Monday, December 31, 2007

The Summit

This quote is originally from the novel, Mount Analogue written by Rene Daumai and Carol Cosman. I took it from the book The Experience Of Insight--A Simple & Direct Guide to Buddhist Meditation by Joseph Goldstein.
You cannot stay on the summit forever. You have to come down again, so why bother in the first place? Just this. What is above knows what is below but what is below does not know what is above. One climbs and one see; one descends and one sees no longer, but one has seen. There is an art of conducting oneself in the lower region by the memory of what one saw higher up. When one no longer sees, one can at least still know.

Happy Birthday You Two

Yvonne Myrtle Charlton--December 31st, 1922

Today is my mom's 85th birthday. Three birthdays ago she was living in the same house she had lived in for over 40 years. She was still driving herself around town and taking care of her own affairs. She no longer drives and now uses a walker to get around her apartment. Tonight we will take her out for a birthday dinner in her wheel chair. My daughter-in-law lives with her, helping with her daily needs. I do her grocery shopping and handle her financial affairs. Yesterday I helped her shower. She was diagnosed with Alzheimer's a little over a year ago. A lot can change in three years.

She was so happy this Christmas Eve with all the family squeezed into my living and dining rooms. She felt cozy and cared for, the center of attention.

Happy Birthday Mommy. I love you.

My little sister was born on my mother's 39th birthday. Happy Birthday Julie.

Nan Yar?

Who Am I?
The Self alone exists;
and the Self alone is real.
Verily the Self alone is the world, the “I” and God.
All that exists is but the manifestation of the Supreme Being.

Friday, December 28, 2007

The Perfect Mix

Check out Gillette's, What I Want In A Lover. She writes a very insightful and thought provoking post on a variety of issues surrounding love and relationship, being poly, and the possibility of finding that perfect mix in our "one and only".

Thursday, December 27, 2007

The Books Of My Childhood

Kahlil Gibran's The Prophet is one of
the three books I grew up with. The other two were Autobiography Of A Yogi by Paramhansa Yogananda, and A Child's Garden Of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson. Actually, there were probably a dozen books on the bookshelf of my mother's home but these are the three I remember besides the Holy Bible and I read them over and over. I still have the original Child's Garden of Verses and Autobiography of a Yogi but I don't know what ever happened to The Prophet. I did find a lovely copy of it that was published in 1970 and this is a picture from it's cover.

A quote from inside:
Then said a teacher, Speak to us of Teaching. And he said:

No man can reveal to you aught but that which already lies half asleep in the dawning of your knowledge.

The teacher who walks in the shadow of the temple, among his followers, gives not of his wisdom but rather of his faith and his lovingness.

If he is indeed wise he does not bid you enter in the house of his wisdom, but rather leads you to the threshold of your own mind.

The astronomer may speak to you of his understanding of space, but he cannot give you his understanding.

The musician may sing to you of the rhythm which is in all space, but he cannot give you the ear which arrests the rhythm nor the voice that echoes it.

And he who is versed in the science of numbers can tell of the regions of weight and measure, but he cannot conduct you thither.

For the vision of one man lends not its wings to another man.

And even as each on e of you stands alone in God's knowledge, so must each one of you be alone in his knowledge of God and in his understanding of the earth.

Sometimes I Like It

They say it may snow today. Sometimes I like it...

The Rules Of Poly

Check out Mistress Matisse's new poly article in Seattle's only paper, The Stranger. It's about Poly rules and is called Isn't That Special.

In her Live Journel, Polyamory Australia, Cuddlefairey posted an interesting quote from mtrimpe on Personal Development for Smart People TM Forums on December 24, 2007:

"Monogamy is like learning to walk on a rope with a safety net forever hanging one foot below the rope. You might eventually learn how to walk the rope, but the temptation to just fall and lie down is a lot greater then when you know you'll fall 10 feet and have to climb all the way up again."

She explains where the quote was coming from and it matches my own personal interest in polyamory:
This was about learning (or not) to overcome jealousy and insecurity through personal development. It was in response to the idea that a lot of people shy away from the possibility of a polyamorous relationship because they think it will cause too much jealousy and insecurity. Therefore they never develop themselves emotionally enough to overcome such things even in their monogamous relationship. Hmm, seems to make sense. If you ban that which you are afraid of, then you will never get over your fear.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Celebrating The Holidays

What a week! Here's some pics that highlight some of the events that have kept me busy celebrating the holidays.

We celebrated 3 birthdays on the 22nd. One was our 7 year old grandson's birthday party which was held at the Pageant Theatre. It pays to have connections. He and all his little friends had the whole theatre to themselves. This picture was painted on one of the inside walls by local artist Gregg Paine.

We celebrated my niece graduating with her Doctor of Juris Prudence and passing the bar along with our Christmas Eve party because it was the first time we could get everyone together. We gifted her with a stylist leather brief case for court. We had 19 people for dinner. Jerry made Spaghetti Carbonara and I made the most outrageous punch. It was a full house and the kids were so sweet. My mom really enjoyed herself too.

My son and granddaughter playing the piano together on Christmas morning.

Jerry waving to our granddaughter who is looking out my mother's Christmas afternoon window.

She was a jumping, flying, gently scratching kitten all day.

We shared Christmas dinner with my best friend and her three lovely daughters and grandson. She is a fantastic gourmet cook and collects Santas.

My sweetheart's chest.

Monday, December 24, 2007


This is from my little calendar of poems and ponderings that my friend John makes and gives as New Year's gifts each year.

Housewarming by Thomas Smith

In my dream I was the first to arrive at the old home from the church. Wind and night had forced through the cracks. I pushed inside, turned on the lamps, lit a fire in the stove. Frozen oak logs stung my fingers; it was good pain, my hands reddening on the icy broom-handle as I swept away snow. On Christmas Eve, I prepared a warm place for my mother and father, sister and brothers, grandparents, all my relatives, none dead, none missing, none angry with one another, all coming through the woods.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Being Human

I just finished reading The Road by Cormac McCarthy. I seldom read novels but when I do I tend to really enjoy them. My friend Rebecca loaned me the book and she said she was intensely affected by it. So am I. This is a postapolcalyptic novel from Oprah's Book Club, and it seems to be getting some pretty rave reviews. McCarthy also wrote, All the Pretty Horses, and No Country for Old Men (I just saw the movie and it was great) among others. The Road is a story about the love shared between a father and his young son as they struggle to survive in the gravest of circumstances.

One of the issues dealt with in the story is cannibalism and it has propelled me deeper into one of my current contemplations on what it means to be human. I've been perplexed lately when I hear something about man's inhumanity towards man. What does it mean to be inhuman when after all, humans seem capable of just about any atrocity? I saw a quote recently that said humans are innately inhuman.

I've pondered cannibalism before. We've all heard of The Donner Party and other instances of people eating human flesh to survive. Is making the choice to engage in cannibalism inhuman? Does eating the flesh of another human being destroy compassion? I've always thought that I would choose to die before I'd choose to eat human flesh but I've never been starving and faced with that decision so I don't really know for certain. I bet though that it's a place I just wouldn't go. I don't even like eating the flesh of animals but I obviously would to survive. I'm very curious about it and wondering if there is something innately "evil" about the practice. By evil I mean something not suited for a human being and yet something only a human being would be capable of doing.

And I suppose there is a huge difference between the different forms of cannibalism such as the cultural normalcy of indigenous tribal warfare, modern criminal cannibalism, and then that of necessity (in a crisis survival situation). Even with cannibalism from necessity there is a difference in the eating of the flesh someone who has already died as compared to killing someone for the sole purpose of eating them. What a morbid topic. Really though this contemplation moves me way beyond the initial issue that spurred it.

Is this all about free will? Humans are obviously animals and yet we are just as obviously more than animals. Does our human potential come from a higher nature that allows us to seek enlightenment and does this all rest on the choices we make? Is human life on the cusp between animal and God? Are only humans capable of the choice between good and evil?

In The Road, there are the good guys and the bad guys. The bad guys have chosen to kill and eat human flesh in order to survive. The good guys have chosen to carry the fire of the human spirit with them and starve if need be, to survive. I find it's not always that simple, the choices I face every moment to be a good guy or a bad guy. I must always remember that I'm carrying the fire. I must never forget that.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Little Bringers of Light

I was 24 years old, trapped in an abusive relationship with the father of my four middle children and pregnant with my third child. We lived in a farmhouse in Mt. Angel, Oregon in the middle of a wheat field. We also had a little apartment about 50 miles away, in Portland, one block from the Hare Krsna temple where we would stay on Saturday and Sunday nights while engaging in temple worship and taking advantage of being in the association of devotees.

I had given birth to my first child in a hospital (1971) and my second child at home (1976), with only my husband and first child present during the birth. I thought I might need some extra help this time around so we hooked up with a midwife for some prenatal care and made the arrangement with her that we may, or may not, call her to attend us during the birth.

I knew the date of my baby's conception but the midwife thought I was one month less pregnant than I was telling her I was. Before her, I had gone to see a naturopathic doctor for a prenatal check up and he had told me the same thing, that the baby would be born one month later than I was expecting so even though I knew better, I allowed them to convince me otherwise. My contractions came on December 22, 1978 when I wasn't expecting my baby to be born for another month. I was washing diapers and baby cloths in my wringer washer during labor.

It was an old farmhouse, heated by a wood stove in the living room so we made up a birthing bed next to the stove. Baby clothes were drying on a makeshift clothes line above my head. My eldest son had just turned 7 and my daughter who was 2 1/2 was demanding full on attention. She wanted to be held, to nurse, to be comforted. I wanted attention myself and there didn't seem to be enough to go around so we decided to call our midwife to come and help us out. As we didn't have a phone, we sent my son running to the nearest neighbor's, about 1/2 mile down the road to call the midwife for us.

When N. was born, my husband reached above his head and pulled a dry baby blanket off the line to cover him. The midwife arrived after the birth. It was a cold winter and our pipes froze so we headed into Portland (City of Roses, Puddletown USA) for running water. The winter solstice and the infamous Portland Ice Storm of 1978 was in progress. We named N. after the Lord Caitainya and Lord Nityananda deities that were worshiped at the temple there.

Eight years later, my sixth baby, O. was born on his brother's birthday. Another homebirth with plans for 3 friends, all midwifes, to be present. My water had broken 3 days previous and I had filled my days with preparations for his arrival and Christmas. I spent a good portion of the longest night of that year soaking in the bathtub. By the time we called the midwives in the morning, two were able to rush over before he was born.

I pushed O. out into the world and into his father's waiting hands with four of his five siblings present. My eldest daughter, then 10, took the pictures which reflect her contempt for O.'s father--she cut him out of just about every one of the birthing pictures! Today she is a professional photographer. That night we celebrated the brothers' birthdays, one newborn, one 8 years old, with pizza, cake and sparkling cider. I called O., Little Bringer of Light as he was born the morning after the solstice and the darkest night of the year. Each day was longer and brighter for six months after he was born. I thought that was so auspicious. Of course the same was true for N. too although I didn't have much awareness of the winter solstice when he was born.

Today I'm taking O. out to lunch at the Sierra Nevada Brewery and buying him some legal alcohol. I sent a present off to N., with his sister who is in Santa Cruz visiting him for his birthday.

N. turns 29. He is the father of two beautiful children, split from their mommy right now. He's an incredible chef and a contractor, living in Santa Cruz, trying to find his way. O. turns 21 (thus the legal alcohol.) He's the baby, the only one left at home out of our 9 children and I'm in no hurry for him to fly out of the nest either. He's working and going to school, finding his way, telling me he loves me just about every day. He's a nice young man, 6'5", beautiful body and face with long flowing dark brown locks and a creative and artistic mind. I like having him around.

Happy Birthday boys. My sons.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Father Solstice

Happy Winter Solstice!

Well, I think it's today, on the west coast anyway. The most common date and time I've come up with for this year's winter solstice is December 22 at 1:08 am EST which makes it December 21 at 10:08 pm here in California. I suppose that makes today the shortest day and tonight the longest night of the year?

Anyway, it's certainly a day of celebrating along with all of the other holidays occurring at this time such as Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, New Year's etc. Besides everything else going on in December, my family has something like...let me count...10 birthdays that we celebrate this month and that's not counting baby Jesus. That's also not counting a bunch of friends with birthdays in December either. Two of my boys were born on December 22 so I'll be posting about them tomorrow. For now, brrr, it's cold outside! I feel the chill and it's obvious Father Solstice will arrive tonight.

A New Love Interest

I have a new love interest and I guess I've been leery to write about it because I don't want to jinx it. Or perhaps I'm just feeling private. Actually, calling it a "new love interest" sounds premature. What I have is an interest in a new friend that I find myself sexually attracted to and I'm encouraged that there is some possible potential to take things further. I met him last summer and after hanging out with him for awhile I noticed I was attracted to his energy. I'm not often sexually attracted to men other than my husband although I have been noticing it happening more often these days. A few months ago I was in a group of people when I realized that there were 3 men in the room that I was in love with. I considered all of them good friends who hold very special places in my heart. This experience made me very happy.

Anyway, I connected with my new friend and potential (dare I say lover?) again recently and the original charge was still there only stronger. Seeing that I'm a married woman and that most people assume a monogamous mindset, I realized that the onus of responsibility was probably on me to address the issue of my attraction. I sent him an email and invited him to a party saying something to the effect of, hey, I like you and would enjoy more. He responded in kind, more or less, telling me he was pretty open minded and perhaps we could meet up again soon. So there it is. I'm not overly excited at this point but I'm curious and a little scared. I'll be disappointed if this goes nowhere but I'm not counting on it being something more than it is either. What it is, or could be, I don't know. I'm open to finding out though because he seems like a nice guy.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Jimmy's Corn Cob Pipe

Fun poster huh? My artist stepson drew it. This will be a fun party as the college students are out of town for the holidays and the tradition is for all the local fans to come out and dance. Looking forward.

Monday, December 17, 2007

May 1-4 Enlightenment Intensive

My friend Patrick and I are co-mastering an Enlightenment Intensive on May 1-4, 2008. You can check it out here.

You can also check out more about Enlightenment Intensives here.

Holiday Cheer

A friend invited Jerry and I to cut a tree from his land this year so we took a little drive up into the foothills above Chico, brought home this lovely nine foot tree and laced it with 400 lights. Here's a little Christmas Cheer to share with you.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Lust Caution

Lust Caution

I really enjoyed this film a lot. It's directed by Ang Lee who also directed Brokeback Mountain and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. It's a highly erotic, melodramatic, political, espionage, love story starring Tony Leung (Mr. Yee) and Tang Wei (Wang Jiazhi) that takes place in Shanghai, 1942 during the World War II Japanese occupation. It's a long movie with sub titles that moves fairly slowly and I loved every minute of its trance like quality. The sex scenes are beautiful, hot and intensely powerful. I'll probably watch it again just for those.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Birth As We Know It

Below are some links for you to check out. My friend, Elaina Tonetti has been doing some amazing work surrounding birth. Her first video is called Birth Into Being and later it expanded and evolved into Birth As We Know It.

I've witnessed many beautiful births, those of my own six children, several of my grandchildren, as well as many others. I've been present at only one water birth, my granddaughter, Namika, who was born in Hawaii, 2004. She took her birth in the morning, outside, in pre-hurricane weather, the storm hit that night. My son was in water with her mommy, welcoming her. It was one of the loveliest moments of my life.

Click here to view two trailers of Birth As We Know It. There is a theatrical trailer which runs for a couple of minutes and introduces the film:
Once in a lifetime a film inspires us to believe, to love, to heal, to
live. The most compelling look at birth and life of our time.
Birth as we know it.
Then there is an Incredible 10 minute promo. I encourage you to watch both of them. I've had Birth Into Being for many years and I'm definitely going to order the Birth As We Know It dvd.

Monday, December 10, 2007

The Raffle

That was one intense weekend! Friday night was the lighting of our community Christmas Tree in the downtown city plaza. We didn't go for the lighting but walked through the plaza after dinner when the masses had cleared. Then we went to the yearly Erotic Art Show and it was disappointing. I keep attending because there is so much potential for this event but each year seems to offer less than the year before. The first show was exceptional and I was very excited when the second year came around but it didn't quite cut it. The third year was even worse and it's been a downhill slide ever since. I keep going, hoping for the best, wanting to support the arts in general and the erotic arts specifically but this one has been a losing cause so far. I've done nothing to contribute besides attend, it's been a spectator sport for me so far.

After the art show we went back downtown to this unpleasant little pizza place where a band called the Yule Logs was playing. This band gets together only at Christmas time and they do all these funny, funky Christmas songs. Not my thing really but Jerry wanted to go so I tagged along. Besides, this event was being held in honor of Josh Read, a local musician who recently died and the money raised was donated to his music scholarship fund. Jerry bought our tickets and then threw in an extra $10 for raffle tickets. We listened to the music and people watched for about 30 minutes and then the band stopped and the raffle begun. We won 4 out of about 10 prizes. The first prize was a $25 gift certificate for The Naked Lounge, our favorite coffee place. The second prize was a white elephant which I took home and gave to my son. The third prize was two dinners at a downtown Mexican restaurant we enjoy eating at a few times a year. The fourth prize was a $50 dollar gift certificate for the restaurant at Sierra Nevada Brewery. Talk about a good investment on raffle tickets!

I was up at 7:00 Saturday morning and stayed busy until 8:00 that night when my work was done and I settled down to party! I was up washing clothes and dishes and then out of the house doing my mom's weekly grocery shopping by 9:00. Then I was back home picking pink camellias, mandarins and lemons to use as decorations for my friend Gerda's Memorial Service/Celebration of Life. Off to the church to help set up for that (although truthfully I just dropped a few things off and left as I had so much on my plate) and then I met my brother at Starbucks for a soy chai and chat before he went to visit our mom and talk with her about some financial issues I had been avoiding. My son stopped by to show us the "new" car he had bought (with a little loan from me) and then I dropped off my mom's groceries and rushed home to dress for Gerda's service which started with a Catholic mass.

Gerda wanted everyone to wear pink so I found some black and pink and dressed in a fitting outfit. As we were leaving the house Jerry asked if I had something to cover my head. I told him no, and he said, "That's what they do you know?" I was amused that although he was raised Catholic, I knew more about what would be expected of me than he did. Shows you how long it's been since he's been inside a Catholic church. It's not really true that I knew more than him though because he knew all the proper responses to the prayers they were reciting, did the sign of the cross at the appropriate times and offered this little genuflect thing when he passed by the altar. After mass we eat and talked about Gerda, her son showed a slideshow and Jerry's band, Spark and Cinder played.

Home to pack up in a hurry for the AfterBurn party. Bedding, food for dinner and breakfast potlucks, alcohol, PlayaWear, computer with BurningMan slide show, BurningMan photo album, towels for hot tub and sauna. Jerry and I parted ways as he had a gig, a Christmas dance party that I was sorry to miss because everybody who was anybody was going to be there...well, except the ones who were going to be at the party I was off to. Here's a few fun pictures I took. We even burned a man! Nice gathering of friends and Jerry joined up with us later.

Saturday, December 8, 2007


December 8, 1971
7:00 pm
Enloe Hospital
Chico, California

Brandyn is 36 years old today. He is my eldest child. I gave birth to him when I was 17 years old. When he was a baby I called him My Little Froggly and Brandyn Pie Landyn. Later I gave him the spiritual name of Damodara. Damodara is one of Krsna's many names (Krsna is the blue colored God of the Hindu religion.) The story of how Krsna obtained this particular name goes something like this: He was the son a cow herder and his wife, and being a little rascal he would often steal the freshly churned butter. Once, after breaking the butter crock with a rock and feeding the butter to the monkeys, his mother, Yasoda took some rope and tied him up to keep him out of mischief--thus he was called Damodara, which means He who is bound by the ropes of love.

Brandyn was jaundiced when he was born with an extremely high bilirubin count (that's what makes a jaundiced person's skin turn yellow) so they wouldn't let us leave the hospital at what was the normal 3 days back then. They did allow us to go home (we went to my mother's for a week) when he was 5 days old but we had to bring him back to the hospital every morning for them to prick his heel for a blood sample. He would scream loudly and flail his little arms and legs. It made me very sad subjecting him to this torture.

I breastfed him while we were in the hospital but they still insisted on giving him bottles of formula to supplement his nourishment. They also fed him sugar water and refused to wake me for his nightly feedings as they insisted that I needed my rest. The babies were watched over in the nursery back then so you had to rely on the goodwill of the the nurses to bring them to you for a visit. Once we left the hospital I stopped giving him the bottles.

At two weeks old we dutifully took him in to be circumcised. The nurse took him from me and disappeared into doctor's office while me and my husband sat in the waiting room. I cried and got sick to my stomach when I heard him screaming as they mutilated his little lingham. I didn't know any better to even question whether there was another option than to sacrifice my little one to this unnecessary and barbaric procedure.

He was the only one of my 6 children to be born in a hospital but back then, I though natural childbirth meant using the breathing technique of the Lamaze method. He was also the only one of my four sons, that I had circumcised.

Children are resilient, at least that's what they say. And truthfully, I did him far worse in his life than what he went through as a newborn. I'm still tender around the issues of him. It's difficult for me to be transparent here. I am challenged with lots of guilt, shame, regret, remorse, sadness. I'm embarrassed at my lack of mothering skills and the ways I failed to protect him.

Brandyn had a hard life but he was an intelligent young man and a spiritual seeker. I thought he would become a monk, leave home and join a monastery or some such thing. But that was not to be his path. Instead he started suffering from paranoid delusions that grew worst as he grew older. Voices haunted and taunted him. Medication never controlled his symptoms, only lessened them and he perceived the side effects as worse that the symptoms themselves. The medications, although allowing for his sweet and caring nature to shine through, made him stupid and clumsy. He hated that.

Brandyn suffers from paranoid schizophrenia. He is among the 1 in 100 adults in the United States that are afflicted with this mental illness. He is off his medications right now and has been for several years. It's not a pretty picture. My heart aches for him.

I'm a trained psychotherapist, I have professional knowledge about schizophrenia. But this is one of my personal demons. I don't take much stock in anything I've learned that could lessen my burden about this not being my fault. The sometimes tender, sometimes intense emotions that I experience related to him don't cripple me but they do pierce my heart and I suppose they will be with me until the day I die.

Happy birthday baby, my son, my eldest. I love you.

Friday, December 7, 2007


For some reason I've been thinking about my friend Charlie. Charlie died awhile back, maybe 10 years ago now. He was probably about 75 years old at the time and I was hanging out with him when he was around 70 or so. He used to bring me boxes of kiwis for gifts. He had planted them when kiwi farming was so popular in our area and he always had a surplus. My kids loved them. I'd often find them on my doorstep upon returning home but just as often he'd catch me there and I'd invite him in for a visit. I really like Charlie a lot but I was a bit nervous around him. He was obviously sexually attracted to me and I didn't know how to handle it. Back then I was still of the mentality of thinking that old men who directed their sexual energy towards younger women were perverts of a sort. I was 32 years younger than him and that qualified him as a "dirty old man". Regardless though, I knew Charlie was a nice guy and I enjoyed visiting with him and appreciated that we were friends.

Since my visits with Charlie back then I've come to learn a few things. I have a lot more awareness about "dirty old men". I realize growing old is part of the human condition and it's happening far faster than I would like. As old and worn as our bodies may get, we are still the same person. We still have the same desires (ok, the hormones may not be raging like they once did) but we still get horny, still appreciate the beauty of a young man and young woman's body, still need human touch and connection. What's different is that when we look in the mirror we often gasp in surprise at the old person staring back at us. Sheesh, who is that? How did that happen?

Me and my husband have often found ourselves appreciating a young woman's beauty together. I'm not being ageist here as we appreciate older women's beauty also but that's a different story. So we will be appreciating a younger woman and my husband, more so than me is acutely aware that she probably regards him she would her father, or maybe even her grandfather! Ouch. I know that some young women and men have attraction for us older folks but still, that's not usually what is going through their minds when they are watching us. If they are noticing us at all. Often, older people are practically invisible to younger people.

Anyway, when I think back now, to Charlie then, if I could go back in time I'd been way more physically friendly with him. I always gave Charlie nice long extended hugs but if I could do it over again, I'd sit right next to him when we visited. I'd hold his hand and maybe even offer him a back massage. I'd take pleasure in him wanting me sexually, even if I was choosing not to go there with him, I'd support his desires and longing. I'd view him more as an eternal soul with human desires, trapped in an aging body that so many in our youth centric society fail to accommodate with understanding and compassion.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Knowing The Truth

I've been reading this book called, The Spiritual Path--Buddha Zen Tao Tantra by Osho. This quote is on the cover:
"Truth surrounds you. It is in the air, it is in the fragrance of the flowers, it is in the flow of the river, it is in the green leaves, it is in the stars, it is in the dust. It is in you."
Osho says that the word buddha means "awakened intelligence" and that the word buddhi, "intellect," comes from the same root word, budh and that there are at least five meanings to this word. One of the meanings of budh, or intelligence, is to know, to understand that which is. He explains the difference between understanding something, knowing it, and having knowledge or information about it. An intelligent person doesn't care so much about knowledge but wants to understand, to know something. First hand knowing is for the adventurous, those who are willing to move into the unknown. Secondhand knowledge makes your memory bigger but not your intelligence.

I think what Osho is talking about here is having a direct experience of the truth. This is what the Enlightenment Intensives with their dyad contemplation and communication technique are all about--intending to have a direct experience of the truth, or a direct knowing of the truth. This is called a breakthrough to enlightenment.
Osha tells this story:
A woman bought a tin of fruit but she could not open the tin. She did not know how to open it, so she rushed to her study to look in a cookbook. By the time she looked in the book and found the page and reference, and came rushing back ready to open the tin, the servant had already opened it. She asked, "But how did you do it?" The servant said, "Madam, when yo can't read, you have to use your mind."
There is something very important for me in this story. I tend to often depend on other things, seeking here and there for all sorts of tools to aid me while my mind sits idle.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

An Analysis of Bouquet

Joshua Bardwell offers An Analysis Of "A Bouquet Of Lovers".

Most anyone who is familar with the history of polymory will have read A Bouquet Of Lovers--Strategies for Responsible Open Relationships by Morning Glory Zell. You can find it in the appendix at the end of Bardwell's analysis or also by clicking here.

Pleiadian Polyamory

If you are bored or perhaps actually interested in channeled information on Extraterrestrial Sex, the history and evolution of their monogamous and nonmonagamous relationship styles then click here. It seems that polyamory is the norm for the Pleiadians!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Check This Out

Wow. I found a new blog called Freaksexual. Check out Pepomint's post on November 27, 2007 called The Strange Credibility of Polyamory. This is a very thought provoking post as well as all the added comments--be sure to read them too. It's long so give yourself some time. Way worth the read though.

Check This Out

Here is an article on polyamory to ponder,Stranger Bedfellows by Mistress Matisse. I'm more into the "incestuous" relationships myself, theorectically speaking anyway.

Monday, December 3, 2007

A Lovely Weekend And A Crush

I had a lovely weekend. Saturday evening found us up in the foothills at one of our Burningman Peace Campmate's home, celebrating an afterburn gathering. Dinner was scruptious with Chioppino and homemade noodles along with other delectables and lots of wine, chocolate and port. We shared pictures and glowstick jewelery, enjoying one another's company. It was sweet and warm and just what I needed, reconnecting with everyone. It made me happy.

I've been bored lately. Probably the real reason for not blogging. Besides hitting the pavement running ever since our plane hit the tarmac, returning from our Thanksgiving trip back east. I've been going none stop but at the same time I've been feeling restless and unsettled. I have a tendency for boredom and it hit me with a vengeance last week. When I did have a moment to rest I couldn't write, or read or even knit. Zoning out in front of the television was about all I was capable of. I made a mess of my house had no interest in sex either. Until Friday night and the spell was broken. Jerry and I had some nice sexual encounters over the weekend (with each other)and that made me happy too.

Oh, and I have a new crush. I met a man this last summer and really enjoyed his energy and I recently had the opportunity to reconnect with him and I'm very attracted. That's a warm and yummy, excited feeling. And I started knitting and reading and cleaning my house again so I'm feeling back on track, my boredom subsided.

Christmas is coming. My family isn't exchanging gifts this year, thank God. On one hand I love gift giving and receiving and all and yet, especially with my big family, not only the expense, but the time and energy it takes to come up with something for everyone is too much. Besides I don't need more stuff. Who does? We will of course get gifts for the little ones and I actually went out and did that all in one day. I wasn't planning on shopping but I happened to be in a store the other day and I thought, hey, that is sweet... Jerry and I have 14 grandchildren and a niece. I got them all (except the two youngest who are still babies) cute little watches and gloves. Then I bought little Christmas bags to put them in so no gift wrapping either. I'm so proud of myself. Everyone will come to our house and I'll make Christmas Eve dinner for them.

Also, this year we are celebrating one of my nieces passing the bar. She graduated with her Doctor of Juris Prudence a year and a half ago and then passed the bar last January. I had promised her a family celebration but with everyone living so spread out we haven't been able to get us all together so I decided to throw this into the mix. We're all going in on a nice little gift for her.

Today I have several calls to make as I'm helping get the band and hall together for Gerda's memorial service which is looking like it will be next Sunday and Saturday. Saturday for the church service and Sunday for the dance party celebrating her life.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Gerda's Passing

My friend Gerda died last night. She was at home with her family and friends. I have a Marzipanstollen (German Fruit Cake with Almond Paste filling) that I picked up, hoping to take by for a visit today. I'll save it for her memorial/celebration of life. Goodbye Gerda. Thank you for all of your sweet gifts, for sharing yourself, your love with me. Here are a few words from an email Gerda sent to me and others awhile before she died:
I will go soon "home", Please do not cry or be sad for me. The time is right here now for me . I will be more happier. So please be also happy for me."

I cry for myself Gerda, and I am happy for you.

Monday, November 26, 2007

My Friend Gerda

My friend Gerda is dying. She has cancer and its been a very long and painful process for her. She is on a strong dose of morphine now and is in the transitional state between this world and the next while under the 24 hour care of her two children and friends.

Gerda is deaf and I don't know sign language. In the earlier years of our friendship we would write notes back and forth on napkins in dark noisy bars when we would be out dancing. I have a memory of perhaps the first night I met Gerda, calling AAA for her with my membership and waiting with her for the tow truck to arrive when her car wouldn't start after a late night out. She came to Jerry's and my wedding and I had arranged for another friend to sign the ceremony for her. She gifted us with a beautiful hand stitched wall hanging, commemorating our union.

Although I've been friends with Gerda for many years, I have chosen to keep a distance between us. Communication was obviously difficult but one thing that always came across very clear to me in our connection was that Gerda identified with being a victim. I had a difficult time with that. I always felt hesitant and somewhat resistant toward extending myself as her friend. Something about the way I perceived her relationship with life and the role that she seemed to be requesting of me left me feeling uncomfortable. Being her friend required effort and an openhearted patience that wasn't easy for me to muster and which I often preferred to avoid. And yet, she was always kind and loving, always sweet and generous, always offering me a smile, a hug and inquiring of me and my family's welfare.

As Gerda is dying, surrounded by her family and friends, I find myself dealing with some regret of my inability to be a better friend to her. I feel the imminent lost of opportunity for human connection and unconditional love. Gerda has been a great teacher to me, inspiring contemplation at my lack of compassion and the derogatory superiority I hold towards the victim. This indicates a self denial of sorts. The triggering of my own inner victim when I'm confronted with another's victim consciousness. What is it that I still do not understand about my inner victim? I suspect my tender spot is related to my fear of buying into its delusion. I've identified and lived in victim consciousness for a good portion of my life. Its powerless and painful there and I still have the tendency to travel to this pathetic place. This not only scares me, it embarrasses me. Embarrassment, what a self conscious obstruction to the truth. Oh the ego, it is insidious.

But understanding the role of victim is not an easy one. Look at the human condition--war, rape, murder, genocide, torture, hunger, violence, anger, sadness, greed, hunger, pain...the various abuses perpetrated against children. Being a victim seems to come hand in hand with who and what we are. Why is peace with self and others so seemingly difficult to attain?

I was 26/27 years old when I first discovered my own victim consciousness. This awareness still proves to be one of the most empowering and freeing moments of my life. I've since spent the same number of years working to step out of this deceptive role and understand how it impacts my life.

Blessings to you Gerda. I pray for your last days to be peaceful and your suffering light. May you die in the loving arms of your family and friends. Thank you for being my friend. I love you.