We each have a contracted, defensive, uptight piece of us that we might name Francis. Remind him of the one rule he needs. A hip-pocket sense of humor can be a super-power.
Seeing Your StoriesHumour
Rhapsody in the Key of L
Live: Engage, Explore, Experience, Express, Expand, Enjoy (a little E digression there…)! Also ache and cry and grieve and long. This is it, and it’s all for you.
Patton, I’m Not
I am fundamentally weak, in both physical strength and emotional resolve. Odd, then, that my early career was as an Infantry officer in the U.S. Army. Soon enough, I realised I would not follow in the footsteps of Patton or MacArthur.
I am a man and have three balls:
Huge bottom, chest and head quite small.
But for sticks, I’ve no arms at all,
A scarf but not a belt.
The 12 Commandments of Christmas
On the twelfth day of Christmas my true Lord said to me: Ughhhhh! I’m tired of trying to do this through one liners.
There’s something to be said for succinctness, sure, but you guys still don’t get it. I mean, where’s the ambiguity in ‘Thou shalt not kill’?
Discoveries that emerged from 1905 to 1925 predict experimental results with great accuracy, and their theories underpin many of the technological advances of the past hundred years. Isn’t it odd, then, that we haven’t agreed how to incorporate their implications into a single picture of reality?
A New World Story
Question things you’ve always assumed to be facts, the unseen beliefs that determine your experience of the world. Experiment with alternatives, even if, at first, those replacements clash with all you’ve taken to be true. Exercise courage and curiosity to remain open. Recognize that all this effort isn’t yours, and your journey brings you home.
Out of Time and Space
Julian Barbour aims to complete the work Einstein began but did not to take to its fruition — rejecting all space and time (and space-time) as absolute metrics for or containers of change. His work embodies a crucial willingness to question fundamental assumptions, to see through old stories and imagine new ones that may work better.
Putting the Being in Human Being
To discover our natural divinity, we see through any apparent conflict between that divinity and our mortal humanity. We live with faith, which is to say with openness to uncertainty, to mystery.
The Buddha was committed to alleviating human suffering. Careful meditation on impermanence reveals the deepest truth: no durable self exists. You are among the “things” that seem stable but are actually juggled, fleeting aspects of an undivided flux. If there is no “you,” then who suffers?
The Dance of Life
Meet two eastern metaphors. Maya is the hypnosis and illusion that constitute our sense of separateness from the universe’s flow. Lila teaches us that the “meaning of life” has nothing to do with purpose or reason but is all about effortless spontaneity and play!
The Ego’s Fight
The ego has an antagonistic relationship with the present moment. Only the ego rejects anything as it happens. Included in that “anything” is the ego itself. So, if you ever notice yourself fighting the ego, then you’re actually noticing the ego fighting the ego! The noticing is powerful. The fighting is…well…self-defeating.
An Undivided Whole
We drift in an undivided, complex flow. Springing each moment from nothing, this flow is called life. Life is what happens — no more and no less. What happens is the dynamic manifestation, the unfolding into here and now of a single, dimensionless, eternal, unchanging principle, called Tao.
Truth v. Certainty
Kurt Gödel’s world is relentlessly logical. It explores and defines the reaches of certainty, the realm of provability. Here, our logic proves its own limits, which is humbling. But it’s also beautiful because we wake to the creative power of our stories, and we open them to living adaptation.
The Laughing Padre
As the tunnel curves to the right, a flickering light casts onto its left wall. Soon enough, the channel opens into a small cave, a table at its center. On it burns a candle. A plump woman sits behind the table, her shoulders shaking. Is she distraught? But a few seconds’ closer listening reveals soft chuckles, synchronized with her shoulders’ rhythm. A gentle laugh, but one that fills her body.
The Non-dualogues Session 4: Freedom
slumberfogey: Readers are going to think my old man humour is contagious. Now, remind me who you are. I need to see whether we need to backtrack at all after our break.
pilgrim: I don’t think we do! I am the experiencer of my experience.
The Non-dualogues Session 3: Who Am I?
slumberfogey: Who are you?
pilgrim: You recognise me, don’t you? I’m Gary, but you always call me pilgrim.
slumberfogey: So “Gary” is your name or “pilgrim” labels you, but is either who you are?
The Non-dualogues Session 2: What Is Happening
slumberfogey: You’re handling this moment with the precision of a World War II bombardier. Imagine yourself more like a laser eye surgeon. What Is Happening?
pilgrim: I’m imagining myself as a laser eye surgeon.
slumberfogey: Are you taking the piss? Okay. How are you certain you’re imagining yourself as a laser eye surgeon?
The Non-dualogues Session 1: Truth
pilgrim: Well, the ad said I could get enlightenment, or something like that?
slumberfogey: Is that what I said? Bit naughty of me. Felt like I needed to talk up the product to get people’s attention. Do you want your money back?
pilgrim: I didn’t pay anything.
slumberfogey: Ah. Just as well.
Making Heaven Great Again
Dear Martin nearly chokes on his milk and honey shake when he sees none other than St. Peter strolling across Paradise Square toward Angel Burger.
“St. Peter, aren’t you meant to be at the Pearly Gate?”
“Greetings, Dear Martin. No, no. I’ve made myself redundant. I must say, I’m enjoying the leisure time. Running immigration control for eternity isn’t as easy as it looks.”