31 Jan 2012

I am a child of the future. That is how I feel, at least sometimes: I look and see how the technology moves me, and I move the technology, how far flung the advances that have occurred even just in my lifetime have been. Interesting how, though, everyone’s yesteryear vision of the future was how outreaching that technology was going to be, and yet, how different, how inward it all went, how compactified the future turned out. No cities in space, but instead, the internet, by which you can sit anywhere and the whole world can appear on a screen. Just a little observation, this all is. Having missed the sixties, I would have to say that this is my high and beautiful wave, and I know that it is not always so high, and not always so beautiful, but it never was in the past, either. But something to ride: it’s a trip, man. Far out. Groovy and a half.

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:01 am

28 Jan 2012

Strange the things that keep hope alive. That which is dissipated by shouts, sustained by whispers: what casual glance ignited the cool blue flickerflame? What steady breath blown keeps aglow these careful embers? Yet myself I have been harboring at least one hope for years now, one that St. Jude, the patron saint of lost causes, might himself tell me to let go. Sometimes it is the feeling that one cannot process how it could not be true, that to counter a certain hope would be to destroy rather central structures in one’s soul. Have I been a fool to keep hoping for impossible things? Though in truth, I can still see the possibility in it… There have been signs, I think, and that has been part of it; but what is prophecy, and what just the wishful thought? Or is it all a test, to see if I can as the prophets could: to believe in something until it happens. To see if I have the mettle to be a believer true, to see past doubt, if it makes sense to me in my inmost. If the promise has been whispered from on high, who never fails to deliver…

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:01 am

25 Jan 2012

The Kiss

There at my fingertips
danced the magic of a world;
there at my feet swam the rivers
that flowed through galaxies;
there, there at eye level
an angel prince who whispered
eldritch things, my secret name.
I remember the trees
all spoke in their arcane tree intonations,
that sung from bark to bark
the eons of withstanding;
I remember the mountains
that a lifetime could not climb,
whose peaks reached into the third heaven;
I remember, I remember rain
that fell through seven atmospheres
and carried the scent of the uppermost sky
down into the valleys of mist.
And if I think correctly,
all of it together, freely given me
for a thousand years, could not equal
the secret in your kiss:
there, where the real meets the dream,
through the infinite looking glass;
I remember as if it happened just now,
and as if it never happened:
all the magic in the world,
I could taste their every inkling.

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:01 am

22 Jan 2012

Once a virtue is broken, suddenly, we have a price. No longer are we infinite and pure.

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:02 am

Abbot Lot came to Abbot Joseph and said: “Father, to the limit of my ability, I keep my little rule, my little fast, my prayer, meditation and contemplative silence; and to the limit of my ability, I work to cleanse my heart of thoughts; what more should I do?” The elder rose up in reply, and stretched out his hands to heaven, and his fingers became like ten lamps of fire. He said: “Why not be utterly changed into fire?”

– Saying of the Desert Fathers

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:01 am

19 Jan 2012

Joseph M. W. Turner: Snowstorm

Click on the pic for a larger version.

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:01 am

16 Jan 2012

Quiet night, and I wonder at the world. I have thought that I knew my purpose, and that no mystery was beyond me — that I had been given sight — but what was truly mine but vanity, and chasing after wind? If there is an underlying Reason, I think perhaps it is too deep to ponder, too obscure to scry, and if any says he knows the mind of God, what he sees is merely his own reflection made into a graven image. We must do what we can, it is true, but let it be known that we have only faith to guide us. However well we know the ways of this world, we have only the barest premises to make choices that are half random. But it is also true that we may desire to do right. We may believe there is right and wrong in this world, and strive to do what in our eyes is the good. Knowing that our compass will never point to true north, we can do what is in our ability: to put our hearts in the right place, and know that we tried. To be able to look ourselves in the eye. To be able to sleep the sleep of the righteous.

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:01 am

13 Jan 2012

Men stand much upon the title of orthodox, by which is usually understood, not believing the doctrine of Christ or His apostles, but such opinions as are in vogue among such a party, such systems of divinity as have been compiled in haste by those whom we have in admiration; and whatever is not consonant to these little bodies of divinity, though possibly it agree well enough with the Word of God, is error and heresy; and whoever maintains it can hardly pass for a Christian among some angry and perverse people. I do not intend to plead for any error, but I would not have Christianity chiefly measured by matters of opinion. I know no such error and heresy as a wicked life… Of the two, I have more hopes of him that denies the divinity of Christ and lives otherwise soberly, and righteously, and godly in the world, than of the man who owns Christ to be the Son of God, and lives like a child of the devil.

– John Tillotson

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:01 am

10 Jan 2012

OK, maybe I am a bleeding heart liberal, after all. I like to think I am a moderate. But when those right wing nutjobs appropriate Christ like they do, it really makes my stomach turn. Don’t even get me started on the Bible. Having read it 8 times, now, there are things in there that are completely whiskey tango foxtrot. But I’ll save that for later. These millionaires who claim that God called them to run: do they understand that Jesus stood up to what was then the religious establishment, who professed to serve the same God he did? That where he did anything close to violence was to the money changers at the temple? It was to those who dealt unfairly with money, and said they acted in God’s name. This was the closest to hatred that Christ ever got. Hello, rich Christian politicians, this means you! You cannot serve both God and riches.

To those who instead hate anyone else simply because they are different from what they know, how in the f*** do they get off doing it in the name of the Lord? This is the dude who was criticized for hanging out with the non-Sunday teatime crowd. This is the dude who said, let he who is without sin cast the first stone. Do you recall, maybe, a “love your enemies” in there? Even if we were to count them as enemies, to feed them and take care of them. To anyone who claims some subset of the population is going to hell for what they are, instead of how they treat people: you burn the bridge by which you yourself need travel to be saved. To you who call yourselves righteous, who claim to know the will of God, I say to you, the perverts and drug addicts precede you into the Kingdom. Only one of us was ever perfect, and he said how we act towards others is how we are, in fact, acting towards him. By how we judge others, we will be judged.

I guess this is all I’m really saying: “‘Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord”, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only one who does the will of my Father in heaven. On that day many will say to me, “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many deeds of power in your name?” Then I will declare to them, “I never knew you; go away from me, you evildoers.”’” [from Matthew 7, NRSV] Chew on that.

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:01 am

7 Jan 2012

i am afloat on the skin of the watery destinies
the liquid realities mixing with my own skin
until i am the color of whatever happens
in the season of the snows, adrift in nakedness
i do not notice my own evaporation
until i am high in the notice of the moon
and the demon tries to tip the whole balance over
so distant gravity tries to rouse me from my perch
slipping from thought as if i had no weight
unloved by the hours that pass me each on to the next
every stranger is familiar, or i am grown old
though i know some fossil fires cruder
i wait as all the motion keeps vanishing
have i always known time’s next-door-neighbor?
now, the kind of change in the pocket of a dream
now, the traveler without place names
i know how i arrived here, alternatively, rambling
though i don’t remember this particular future
what i have seen could fill a mirror
the sentiment of myself in plastic wrap, disposable
one cold day to freeze my watery eye
if i have not seemed to be present, take note
i have eked out a positive sum to the seasons
for i have collected all the scraps of perception
that twilight mistook as unchanging
and i have become my own, very breath:
steady, with rhythm, the essence of life’s matter

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:01 am

4 Jan 2012

My thought is perched upon a precipice, looking out into the unknown. Perhaps it is time for my mind to stop wandering. I wonder what these dreams I have really mean, whether they are worthy of me, and I worthy of them — there is work to be done, I know that for sure. I have gone down enough pathways that led to barrenness, that twisted back on themselves, and that just go on and on without end, that I am wary now of where I should step. But go, I must; this is for certain. And I do not know which part of the adventure will be why I go, so I think I must taste it all as if such wine shall never be bottled again. Into the uncharted: I imagine that what is meant to be will happen, like it or not, and saint or fool, I must claim my destiny. Dream my dream.

posted by John H. Doe @ 2:26 am

1 Jan 2012

Happy New Year!

Click on the pic for a larger version.

posted by John H. Doe @ 12:01 am

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