Art, Creating and Writing Practice

Keyboard
WARNING: this is a boring writing practice

We all do art.  Words are art, spoken or written no matter.   If you bring sound from silence, you are creating and you are an artist.  If you coax something out of what is in your mind into art and put it outside of yourself where it is visible, you are an artist!

We are creating all of the time.  I suppose you could say we are creating all kinds of causes and conditions that if they do not manifest today or tomorrow, their seeds are there waiting for that stimulus to awaken whatever those may be.

Now its time for a confession.  This is a writing practice. You see, there’s this thing in me.  Let’s say it’s like in the paragraph above.  There’s something in my mind, heart, spirit that is really seeks written expression.  How, after all, can any of us write unless we write?  We practice all kinds of things in life to get better.  We workout at the gym in order to get stronger.  We walk to stay healthy and such things as this.  Writing is no different.

There are these ideas and thoughts about stories to create — for fun, for maybe inspiration or some kind of education but I’ve got to use this form.  Fingers on the keyboard.  Using a pen and paper makes my hand numb.  Go figure. I’ve tried it but typing; yes, it’s a ‘can-do’!

Many times, nonsense is written and let me apologize if I’m already boring any readers.  There are only a few minutes left to this practice but before I go, let me describe a thing or two.  The overhead daylight bulb in the desk lamp just to my left creates flashes of sparkle from my silver rings as they move on the keys.  One is heart-shaped.   That was my mother’s.  Another ring is a feather-shaped which reminds me to lighten up.  Actually, it reminds me of finding a white feather just at the door threshold of the hospital when I was admitted for gallbladder surgery.  A sign that the angels were watching over me?  I’d like to think so.  And then there’s the bulky butterfly which is my favorite.  Looking beyond the lamp, its dark outside and the day went well. There was no drama trauma and that always rings the gratitude bells of the heart.

It’s snowed today and while nothing stuck (*or laid as they say in the high country), the cold rushed in like an unkind guest when the door was opened.  I had to do this to feed the stray cats just before nightfall.  Such boring stuff, I know.  That’s why I get discouraged by this writing business but all the books about writing say, just do it.  Its a really great slogan Nike! Really is.  Well, there’s the timer.

I came onto this blog to add something and to tidy up a few things so while here, this post happened.  You see, in a moment of weakness, I paid the ransom to get rid of the advertising at the end of the posts and then had got myself in big trouble doing a name change server redirect thing with my hosting service.  A tangled web it was!

Well, beeper just went off; writing practice is over.    Sorry about the big bore.   If only I could be more clever.

I sit and stare up at the light to see what the mind wants to type next to end this, but the only thing that comes to mind is dinner.  It’s getting near 8 PM and my stomach feels betrayed.

I apologize for any run-on sentences or typos or any other writing errors; this was dashed off in a flash.  I usually do my writing practices in a Penzu Journal.

Life – Is it one unchanging moment of happiness?

Unchanging HappinessIs it possible that any moment in our life would be one that we would wish to have unchanging, remaining the same for eternity?  We do this with life maybe subconsciously but we seem to continually be leaning forward to try to achieve that unchanging and happy moment.  Here are some thoughts about that from my view.  My life does not seem to be one unchanging moment of happiness.  That’s likely true for you too, right?   No matter how we try consciously (or subconsciously) to achieve a continually unending moment of bliss, we know it’s not possible.  Yet we still try for it.

What to do then?  We can pull back from striving to reach for that unending happy moment and instead make peace with this here moment no matter how it appears for us.  How?  By believing that this moment is more than enough.  Its not that difficult really.  We can do it by developing stability and the state of wellbeing with intentionality. ( Fake it until you make it using the tool of meditation. ) This then is the gateway to freedom from the suffering that consumes us due to yearning for some other moment (s).

It is to our great benefit to have the kind of confidence in our overall life that any moment has, contained within it, the seed of freedom from the suffering that yearning creates – said another way, enlightenment comes from making peace with the human condition. 

When we don’t argue with the way things ‘are’ and when we don’t make life wrong by believing like . . . “it shouldn’t be this way” . . .  and when we can make peace with life in such a way that we do not become tired of life or weary of the trials that are natural to this dimensional reality.

Let’s face it.  Life does turn sour on occasion or as I have heard it recently referred, “. . . when life turns rancid.”   But what I am referring to here is that to make peace with life and its many ups, downs, and experiences keeps us out of that kind of yearning that causes our unhappiness.

Psychologists tell us that even if we intellectually admit that difficulties in life happen and we concede that trauma does occur in life,  when we bump up against such energy there’s a part of the mind that is incredulous–its doubtful about it’s happening.  And in that type of unacceptance, we suffer even more.  In Buddhist thought, this is referred to as ‘the second arrow’ if you are familiar.  Double suffering is another way to say that.  There’s a part of the mind that cannot conceive that suffering can occur in our life! And want’s to deny that it shouldn’t be the way it is.

We set ourselves up when we try to reach out to find that which we believe will complete or fulfill our hearts.

The fact that we think our heart is lacking that which something outside ourselves can provide is the first step in the confusion about all this.

Whatever we reach out for in order to bring the heart to its fulfillment it (or to complete it) will eventually disappoint us.  Clinging or grasping for what we think we don’t already have can never work in the end.

Imperfection, disappointment, anger, even hatred energies exist in this realm and are woven into the fact of being human.  It’s just how things are on earth.  Yet, remember, as you just read that last sentence, there was likely that part of your mind that disbelieves it.  Or believes those energies bump into others but not myself. 

Stress occurs by not making peace with that way things are and resisting or arguing with it all.  I often quote this phrase, “Whenever you argue with life, you lose.”  Meaning you suffer.

My final thought:  All difficulties or suffering bring opportunities for growth and insight.  When we understand life in the ways I’ve written about here, we develop wisdom.  Then the mind feels strength, energy, freedom, detachment and becomes devoid of craving and the sources or causes of suffering. 

Cultivating Pre-set Mindstates

Creating a Meditative Default or Preselected Option

It’s a fallback position that I’m talking about here.  Once upon a time a few years back some man lost control of his auto and slammed into the back of me as we were pulling away from a  traffic light.  I called my daughter just after this while waiting for the police to come to make the report for insurance purposes.  She commented on how peaceful and calm my voice was for just being rear-ended rather violently.  My preselected default meditative state took over without my conscious direction.

Or at least I think that’s why.  Since then it had become more conscious within me to work on cultivating that default state of being when my attention isn’t consumed elsewhere.  Sometimes, it’s repeating a mantra such as, “May I be content and peaceful, may I be happy and in goodwill, may I be protected and safe . . . “and then eventually changing the “I” to “we” meaning all beings.

When waiting for my coffee to finish reheating in the microwave, at a traffic light, while stretching before or after a workout at the gym the mantra takes over my consciousness.  Sometimes, it’s not a mantra, however.  Sometimes my attention is naming the breath activity:  Breathing in, breathing out.  This creates a dropping down into the body and into the moment and peace is naturally there.  I consider these mantras or this breath attention as cultivating a set point which can, after habitual reinforcement, become ones ‘go to’ place in good times and in … well, in times that are not so good when they arise in order to soften those jarring moments of life that can leave us in a state of shock or knock us out of a previous state of consciousness.

Default options are pre-set courses of action that take effect if nothing is specified by the decision maker or the decision maker isn’t sure what to do.  What is your default setting?   Have you consciously cultivated a positive one?