Blossom…

Risk

And then the day came,
when the risk
to remain tight
in a bud
was more painful
than the risk
it took
to Blossom.

-Anaïs Nin

Dream Poem

Once in the dream of a night I stood
Lone in the light of a magical wood,
Soul-deep in visions that poppy-like sprang;
And spirits of Truth were the birds that sang,
And spirits of Love were the stars that glowed,
And spirits of Peace were the streams that flowed
In that magical wood in the land of sleep.

Excerpt from: Song of a Dream
Sarojini Naidu
——
Dear Readers…

One of those week of wonders, painting away, resubmitting the magazine for publishing (the second time! Oh pleaz oh pleaz!) and getting involved in more projects. I sorted out papers and art from the last 30 some years, and even though I cleaned out the un-necessary bits, I have so much more to go. I was surprised at the amount of sketches etc., for ideas not yet implemented. On those alone I could paint for a couple of years it would seem. Digging through the files I found pictures of friends years ago, and my thoughts were deeply stirred by the memories.

Lucid Dreams: There has been a series of these, which I am thankful for. Lucid Dreams are like gifts. I have found that they happen at proprietary times for me. Often, dreams will come that include the idea or experience of a visionary state. I may experience a heightened state of awareness through either, say a bit of grace, or I will experience a psychedelic state from ingesting a dream entheogen… I cherish these dream experiences.

Well, I have to cut this short. Part of the theme of this entry will become clear with the next one… this is actually part one of a larger theme… find it! Write me with where you think it’s going!

Blessings,
G
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On The Menu:
Dharma Rain Auction!
The Links
Love Under Law – The Pleasure Dome
Anaïs Nin Quotes
A Double Return
Al Ghazali Poetry & Prose
The Songs of Kabir, tr. by Rabindranath Tagore
Love Under Law – Love Syrup
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Dharma Rain Auction!

I painted “The Blessing”, at the request of my friend Terry for the Dharma Rain Auction, with is occurring This Saturday (see the Dharma Rain link above).

I am honoured to be asked to donate the painting, it helps bring around a spiral in my life.

In 1968, I met and spent time with Rev Master Jiyu Kennett, when she came to Mt. Shasta to locate property that was later to become the Shasta Abbey. I spent time with her at my friend Helen’s Wolfe’s house, (who had been part of the Harvard/Mexico/Milbrook nexus, as well as the early Haight Ashbury scene.) Helen had been connected to Rev. Master Jiyu Kennett through members of the San Francisco Zen Center. The time we spent talking at Helen’s house helped me clarify my vision and pointed me in new directions in my life. She was perhaps one of the kindest person I had met… What this leads to is that the founders & directors of Dharma Rain are her direct students, and after all this time, I finally will see some of the fruition of this great Teacher, and see how her students have faired. I am quite excited.

Please join us Saturday evening, the 5th of March at 6:30 for the silent auction at 2539 Southeast Madison Street, Portland!

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The Links:
Into The Heart Of The Kaleidescope!
Altar of the Twelve Gods sees the light…
To Dream Of Falling Upwards…
Wake Me Shake Me
What kind of times did the Ramayana exist in?
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Love Under Law – The Pleasure Dome

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Anaïs Nin Quotes:
“We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.”
“Love never dies a natural death. It dies because we don’t know how to replenish its source. It dies of blindness and errors and betrayals. It dies of illness and wounds; it dies of weariness, of witherings, of tarnishings.”
“I, with a deeper instinct, choose a man who compels my strength, who makes enormous demands on me, who does not doubt my courage or my toughness, who does not believe me naïve or innocent, who has the courage to treat me like a woman.”
“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.”
“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”
“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.”
“Luxury is not a necessity to me, but beautiful and good things are.”
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Arthur Machen: One of the stories that started his career…

A Double Return (1890)
One of the first of Machen’s new racy and very contemporary tales of the early 1890s, it succeeds in evoking eeriness and being (at least a little) salaciously shocking, though without the faintest touch of crudity. Oscar Wilde read this tale and was impressed with it; on its strength he took the young Machen out to dinner and encouraged him in his chosen career.

The express from the west rushed through Acton with a scream, whirling clouds of dust around it; and Frank Halswell knocked out the ashes from his pipe and proceeded to gather from various quarters of the carriage his newspapers, his hat-box, his handbag, and, chief of all, a large portfolio carefully packed in brown paper. He looked at his watch, and said to himself: “6.30; we shall be at Paddington in five minutes; and only five minutes late, for a wonder.” But he congratulated himself and the railway company rather too soon: a few minutes later and the train began to slacken, the speed grew slower and slower, and at last came the grinding sound of the brakes and a dead stop. Halswell looked out of the window over the dreary expanse of Wormwood Scrubbs, and heard someone in the next carriage explaining the cause of the delay with pardonable pride in his technical knowledge. “You see, them there signals is against us, and if we was to go on we should jolly well go to kingdom come, we should.” Halswell looked at his watch again and drummed his heels against the floor, wondering impatiently when they would be at Paddington, when, with a sudden whirl, a down train swept by them and the western express once more moved on. Halswell rubbed his eyes; he had looked up as the down train passed, and in one of the carriages he thought he had seen his own face. It was only for a second, and he could not be sure. “It must have been a reflection,” he kept on saying, “from the glass of one window to the other. Still, I fancied I saw a black coat, and mine is light. But of course it was a reflection.”

The express rolled into the terminus with dignity – it was only ten minutes late, after all; and Frank Halswell bundled himself and his traps into a hansom, congratulating himself on the paucity of his bags and the absence of his trunks as he watched the excited mob rushing madly at a Redan of luggage. “153, the Mall, Kensington!” he shouted to the driver above the hubbub of the platform; and they were soon threading deftly along the dingy streets that looked so much dingier than usual after the blue mist upon the sea, the purple heather and the sunny fields. Frank (he was a very popular artist in those days – a rising man, indeed) had been on a sketching tour in Devon and Cornwall: he had wandered along the deep sheltered lanes from hill to hill, by the orchards already red and gold, by moorland and lowland, by the rocky coast and combes sinking down to the wondrous sea.

On the Cornish roads he had seen those many ancient crosses, with their weird interlacing carving, which sometimes stand upon a mound and mark where two ways meet; and as he put his portfolio beside him he could not help feeling a glow of pride at its contents. “I fancy I shall make a pretty good show by next spring,” he thought, Poor fellow! he was never to paint another picture; but he did not know it. Then, as the hansom verged westward, gliding with its ringing bells past the great mansions facing the park, Halswell’s thoughts went back to the hotel at Plymouth and the acquaintance he had made there. “Yes; Kerr was an amusing fellow,” he thought; “glad I gave him my card. Louie is sure to get on with him. Curious thing, too, he was wonderfully like me, if he had been only clean shaven and not ‘bearded like the pard,’ Dare say we shall see him before long; he said he was going to pay a short visit to London. I fancy he must be an actor; I never saw such a fellow to imitate a man’s voice and gestures. I wonder what made him go off in such a hurry yesterday. Hullo! here we are; hi, cabman! there’s 153.”

The twin doors of the hansom banged open; the garden gate shrieked and clanged, and Halswell bounded up the steps and rapped loudly at the door. The maid opened it. Even as he said, “Thank you, Jane; your mistress quite well, I suppose?” he thought he noticed a strange look, half questioning, half surprised, in her eyes; but he ran past her, up the stairs, and burst into the pretty drawing-room. His wife was lying on the sofa; but she rose with a cry as he came in.

“Frank! Back again so soon? I am so glad! I thought you said you might have to be away a week.”

“My dear Louie, what do you mean? I have been away three weeks, haven’t I? I rather think I left for Devonshire in the first week of August.”

“Yes, of course, my dear: but then you came back late last night.”

“What! I came back last night? I slept last night at Plymouth. What are you talking about?”

“Don’t be silly, Frank. You know very well you rang us all up at twelve o’clock. Just like you, to come home in the middle of the night when nobody expected you. You know you said in your last letter you were not coming until to-day.”

“Louise dear, you must be dreaming. I never came here last night. Here is my bill at the hotel; you see, it is dated this morning.”
Mrs. Halswell stared blankly at the bill; then she got up and rang the bell. How hot it was! The close air of the London street seemed to choke her. Halswell walked a few paces across the room then suddenly stopped and shuddered.
“Jane, I want to ask you whether your master did not come here last night at twelve o’clock; and whether you did not get him a cab early this morning?”

“Yes, mum, at least -”

“At least what? You let him in yourself.”

“Yes, mum, of course I did. But, begging your pardon, sir, I thought as how your voice didn’t sound quite natural this morning when you called out to the cabman to drive to Stepney, because you had changed your mind, and didn’t want to go to Waterloo.”

“Good God! What are you thinking about? I never came here. I was in Plymouth.”

“Frank! You are joking! Look here, you left this behind you.”

She showed him a little silver cigarette case with his initials engraved on it. It was a present from his wife, he had missed it one day when he was strolling with Kerr, and had regretted it deeply, searching in the grass in vain.

Halswell held the toy in his hand. He thought he was indeed in a dream, and through the open window came the shrieks of the newsboys, “Extry speshal! extry speshal!” The light had faded; it was getting dark. But suddenly it all flashed upon him. He remembered Kerr and the face he had caught sight of in the passing train; he remembered the strange likeness; he knew who had found the cigarette case; he knew well who it was that had come to his house.

The maid was a good girl; she had stolen away. No one knows what manner of conversation Frank and his wife had together in the darkness; but that night he went away, as it was said, to America. Mrs. Halswell was dead before the next summer.
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Al Ghazali Poetry & Prose

Say unto brethren when they see me dead,
And weep for me, lamenting me in sadness:
‘Think ye I am this corpse ye are to bury?
I swear by God, this dead one is not I.
I in the spirit am, and this my body
My dwelling was, my garment for a time.
I am a treasure: hidden I was beneath
This talisman of dust, wherein I suffered.
I am a pearl; a shell imprisoned me,
But leaving it, all trials I have left.
I am a bird, and this was once my cage;
But I have flown, leaving it as a token.
I praise God who hath set me free, and made
For me a dwelling in the heavenly heights.
Ere now I was a dead man in your midst,
But I have come to life, and doffed my shroud.’

The Causes of Anger and It’s Medicine

Know, O dear readers, that the medicine of a disease is to remove the
root cause of that disease. Isa (Jesus Christ) -peace be upon him-
was once asked: “What thing is difficult?” He said: “God’s wrath.”
Prophet Yahya (John the Baptist) -peace be upon him- then asked:
“What thing takes near the wrath of God?” He said:”Anger”. Yahya –
peace be upon him- asked him:”What thing grows and increases anger?”
Isa -peace be upon him- said:”Pride, prestige, hope for honour and
haughtiness”

The causes which cause anger to grow are self-conceit, self-praise,
jests and ridicule, argument, treachery, too much greed for too much
wealth and name and fame. If these evils are united in a person, his
conduct becomes bad and he cannot escape anger.

So these things should be removed by their opposites. Self-praise is
to be removed by modesty. Pride is to be removed by one’s own origin
and birth, greed is to be removed by remaining satisfied with
necessary things, and miserliness by charity.

The prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “A strong man is not
he who defeats his adversary by wrestling, but a strong man is he who
controls himself at the time of anger.”

We are describing below the medicines of anger after one gets angry.
The medicine is a mixture of knowledge and action. The medicine based
on knowledge is of six kinds:

(1) The first medicine of knowledge is to think over the rewards of
appeasing anger, that have come from the verses of the Quran and the
sayings of the Prophet (pbuh). Your hope for getting rewards of
appeasing anger will restrain you from taking revenge.

(2) The second kind of medicine based on knowledge is to fear the
punishment of God and to think that the punishment of God upon me is
greater than my punishment upon him. If I take revenge upon this man
for anger, God will take revenge upon me on the Judgement Day.

(3) The third kind of medicine of anger based on knowledge is to take
precaution about punishment of enmity and revenge on himself. You
feel joy in having your enemy in your presence in his sorrows, You
yourself are not free from that danger. You will fear that your enemy
might take revenge against you in this world and in the next.

(4) Another kind of medicine based on knowledge is to think about the
ugly face of the angry man, which is just like that of the ferocious
beast. He who appeases anger looks like a sober and learned man.

(5) The fifth kind of medicine based on knowledge is to think that the
devil will advise by saying: ” You will be weak if you do not get
angry!” Do not listen to him!

(6) The sixth reason is to think: ” What reason have I got to get
angry? What Allah wishes has occurred!”

Medicine based on action

When you get angry, say: I seek refuge in God from the accursed evil
(A’oudhou billaahi min as shaytaan ir rajeem). The prophet (pbuh)
ordered us to say thus.

When Ayesha (RA) got angry, he dragged her by the nose and said: ” O
dear Ayesha, say: O God, you are the Lord of my prophet Muhammad,
forgive my sins and remove the anger from my heart and save me from
misguidance.”

If anger does not go by this means, you will sit down if you are
standing, lie down if you are sitting, and come near to earth, as you
have been created of earth. Thus make yourself calm like the earth.
The cause of wrath is heat and its opposite is to lie down on the
ground and to make the body calm and cool.

The prophet (pbuh) said: Anger is a burning coal. Don’t you see your
eyebrows wide and eyes reddish? So when one of you feels angry, let
him sit down if standing, and lie down if sitting.

If still anger does not stop, make ablution with cold water or take a
bath, as fire cannot be extinguished without water.

The prophet (pbuh) said : ” When one of you gets angry, let him make
ablution with water as anger arises out of fire.” In another
narration, he said:” Anger comes from the devil and the devil is made
of fire.”

Hazrat Ali (RA) said:
The prophet did not get angry for any action of the world. When any
true matter charmed him, nobody knew it and nobody got up to take
revenge for his anger. HE GOT ANGRY ONLY FOR TRUTH.

Life is nothing but an accumulation of many breaths. So every breath is just a precious diamond which cannot be purchased with anything in the world. It is a priceless jewel which has got no substitute in value. So in movements and talks, and in sorrows and happiness, such a priceless breath should not be spent in vain. To destroy it is to court destruction. An intelligent man cannot lose it. When a man gets up at dawn, he should enter into an agreement with himself just as a tradesman contracts with his partner. At that time, he should address his mind thus: O mind, you have been given no other property as precious as life. When it will end, the principal will end and despondency will come in seeking profit in business. Today is a new day. Allah has given you time, that is, He has delayed your death. He has bestowed upon you innumerable gifts. Think that you are already dead. So don’t waste time. Every breath is a precious jewel. Man has got for each day and night twenty-four treasure houses in twenty-four hours. Fill up these then find them filled up with divine sights in the world next. If they are not filled up with good works, they will be filled up with intense darkness wherefrom a bad stench will come out and envelop them all around. Another treasure house will neither give him happiness nor sorrow. That is an hour in which he slept, or was careless, or was engaged in any lawful work of this world. He will feel grieved for its remaining vacant.

[Taken from al-Ghazali: Meditation and Introspection, The Book of Constructive Virtues, Ihya Ulum-id-din.]

– Imam Al-Ghazali
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The Songs of Kabir, tr. by Rabindranath Tagore


O Sadhu! my land is a sorrowless land.
I cry aloud to all, to the king and the beggar, the emperor and the fakir–
Whosoever seeks for shelter in the Highest, let all come and settle in my land!
Let the weary come and lay his burdens here!

So live here, my brother, that you may cross with ease to that other shore.
It is a land without earth or sky, without moon or stars;
For only the radiance of Truth shines in my Lord’s Durbar.
Kabîr says: “O beloved brother! naught is essential save Truth.”


The shadows of evening fall thick and deep, and the darkness of love envelops the body and the mind.
Open the window to the west, and be lost in the sky of love;
Drink the sweet honey that steeps the petals of the lotus of the heart.
Receive the waves in your body: what splendour is in the region of the sea!
Hark! the sounds of conches and bells are rising.
Kabîr says: “O brother, behold! the Lord is in this vessel of my body.”

The flute of the Infinite is played without ceasing, and its sound is love:
When love renounces all limits, it reaches truth.
How widely the fragrance spreads! It has no end, nothing stands in its way.
The form of this melody is bright like a million suns: incomparably sounds the vina, the vina of the notes of truth.

O friend, awake, and sleep no more!
The night is over and gone, would you lose your day also?
Others, who have wakened, have received jewels;
O foolish woman! you have lost all whilst you slept.
Your lover is wise, and you are foolish, O woman!
You never prepared the bed of your husband:
O mad one! you passed your time in silly play.
Your youth was passed in vain, for you did not know your Lord;
Wake, wake! See! your bed is empty: He left you in the night.
Kabîr says: “Only she wakes, whose heart is pierced with the arrow of His music.”

When at last you are come to the ocean of happiness, do not go back thirsty.
Wake, foolish man! for Death stalks you. Here is pure water before you; drink it at every breath.
Do not follow the mirage on foot, but thirst for the nectar;
Dhruva, Prahlad, and Shukadeva have drunk of it, and also Raidas has tasted it:
The saints are drunk with love, their thirst is for love.
Kabîr says: “Listen to me, brother! The nest of fear is broken.
Not for a moment have you come face to face with the world:
You are weaving your bondage of falsehood, your words are full of deception:
With the load of desires which you. hold on your head, how can you be light?”
Kabîr says: “Keep within you truth, detachment, and love.”
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Love Under Law – Love Syrup

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