dangerous compassions

I call you / from the comet's cradle

Thursday, November 23, 2017

photographs of the most important things

Yesterday I had some Thanksgiving sads.  But then I took a nap and felt better.

At night we went to A's place and had coffee with him at Sunrise then dinner at Cornish Pasty and then A shot pool while Ming and I watched.  There were very good feelings and nice conversation.  Nice eye contact.  Lotsa love.

We talked about how there are no photographs of the most important things, like a first kiss.  We talked about what God said when I asked her what to do about something.  "Let him go," she said.

We talked about his mom and dad, a little.  His sister making a dragon costume for his nephew.  Oh, countless things.  Both his cats.  The punchline to a joke.  My letters and the beautiful one he hasn't read yet.

Today's Thanksgiving, here in the United States.  I don't know if I'll make anything.  Ming's supposed to go to Gobble Gobble Give but seems to be sleeping in at the moment.

I love you, reader, and I hope you don't mind me saying it.  The sky is starting to light, which means it's time for me to meditate, with my candle flame and hunk of amethyst.



Here's me and A last night, a picture Ming took quickly of a nice moment.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

badwater




fairy tale reward

We bought m&ms at the glorified gas station that boasts Area 51 merchandise and a brothel.  And we got gas too.  What's the name of that junction?  Lathrop Wells, Ming tells me.

There was an old man sitting on the porch.  I wished him a good morning.  He told me, "Have a good trip," when I left.  He was like a magical man.  Where if you say good morning to him in a fairy tale, you'll get the fairy tale reward.

Our home is such a mess.  My desk has too many piles--I need to excavate.  But everything seems to belong here.  But that is wrong.

Yesterday I got a paper cut opening an envelope in a way I know I shouldn't.  I got a sweet Thanksgiving card from S.  She says we live exemplary lives, which tickles me.

Ming's eating canned corn with pepper for breakfast.  I have tea.  I hope you have a good day.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

great

We took a spontaneous trip to Death Valley.  I had been there a few times recently, but it had been many years since I camped there. 

Death Valley used to be my favorite place in the world.  Then I went on the Sacred Peace Walk and that valley became my favorite place in the world.

Campground grackles, croaking ravens, Salt Creek pupfish, good clouds, Badwater, huge expanses, huge mountains, gorgeous desolation.  So many stars.  In the night we looked for Cassiopeia, one of my favorite constellations.  Ming found it for me using an app on his phone.  The W was on its side.

I even slept ok because we have that air mattress now that our friend gave us.

Then I drove most of the way home, on those desert roads.  Then we attended Catholic Worker Thanksgiving.  I felt serious.  I ate some good foods. 

Just now Ming gave me bran cereal for dinner.  It was great.

Monday, November 20, 2017

new x word

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orthopraxy

Orthopraxy is like orthodoxy but actions.

completed mandala right before they destroyed it


The ceremony was beautiful.  We brought A with us.  He put his arm around me.  We cried a little.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

dam up the fountain of your soul

This is from Richard Rohr.  Amazing!
The following exercise is based on a teaching from Friar Francisco de Osuna, OFM (1492-1542), the spiritual “master” of Teresa of Ávila. In my words, here is what he taught his students:
  1. Dam up the fountain of your soul, where love is always springing forth.
  2. It will be forced to rise.
  3. Yet it will remain quiet and at rest within you; wait for that quiet.
  4. You will see the image of God reflected in your own clear waters, more resplendent than in any other thing—provided the disturbing turmoil of thoughts dies down.

once dreamed of a treasure money never could have bought

https://soundcloud.com/robertmajors/sail-vegenation

I love this song.  I remember when it was new and Robbie played it for us at the cabin.

Turn it up!

tabling, parentage, two dimensional depictions of palaces

Gmorning, friends.  Yesterday we tabled for many hours.  I started to lose my mind around 2 pm.  We started packing up at 3 (two hours early).



Then we went to the library for a talk about mandala symbolism.  The monks were still working on the mandala! 



The talk was weird.  Intercultural communication was a struggle.  One guy talked in Tibetan and the other guy translated.  They had a slideshow and a laser pointer.  We learned about the reasoning behind the mandala's features.

Turns out mandalas are two dimensional depictions of palaces.  I had no idea.

On the outside is cleansing fire.  Then is a vajra wall.  Then are 64 lotus petals.  Then is some gardenage, I think?  Then is the building with parasols, parapets, and red ledges where angels hold offerings.

They told a story about a lady who angrily broke some branches at a monastery.  Her karma was to be reborn next life as a snake with a tree growing out of its head.  When the wind blew, it hurt.  She died somehow (can't recall) and her head was cut off and hung at the palace to remind people that acting in anger is a bad idea.

I don't see how breaking tree branches at a monastery is such a bad thing to do.  Obviously something is lost on me.

We left before the talk was over--Ming was done, falling asleep and not wanting to comprehend all of the mandala mysteries.

Then we went to Vege-Way, the local vegan fast food joint.  PMB, who was with us the whole time, ordered $30 worth of food.  Kind of amazing.  Three burgers, some monster fries, some fake popcorn chicken, and a strawberry shake.

Sometimes he called us Mom and Dad to rile us.  It's a running joke.  Some people think we're his parents.  He could be my kid, if I had him when I was 17.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

jalapeno juice

This morning we served the hungry.  It was pretty fun.  I did jalapenos. 

This one guy likes a lot of jalapeno juice.  I pour it from my round tub into his paper cup.

I wore my new purple jacket--it has a functional hood.  But it's not all that warm.  It's as warm as a sweatshirt jacket.  Can't decide whether that's good or bad.

Today is an event at Transcending the Gender Box.  We are tabling--we need to get our shit together.  We're bringing PMB.  Hopefully he'll be helpful and not bored.

Speaking of bored!  I wish to be more entertaining for you, reader.  It comes and goes.  I'll take some pictures today and try to post some for you.

Friday, November 17, 2017

soteria

What of all the wonderful things in the world could I tell you?  The world is our oyster.

Yesterday we shopped for a blanket.  We ended up choosing a dark blue one--hopefully not depressing.  It's white and fuzzy on the other side.

We also ended up buying some sheets with camels on them.  They're amazing!

Yesterday Ming called a lawyer.  We need to get a will and all that.  We've needed to for a while.

Yesterday we went to Red Rock so Ming could hike but the wind was so strong he couldn't walk more than fifteen minutes.  I sat in the car reading the soteria book.  It's very good.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

sand mandala

Yesterday we went to the library to watch some Tibetan monks start a sand mandala.  It was amazing.




I wore my mandala teeshirt to the event.  Appropriate or party foul?

We're going back Sunday for the deconstruction ceremony.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

the conundrum of the functional hood

My computer thinks it's 7:05.  Maybe I should restart it.

Yesterday's community lunch?  They loved it.  I feel happy about that because it's the least I can do.  I do almost nothing for them, and they do everything for me.

The sky's starting to light.

Today we're going to the library for a mandala thing.  Some monks are making a mandala out of sand.

All of the things I should be doing vs what I do.

the conundrum of the functional hood

I want my sweatshirt jacket or any jacket to have a functional hood.  A stupid hood without ties that just blows off in the wind--what's the point of that?  It's my pet peeve.

Yet I will consider a jacket with no hood at all.  Now does that make any sense?  I could get a $12 walmart sweatshirt jacket with a non-functional hood and just cut the hood off.

Oh life.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

goodness

Yesterday Ming took PMB to the electric bike store to look at the electric bikes.  It took a long time.  Then at night Ming went to a Jewish Voice for Peace talk led by our old friend.  I stayed home.  This morning Ming left around 6am for a hike with friends.  So I haven't seen him much this past 24 hours.

I've meditated and am trying to keep busy as best I can.  Today I make community lunch for eight people.  I'm making sundried tomato pesto pasta with kalamata olives and fresh mozzarella.  I'm making vegan garlic-lovers pasta with peas.  I'm making veg sausages and kale salad.  That's about it.  I have some red beans in the fridger I might heat up for them too.

Goodness and warmth to everyone.

Monday, November 13, 2017

sometimes

Gmorning.  It's 2:30 am and I'm up.  I accidentally went to bed too early.  I needed to retire and it was cold.  So I went to bed in the afternoon.  Slept hard.

Ming put the quilt on the bed.  Fall is here.

Today was the chest compression only CPR class.  It was under-attended.  12 people on facebook said they were coming!  Of those 12, only three showed--the three organizers.  Besides that, two people showed who did not rsvp.

Sometimes it's hard to get people to show up to stuff.  And sometimes it's easy.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

radical mental health collective meeting #11

Some important things happened yesterday.  We ran into a friend we've been estranged from for months.  That was emotional and left a lot of residue.  We hugged him, saw him, heard his voice.  It was painful somehow.

We had lunch with our new friend H.  It was good.  She wants to have movie nights with us.  I explained why I don't like movies.  She saw it as a challenge.

A former community member has returned.  We have't seen him yet.  He doesn't live here at our compound, this time--he lives at the Catholic Worker house.

Then at night was a radical mental health collective meeting.  A friend I wasn't expecting to see showed up.  In fact, he was early, sitting by the door, reading a book.  He had never been early before--in fact, every single time he was late.  So we talked.

Then after the meeting we talked more.  Ming got in the car with the guy we were giving a ride home to.  They got cold so Ming tuned on the car for the heater.  Then they got hot, so Ming turned the car back off.

Meanwhile, the friend and I were talking.  We were trying to work some things out.  I didn't have much to say.  Then later at home I did have things to say and emailed him.

Ming and another friend co-facilitated the meeting.  They were very kind to me.  They consulted me on things.  The collective is my baby, and I was afraid they'd drop it on the head.  But they didn't.


Saturday, November 11, 2017

way

Yesterday was a Creech vigil.  Only problem was it was Veteran's Day observed.  So almost no one was coming or going.  Oops.  Calendar fail.

But the mood was good.  Today's Saturday.  We're having lunch with a new friend.

In the evening is Radical Mental Health Collective.  Yesterday we bought food for it at Trader Joe's.  But it was crowded because the worker bees were off work for Veteran's Day observed.  Doh.

This morning we serve and meet.  Ming's thinking of going to the air show.  Reconnaissance.  I'm like, no way.

Friday, November 10, 2017

to cry in the car

Last night we went for a walk at dusk.  I was crying in the car, a good place to cry.  The clouds were pink as we walked.  I didn't photograph them for anyone.

Then we went to Roberto's for burritos.  Mine was good.  I put lime juice in it.



You Are the Light
--the Innocence Mission

And I would like to cry in the car. The blue violet hills and the voice of Neil Young. I left the flowers outside your door. Your curtains were flying Though you were not at home. And I can only say that I have hoped for you. Safety from fears and darkness Are you feeling better than before? There's a hidden life for everyone. Sorrow remains though you can tell no-one. The Host on your tongue is a perfect moon. It does shine inside you. You shine into the room. And I can only say that I have hoped for you. Safety from fears and darkness Are you feeling better than before? Down in the hallways in wintertime. There is your great kindness And you are the light. And I can only say that I have hoped for you. Safety from fears and darkness Are you feeling better than before? And I can only say that I have hoped for you. Safety from fears and darkness Are you feeling better than before?

Thursday, November 09, 2017

important night

Last night I meditated in the Rice room for 20 minutes and it felt good.  Amethyst, a candle, some incense.

Last night was my reading.  I made a mistake.  But it's okay.

Afterward we got custard.  Can't make that a habit.  But it felt like an important night.

Wednesday, November 08, 2017

resist

"Resistance is not only about battling the forces of darkness. It is about becoming a whole and complete human being. It is about overcoming estrangement. It is about the capacity to love. It is about honoring the sacred. It is about dignity. It is about sacrifice. It is about courage. It is about being free. Resistance is the pinnacle of human existence." -- Chris Hedges

https://www.truthdig.com/articles/the-cost-of-resistance/

wrong

Yesterday we stopped at Whole Foods for a few things.  I got six peanutbutter malt balls from the bulk candy bins.  Three of them remain and are on my desk.

Seems like there are good times to do certain things.  Like I probably wouldn't eat these malt balls this morning.  Seems like an evening treat.

I don't really watch movies.  But if I did, I think I'd choose afternoon.

When I eat ice cream near breakfast time, I know something is wrong.

I'm out of ice cream.  I bought some low sugar kind that's super expensive from Sprouts, a week ago.

Tonight I have a reading.  I'm reading a poem I wrote about my friend A.  I'm really not looking forward to it.  But hopefully my attitude will change as the day flows on.

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

retreat reportback

Our retreat was beautiful and relaxing.  I got what I needed: clarity, quiet, lots of singing.  Lots of rest.

Monday, November 06, 2017

midnight note

I'm up in the middle of the night.  This morning we go on retreat.  I hope to sing a lot.  I'll bring the uke too.  Maybe write some letters.  Get some clarity.  Leave the city behind for a little while.

City noises have been bothering me a lot: yelling neighbors, engines revving, even the ice cream truck's loud persistent song.

Well, I should go back to bed.

Sunday, November 05, 2017

poor attendance, black eyed peas, hey

Last night was a meeting of the Radical Mental Health Collective.  Only three of us showed.  That happened once before.  We still had a meeting--it was actually good.  Our most loyal was sick.  One person had to work late.  Others forgot.

I have faith we'll bounce back like we did last time.

Then we went to A's house to drop off the last of the black eyed peas I made for the meeting.  It was good to see him and two other friends.  Nice hugs.  He showed us his garden.

I was awake before 5 this morning.  Slept poorly last night.  Woke up tons of times but always went back to sleep quickly.

Now I'm listening to music.  Hey, happy daylight changings time.

Saturday, November 04, 2017

no shade in the shadow of the cross

Sufjan: "I take one more hit when you depart."
me:  Don't do it, Sufie!  Say no to drugs!

maybe one day

Nothing much has happened yet today.  Listening to Aimee Mann, my comfort.  Daydreaming about a letter I'll write later.  Ate breakfast.

Woke up thinking it was Sunday because, well, I served the hungry yesterday.  I usually do that Saturdays.  And we had our Saturday meeting yesterday.  So I'm all discombobulated.

I call the Rapid Responders the scum of the earth.  I shouldn't call them that.  They are the people who "clean up" after the homeless ie suddenly show up to throw away the homeless people's tents, sleeping bags, luggage...

I also think of as the scum of the earth the people that Social Security gets to evaluate those who apply for Social Security Disability.  That guy who evaluated me and said yes, I would be fine when my current manic episode was over, he is the lowest of the low.

But all people are people, and I should look for the humanity in everyone and build bridges, not walls.  Maybe one day I will be like my Catholic Worker friends with open hearts.