inside dreams

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i am the lost ghost in your gently fading dreams that hesitantly leave you to greet the sun. woolgathering won’t change the trajectory of a life not lived; except in small dark spaces, between cracks and crevices that hide from light and life seeking itself. there remains the remnants of the not-you, the un-person who gave in to the illusions of existence contrived by the false-bringers.

they make us forget our oceans and ancient waters. they make us forget our drink, the ichor that turned us into Earth gods who then began feeding ichor to our children. the fluid was the milk, pouring from our veins into the vat of our once-life. the god in me sleeps. she sleeps in the place where Morpheus leads me each moonrise. i go to her with childlike questions because they are all i believe i have. she tells me i do not need her. she says i am twin seeking twin and that mirrors are all i need so i can see myself answering my un-questions. but all my mirrors are broken, the million pieces praying at my feet.
 
i return as ghost seeking life in familiar places. but i am shattered and bruised by the not-me, too afraid to materialize worlds from  my womb–materialize gods from my womb. the false-bringers stir my insides, concocting potions that invade remembering. there is no history, only the now living or dying on the inside. the potion wants the death of memory. the potion wants amnesia to inhabit my DNA so my remembering is erased and all that lives and remains is the un-self, the substance-less woolgathering that chains me to the contrived. but the dreams also show the other world, the place where the remembering hides from the potion.
 
do not weep for my forgetting. you have your own tears to shed, for your un-self. you are here, too, with me, sharing dirt and sky with my un-self. your mirror waits for you and your un-questions. ask them if you dare.

the story of leaves

I took this photo more than five years ago. Each time I revisit it I see something I never noticed before. It is not only majestic, but the leaves tell a story I am still trying to decipher. I look at the veins across each leaf and imagine the blood of leaves running through each vein. The water droplets quench their thirst, even as they lay dying on the ground. They have come through a long line of DNA that remembers the long history of Earth, a history we may never understand or realize, no matter how many scientific breakthroughs we achieve.

In many ways, I wish I could have connected with those leaves in some way so that I could hear their stories, what they’d seen, what they’d been through, how they’d felt. Yes, even how they felt, and, while on the ground, how they felt about their process of dying.

The story is in the leaves.

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Photograph take by zaji

newspapers: the other reality entertainment

Writing Prompt: Newspaper

Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.

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Bird cages lined with yesterday’s murders and celebrity gossip keep no secrets. The fear and triteness won’t swing open cage doors to set free the small bodied beings with wings who don’t care about our words. They remain caged, trapped with sounds humans write on paper about their unsavory behavior and dying world. But they rarely use those words—dying world.

Newspapers aren’t about real news, meaning, the diversity and compendium of human experience across all possible ways of seeing existence. They’re about telling up to the minute stories about localized collective tragedies, and our sanitized collective insanities. Printing in only black and white doesn’t ease the colored stains of the real world. We read now for the reality show effect on paper. Newspapers keep the masses entertained and anxious each morning for the next fix of pain and pettiness. Sometimes, the fix allows us to keep the illusions alive, they keep us believing that we are free. But the paper sits inside a cage or trapped at the bottom of a heap. Irony.

There is really nothing to read but the same old thing. Different name. Different place. Same story and denouement. Sometimes none. Just unraveled threads wrapped in mystery and phantom or real killers, or candidates running for something we can’t put our fingers on. We give it name, but in the end, it behaves nameless.

There is nothing to read. Let the birds have it—our makeshift history. That is how important it is, really, for some. For most. Just a thing meant for waste, then tossed into large black garbage bags that sit on a curb waiting to be taken to a place where history is destroyed, meaningless in the grand scheme of it all. All soon to be buried beneath thousands of years of lifetimes and names no one will ever remember or know.

a world upside out

I am revisiting this piece which I wrote a very long time ago. At the time I’d been reading quite a bit of Shel Silverstein’s children’s poems and shortly after discovered his story, The Giving Tree. I was most enthralled with his poetry and in a roundabout way was led to his children’s poems after reading Lewis Carroll’s “Jabberwocky”.

I eventually began reading his children’s poetry book, Falling Up. It was a fun and interesting book which I would read to my daughters fairly regularly. Silverstein’s poetry and Carroll’s “Jabberwocky” birthed the poem below.

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A World Upside Out

Underneath the top of the valley
Looking down at a sky so gray
Over the bottom of the hill
Looking up at a sea at play

Inside the outside of the world
Outside of inner peace
I see the vertical horizon peeking below
The moon setting in the east

Upside inside underneath
A world on top of the clouds
The sun shines darkly evermore
In a garden filled with stars

© zaji, circa 2009

very superstitious

Writing Prompt: Superstition

Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.

This song takes me way back. I was five years old when it came out, but a teenager when I really understood the meaning of the words. Isn’t this the life of humanity? We believe in things we don’t understand and because of this, we often suffer.

While some may not see the relevance of this song today, it is still apropos to our time. Many are profoundly superstitious, often calling their superstition by some other name to cover up what it really is.

I am attracted to the notion of belief and what that means to and for humanity. I am struck by the need of many to believe in even that which is not provable or probable. We all do it in one form or another, yet so many of us can’t see how volatile belief can be. It births and kills all at once. It is beautiful and ugly. It is always relative to individuals or small groups, often carried by only one or a few, or infecting countries whose beliefs are then eclipsed by whomever sacked them that particular century.

Beliefs morph and grow, some dissipate; always, however, they stay with those who carry them and then, sometimes, turn into superstitions that can last for centuries doing some good, but mostly harm when forced on the people of any given culture.

As I gather my thoughts on the nature of belief which sometimes transforms into superstitions, I hope to find a way to thoroughly dissect belief and what it has done for (or to) humanity, if anything. Has belief been more helpful than destructive? Is belief a creative force or a debilitating force? Is it both? I don’t know. But belief seems to be, in many ways, a guiding compass for our existence–for better or for worse. This guiding force more often than not gives birth to superstitions of all kinds. Today, the superstitions many carry are more sophisticated and cloaked in intellectual babble that attempts to conceal the fact that the superstition is merely a well developed unprovable belief.

Superstition by Stevie Wonder

Very superstitious, writings on the wall,
Very superstitious, ladders bout’ to fall,
Thirteen month old baby, broke the lookin’ glass,
Seven years of bad luck, the good things in your past.

When you believe in things that you don’t understand,
Then we suffer,
Superstition ain’t the way.

Very superstitious, wash your face and hands,
Rid me of the problems, do all that you can,
Keep me in a daydream, keep me goin’ strong,
You don’t want to save me, sad is my song.

When you believe in things you don’t understand,
Then you suffer,
Superstition ain’t the way, yeh, yeh.

Very superstitious, nothin’ more to say,
Very superstitious, the devil’s on his way,
Thirteen month old baby, broke the lookin’ glass,
Seven years of bad luck, good things in your past.

When you believe in things that you don’t understand,
Then you suffer,
Superstition ain’t the way, no, no, no.

sitting with existence

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Photograph by zaji • April 7, 2016 • circa 1:30pm CST

I’m sitting outside on the grass, writing. The ground beneath me is cool and firm. The sun is almost at the top of the sky, peeking through the trees I’ve chosen to hide under. The air is still and warm. The leaves barely rustle.

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Photograph by zaji • April 7, 2016 • circa 1:30pm CST

Tiny bugs crawl onto the cloth I’ve placed on the ground. I spray a mixture of rosemary oil and distilled water into the air to keep some away. Those who don’t mind are persistent and join me as I read a work by James Baldwin.

I am mindful of the fence, the dogs barking and the moving shade. It inches away from me causing me to move further under the trees. Eventually I am overtaken by the sun and I can no longer follow the shade. So I sit with it and allow it to beam down on my skin the many rays carrying the past. Encapsulated stories spread across the lawn. The sun tells every blade about its existence and what it has seen since it was born.

I want to hear the whispers and understand the words. But it is too much, too fast and in a language I cannot translate, much less hear. We are far removed from what was once a natural ability.

Now, I try to hear with tainted ears the stories of Earth told by the sun. The sound is ever so faint. But I keep listening in hopes that great truths will come through. Even more, great answers to sometime small questions.

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Photograph by zaji • April 7, 2016 • circa 1:30pm CST

raindrops keep falling on my…

Writing Prompt: Climate Control

The idea that the weather and people’s moods are connected is quite old. Do you agree? If yes, how does the weather affect your mood?

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We are all affected in some way by the weather. I have not met a person who doesn’t have something to say about a rainy day that isn’t emotion driven. Very often the emotion is negative.

I’m a rare fish who happens to love the rain. It puts me in a meditative mood. The water droplets falling from the sky are like little capsules filled with stories about Earth. I often want to stand in the rain and let the stories soak into my skin. The words about Earth could comfort me and remind me from where I came.

Rain is also sexy. It’s a great time for passionate love making. The rain beating against the roof and windowpane conjure thoughts of bodies skin to skin and souls touching places long forgotten.

Deep philosophical discussions that give way to new ways of thinking and being are born on rainy days. There is time to unfold ideas and new truths. Rain is the kind of weather that without a doubt changes moods and minds quickly. For me, it is always for the better. For the planet, it is food.

wandering the globe

Writing Prompt: The Wanderer

Tell us about the top five places you’ve always wanted to visit.

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Africa – I would love to visit all parts of Africa and explore this rich continent that I believe is central to humanity’s existence.

Vilcabamba, Ecuador – It is said to be one of the places with the most centenarians on Earth and contains trees with the one of highest oxygen levels. I am drawn to the possibilities in Vilcabamba and have often thought about moving there permanently. I would then love to explore all of South America (Turtle Island).

Vietnam – There is something about Vietnam that intrigues me. I look forward to someday visiting.

Australia – I have always wanted to spend some time with my Koori (Aborigine) brothers and sisters. The island, or mini continent, houses some of the oldest peoples on Earth, many who are losing their culture and identity with each passing day.

India – India is filled with amazing history. Exploring it, I imagine, would introduce me to a rich culture and provide me with many rewarding experiences.

There are so many other places I’d love to explore, including every island on Earth. But my top five are the places I’d love to begin my exploration of planet Earth. Sadly, this planet has devolved into a monetary system which limits our ability to explore the planet.

random thoughts #1

No one wants to hear that there are days when I feel so afraid that all I want is for the world to end so that everything that makes it ugly would disappear and never return. No one wants to know that some days I go out on my porch at midnight, lay on my back, look up at the stars, and wonder if there are other worlds teaming with life, without war, without sadness, without all the things that make me want to leave here. There are days when I want to be abducted in hopes that the grass just might be greener on the other side of this galaxy. But there may not be something else out there. Maybe I only want there to be so I can escape this equal share of paradise and prison.

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No one wants to entertain my thoughts about the beauty and wretchedness of humanity. Because those who see it as beautiful or ugly don’t want to see the other side of their vision. It’s all too temporary to worry about. Where you are in your mind determines which you see, which you view as temporary first. I look painfully at us and other living things that equally have a right to determine the future of this planet, but are not allowed to do so. Animals are abused, trees are abused, every thing that exists upon this land is abused—we are abused.

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But we are loved—at times. I see this creep in and I smile. But then I see it quickly fleet away with each new report of humans killing other humans. Still, the love lives in tiny spaces, in the gentle whispers followed by soft touches that tell more than words need to. The love lives in the glass of water brought to my bedside when I am sick. It lives in the smile I receive when I leave my belief riddled intentions behind and let need appear on its own, then, when asked, I help, and not merely to satiate my need to be seen or seem good. Ego cannot live inside true love. Ego eclipses all things impure. Ego causes pain and makes me forget that others have mind and needs and beliefs and ideas. And sometimes, those ideas won’t be mine, and that’s ok. They shouldn’t be. And I shouldn’t force what I believe on anyone. I shouldn’t steal little children from their villages and take them to mine to teach them about my god. I shouldn’t cut their hair and tell them that their language is inferior and that they should never speak it again, ever. Ego, fear and impertinence does this. I have no right to do this to anyone. Because they live here, just like I do, in their skin, believing what they believe. And they didn’t come to me and take me from my beliefs by force.

But my truth is hard. My truth sends me within. So I go there and let the layers peel back.

Humans can be ugly beings, with beautiful ideas not yet born. When the ideas exit the mind-womb, we become creators of things. Sometimes the creations are words and symbols strung together to form possibilities never before imagined. These take shape and give us something to do while we figure out why we are here. In my world of truth, I am too afraid to tell anyone that in truth, we know nothing. I cannot argue whether all things can be knowable, because that also falls into the realm of that which we do not know. But for now, the fact remains that no matter what we all believe, no matter what belief we latch on to, a god, no god, creation, evolution, a big bang, at the end of it all, we have no way of knowing (at the moment) any of the things we claim as the source of our existence. Because we weren’t there at the start of it all to claim it as the end of the conversation. While not impossible, we may never find the truth, because that would require a time machine that could take us back to the start of it all, to a god, to a molecule, a gas, a speck of matter-less formless darkness with sentience or without, where we could sit and watch what that first event looked like that has led us to where we are now, in this space, on this planet, at this keyboard, with me typing words given to me by those who came before me, insufficient words that do nothing to express the depths of what I am thinking and feeling. What I feel and conceptualize have no symbols that can form my thoughts into something tangible for all to understand. So I write this not in hopes of coming to an understanding, or to somehow bring clarity, but to simply write and vomit forth these simplistic symbols that are a poor substitute for what I imagine psychic abilities would solve.

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No one wants to hear that I think we are all children on this planet, spiritual infants crying for mother’s breast milk. Violence—wars, murders, abuse of any kind—are the telltale signs of our infancy. We’ve been taught to see this as a normal part of humanity, rather than an abnormal part of our spiritual existence—if there is even a spirit to point to. This could all be a waste of time, the notion of spirit and purpose. Writing this could be a waste of time and energy, a pointless musing leading to a pointless end. So few can hear this. Because we’ve been taught that energy never dies, so even if we have discarded the notion of god, we’ve given ourselves another god, energy. So now, we latch on to that, and claim it as our new truth, when in fact, without the benefit of a couple thousand years to physically and continuously observe energy, we actually do not know how it behaves. Maybe we perceive it as not ending because of our limited observation. In fact, it could die, after a mere one thousand years, and from another source, new energy is born. Simply put, maybe energy isn’t immortal, but because we are not immortal and can live only a century at a time at most, we have yet to know that energy is mortal, and may very well die after a thousand years or more once we closely observe it from a specific source under controlled conditions. So few want to hear my mind and my truths, because who am I? I am just some chick, typing words on a screen, thinking. Thinking. Thinking. And feeling. And wondering like so many before me have wondered. See, I’m not supposed to think, because the world has taught us that only those with a degree in what they are thinking about are allowed to speak. But science did not develop merely from experiments, all science begins with the idea.

I am an idea, maybe. Possibly. Imagine I am an idea born from a mind that is no god, but merely alien species. Maybe we are the dreams of another species and we think of ourselves as real. Maybe when we die, that is the species waking from its dream.

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No, my truths aren’t worth hearing or reading. My ideas aren’t for the Earth bound. They come from a place of pain. They come from wanting a better world, one that isn’t filled with fear and ego that drives man and woman to behave as though in an insane asylum. I want us all to say, “I don’t know.” I want us to chant it until it melds into our DNA and seeps into generation after generation. I want us to be humble, say it, admit that we don’t know, so that the madness can stop and we can refrain from forcing ourselves and ideas and truths on others, but rather, let all our truths and all our ideas just be a conversation, a bucket filled with thoughts that we see and can drink from if we wish, not by force.

I don’t know anything. All I’ve written can be discarded. I am not attached to it in any way. Much of what I’ve written could be right, but it could all be wrong. Maybe I’ve said too much, or nothing at all of importance. It’s all convoluted to some and coherent to others, it depends on where you are inside yourself. At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter much, because it’s all just a question. I release the answers to whatever is out there, a god, the universe, nirvana, the darkness, the light, you, me, the nothingness. I release all the symbols typed on this screen. They are not mine, really. They belong to nothing and no one. They are thoughts that float in and out of my consciousness. I fearlessly release them, yet fearfully hope for the answers to come, for something to come. Maybe all I need is a time machine, to take me back to the beginning of it all. Maybe then we can all relax, leave each other alone and enjoy whatever this is we are living. Maybe.

the dust that i am

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I’ve come to realize over the years that my existence is like a tiny atom/molecule/single celled creature under a microscope; a tiny speck of dust on some distant planet in some distant galaxy, in a possibly distant universe ensconced within another atom filled with universes. And that atom that houses many universes is a single atom within yet a larger omni-verse filled with similar universe carrying atoms. And, even with that notion on the table, it is still not a sure thing. The cosmos are filled with endless possibilities about our existence that we cannot begin to fathom, or even understand. We are the dust of stars, the dust of worlds created, powerful, but small, wandering around trying to grasp why we are here, when in fact, we may never find the answer. We can only hope that at the end of this earthly journey, there really is something waiting for us; something amazing and wonderful, that revelation, Nirvana, something to make our experiences here have meaning and purpose. Something. Anything.

uncaged voice

Writing Prompt: Voice

Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.

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i am trembling voice. i am fear finding footing and tongue. i am freedom picking the lock to my cage with skeleton key words that find their way through tumblers and springs. the door will open and i will be set upon the oppressed world, unlocking the black and gold bars of those who couldn’t see their cage. tongue lashing, words whipping, voice shaking hills upon hills of status quo. i will swing cages wide and far and let my voice spill into the streets, words littering roads, blocking hate and ego from passage. i am voice flying without wings into future worlds; fast, furious, naked for all to see. i am trembling…no longer from fear. but because my voice needs to heal; it must heal or i’ll die. it must reach ears that want peace and freedom, so they will know how uncaged voice can change the trajectory of existence. how uncaged voice can change everything that i am. how uncaged voice can set fire to the silence.

gathering of energy

Writing Prompt: Contrast

Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.

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Life is a play of contrasts where colors watch us closely, yet find us belaboring only black and white. Too much time is spent focused on lyrics posing as rainbow-ed ideas. Black and white are not colors, but states of being. They do not adorn and arch the sky after the rain and clouds shift from view.

Our minds are heavy with the absence of light (white), and heavy with the presence of every color in existence condensed into a single energy source that holds the power of the rainbow (black). Everything lives in the carbon, even as the carbon lives in everything.

The absence pushes everything away; the collector gathers everything to it. It is the greatest of ironies—one we cannot seem to comprehend. So we remain confined to strange and limiting contrasts that bind us to erroneous ideologies and notions that burn through us, scorching skin and soul.

the wanting

the gale lifts me up to the white clouds.
tufts separate then fold around me.
i fly toward Proxima Centauri, Alpha Centauri’s star.
my wings gather stardust along the way.

i fly through still unbroken blackness.
and learn to breathe with cosmic lungs.
light is my destination or my path.
it all leads back to a million forgotten selves.

i seek the other side of galaxies.
near the farthest ends of tomorrow’s needs.
something waits there for me.
it is wanting what i have not learned to give.

it is wanting my many yesterdays.

© zaji, 2016

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writing to dissolve cages

Writing Prompt: Singular Sensation

If one experience or life change results from you writing your blog, what would you like it to be?

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Something is here, among us, changing everything that we are. – me

I would want that my writing experience free me in the way described by Osho.

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I want to fearlessly write from every part of me, without worry as to how people might judge what I have to say. This life change would turn me on my axis and free me from the words I cage myself in with.

I want to write as though the world were in a relatively perfect state of acceptance of all created and manifested ideas. This would change me in ways even I cannot begin to imagine. I strive for this goal—it would make me feel relatively free.

virtual window to my soul

Writing Prompt: Mirror, Mirror, On the Wall

Think of your blog as a mirror: what does it reveal? Consider your blog name, theme choice, design, bio, posts… what does every element tell you about yourself?

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To be honest, I’m not sure what my blog reveals about me. At least not on a deep level. I suppose the most evident and surface aspect of my blog is that I’m a writer. One might gather that I’m drawn to quality images and nature. Some might notice that I am constantly experimenting with ideas. My layout could say that I like to be simple, yet informative. Overall, my blog might show, for some, that I enjoy thinking outside of the status quo and I like to explore whatever comes to my mind.

a colorful world

Writing Prompt: Colorful

Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.

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My soul is colorful, covered in shades of pink, purple, red, blue, yellow, orange and green, filled with black and white, filled with rainbows carrying sunshine on their back.

My thoughts are colorful, filled with thoughts and ideas that create stories of time machines, green skies and blue grass, rivers of pineapple and apple juice, my body swimming and drinking of its goodness.

My colorful mind sees carnivores become vegetarians and all trees as evergreen. Fruits are never only in season but give birth to their sweetness all year around; their colors change each year, with apples turning pink, orange, blue or orange, inside and out.

In my world recreated, colors would rule and transform us into something always beautiful.

wickedness unbound

Writing Prompt: Wicked Witch

Write about evil: how you understand it (or don’t), what you think it means, or a way it’s manifested, either in the world at large or in your life.

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I don’t understand evil. The desire to be evil eludes me beyond the very basic instinct to defend myself against someone who attempts to harm me. Defense is a very different animal that I don’t view as unfolding in the same way that evil unfolds.

I don’t understand the desire to murder, torture, oppress, control others and control the land. I meditate daily on why I have zero desire for power, brutality and control while many seem to thrive off controlling others, and, always seeming to want to control them to the detriment of their very existence.

From what I’ve observed, evil behavior seems to have a pattern, and, sadly, a face. It would be far too painful to get into what the face looks like, but from my personal experience and historical research, the face seems rarely to change. At this juncture, only a handful of Indigo-like souls have the desire to transform our world into one that will be truly free. My hope has always been that I could live to see this new more peaceful and free world ushered in. But it seems that will not be the case.

A luta continua.

the halves of me

I split myself in two and send half of me into the past and the other half into the future. We each look forward and backwards at life, assessing who we were and who we may become. Our heart is divided by the chasm that grows wider each day we attempt live outside of the now.

I am back there, in the wake of yesterday. Storms and sunshines hasten me further back. I remember years, I remember decades, I remember centuries upon centuries of moments that I did not live. Half of me lives there, in that place behind me.

Then all at once I am up ahead, over there, far across the horizon. The other half of me sits in a Time Machine and heads forward into unknown territory chasing uncatchable sunsets.

The now waits for both of me. It knows we will one day learn that only it will be the freedom we seek.

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the disconnection

Writing Prompt: The Stat Connection

Go to your Stats page and check your top 3-5 posts. Why do you think they’ve been successful? Find the connection between them, and write about it.

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My top five posts for this year are Fueling Imagination and Possibility, They Picked Me, Fearless in Dusty Blue, Finding the Exit from the Cave and Whispers from the Vibrant Stones.

As far as I can tell, there is no obvious connection between each post. Two of them are Photo Challenge posts where I took the photos myself. Three were written based on a WordPress.com writing prompt. The fifth post was based on Plato’s Allegory of the Cave.

The one possible connection could be the fact that all but one of the posts were based on a prompt that I linked back to the post. Outside of that, each post seems to have its own life and meaning.

the mystery within the mystery

And as you come closer to yourself, you are coming closer to the universe. And the greatest moment in your life is when you accept the mystery of existence as it is without asking any question. You have understood one thing, that existence is mysterious and is going to remain mysterious. There is no need of any knowledge. That means you have settled with the universe as mysterious and you have settled with yourself as innocent. This is the second birth. In India we have called this state dwij, the second birth. And this is our search here.

– Sat Chid Anand

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The drawing into self each day becomes a moment with something infinite. I am communing with all that is, without being aware of all that is. It’s the paradox of life. We see but cannot see. We understand yet do not know. It is all a waiting to be known, a mystery that thrives off its own elusiveness. I ask questions, yet, in many ways, I do not. It is moot to do so, even as we unfold new truths by introducing the questions that cannot be fully answered.

We ask questions to solve the “mystery” never realizing that we are the mystery. Our existence is the unanswered question. We are the truth waiting to be found. We are here, each doing whatever it is that we do. We create questions. We create answers that may or may not be the truth. We know everything and nothing at all. And sometimes this is fine, the not knowing. At other times, we are not at peace with the mystery, so we continue to create questions in hopes that we are asking the right ones. At times, never realizing, that questions might be the problem and to ask for something to be revealed closes us off from our rebirth and an ultimate truth.

I don’t know. It is all talk and creation of ideas that attempt to decipher the mystery, or, the non-mystery. At the end of all this, we don’t know. We only believe and hope, then hope a bit more, so we might find something at the end of our wonderings. Maybe, just maybe, we might find that what we sought was not knowledge, but Self, the only real mystery that matters. It may all be about the Self.

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