brain, suspended

A huge thunderstorm just moved over us.  We’d been hearing the thunder for some time, and then the entire sky turned Payne’s Gray, making the leaves and needles on the trees look phosphorescent.  It rained for about two minutes and on it went.  I don’t know if it’s me, but things certainly seemed to take longer to happen…back in, uhm, the day.

We’ve been in this place for almost six years now, which is incredible when I think about it.  A total, complete, exhaustive and comprehensive life change, and we have survived it so far even though it seems more like we’ve been here for twenty years in terms of what’s happened.  In that time a lot has changed in this little area:  people have come and gone, several people have died, one got murdered and as of today it’s almost as thought none of that happened.  Actors on a stage, indeed.  A lot has changed for us, too, in fact so much so that nothing is really the same as it was before.  I think I always admired people who I thought were brave enough to do such a fool thing as take the leap when the calvary’s bearing down with sabres drawn, but for sure I didn’t think I was such an individual.

It has, in retrospect, taken this long for the Partner and I to even begin to be oriented in place and time.  We came here to a spot that had literally nothing on it except an RV hookup of sorts, in a place we’d never really been,  and built a home that has protected and sheltered us, and grown a lot of our own food.  I still have a shock of incomprehension when I drive to town, as though I’ve just woken up some place far, far away.  But we really are here, and we are starting, as well, to be here NOW.

And, NOW is such a time, isn’t it?  Clear and honest communication seems to be at a premium, the power structure is full of crooked, mindlessly selfish individuals, and yet in spite of the nightmares swirling around all over the world, things continue and it is hard to imagine that somehow that might end.  In spite of everything I find my optimism is unquenchable, if bloodied and muddied.  It’s clearer than ever to me that we all, really, could do almost anything we set our minds to if we would choose to do it.  So much of what we do is kind of on auto-pilot- the brain knows what it’s doing and you don’t need to be told it’s doing it.  The gist of mindfulness, in a way, is slowing ourselves down to the point where we actually pay attention in each moment instead of gliding along letting the brain do its thing.  This isn’t so we can micromanage how our skin heals or how we walk up stairs, but perhaps to NOTICE it and notice everything around all of what happens, and thus to see that there is a bigger order than we know or create.  That bigger order contains the proper questions.  And those proper questions lead us to actual answers.  The thing, I’m thinking now, is not to be afraid of that, not to be afraid of the silence or of the music, not to doubt that we may yet do what we ought to.  Not, in essence, to be afraid to relinquish our ego drives thinking that we will lose our “individuality” in so doing.  That fear keeps us from being what we are, doing what we really could do.  Not to mention SHOULD do.  It’s amazing how pervasive fear is, how powerful, and how once you commit to the work, how it recedes into the distance and goes away.  Anything is possible.

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