Grainy Taste – Rumi

On the wings of a Falcon.

Image by elvis_payne via Flickr

Without a net, I catch a falcon and release it to the sky, hunting God. This wine I drink today was never held in a clay jar. I love this world, even as I hear the great wind of leaving it rising, for there is a grainy taste I prefer to every idea of heaven: human friendship.
from Rumi The Glance, Translated by Coleman Barks

If this world was as good as it gets — no heaven or blessed afterlife — what would you change?

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Gallery

The Story of Pilot Butte Creek

This gallery contains 4 photos.

Listen to The Story of Pilot Butte Creek by Jason Burns while watching this slide show.

Gods

Gods are beings who transcend the realm of ordinary experience in power and meaning, with whom men have relations which surpass ordinary relations in intensity and significance. – Paul Tillich

Medicine Walk

Tipi

Tipi on the South Saskatchewan river, south of Saskatoon. Photo by Erin {Kestrel}, June 2011.

I want to honour one of the oldest things we have, which is our four directions.  We seek knowledge from those four directions. We get Power from those four directions.  They pull stuff into our lives.  When we call out to them in prayer, they will bring things to us.  The four directions came with creation.  We didn’t.  We were the last thing created.”
– female Elder from the Anishnabe Nation

 

 

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Fear

There is no fear, until we make it up.

Image via Wikipedia

I sing in my soul of a better way,
A way free from anger and fear.

“Let go…Let Go…”
A voice in my head cries.
“No,” I answer, “I’m afraid.”
Lightning crashes.  The rains begin.

“Let go…Let go….”
A great river overflows its banks,
What will be destroyed in the flood?
The receding waters bring life and renewal.

I sing in my soul of the welcome storm,
And the water that washes all away.

“Let go….Let go…”
“No,” I answer, “I’m afraid.”
I cling to the safety of what I know.
Below me, the great chasm opens.

“Let go…Let go…”
A young bird clings to a branch.
He, too, is afraid of falling.
Falling, he learns to fly.

I sing in my soul of the freedom of flight,
And dreams carried on the wind.

“Let go…Let go…”
“Yes,” I answer. “Yes.”

I sing in my soul of the lighting and the flood,
Of the fear and of the fall,
Of endings and beginnings.

“Let go…Let go…”
Nothing here remains.

— Erin {Kestrel} (2002)

The Otherworld

Universum - C. Flammarion, Holzschnitt, Paris ...

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There are two worlds.  These are not the worlds of the living and the dead, but the material world and the world of ideas.  They are not separate, but interact with each-other.  Ideas create reality and reality creates ideas.  The material world can be investigated and explored through scientific means, but the Otherworld cannot.  It is the world of dreams, visions, fantasy, fiction, imagination, visualization, and inspiration. Its reality is not literal, but metaphorical, as are its truths. In a sense, these metaphorical truths are more real than reality because they have multivalent meanings — they come closer to the divine.  Our society establishes a clear boundary between reality and fantasy, and values the former over the latter. The boundary, however, can be crossed.  We can enter into the Otherworld and bring a piece of it back into the material world.  This is the essence of magic, the key to creativity.

(2002)

What’s Not Here – Rumi

Litière de tremble

Image via Wikipedia

I start out on this road, call it
love or emptiness. I only know what’s

not here: resentment seeds, back-
scratching greed, worrying about out-

come, fear of people. When a bird gets
free, it doesn’t go back for remnants

left on the bottom of the cage! Close
by, I’m rain. Far off, a cloud of fire.

I seem restless, but I am deeply at ease.
Branches tremble; the roots are still.

I am a universe in a handful of dirt,
whole when totally demolished. Talk

about choices does not apply to me.
While intelligence considers options,

I am somewhere lost in the wind.

– Excerpt from Rumi THE GLANCE Songs of Soul Meeting translated by Coleman Barks

Some restrictions may apply

This poem was contributed to Prairie Pagan by Jim Tait.

What’s done is done. I cannot mend
nor change the past. I comprehend-
though from my biochemistry
my mind can have no liberty
so on these thoughts I can’t depend.

And further, I can not defend
my actions from all consequend.
Despite these limits, can it be
I have free will?

There’s laws of physics I can’t bend.
But disbelief I will suspend
for, though I see the irony,
responsible morality
leads me to choose I will pretend
I have free will.

– Jim Tait (2011)

What would Jesus do? Finding a spiritual archetype when you don’t have a religion.

Brooklyn Museum - Hands Female Nude Baby - Kah...

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How can I find a spiritual archetype that inspires me when I don’t have a religion to point the way for me?

Organized religions have a multitude of characters a faithful person can draw inspiration from.  Christians have Christ, Buddhist have the Buddha, Muslims have Muhammad.  There are gods, saints, prophets, holy men, characters from mythology and scripture.  Organized religions also tends to codify the characteristics of a devote follower.  They set out guidelines for daily and weekly religious practice, and observance of holy days and rites of passage.

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We Two, How Long We Were Fool’d – Walt Whitman

Grass at Sunset ~ oscote365 77

Image by dj @ oxherder arts via Flickr

We two, how long we were fool’d,
Now transmuted, we swiftly escape as Nature escapes,
We are Nature, long have we been absent, but now we return,
We become plants, trunks, foliage, roots, bark,
We are bedded in the ground, we are rocks,
We are oaks, we grow in the openings side by side,
We browse, we are two among the wild herds spontaneous as any,
We are two fishes swimming in the sea together,
We are what locust blossoms are, we drop scent around lanes mornings and evenings,
We are also the coarse smut of beasts, vegetables, minerals,
We are two predatory hawks, we soar above and look down,
We are two resplendent suns, we it is who balance ourselves orbic and stellar, we are as two comets,
We prowl fang’d and four-footed in the woods, we spring on prey,
We are two clouds forenoons and afternoons driving overhead,
We are seas mingling, we are two of those cheerful waves rolling over each other and interwetting each other,
We are what the atmosphere is, transparent, receptive, pervious, impervious,
We are snow, rain, cold, darkness, we are each product and influence of the globe,
We have circled and circled till we have arrived home again, we two,
We have voided all but freedom and all but our own joy.

Walt Whitman (1819 – 1892)