The Inner Struggle

Simplicity of Spirit …

“Yamanakabushi” performed by Jean-Pierre Rampal & Yuzuko Horigome, from the album “Yamanakabushi: Japanese Melodies”, Vol. 3, (1982)

a tranquil streamSome thoughts today on “Simplicity”, the quest for which is an uphill battle which never ends in a world that worships the complex and “it’s complicated …” as a rationalization of every form of duplicitous, dishonest and even harmful behavior. The exploitation of “the other” for the benefit of “the self” necessitates an entire Olympiad of gymnastically complex contortions to protect our self image and to deny the reality of our conduct and intentions.

What is one to do in this duplicitous world? To approach in some way true simplicity of spirit we are required to avoid every form of duplicity. We must avoid duplicity of mind by a passionate search for truth. We must love and accept the truth even when the truth requires sacrifice. Sacrifice of beliefs, sacrifice of views, sacrifice of attachments to both creatures and ideas and modes of thought. How successful are we in this pursuit, even when embarked honestly upon it? How passionately do we desire peace?

Sacrifice also must be embraced when truth reveals our defects, and errors, and wounds our egos ,and harms our self love, revealing things, actions, and beliefs which do not redound to our credit, which even may detract from our self image and our public image. We are so wedded to ourselves and our narcissistic self image that even in prayer we often fall into delusional reveries about why we are “not bad people”. But is there peace in being “not bad people”?

To find peace, we must embrace the most candid, honest, sincerity, fleeing vigorously from every falsehood with the same intensity of passion with which we search for truth. This is not easy in our modern world where the entire focus of existence is deception and self aggrandizement. Our fear and avoidance of simplicity is perhaps the hallmark of our age, the leitmotif of our society and our culture.

William ShakespeareBut, duplicity poisons peace, and gives rise to our multiplicity of fears all stemming from our total lack of simplicity, the complex monkey on all our backs. William Shakespeare nailed it in Hamlet’s soliloquy:

To be, or not to be, that is the question:
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take Arms against a Sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them: to die, to sleep
No more; and by a sleep, to say we end
the heart-ache, and the thousand natural shocks
that Flesh is heir to? ‘Tis a consummation
devoutly to be wished. To die, to sleep,
To sleep, perchance to Dream; aye, there’s the rub,
for in that sleep of death, what dreams may come,
when we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
must give us pause. There’s the respect
that makes Calamity of so long life:
Benedict Cumberbatch as HamletFor who would bear the Whips and Scorns of time,
the Oppressor’s wrong, the proud man’s Contumely, [F: poor]
the pangs of despised Love, the Law’s delay, [F: disprized]
the insolence of Office, and the spurns
that patient merit of the unworthy takes,
when he himself might his Quietus make
with a bare Bodkin? Who would Fardels bear,
to grunt and sweat under a weary life,
but that the dread of something after death,
the undiscovered country, from whose bourn
no traveller returns, puzzles the will,
and makes us rather bear those ills we have,
than fly to others that we know not of.

(“Quietus” is an old English term for Death or suicide – could we call our Canadian Euthanasia bill the Quietus bill? It will certainly “quiet us”.  a “Bodkin” is a “blade” and”Fardels” are “troubles”)

Truth and true peace is to be found in sincere simplicity of spirit … in that simplicity no fears can arise to plague us … rejecting the complexity of our will and all the fears thereof, and embracing the simplicity of God’s will, the sincere pursuit of only good, not “our good”, but “Good”.

Cheers

Joe

empty oneself of every trace of belief in one’s “goodness”

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Life in a small town, Pen as Sword - Social Commentary

Hunger Games Come to Canada – (with a twist)

Just noticed a brief lament over on David Warren’s Blog.

An event I have been predicting for several years (ever since the 70’s actually)  is about to become law in Canada, “de facto” and “de jure”.

The Hunger Games (of media buzz) will be instituted in the Brave New Socialist Dominion of the North.  The twist is that the players will be old folks who no longer can make a positive material contribution to the fabric and substance of our Northern Socialist Paradise. As David says:

“Today is a special day up here in Canada, worth remembering for a long time: the last day in our public life before our Supreme Court ruled on what the psycho faction likes to call “euthanasia.” The pagan mind thinks suicide is an option, but after tomorrow, every life in the monopoly public healthcare system is worth whatever the death committees decide. With the passage of time, their budgetary constraints will weigh ever more heavily upon them.”

I am sure the intellectual giants and chattering “masses” over at “Being Liberal” will be just wriggling with joy at this new evidence of the powers of socialized medicine to “cut costs”.  I guess the rest of us knuckle-draggers will just have to start adding old folks to the ever mounting mountain of bodies that the “choice” faction generates daily.  After all, what’s a few thousand more added to the millions already on the pile. And think of all the savings … no more ever increasing medical costs supporting a geriatric population … just a few nods and winks and some mumbles about “quality of life” and we are home free.

Did anything good happen today?  Yet? …  The snow storm finally petered out and the shoveling is mostly complete …woohoo!  The bills are paid for this month!  (genuine Woohoo on that one) … I guess it’s time for a coffee break … Euthanasia,  I don’t know… will I have to shovel?

Cheers

Joe

Dawn of a New Day

Dawn of a New Day

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