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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Believing Is Seeing

(Click on highlighted links for more information.)
Hawkweed, dandelions and slugs provide a look into the nature of how we understand what is happening around us.

Basically we see what we believe should be the normal state of affairs. We determine normality through a variety of information inputs which we have agreed within ourselves or in concert with others to be the way things should be. That becomes what we expect to see.

Imagine that you live in an area where you might come upon a poisonous snake in the road. In the moonlight you see something stretched across the path. Your immediate thought is of a snake and you react as if it were a snake. Your blood pressure rises, you feel a surge of fear immediately, and your mental state completely changes as your heart rate accelerates and your face warms up. Then you realize it is a rope. I saw a dog turn into a stump in just this way recently.

Even though there was no snake, you reacted as if there were a snake. It was a genuine response because you were convinced by being prepared to see a snake so one appeared and scared the crap out of you. But now you know the snake did not exist anywhere but in your mind. The snake was something you created. It was an illusion just like the dog I saw that turned into a stump.

The people in this area are living under the illusion that Hawkweed is actually Dandelion. I know better than that. I've determined it by examination. I know why they call Hawkweed Dandelion. The plants are vaguely similar in appearance, and the people looking at them do not look close enough. They have agreed together that these plants are Dandelions. However I know for certain they are Hawkweed because I have taken the time to examine them. There's an application of this to democracy as well. And here is is a slug feasting on the bottom parts of a hawk weed plant . This shows you the way he and she became a duck.

I started thinking about the insistence of the locals here on demanding that Hawkweed be called Dandelion. Their authority is that they grouped together on the basis of collective ignorance in order to enforce the idea that Hawkweed is actually Dandelion. But if anyone of them had been required to look closely at the two plants they would recognize the differences fairly soon. But collective opinions are very powerful.

The video below will explain in more detail than I have related regarding the reason we experience the things we experience.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Invocation: Ceremony by the Sea

This is at the end of a short road named 'Sunset Beach Lane' in Warrenton Oregon. There are many roads like this along the coastal highway that offer mouth dropping surprises if you go down them.

(Click on photograph to see what I mean)

Sunset Beach Lane is only about a mile long. There are a series of very large rolling sand dunes between the highway and the ocean. As you see it cuts through the first dune and opens out onto the beach. Vehicles are allowed out on the beach.

At the entrance to the beach there are tracks in the dry sand that give the illusion of safe passage but can, under the right circumstances, bog a 4WD drive down and get it stuck if it doesn't keep moving.

To say there are ruts would be misleading. It appears that there are ruts. But a rut implies a stable structure such as frozen mud or snow would produce, which in turn leaves a stable area for the path of the tires. The walls of these tracks in the sand are continually sliding in on top of themselves and what appears at a distance to be a stable track is actually fluid sand.

As I was walking in I watched a 4WD coming out. I remarked to myself that he was not moving fast enough and sure enough he slowed even more due to the resistance and lack of stability of the sand, and then it was all over. The wheels begin to dig in and rather quickly it just stopped. It was like watching a cheetah in the final stages of pursuing a gazelle in the sense that it was a forgone conclusion that the 4WD didn't stand a chance. I helped push him out. He could not have gotten going again without being pushed.

Being stuck in sand is different from being stuck in snow. The snow can be moved out of the way, but the sand will continue to simply fill in so that the tires are always on a bed of unstable sand. I didn't take the Saturn out there. Some have had the experience of losing their cars to the tide.

This is a nice place to spend the day digging clams, meditating etc. But many people come here for the sunsets to have some beers and party almost every night when it is clear in the summer. It's hardly ever crowded. This is a beach as untamed as it could possibly be. There's nothing commercial to interfere with what the ocean offers up.

This is noteworthy because the Pacific speaks profoundly with great understatement as it simply continues its unending chant. For those who listen it offers a purely primal encounter at this part of the universe. Take a look. (Click on highlighted text.) Stop and listen to the still small voice within your 'self'.

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A practitioner of the art of living with the intent of learning how to die without fear.