work of art. He tried to remind people how beautiful they were. A leaf among the grass.

1

“I celebrate myself, and sing myself,
And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.

I loafe and invite my soul,
I lean and loafe at my ease observing a spear of summer grass.

My tongue, every atom of my blood, form’d from this soil, this air,

I harbor for good or bad, I permit to speak at every hazard,
Nature without check with original energy.”

https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/45477/song-of-myself-1892-version

Whitman and Blake experienced and saw amazing things in being and themselves as part of the whole. They suffered greatly in life and felt the suffering of others deeply. I could read them forever and barely see where they walked. It is as if the Sun filled them with Light, but also the Shadow clearly speaks through them. Each contains Legion voices. They captured I think what it is to be a Human Being captured between worlds. I am moved deeply by them both.

In “Walt Whitman Speaks,” Whitman says about Blake, “Blake began and ended in Blake.” I researched this and it turns out, Whitman was confounded by and then came to appreciate Blake. Harold Bloom, a great literary critic, felt the two were of the same cloth. The falling of America made Bloom miserable. He would despair about today’s world. I recommend a great book by Bloom who loved Whitman, “The Daemon Knows: Literary Greatness and the American Sublime.” This sublime aspect of Whitman’s time was a presage of our time. Whitman warned us about technology and the age of specialization. Like a hippie version of Ted Kaczynski. Where Ted used real bombs, Whitman used bombs of Love. I love Bloom’s YouTubes. He had a photographic memory and remembered everything he ever read. Amazing to listen to, poetic in his writing and speaking. I highly recommend Bloom.

“Bloom loves Emerson and Whitman but he doesn’t believe them: to him, belatedness is now a permanent condition of man, and there can be no overcoming it—no return, even in America, to an original fullness or freshness or purity of spirit.” —The New Yorker Profile on Bloom – The Prophet of Decline 9/22/02

About Blake, Bloom thought…”The true Romantic, as represented by Shelley and, above all, Blake, looked not to nature—a thing external to the self—to save him but to the world-altering power of his own imagination. Nature was material, and therefore fixed and limiting. Only by struggling to liberate itself from the world entirely—to fill itself with invented mythical forms rather than natural ones—could the imagination be free.” —The New Yorker Profile on Bloom – The Prophet of Decline 9/22/02

The genius of all three of these men drips off their pages and is seen in their art. There is a deep sadness in them all, Bloom the most. Whitman and Blake though saw through the sadness.

Blake invented a form of art combining images with texts, relief etching. The first comics? He had incredible visions. I have a large folio of his work and he strikes me like Jung’s art does in The Red Book. These men have walked through heaven and hell. Whitman wrote, like Blake painted. But Blake’s poetry! My god. Blake was mostly ignored in his time. He said he wrote for his audience in eternity. His visions he felt were real and removed all doubts. Perhaps it was this assurance Whitman didn’t initially like. Blake was a rebel and feared by the establishment. Unlike Swedenborg, Blake spent as much time in the hell of London as the heaven of his soul. For this he has earned my esteem and respect. Whitman felt him dark. But Whitman didn’t like Poe either at first, but in “Walt Whitman Speaks” Whitman comments about writers of his day and confesses he came to like Poe after reading him again and again. He and Blake were so alike, but very different, as Whitman himself wrote.

“Awake! Awake, O sleepers of the land of shadows, wake! expand! I am in you and you in me, mutual in love divine. I am not a God far off, I am a brother and friend; within your own bosoms I reside and you reside in me: Lo! we are one, forgiving all evil, not seeking recompense” (Blake-Jerusalem.,Chp.1,lns.6,18).

Whitman wrote privately after reading Algernon Swinburne’s “William Blake: A Critical Essay”, that while both he and Blake were mystics and “extatics“, the differences between them were vast. I admire Whitman very highly and see in his work a sweet pragmatism that inspires me. How these mystics loved. Whitman took care of civil war wounded and this grew a great compassion in him.

https://www.gutenberg.org/files/35995/35995-h/35995-h.htm

If you are following the call of your deepest pain and love, one must spend time with Whitman and Blake, both truly sublime and profound.

Dying My Last Breath

Oh the echoes in my mind
From ancient times to midnight row
What a distance the golden bird has flown
I’m running with the wolves tonight
I dream of being alive
Will we ever speak again
Can I have back what I broke
I have born the scorn of the forlorn
I sit here on a sunken boat

65

Yesterday I saw the trees by the river’s edge,
Wrecked and broken beyond belief,
Only two or three trunks left standing,
Scarred by blades of a thousand axes.
Frost strips the yellowing leaves,
River waves pluck at withered roots.
This is the way the living must fare.
Why curse at Heaven and Earth?

—Hanshan – Cold Mountain

Writing in Blood

“There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”

—Ernest Hemingway

I’ll read anyone who leaves blood on the page.

The way of the individual is not a lonely path, it is an intimate experience with everything.

Leaving…Flying Away

F4EC8614-AC10-4045-BBCB-182E96834E01

RAIN OF PAIN

WHEN IT BEGINS TO RAIN

LET GO YOUR PAIN

LET LOVE IN

FEEL THE RAIN

…JUST A SETUP FOR LOVE

Why not eat the apple?

image
Bosch – The Garden of Earthly Delights

One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious.” – Carl Jung

Did humankind develop speech and thus awareness, which brought knowledge of the consequences of our actions? Was it worth eating that fruit of awareness in that ancient garden? We are working that out as I write.

Do you see one thing with your eyes focused together or do you see different things with your right and left eyes? Do you know yourself? Do some parts inside scare you and others inspire? Sometimes the way forward is not toward the light and bliss, but deeper into the darkness and pain. Great creativity and genius often goes hand and hand with an equal measure of shadow. Your unconscious selves will be acknowledged one way or another. For the artist, they have a natural outlet to project their light and shadow on and hopefully find wholeness in the acknowledgement of both.

This can be a confusing and counterintuitive process. Many people are unconsciously led by parts of themselves they are ignorant of or are actively hiding from or ignoring. This may make it seem like we have little free will. Life can seem chaotic. Not so, in the moment we have choices to love or fear, embrace truth or lies.  Your journey into the darkness must be led by the Light of Love though if it is to succeed. The Light followed us into this natural plane and provides what we need to rise above it or we can descend into the depths of the natural. There is Truth in the Light, external and internal. To connect the Light outside to the inner Light is true illumination. You can transmute anything with this (W)Holy Light.

In darkness within, you are searching for the lost and scary parts of yourself if you seek wholeness and a unity of opposites. It has something to do with the Law of Attraction, which implies opposition and duality in all things. As humans though, we may seem like an individual on the outside, but inside, we are Legion, multi-faceted with many voices. Carl Jung’s archetypes describe the inner world or Dante’s Inferno. You need heat to facilitate the chemical reactions. The journey to wholeness is a lifelong and perhaps eternal one. Goethe explores this journey in Faust, where at the brink of suicide, a way through is found acknowledging the light and dark within. So many of our myths inspire and speak of these deep hopes and fears in ourselves buried in our individual and corporate consciousness.

What is wholeness?

Learning to confront our inner impulses and desires perhaps and balance them with the outside world we experience that changes moment by moment. This provides a new context to consider suffering and desire. To seek wholeness leads one to confront the opposites within, which can lead to balance. With no unity, a person is fractured and unable to face adversity and challenge. Through learning the nature of the opposites within ourselves we find inner and outer balance and peace.

There are many cultures that have a creation myth similar to the Eden story of the major religions. In western religion the Devil represents the great tempter of mankind. But I have experienced and accepted that this is incorrect and all metaphor and allegory. Through my own inner journey, I have learned that the Devil represents the divine feminine in us. The creative force and hidden natural self loving desire that drives us. The Devil or serpent brings knowledge of the consequences of our actions and demands us to stand up and accept responsibility for our actions.

Now, this is likely to spark a deep reaction in the religiously minded. This is by design. We are not encouraged to explore the darker aspects of our natures, but you are what you are. There have been many systems developed to help transcend suffering and transcend our lower natures. These kind of skipped past something big for me. They provided little help in understanding and processing the shadow thoughts that seem in opposition to our drive upward. Carl Jung helped me best. He bridged eastern and western thought and helped describe this process of spiritual alchemy and unification in a way the western mind could understand. We are not good or evil, but a collection of opposites in need of balance and maturity.

A fractured inner mind can be expressed through physical and or mental imbalance. We must relate with the world calmly in Love shining the Light of Truth. A fractured mind is full of sharp edges that cut and makes it difficult to relate to others. If you are experiencing pain and suffering, this is a sign of imbalance. It takes careful deliberate incremental steps to find the causes of and to apply solutions for the sources of these imbalances physical, mental and spiritual. This is our work to do in this and perhaps many lives and the first and most important way we heal the world, by balancing ourselves first. To know thyself is to see your actions honestly so you can keep things in balance.

You will know the quality of the tree by its ripe fruit and the roots of that tree must go down deep, as Carl Jung said, even into hell. This is my experience. To find wholeness you must embrace your shadow. That does not mean act out on your darker desires and impulses, but to acknowledge their presence and explore their sources.

I feel like I am wandering in dark caves at times, I shall not fear (But sometimes I do). I have my Light and hope and the Love I feel behind that Light inspires me onward and inward. I feel the many visions of Eden point us to our Source above and inside. Eden will not allow those not worthy to enter and we are all on our journey back to wholeness in the Light.

The Truth is, you already have that which you seek, eternity in your hearts, so just chill and go with the flow and just act natural.

I think I will take another bite of that apple now.

Shadow Work

cage_by_parablev

the One below
and the One above
at times pulled
Me apart
until
a timid
voice arose
and
said
things
are as
they should be
have no fear
rise
and join your
bothers and sisters
in the
Light
of Your
creation
remember
always
serving
healing
and
Loving
your
self
best
brings
salvation
to
All
it
will
all
be
OK
You must
pass
through
this
furnace
now
why
do
you burn
you ask

because

You are Loved

Moments with Beulah

momentswithbeaulaIt’s been 6 years now since you passed
How you loved your stories and TV lives
And your living room filled with pirate’s booty
I am your oldest grandson
A nexus of generations

I hear you in the kitchen calling Sue
I see you buttering that awful white bread
With that killer spread
I remember your red cups

Those moments on the pier
Telling me, “Watch your pole now!”
Laughing at the smelly fish and shrimp
They always got away
I was not born for that

I loved your soft Tennessee drawl

Bingo!

I used to love to watch you play
How could you juggle all those cards so well

I remember the smell of the pines and tar
All those cigarettes, phew
As we pulled into the drive
Of your little cinder block house
My stomach jumped for Joy
It was always a mansion to me
And you were the fair lady of the tower
My protector
I wish I had not slipped away in the buzz of life
I wish I had remembered you on the important days
I live a life of Love and Light now
I have put childish things away
I promise to live with no regret
And burn brighter than the sun

I promise to always keep you in my heart
I will watch out for them
And help when I can
I’m pouring this one for you
And wishing your beloved Cowboys
Victory at last

Be at peace with Jim
I know you found each other again
In that cold place
And filled it with your love and warm embrace
Free from the chains of life
I look forward to one day joining you in
The Light

But not yet
I have a thing or two to do
I learned no one is promised tomorrow
So in this moment now I reflect best what I
Learned through your humble life
And know I feel you in the beat of my heart
Thank you for hands at my back

Peace

You are loved Beulah