No Willful Change

Let’s say I’m at A
And I like A
Why would I change?


Let’s say I’m at A
I don’t like A
I’m tense
I want to get away from A
I do things to go from A to B


Let’s say I’m at A
I don’t like A
I’m curious about A
I let myself be at A
I feel what comes up
In the spirit of “All things must pass”
The universe draws me away from A
I may end up at B or somewhere else

What if I consistently chose the third scenario, rather than the second?  If I’m tired, I go inside myself and feel it.  I may lie down for awhile but I’m not shaking my head, denying that I’m tired.  If I’ve eaten too much, I let myself go inside the bloating, the pressure.  What’s it like?  If someone has spoken harshly to me, I let my feeling come up, whatever it is … anger, sadness, fear.  I don’t shove it down with TV or by staying busy.

Perhaps I don’t need to move away from anything (with the possible exception of a speeding car!)  The pain of life could be most vivid in the experience of “Not this, not that”, the sense that this moment needs to be improved, avoided, ignored.

Despite the sometimes existence of bodily pains and spiritual woes, staying inside what’s happening right now could be the road to freedom.

If I let go, will the universe provide?

Out Of The Blue

I was just at Wendy’s in St. Thomas, having their yummy Asian cashew chicken salad.  It’s freezing rain right now … our first taste of winter.  On the way there, I concentrated like crazy.  Slow, Bruce, slow.  And gentle turns.

Emerging from the restaurant fully satisfied, I poked my way home.  Sometime during the trip, my caution evaporated … and I sobbed for Jody while winter passed me by.  Huge, gasping cries.  How I miss my dear wife.

But where did this fresh grief come from?  I don’t see any trigger.  The last few weeks, I haven’t been crying for Jodiette every day – maybe every second one.  But this, just half an hour ago, was a flood.

Last week I had lunch with my friend Lyrinda.  We had two hours of great talk.  Maybe halfway through, there was another flood.  I was overwhelmed with an immense peace, such that I just sat there with mouth open.  Lyrinda smiled.  And the sublimity continued to percolate through me.  [Oh, my.  I just wrote this stuff and the peace and the tears are both here with me.  Oh … how can they be visiting at the same time?  But they are.  I think I’ll just sit with them for a few minutes.]

Did my written words call forth the peace and the sorrow?  If so, perhaps I can bring into being anything I want, just by saying or writing it.  And yet a big slice of me doesn’t want to perform acts of will.  It wants to let go.  Aren’t the moments of serendipity allowed entrance by open hands, rather than clutching ones?  Well … maybe both can create the sun bursting through the clouds; or 1, 2, 3, 17, 121 … ; or joy.


I’ve often wondered about my handwriting and what it says about me.  I look back at some of my high school textbooks, and the notes I made in the margins.  Everything is sharp angles, sort of tortured-looking.  I remember being pretty happy as a teenager, except when it came to acne.  Boy, I had a case of it!  Is that what all those straight and fractured lines were about?

As an intinerant teacher of visually impaired students, at least before I had grown a laptop on my fingertips, I walked around countless classrooms with an 8.5 x 11″ lined pad of paper as my weapon of choice.  Okay, not a weapon, but I sure scribbled like a madman.  Reams of paper, with the script unintelligible to others, and sometimes to me.  I created frantic slashes of ink, afraid to miss a single salient point about the Grade 5 kid with cataracts.  Somehow, I later wrote reasonably cogent reports about said children.

Another venue for my pen-like expressions were, and still are, 3 x 5″ index cards, on which I have purported to record the collective wisdom of mankind, as revealed in a ton of spiritual and philosophic books.  Sitting in my man chair, relaxing through chapter after chapter, I knew there’s no hurry, so I expected that my handwriting would flow like the blessings of the universe.  Nope.  Instead, another type of penmanship showed up.

Despite the peace which I’ve usually felt as I’ve contemplated thoughts for the ages, my hand does not follow suit.  Too often, I cross t’s and dot i’s before the whole word has been revealed.  I have trouble with the “ng” combo at the end of words.  Recording those letters should be a graceful experience.  Instead, my hand stutters as I try to make the end of the “n” reach towards the top of the “g”.  My pen dives down rather than up, in a spasm of jerkiness.

As I near the right end of the card, I try to cram more words in, while I could just leave lots of space as I wander onto the next line.  The same when I’m nearing the end of the whole card.  More!  More!  Stuff it in.  How very silly, and worrisome, to me.  What kind of spiritual path am I on if I can’t let go with a pen in my hand?

I decided yesterday not to worry about the beauty of my script.  “Just go slow, Bruce, and see where that takes you.  Feel the essence of pen peace.”  But then I glimpse the possibility that any flow or non-flow of my writing is fine.  Let it all be there.  Be a “jerk” if that’s what your hand leads you to.  So I’ve chosen to do exactly that.  It’s all groovy, even though I have visions of a highly evolved soul and hand working in blissful tandem.  Maybe next lifetime.