Jerry Katz
photography & writings

The wind carves shapes into the beach sand

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Highlights #570

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Wednesday, December 20


The Dance of Tendencies:

The House of Cards:

ºThe 'house of cards' is the perfect dwelling, for the joker...
ºGene Poole

The house of cards is also fitting for the bards
Who are composing many songs
In praise of That to Whom their heart belongs

Some writing on a theme like love
Plus all the birds and bees above
While others can't stop laughing
That many can't stop coughing
Although there really is no smoke
It seeming so, that is the joke...


Jan's Frail Flowers:

Harsha wrote:
>Thanks for sharing this magnificent picture and poetry Jan.

You're welcome Harsha - with some 19 hours a day of physically awake
leisure, plenty opportunity for creativity...

>Perhaps we are all frail flowers.

Undoubtedly - human life starts with total dependency.

>Hope you are feeling better and have mostly recovered from your
>injuries and walking around. Take care brother.


Healing continues but the injuries were rather bad - although walking
on two feet is possible again, it is followed by an increase in pain a
few hours later...




Gene and All,

Some time ago when I was more active on NDS then I am today, we had
some dialog (at least I was talking with myself) over my apprehension
of an apparent external conflict between the pure non-dual position of
'nothing need be done - no one needs to be awakened' and the apparent
'doing' of this sort we all seem to engage in.

Although I recall this dialog occurring on and off-list, and therefore
not available for complete review, I recollect me posing the question
to you, "if this (pure non-doing) is truly so, then why do you continue
posting?". I recall a non-response to the question, which was wrapped
up in an overall discussion of choice.


Huh! Perhaps I simply forgot to reply. I do not recall a non-reply as
an ironic answer.


There was no association (on my part) of the non-response to anything
in particular, except that I viewed your continuing efforts as sort of
a tacit admission that there was indeed 'more' insofar as you perceived


Well, no need for tacit, or admission, in this case. It is that the
'glaring inequities' as perceived, disturb the inner equilibrium, thus
extruding more words. This is an event, which allows impulse to take
center-stage, along with the star, 'volition'. Sometimes, volition need
not wrestle with impulse, but instead, dance gracefully. Of course, the
audience may know the reality behind the fantasy; all the better, as


I remained inwardly puzzled and felt the need to understand the
underlying contradiction, since much had been personally gained in my
association with NDS and all of those then participating on the list,
and what was said was reconcilable, at least internally.

This 'more' seemed to reveal itself to me through some of your posts,
again, on and off-list, associated with the word 'responsibility'.
Clearly an interesting word and concept. But perhaps I projected this
association in my efforts to reconcile the apparent contradictions.


Perhaps the question is; are the contradictions 'real' or do they
occur, only in the construct of logic?

It is more than 'this too shall pass', the comparison of the eternal
with the temporal. It is a call to appreciate the (could-be)
harmlessness of logic, of allowing the fun of the eternal, in the
proposing of what does not really make much if any difference.

'This is what we are doing now'.


Now, returning after some extended hiatus, I find a sense of 'non-dual
activism' alive in some. I find this somewhat strange, seeing this as
perhaps an epitome and perhaps one of the more classic
characterizations of the of the word 'oxymoron'.


If a system adopts rules and regulations which invalidate that system,
the rules cannot be enforced, for there is no system remaining. Here we
see the (logical) 'checksum' error-control algorithm at work; this is
what much of NDS is about, which is voluntarily holding up to another,
the illogic which is seen by one, but not by another. Everyone learns
in the process. Eventually, by logic, the system will vanish.

But the frequent proclamations of 'nothing' and 'nonexistence', are
themselves illogical, and thus error. But the error of
non-nonexistence, does not imply existence; rather, what is pointed to,
is the system of logic itself. Those looking for a firm foundation upon
which to stand, are advised to purchase a parachute, or an anti-gravity


Lest anyone take this as a criticism, let me throw in a, ;-), to
quickly nip that line of association in the bud.

Notwithstanding any 'right' or 'wrong'-ness certain psychological parts
may quickly seek to associate with this paradoxical process. Let me at
least say, "Uh, it makes sense."

"Making sense", as subjective as such processes usually are, is, for me
at least, a bell-weather of a decision to use active force in my life.
That is, "to go for it".


If you are stating that to move, is called for sometimes, I can only


Now, for a truly pointless personal tale.

One has no responsibility. One gets responsibility. One, again,
realizes one has no responsibility, that all is put before one, or,
'happens'. One then becomes responsible for what is put before one. One
then acts 'responsibly' - as best one has been conditioned. One
'fails', or 'succeeds', using this aforementioned conditioning. One has
no responsibility. One, again, realizes, that all is put before one,
or, 'happens'. One then becomes responsible for what is put before one.


Between the 'one' and the 'zero'... is what? Transition, transmutation,


One *asks*, "What is my responsibility?"

Tend MY Garden.

One becomes responsible.

You are free to realize that you are indeed, God, or Nothing, at any
point along this former chain of associations.

The question, to all, remains, even in light of such a realization, is
there something called responsibility?

This is not a question that I feel that needs to be answered publicly.
For the time being, I've answered it for myself. That answer may change
in the future. No big deal.

Warm regards, John


I see it as akin to the task of the mountain-climber; each
finger-and-toehold must be carefully evaluated, before putting ones
weight, and thus life, into those decisions.

The system of logic, which we here all subscribe to, knowing or not, is
embedded in our language; it is as tenuous as the bearing-mechanism
which attaches the fuselage of the helicopter, to the rotating wings

Given the current and common dependency upon identity as proxy,
breakdown of the system of logic, will lead to dissociation and
separation, known as psychosis. That is the why, of our emphasis upon
learning the provisional nature of the system of logic. Preservation
is, in reality, a matter of letting go.

Thank you John...


Gene Poole



Excerpts from his response to Gene's letter above:

I have recently acquired a Persian rug with 490,000 knots from an Iraqi
friend of mine. If each of these knots is conscious of its own
existence and develops its own sense of connection with the warp (or is
it the woof) of the rug. Is the knot then the rug?

To force this analogy we are all knots with greater or lesser
realization of our connections to the rug. I, at least, am still far
away from the concept the rug maker had in mind and discerning the
pattern intended to be displayed - not to mention the house where the
rug resides.

Understanding, then, at least as far as I am concerned, that the
pattern and the rug has to do with emotions, this is what I wonder


Numerous examples in my existence point to the perception that the
'road not taken' leads in the same direction I am going anyway, so I
might as well enjoy the walk.

Where one 'was the emotional experience', from the reverse side
[experientially] of logical formation, an observer might intuit that
psychosis is a foregone conclusion - since feeling is first and
reasoning second (or third) - and feeling was quite intense and
chaotic. Marry this to contemporary 50's disdain and denial of emotions
- particularly in males.

"Dead or institutionalized before twenty-five."

This from an early diagnoses in my teens. None of the former

Logic then, at some critical formative juncture, becomes one's life
preserver, otherwise its off to the hospital for the rest of your life.
At least at the level of understanding of psychological science in the
60's, which it seems, was more of an exercise in classification,
statistics and probability than a healing art.

I would also contend there is a certain flexible order of instantiation
which has to do with individuation. Identity, then, being separate and
independent and beside the point of this process.

That we can eventually shed a cocoon presumes cocoon building at some
point. I conclude you point to the former [individuation], and we
normally substitute the 'identity' for this process. This I have
observed in myself.

Having said all of this, yes, letting go. But not before we know to fly
a helicopter. :-)




"Now is the time to begin to listen to your conscience. Now is the time
to begin to be compassionate individuals and citizens."
-------------especially developing compassion towards those who we view
as being materialstic, capitalist,callous exploiters of the world, and
proponents of U.S. dominance, eh Terry. I mean shit it's easy as pie to
have compassion for the underdogs of the world. But try turning on
those "love lights" for the ones you have the most contempt for, the
ones you percieve (and it is just a perception) that are destroying our
precious little planet.


To begin with, Matthew, it is the young Dawn Child you are quoting, not
me, and I specifically said I didn't endorse everything she was saying,
though I agreed with her aims and stance. To address your point (?), I
fully agree that the polluters and exploiters need to be drawn into the
dialog that it would take to come up with solutions for 'our precious
little planet.' It is not the 'Earth First!' type groups which will get
things accomplished, but the coalitions of all interests, working
together, who may be able to help. I have lived in areas where the
timber and hunting industries were the prime sustenance for the local
human population. If you speak with these people one on one in a
non-confrontatory way, you will find that they have every interest in
saving the trees and the wildlife habitat that they depend on for a
living. If you speak with farmers, you will find that they would *like*
to have strict government regulations, the famous 'level playing
field,' so that they could both preserve their land for their own
children and yet be able to successfully compete with the other
farmers. Germany has had a 'beer law' for four hundred years that
requires all beer to made solely from hops, water, yeast and barley
malt. No preservatives, no artificial CO2 bubbled through it, no rice
or other starches. Beer costs twice as much, but it is real beer, not
the swill that we produce in america and are only able to sell by
cutting prices and heavily advertising; and you better drink it very
cold so you won't notice the tastelessness (so-called 'drinkability').
Similar laws could be passed requiring farmers to care for their land;
like japanese rice, the food would be more expensive but we could
preserve a humane way of life and work, as well as our health and the
health of the environment; not to mention consuming a tastier and more
nourishing product. The problem is unrestrained competition, where
whomever can cut the price to the lowest possible level - thus
producing shoddy goods and widespread cheating, bribery and lobbying -
wins out over the competition. If we were to thoughtfully provide a
level playing field for honest competitiors, with rules that provide
for the care of the environment and sustenance of the resources, even
the exploiters and polluters, for the most part, would approve. There
are many industries which greatly prefer regulation to the chaos and
degradation that occurs when the survival of a business depends on
cutting corners and cheating. (I spent years planting trees and
performing other services in the woods of the northwest, where all
contracts were required by law to be let out to the lowest bidder. The
low bidder was *forced* by simple economics to cheat and lie in
carrying out the contract, and the forest service guys we worked with
knew it, and *helped us cheat!* in order to get any sort of work done.)
The bottom line here is that it is not some eco-nazi group which is
going to save the planet from the rest of us, but a coalition of
compromisers who take into account the needs of everyone involved. It
is *my* (pragmatic) belief that every problem has an ideal solution
which would be satisfactory to virtually all interests, were they all
to be represented. The important thing is get people to stop hating
each other and to face the problems and communicate possible solutions.
To do this we have to first break down the cynicism of people like
yourself who appear to believe that anyone whose interests differ
necessarily has 'contempt' for those brothers and sisters whose
personal interests lay elsewhere. We *all* have saving our precious
planet as a mutual interest; I credit everyone with this interest even
if they themselves don't realize it. And I have contempt for no one.
Sooner or later we will all be 'green'; it will start as a small
movement and ultimately become the guiding light of the human race.
Sooner or later, even if it takes running out of food and water and
energy before some people 'get it.' Thanks for your comments.

aloha, terry


I was dead, then alive.
Weeping, then laughing.

The power of love came into me,
and I became fierce like a lion,
then tender like the evening star.

He said, "You're not mad enough.
You don't belong in this house."

I went wild and had to be tied up.
He said, "Still not wild enough
to stay with us!"

I broke through another layer
into joyfulness.
He said, "It's not enough."

I died.
He said, "You're a clever little man,
full of fantasy and doubting."

I plucked out my feathers and became a fool.
He said, "Now you're the candle
for this assembly."

But I'm no candle. Look!
I'm scattered smoke.

He said, "You are the sheikh, the guide."
But I'm not a teacher, I have no power.

He said, "You already have wings.
I cannot give you wings."
But I wanted his wings.
I felt like some flightless chicken.

Then new events said to me,
"Don't move. A sublime generosity is
coming toward you."

And old love said, "Stay with me."
I said, "I will."

You are the fountain of the sun's light.
I am a willow shadow on the ground.
You make my raggedness silky.

The soul at dawn is like darkened water
that slowly begins to say "Thank you, thank you."

Then at sunset, again, Venus gradually
changes into the moon and then the whole nightsky.

This comes of smiling back
at your smile.

The chess master says nothing,
other than moving the silent chess piece.

That I am part of the ploys
of this game makes me
amazingly happy.

-- Version by Colman Barks
"The Essential Rumi"
contributed by Xan



John Duff wonders out loud:

The question, to all, remains, even in light of such a realization, is
there something called responsibility?

This is not a question that I feel that needs to be answered publicly.
For the time being, I've answered it for myself. That answer may change
in the future. No big deal.

Warm regards,

Hi John,

It's been good to hear you in the past. I know, that for the moment,
the answer is squared away in your mind, but its asking reverberates
through the same medium which prompted it. By medium, I don't mean NDS
so much as I mean, life's purpose.

Life's purpose, or "intent". The reason for all this, is the ongoing
question, and the ongoing answer all at the same time. The question and
answer, coexisting simultaneously, like a New Years Eve "sparkler", the
fuel and the fire, sparkling and sputtering in the eternal NOW.

Responsibility is a thing that seems futile, the cards are already
laid, and I'm the eight of clubs! One game will be lost, another won.
The eight of clubs, each time has its position in that. We know that it
only seems like the games all have mysterious endings, we know that in
retrospect, no game could have turned out differently... well it could
have, but it didn't... We know that it's always now and the game is
what it IS. What could have been and what IS are imaginary differences,
just like what will be, against what we foresee. So responsibility?
What is it...?

I figure, it's to BE the eight of clubs.

You know what I mean don't you?

Love dave



More from the sayings of old Ch'eng

------------- Regarding the thoughts of others as holy and precious
while learning and reciting them to pass them on to others as some
great secret, is what is called being 'chained over and beyond

Cultivating your own thoughts as something rare and precious, thinking
of yourself as worthy of highest esteem and showing a susceptibility to
irritability whenever you are not respected or where it's suggested
that you might be slightly off the mark, is what is called 'carrying
along the yoke of one's thoughts.'

When your own thoughts and those of others seem to you to come and go
like the waves of the sea, none superior and none inferior and where
they have no effect on you whatsoever--though you yourself always
maintain that having attained to a state of perfect tranquillity, this
is what is called 'drifting beneath and beyond thought.'

When no thought any longer holds your attenetion because it has become
clear that, as far as the origional mind is concerned, there is nothing
that can be obtained by thinking, this is what is called 'being on the
brink of the origional mind.'

Entering into no-time, no-space, no-movement, no-thought--and knowing
what it is that is to be seen there in the absence of all perception -
'this is what I call seeing the origional mind.'

All beings are enlightened by the origional mind. Some experience this.
Some have no idea. This is the only difference between them.


No one is holding you prisoner except yourselves.

What a disaster!


You think it's a long way off and yet it is right here. You try to grab
it and off it slips. And so you waste your whole lives, trying to fill
up a bottomless bucket.

If you opened your eyes, you would see the origional mind just as you
see the sunlight. You don't need to interfere to make it happen.


Well, if you have an opportunity to read the book, you may find it
enjoyable. Just remember that books, teachers, satsangs, scriptures,
and such may move you a little further down the path. They won't take
you home.

The funny little secret to this whole seeking cum enlightenment schtick
is that we are already what we seek! Of course until the apparition of
the individual has the 'awakening moment' he or she will have no idea
what we talk about here.

And that's all we can do it seems. Talk about it. I have been in
situations where the 'light' came on for someone else. If I say that I
did it for them, I would be a liar. They 'did it' for themselves. I was
only present. At most I was only an instrument of the grace.

just threw me against the wall. I could see it but couldn't explain
it." That is/was my experience as well. Hell's bells and little
fish-hooks, I couldn't even remember my own name! The self importance
of 'me' just fell away.

To say that I got it, that I realized the allness of conciousness, or
that conciouseness realized the inclusiveness of me would both be right
and wrong. Even though the experience could be described as dramatic it
was a non-event.

Hmmm. Poop!, words don't work here! :-)

Oh well, you might as well ignore everything in this post! Whether I
scratch my head or scratch my butt, it's all the same! :-))

HAHAHAH and HOHOHO! Peace - grace is gonna get'cha - Michael

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