‘find your purpose and live it out’

when it comes to earth, we are reminded that there is no planet B, there is no alternative.  we have to live with our mistakes as well as our successes–image by Chris Yakimov via Flickr from davidsuzuki.org

so what can we do? lots!

  1. electoral reform–why do we vote in the21st century with 19th century rules?
  2. inner reform, what chefurka calls the inner path
  3. community work, what chefurka calls the outer path
  4. elizabeth may says…
    Sign the online petition
    Write a letter to your MP
    Write a letter to the editor
  5. david suzuki links to leadnow
  6. dance and be joyful!
  7. be yourself (and if you can’t do that, try being a hummingbird)

(images from elizabeth may’s blog)

elizabeth may urges us ‘to push back against this sell-out of our sovereignty [of bitumen extraction to china], security, and democracy, and help to educate Canadians by talking to your friends and neighbours, writing letters to the editor in local and national newspapers, calling in to talk radio shows, and filling up the comment boards of news website. Crucially, this is not a partisan issue, and it is only by coming together to stand up for Canada that we will succeed in stopping this agreement.’–image from wikimedia, licenced under creative commons

350.org is only three years old, yet it has accomplished much; however, ‘our most important work is ahead of us — we’re planning a landmark global convergence, embarking upon an educational road-tour, and launching hard-hitting campaigns in countries all around the world.’–image from wikimedia, licenced under creative commons

oil, oil everywhere–david suzuki write, ‘The goal [of developing the tar sands] is to dig it up, sell it and burn it as quickly as possible while there’s still money to be made. It’s cynical and suicidal, but it’s the kind of thinking that is increasingly common among those who see the economy as the highest priority – over human health and the air, water, soil and biodiverse ecosystems that keep us alive. What can we do? … We should all demand that our leaders put the interests of Canadians now and into the future ahead of short-sighted and destructive industrial ambitions.’–images from wikimedia, licenced under creative commons

bruce cox of greenpeace blogs, ‘On May 26th of this year Germany met half its energy needs with solar power. That’s the same amount of power as 20 nuclear power stations produce operating at full capacity…. In the wake of the Fukushima nuclear disaster, Japan has embarked on an aggressive plan to phase out nuclear and invest in renewable energy. Imagine it. In 20 years Japan and Germany could have a skilled technical workforces and free renewable energy, untied to expensive reactors, the price of a barrel of oil or a ton of coal. They will own the future.’–image from wikimedia, licenced under creative commons

2012-10-25 th–gorgeous weather, so i went for a long trike ride; about half-way, i fell and scraped my right hand and forearm, which is a good thing cuz otherwise, if i had not fallen i wouldn’t have met the kind people who helped me get back on my trike; falling is part of the danger of living for me–i’m glad i’m still able to fall; my pain assures me i am alive! and later i might not have met the guy on another recumbent. meanwhile, on suburban lawns today, i saw folks using actual leaf rakes, not leaf-blowers. also, surrender can empower: chefurka reminds me (and maybe you) that ‘unlike the Western interpretation of the word – “the acceptance of defeat” – this use of Surrender asks us simply to accept that there are indeed some things that cannot be done.  If we surrender to the truth of our reality in this way, we are suddenly released from our attachment to the impossible, free instead to do the very best of those things that can be done. In this surprising reversal of meaning, surrender becomes synonymous not with final defeat, but with the opportunity for true victory.  That opportunity is to find the gifts of insight that wait hidden in even the darkest corners of our experience.’ he quotes niebuhr, the prayer i heard every morning for two years at the shaver, the prayer which follows me all the days of my life, the prayer of a human duality and a divine solution (wisdom in the book of proverbs is divine–don’t worry, this divinity is within for those of us willing to dive deep)

Grant me this day
The courage to change those things I can,
The serenity to accept those things I cannot change –
And above all, the wisdom to know the difference

and finally: ‘May your journey be filled with hope, joy, liberation and love.’ tonight’s share film is forks over knives. many of us hung out on the sidewalk after the film. it was hard to say good night. but it was a good night. following a good day.

images from wikimedia, licenced under creative commons, except forks over knives from forksoverknives.com

a friend says we are bags of mostly water, but since water is neither created nor destroyed but has been around since primordial volcanoes belched it into the atmosphere where it rained for 40 million days and 40 million nights forming the hydrological cycle (aren’t you glad we’re clever?), the water we drink and the water in our cells and between our cells and in our bloodstream was once dinosaur pee, so we are bags of mostly dino pee. similarly, some of the air we breathe was breathed by jesus, and the buddha, and mohammed, and any other ancient human, or any other old lifeform. i don’t know the math, so i don’t how ancient the air has to be before a breath is globally shared. maybe we all breathe a bit of what emily dickinson breathed, or trudeau, or thatcher, or ringo; one thing’s for sure: we all carry a bit of strontium-90, a legacy from nuclear accidents like chernobyl. it’s half-life is only about 30 years, but for the civilians and service personnel exposed to depleted uranium with its half-life of 700 million years (aren’t you glad we’re clever?), the sins of the father will be passed to the children for generations. ashes to ashes, dust to dust, however tarnished, we are golden and to the stars we shall return.

images from wikipedia

2012-10-24 we–never did rain; played chess with john; sno came home safely; watched beasts of the southern wild (review pending) at the galaxy (good thing some therapists and an architect were there cuz the automatic doors aren’t automatic)

image: starnewsonline.com

breaking news! chefurka adds a sixth to kubler-ross’s famous five:

  1. Denial — “This can’t be happening! There’s been some stupid mistake.”
  2. Anger — “This is simply not fair! Who is to blame for this?”
  3. Bargaining — “I’ll do anything for a chance at a few more years. Anything!”
  4. Depression — “I can’t do anything about it, so why bother with anything? What’s the point?”
  5. Acceptance — “Well, I can’t fight it, so I may as well prepare for it.
  6. Finding the Gift — “Wow, look at the opportunities this change opens up! I may not be able to go back, or even forward in the direction I wanted, but just look at all the other possibilities that have suddenly appeared!”
images: ‘enflamed’ from chefurka’s blog; kubler-ross from wikipedia

2012-10-22 mo–sno off to t-o. just me and the tick-tock. catching up: bennett reviews  Alan Watts’ THE BOOK: On the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are, which says that really, separateness is a hallucination. chefurka cautions against despair as you climb ‘The Ladder of Awareness’. David Suzuki with Ian Hanington says ‘An energy plan must be about more than just energy.’ don’t speak much french–can you tell me what’s going on in ‘Laisse le vent souffler‘?

images: ‘tracing infinity’ from chefurka’s blog; book cover from google

the dalai lama writes, ‘It is of course deeply unfortunate when such people [such as homeless or prisoners] … feel rejected by society. Not only is it deeply painful for them, but also … it is a loss for society. We are not providing the opportunity for these people to make a constructive social contribution…. It is important for society … to embrace them and acknowledge the potential contribution they can make. In this way they will feel they have a place in society, and will begin to think that they might perhaps have something to offer.’ this was made clear in some of the films we saw on the weekend and when cncc prisoners help out at the gardens. what are they doing onsite at waypoint or cncc? what can ootc do?

image: butchart gardens, brentwood bay, bc

Training the Mind: Verse 4
When I see beings of unpleasant character
Oppressed by strong negativity and suffering,
May I hold them dear-for they are rare to find-
As if I have discovered a jewel treasure

image from dalailama.com

evil is as evil does. while i can’t imagine harper being evil, i can imagine him doing evil. i mean, can’t we all do some evil, big or small? we might call it spite or musical differences or something else. saturday night i saw pictures of mountain-top removal, i saw them (who’s ‘them’? people like you and me) blasting, and i thought, yeah, i can see harper approving that no problem. afterall, he’s okay with tar sands and pipelines, which kill and pollute. killing and polluting are acts of evil in my books. what’s more, harper is our leader; his actions are not merely wrong, but because they are amplified, they lead us into temptation, into addiction, into evil. ideally, forgiveness is greater than evil, but i may not be up to it.

images: mountain-top removal from worldwatch.org; harper from wikipedia

my new hero, steven wells===>.

image: toronto star

bennett says, ‘the most satisfying thing you can do in your life is find your purpose and live it out. Ask how you can provide the most benefit for the most people. Listen to your intuition; this is God communicating with you [okay, if you’re not sure about this god/dess-thing, or you’re definitely sure we’re on our own, you can still listen to your intuition]. Understand your place in the universe and your unique role in fulfilling God’s purpose: to create.’ the most satisfying thing you can do, eh? i’m all for that. from my experience and heeding the wise, the most satisfying thing you can do is love. even when you and your memory become unknown, ‘love will have been enough; all those impulses of love return to the love that made them. Even memory is not necessary for love. There is a land of the living and a land of the dead and the bridge is love, the only survival, the only meaning,’ wrote thornton wilder. but love can be tricky. how do you love god/dess, your neighbour, your enemy, a stranger, your non-communicative child, your partner, yourself? how do you love unconditionally and not get screwed? [addendum: a reader points out that if i feel screwed or if i am screwed, then it wasn’t unconditional.] how do you love the same-old same-old day after day? what happens when you try to keep your head but lose your heart? if love is blind, what happens when you try to keep your eyes wide open?–images: question from themuslimtimes.org; stop from skysom.net; couple from cocteautwinsforum.org?

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2 Responses to ‘find your purpose and live it out’

  1. Cyntiha says:

    Hi Peter, I would challenge your question, “How do you love unconditionally and not get screwed?” That is a contradiction of terms. If you love unconditionally then you would never experience being screwed because when one feels this emotion they are considering self in the equation and it is a selfish action. Loving unconditionally means accepting everything as it is and having no regard for self.

    • good point. i guess as imperfect beings, unconditional love remains an unattainable ideal. what does paul mean, then, in that famous bit from corinthians? that we should strive for the ideal, even tho it’s unattainable?

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