thankful for needing

Kim Upton, 2015

Kim Upton, 2015

There is a cat sitting at the door looking for the Walkway to Summer. He is teaching me that needing is okay.

Birds are singing about Spring and Imbolc/Candlemas Light has come trickling down the trees.

For me a little Hermann Hesse is giving me the kind of sanctuary that my body craves.  And with that, the return to the woods — where many of my good friends live.

“For me, trees have always been the most penetrating preachers. I revere them when they live in tribes and families, in forests and groves. And even more I revere them when they stand alone. They are like lonely persons. Not like hermits who have stolen away out of some weakness, but like great, solitary men, like Beethoven and Nietzsche. In their highest boughs the world rustles, their roots rest in infinity; but they do not lose themselves there, they struggle with all the force of their lives for one thing only: to fulfil themselves according to their own laws, to build up their own form, to represent themselves. Nothing is holier, nothing is more exemplary than a beautiful, strong tree. When a tree is cut down and reveals its naked death-wound to the sun, one can read its whole history in the luminous, inscribed disk of its trunk: in the rings of its years, its scars, all the struggle, all the suffering, all the sickness, all the happiness and prosperity stand truly written, the narrow years and the luxurious years, the attacks withstood, the storms endured. And every young farmboy knows that the hardest and noblest wood has the narrowest rings, that high on the mountains and in continuing danger the most indestructible, the strongest, the ideal trees grow.

Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts, they preach, undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life.” — Hermann Hesse

In truth…I am very lost.  No longer working, a pause in the multitudes of doctor appointments, and the total lack of desire to gaze upon my navel (which, truthfully, I could map out with my eyes closed) has given me a bad case of indifference. This is a good thing, as it as also given me the time to see what my life is needing/craving on a cellular level. And…dare I say…maybe a bit of Wanting as well.

With love,
-ku

trying to shine through all the time

Image (c) Kim Upton, 2015

Image (c) Kim Upton, 2015

This morning I give thanks and praise for my inconsistent online writing.  Whichever of the Graces have prompted me to just sit – in silence and meditation – my humble heart honors  you.

When you go through a growth process, an initiation of sorts, it is not really known when you will get to the other side.  One day you think, “Oh, yes, this is it.  Most surely this is it!”  But if you know that is it, then the experience is like a false mirror — showing you only the pretty things you wish to see.

“CONSOLATION

O BUT there is wisdom
In what the sages said;
But stretch that body for a while
And lay down that head
Till I have told the sages
Where man is comforted.
How could passion run so deep
Had I never thought
That the crime of being born
Blackens all our lot?
But where the crime’s committed
The crime can be forgot.”
(from A Woman Young and Old by W.B. Yeats)

For many years it would upset me when folks said, “It is the Journey, not the Destination, that is the meaning of life.” However, that is not a Truth that works for everyone.  Sometimes we must find that Place.  Even if it means we walk all around the world, a la The Alchemist, to find our treasures waiting in the back yard.

Or, maybe, who can just sit quietly and take stock of all that you have done in life – for good or not-so-good – and ask for amends or forgiveness (from yourself an others).  Then you can give thanks for those who have watched you dance in the sacred moments of learning and growing.

Copyright (c) Kim Upton, 2011-2015

Copyright (c) Kim Upton, 2011-2015

What I’ve learned is that there is truly something to Love.  Not just the sappy love, or the friendship love, but that which seems to hold the Uni-Verse together.  It starts within, then spreads outward.

“I love you. I. Love. You. From that silly hair that never pulls back in a ponytail, to that funny way you crinkle your nose. I love your bad days, and your good days. I love you when you are feeling less that stellar, and I love you as you are jumping over the moon. My heart feels like a vast ocean, and with every pulse of its electromagnetic muscle…a big, giant and enormous stream of lovin’ energy is coming your way.” – Hillbilly Mystic

Shine through all the time,
– ku

your sunday twofer

Photography: Kim Upton, 2014  This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Photography: Kim Upton, 2014
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

“O my God, teach me to be generous
to serve you as you deserve to be served
to give without counting the cost
to fight without fear of being wounded
to work without seeking rest
and to spend myself without expecting any reward
but the knowledge that I am doing your holy will.
Amen”
― Ignatius of Loyola

“Run my dear,
From anything
That may not strengthen
Your precious budding wings.”
― Hafez

when you know, you know that you know

Kim Upton, 2015

Kim Upton, 2015

“Not a whit, we defy augury: there’s a special
providence in the fall of a sparrow. If it be now,
’tis not to come; if it be not to come, it will be
now; if it be not now, yet it will come: the
readiness is all.”
― William Shakespeare

“Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.” – 1 John 4:1

the truth soup of missiology

Image by Kim Upton, 2014

Image by Kim Upton, 2014

As I am writing this morning, the cats are milling about my feet.  My guess is that they really, really want me to get out of their chair.  They’ll get their wish once my soup is warmed “just enough.”

There is a quote, from the Dalai Lama I believe, about how sticking with the faith system (or even lack of) that you were born into is what you should study throughout life.  I think the gist of his words were this: “you can still be a Buddhist if you want to be, but don’t overlook what you were before that.”

Now, listen closely, because there is something on my noggin.

And, don’t get me wrong, I’ve had more heaps of issues with the modern organized church than anything else in my life. Too many “thou shalts” and “thou shalt nots” coming from humans — and not from scripture(s).  And, along with that, I do not think that God Almighty, in whatever form it takes, said, “Yep, let’s just give them one faith system so they can duke it out all the time over who has the right road to My House.”  And, honestly, I have a hard time wrapping my mind around a “father” who would willingly say, “Sure, sure…take my son…”  So, yep, I’ve got some keen and biting issues about Christianity.  (that is putting it mildly)

Because of my questions, I’ve been to all the other “Houses” of the Lord(s) to study their holy books and holy ways.  While fascinating and fulfilling, they never really answered the questions I had about Christianity.  They sure did answer the questions I had about other Paths in life, but not the ones that made the Priests scowl at me during CCD.

In all my 43 years, no one has been able to really put a good spin on my questions, or answer them with anything more than what was passed on to them in school/seminary/their own church.

The best piece of advice I got from both my Mormon and Jewish friends was this: “Read over those books, and pray about it, then you will have answers.”  Oddly, as many times as I’ve read the Bible, I’ve never really **looked** at it.  It was just done in a robotic manner, and with much eye rolling.  Lots and lots of eye rolling I might add…

However, for some reason unknown to me (as of right now), I keep feeling that it is time to read some Holy Books again. And maybe there should be some patience and understanding.  There is no “all truth,” nor is there an “all falsehood.”  But there is a Middle Way (which, by the way, is in all the faith systems of the world).

In this new year I endeavor to find some answers.  Not *THE* answers per se, but just something that will keep my mind from chewing on itself.

I plan to start it with the faith in which I was raised.  A slow and patient read of the Bible…with an open browser window to see correlations and coincidences.  I’ll reference arcane texts, and meditate on new found “scriptures.”  And all of this will take as long as it takes.

You are welcome to join me here, or if we know each other in person, feel free to stop by for tea and talk.

The first step is always the hardest,
~ ku

rumi phoned; i answered — it’s the call of a lifetime

Copyright (c) Kim Upton, 2014

“When the light returns to its source, it takes nothing of what it has illuminated.”
― Rumi

Last night I wrote a very long post about what is going on in my soul.  Not just my noggin squirrels, who so enjoy talking to me about the strangest of things, but that deep place that dwells within all of us (whether we believe in a Mystery or not).

It seemed fitting to share it here, but I still need a few days to walk through my own words.

Blessed Christmas Eve to each and every one of you,
– ku

but then shall I know even as also I am known

Image Copyright (c) Kim Upton, 2014

Image Copyright (c) Kim Upton, 2014

My children and I are walking along a lush green path.  There is much laughter, and we can hear Nature all around us.  Off in the distance there is a beautiful lake.  It shine like a diamond, reflecting color all through its depth.

I hear someone calling my name.  It is pleading — begging for me to come to where it is.  The children can hear it as well, and we all walk over to find the source.

A hand shoots up from the water.  It seems familiar to me for some reason.

“Help me.  Please! Your children are fine, leave them to help me.”

My mind realizes that we’ve been here before.  I know that if my hand touches the hand of the woman in the lake, then I will become like her.

The calling becomes a screaming.  An urgency.  The children are covering their ears and have begun to cry.  Reaching out for the hand, the horrible beast rises up.  She is grotesque and skeletal.  She claims to love me, and love my family, but I know better.  I will not be conned again, nor will I fall into the same trap.

I grab my sword, swing it left to right, and the beast in the lake is gone.

Community has always been such an enigma to me.  Not that I’ve no skills that involve group dynamics, but the whole facade of “Seeming.” (thanks to CC for this idea)

Due to family things, I’ve had to take a few days off from blogging and being online.  It shifts your perspective when you step back from that paradigm.

Off to work on Yule gifts.

Much love,
– ku