"FAITH OF AN ARTIST" Blog Archive

Begun 3/15/14 blog dates at top right of each

NOTE, MAY 23, 2014: I STOPPED DOING REGULAR BLOGS AFTER RESPONSES BECAME A TRICKLE, ABOUT FOUR PIECES IN. I'M NOT INSPIRED TO GO ON BLOGGING ON THE MOON. SO AS OF NOW, I SEE THIS AS AN EXPERIMENT THAT WAS DISCONTINUED. COULD BE RESUMED SPONTANEOUSLY, WHO KNOWS?

Sat

12

Apr

2014

The Road Leads Through Here

A short Antonio Machado poem that came my way this morning seems to give evidence that the Spaniard was "on the Path":

Wayfarer, the only way
is your footsteps, there is no other.

Wayfarer, there is no way,
you make the way by walking.
As you go, you make the way
and stopping to look behind,
you see the path that your feet
will never travel again.

Wayfarer, there is no way -
Only foam trails to the sea.

(Proverbios y Cantares XXIX)

Meher Baba’s first discourse on  “The Types of Meditation”  begins with an almost identical thought: "Meditation may be described as the path which the individual cuts for himself while trying to get beyond the limitations of the mind." 

The poem and thought fill me with enthusiasm! They say: “You’re not competing with anyone or anything, it’s all a road through yourself, from your limits—and who wants limits, anyway—to the Unlimited Self! What are you waiting for? Let’s go!”  

The terrain can seem a little more forbidding when I take off the glasses that yield that particular view. For example: I work with my weight.It's strayed slowly up  since I “slightly modified” a diet that had gotten it to an optimum place. I’m still unable to find middle ground. When there’s a downward trend for a few days, I feel really disciplined. A week later, the needle threatens to swing past its highest point, and I feel like a slob! 

This too is part of that Mind which must cut beyond its limitations. It seems “physical” but the impressions are mental as well, involving the perceived need to feel a certain way, and how to fill that need. 

So it goes, on and on. A train to freedom is leaving every second, and yet there is this entropy, the force of habit and age-old preference. 

Here’s a little piece I wrote recently about that, again suggesting a positive strategy: 


Beyond this second
we don't know a thing--
uncharted waters,
virgin territory.

Habit lags
trying to catch up,
shouting, "I've been there!"

Don't listen. 

2 Comments

Sun

30

Mar

2014

THE FAITH OF AN ARTIST

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Sat

15

Mar

2014

With God As My Literary Agent!

March 15, 2014

 

1.
If you were God, how might you lead someone into a lifetime as a writer? One way might be to tie up the person’s tongue from childhood with the shame of a trauma, so that he or she could not TALK to people, but instead would get used to confiding in a notebook.

 

Later, when the block got released, that habit would be deeply inculcated, and “shamed secrets” could give way to being a scribe for Infinity and for Beauty. The pen could be taken out of the old inkwell and dipped in the ink of Eternal Life.

 

That’s sort of what happened. One realizes, in such dramatic circumstances, that it’s this simple: bliss and beauty, those are Reality. Their obscuring, amid various shadows like “spells” cast upon us, temporarily  hypnotize us into believing we are less than we are.

 

I still go through such alternations, and yet my personal history this lifetime, born into a special Age, reveals  almost mythological dimensions, and when I look back, always reminds me of the truth.

 

And so I’ve been writing steadily since my twenties… since before that, but the “keepers” started to come, the floodgates opened, in my twenties.

 

2. 

I believed I had a "covenant" with Meher Baba, who, if you read the writings on the page with that name on my website, has been my Guide for many years, and whom I've continued to try to, well, please, for almost my entire adult life. Early on, when people were going into professions, I felt: 

 

"No, you have your vocation. You are a writer, even a poet. You are witness to something wonderful, the Glory of God manifest as Beauty and Truth in this vision we call a world. Your job is to continue to be the scribe expressing the miracle of life in this Age, all things continually made new. It is not your job to worry even about publication. BABA is your agent. Leave it to Him!”

 

Now, human Intuition is notoriously fallible. It can be “contaminated” by one’s psychological complexes and desires, even unconscious ones.

 

If your Agent is God, you can scarcely accuse Him of not doing a good job! But the years went on, then decades, and the Publication was not manifesting.

 

It seemed to be, for awhile, way back in the late ‘80s. One day I received in the mail, quite out of the blue, a letter from Meher Baba’s beloved Mehera J. Irani, whom He called “the purest soul in the universe” and “the only one who loves Me as I should be loved.” She praised my poems in a little booklet I’d sent. I’d never expected such a thing! Even today, the letter sits on my office desk.

 

It seemed I was on the right track. A couple of weeks after that, I picked up a ringing phone in my apartment, and a voice identified itself as Michael Peter Langevin, the Editor/Publisher of a big glossy “new age” magazine called MAGICAL BLEND. He’d found a story of mine in his files and wanted to publish it. “The Dreamer” appeared not long after, and I was treated to the vision of my name on the CONTENTS page along with “my cronies,” Yoko Ono and Carlos Castaneda. It seemed “all over but the shouting.”

3.
Now it’s 2014 and I still haven’t shouted! So many years have passed that I’m now a 66 year-old “young writer” instead of the twenty-something guy I started out as (the differences being superficial, of course).  Long ago I had to throw out my “time schedule”, or any idea of what was or is happening.

 

The past two years, since receiving an email from Jane Olivier, an editor at an online magazine called THE MINDFUL WORD, asking if they might publish some poems of mine she’d come across, I’ve felt blessed to have a published voice in a journal confident enough in what I say to have printed and circulated  since then many of my short stories, essays, reviews, poems, and blogs—even, to my amazement and appreciation, my writings about Meher Baba!

 

When I was younger, it appeared that my “audience” was so split into a) “worldly” folks to whom anything about Baba and “mysticism” might be unreadable…and b) the “spiritual community” to whom writings about the sexual/psychological traumas of my upbringing might seem hopelessly profane, that almost no one was left to appreciate all of any one piece!

The times HAVE “a-changed”! No telling WHAT’S coming, no telling WHAT the real Time Schedule is, except to BE HERE NOW! Hopefully, it was never about “fame”, but about “penetrating into the essence of all being and significance” and releasing “the fragrance…for the guidance and benefit of others by expressing in the world of forms, truth, love, purity and beauty.* "About being a continuing witness...well, including  inevitable Growing Pains at every stage… to the Miracle of unfolding life!
___

* for the entire quote by Meher Baba and its context:
http://discoursesbymeherbaba.org/v2-110.php

 

PLEASE HANG AROUND & EXPLORE THE REST OF THE SITE, OR BOOKMARK AND COME BACK WHEN YOU HAVE MORE TIME! 

 
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