Winter Diary: Presently (2017 in Summary)


Now, my prayers are not to make requests but to give thanks for the strength in facing each day as best I could. I am thankful for the difficulties that make me pause and learn to see in new ways. I am thankful for the comfort state reached, having travelled from a place of discomfort. I am thankful for every seeming rejection: from the death of loved ones to sunless cloudy days––all is good. Beauty is becoming easier to find in that which seemed lacking of it. There are also pains from this novel experience of beauty: I have been suffering happiness. An interesting circumstance that has been challenging to talk about since it often comes across as though one means to toot one's own horn. It is  difficult to communicate to others that you are suffering from excessive happiness because those with whom you might be comfortable to speak on the subject might not be interested, and when interested, may not understand. That happiness is painful is something I have been noticing gradually, but which has become a stronger experience this year. Like being intoxicated, intense happiness is probably similar to being on drugs or perhaps even drinking. Meaning that one does things with very much enthusiasm and with very little caution, accumulating debts to be paid when sober. But even in this state of intoxication, one reaches a height of excitement that feels no different from the pangs of anxiety. Thus I have become more interested in calmness and dispassion––which does not mean a lack of empathy and disregard of my environs and those who occupy it, but only to have a better grasp of the flow of my emotions so to not be mastered by them. What is making me happy? In fact, very little––I hardly do much...but much of what I do, I do because I love to. It is really all in perspective and perception; actively creating mindful and healthy relationship with the present by dipping fear and hope in as much truth serum as possible. Seneca’s Letters From a Stoic has been helpful in clarifying certain things and so has the Discourses by Meher Baba.

Should the new year find me breathing, I would very much like to continue pursuing Love! Love of God, of neighbor and of self. Union with God, with neighbor and with self. Thus to seek, practice and know––as much as possible––love, truth and beauty in God. What does this mean? I think it is to let go of illusions of form and division and to merge with the free flow of life. What does this mean? An adventure! To embrace life, which is love, and to sing of its beauty with every breath of my entire being. What does this mean? It means I am letting go because there is really nothing to hold onto and no reason to hold onto anything. It means I am emptying out to be filled and made whole. Filled of what? Of you, my fellow soul, and of life which is our union.  It means to choose the will of Love; to know myself in you and know you in me. Yes, in other words, I am losing my mind. And in other words I am clueless. But no, do not expect that I will be giving money to the homeless or dropping everything to come to your assistance just because you have decided you need help, or that I will be going around telling every Tom, Dick and Harry that I love them! In fact I believe more in the act of love rather than its profession.

Why do I share this with you? I think it is important to start relearning what love is. I think it is important to start asking what God is and not merely swallowing the definitions we get from authoritative figures who do not always know what they speak of or whose relationship with the Divine being is entirely based on the fear of life and death. I share this because I keep hearing that "we no longer believe in God." Well, I do believe in God. Also I feel the urge to share this because it is the trend to agree with our very wise philosophers who have brilliantly argued and made the case that God is dead in this age of logic because the Divine being is our creation from the age of ignorance and desperation. To kill God, according to the Anonymous Author of the Meditations on the Tarot: A Journey into Christian Hermeticism––a fantastic book I am currently perusing which is issuing a lot of ooo!––is merely to choose to not believe in It. But even so, one does not kill God. God chooses and dies for one. For having sprung from Life, one is Life's beloved. But Love does not imprison, for love is freedom and thus allows the beloved the choices of reciprocation and rejection. The thing is, because one is made of love and for love, one’s nature is love, thus to reject love is to choose to go against one’s self and this is hell. Therefore hell is not a state one dies to suffer, but a state one lives and breathes day in, day out merely by allowing oneself to be filled with hate and acting in hate. Also, in our day and age, that which is beyond logic is ridiculed because we fear that which we do not comprehend (everything!)––but we also dislike admitting this ignorance––so we say that God is a ridiculous notion and all who believe in God are fools. Well, I just wanted to share with you that I am one of those fools who is genuinely interested in God. Not because I am afraid of hell, not because I am afraid of death or even because I desire perpetual bliss––who can wrap her head around perpetual bliss? Not me! it sounds quite painful from my current state of happiness suffering––but because I believe in Love and I believe God is Love. What is Love? I really do not know, but something in me very much desires to know it and merge with it.

Right! So I’m going to disappear for a bit. I hope to be back in February and bore you to tears with more thoughts and practices on Love.  ^_^ In the meantime, Merry Merry Christmas! Happy Happy Holidays!! And may the New Year open our hearts and intellects to love, truth and beauty.

Cheers!
JAO

P.S. Here are some of my favorite posts from this year:
January | Decemnuary
February | Photography: Khee I, 1978 by Jack Whitten––Exhibiting at Studio Museum in Harlem
March | Winter Diary: in Transition
April | Theory: Death as Past and Future
May | Feed Me, Also, River God by Marianne Moore + Analysis
June | An Analysis of John Clare's I Am!
July | Experiment: Expecting Everything II
August | Between the Pages of Letters to A Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke IV 
September | Between the Pages of Letters to A Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke V
October | Analysis of Edna St. Vincent Millay's Second Fig
November | Opinion: The Ruse On Equality 
December | Between the Pages of Letters to A Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke VII A

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