Tag Archives: restoration

The Sense of Home


Saw this post this morning and thought to re-post…image

One day on a trip my beautiful partner and I had an opportunity to stay at a cabin…in fact the way one normally thinks about these places is that they are somewhat rustic in appearance, nominal in amenities and a bit rough around the edges.

I hesitate to say that this was any different on the outside appearance of things, with the simple siding, porches that were in need of some refreshing, and in the interior, the homemade cabinets and the open closet space with curtain material was seemingly pedantic enough.

All in all, one did not see the evidence of a big difference from a rustic looking cabin and this rustic looking cabin.

Maybe it is that on the outside, a lot of things look the same, a field of flowers, snowflakes, a group of houses, sometimes even several people from a distance. But as one gets closer, there begins to unfold the specific differences.

And sometimes it takes a moment for the light to hit something so that we can make out what it is. Sometimes if we don’t see the specific light of something we begin to think it might be something that it is not.

How beautiful that nature produces such a variance of design, that each snowflake, each flower, each person is individualistic and in fact has not been replicated at any point in time!  With 6 billion people on the planet and all the ones who came before us, how can that be?  Why would that be?

This cabin had a sense of being in the right place with elements that both looked outward toward a beautiful peaceful river, a luscious forest of trees, and a sunset filled western sky, and inward through a wall of windows from the West to the East toward the living and kitchen areas, comfortably appointed with elements touched with the patina of caring moments.

One senses that the balance that one feels from this house, looking outward and inward would be that sense of balance that one would look for one’s own life… to reflect on those elements that come to us, and rather than just responding, allowing that which is of light to penetrate our hearts and minds before we make a response.

Hmmm. That would be a different approach to the world as it is today!

What feeling is it that might be emanating from our core in this moment? What elements are we receiving back from the world? Does it make a difference what we are emanating from our center and how we receive the response from the world?

Is it the input that adjusts our path?

We cannot know who we are except by the people that we interact with, though many have tried to do just the inward looking or the outward looking. Beautiful steps either direction, though as we know it takes looking with inner eyes and outer ears, to both hear and see those things that connect us to the whole.

When is the right time to feel at home, in our home, and to be able to share that feeling and sense of home with all about us?

Question is, when do we think is the right time to start?

What Remains


maple shavings

maple shavings

Planing wood curls

Air thick with thoughtful Breath

Clouds in Sky

Moments in Time


Dandelions

Dandelions: Whispers of the Earth photo credit

Morning has broken

Dandelions are blooming

Phone is ringing

The Nature of Nature


Attempts to Control Life?

The Nature of Nature

I have been wondering lately about the sense of Intuition.

When we think about our experience of living: that is of our interactions with ourselves first, and then others, or with the material things that we have around us, and that would extend to those things with which that we work with…there seems at first, the direct relationship we have to the senses of touch, taste, smell, hearing and seeing. We know that all our senses are being employed all the time.

Yes. We know this. Just that we do not normally focus on taste unless we have something in our mouth to experience or until we touch something that we ponder the sense of touch. It would seem that we tend to limit our range of awareness to whatever sense seems to be in focus at the time. However, all our senses are working all the time. Just because we might sense an advantage to focus on one at a time does not mean we are not using the others. Sounds pretty basic I know. The trick seems to be that most of us do not actually focus on our senses as such. Each of our senses has been surrounded with ideas and concepts to the point that we do not experience a point of contact with the atmosphere that is the Reality but one that we conceive in our own minds and hearts to be reality. Interesting?

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As we know in the world we have a situation that has shifted from having a distinct sense of Wonder and Pondering, a sense of Intuition of the place we are in, to a sense of imagination about many things, no longer having our life force centered in our specific core and experiencing that beat and rhythm emanating from the Center, but allowing other things to distract and generally add a sense of chaos to our lives. And of course, we think that certain ones who focus on themselves are narcissist and egotistic and we do not want to be like that! But you realize of course I am not talking about surface kind of things. This is not a thought about how great one is in that sense.

The heart, your heart, my heart, beats without ideas of self amplification, self inflation, or self-anything! It beats without trying, struggling or fighting. It is. You are. I am. Pretty simple if we think about it in those terms.  Throughout recorded history no one, that is not one True Prophet, has eluded to the fact that living Life is a complicated, head induced, rock climbing, martial arts training kind of elusive experience. Our world as it is today would like us to believe that it will take all those things and more to live a life. And those kind of things do have their rightful place as we know. Though, the Reality, that is the scientific Truth, is that Life is something that is simple, natural and rich in and of itself, and that the simplicity of a Rich Connected Experience to others and to Nature is available to each and everyone of us. Nice. It is the Foundation that is the basis of the beginning point of all understanding, intuitiveness and wisdom.

Thing is, is that we are not our imaginations! Although to the degree that we believe that an imaginary thing is real then we will tend to have a growth in that direction.  This is the Nature of Nature. Whatever we water in invisible or visible means, we will have growth. That can mean in imaginary ways that seem real because others are willing to agree with you or in real ways that may take some quiet wondering and pondering. Relaxing into the Reality of our senses. All our senses, or as it is said, our common senses, that are allowed to gather into an experience of an Intuitive Sense about where we are and what we are doing. In this, there is a realization that the word and action of focus here is the operative word.

Again, this is not rocket science and we have pretty much heard these things from many people through time. Though the mind is kind of like a labyrinth in that way, so in order for something to get past it, there seems to be a lot of hoops to jump over and around and through. That is not what you would call a direct path. And it can be hard if we attempt to run a full discourse through the jungle of concepts and ideas in our minds. Just saying.

It is kind of like that monster in the closet (or was it under the bed?) that many of us experienced as children. To the degree that we let that thought enter into our minds and hearts, we were under the spell of that particular energy. It could probably be described by the word fear. Fear of this, fear of that, not really based in something real, more based in a sense of something unknown that is ready to pounce on one, chew one up and of course end an existence…of what? A fear based world? Let that be so!

Reality or the essence of things that are real are real in and of themselves. A closet is a closet. A bed, a bed.  The point here is that in order to experience the Reality of anything, we are pressed to let go of our imaginations about it. One could say that it is our concepts and ideas about the world insulate us from the actuality of it. The Wonder of The Nature of Nature.

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If we are to come to a point of rest with our lives in this beautiful place and time, at some point that imaginary monster must be let go…or are we still tied to that energy under the bed?

Would enjoy hearing your thoughts and experiences!

 

The Night of the Warrior


Painting by Barnett Newman

Barnett Newman “Adan” 1952

Silent night. A deep and luxurious quiet, surrounding one with an opportunity to appreciate being alive, moving with the understanding that there are no guarantees about tomorrow or even the next moment, only about enjoying that which has meaning while one is still breathing. The warrior sits still, allowing for the darkness of the deep to penetrate his bones, his heart, while his mind is quieted, steadied by the rhythmic pulsation of his core. Listening. Aware and alert to his surroundings without concern about them.

“Be here” sounded a feint voice from within… and he refocused his attention realizing that the same voice he heard within also sounded from without, not like an echo, but more unto the understanding that it was both inside and out. Simply complete without question.

It did not disturb him that there was a voice, in fact, it was this same voice that he knew was giving him the guidance, the inspiration, and the encouragement to meet those factors that were in front of him. He waited, letting go of the baubles of concern that arose within him, breathing into the air, letting any doubt of his capabilities and talents to dissipate allowing his heart to be stilled into this exact moment. He arose. His body was alive with the richness of connection to the atmosphere from the core of his heart outward, his mind attentive almost unconsciously to the inputs of his senses: the smell, the taste, the sounds, the sights, the touch of his feet on the ground; he was receiving a rich array of inputs yet he had no judgement about any of it. Just the awareness and the focus on the atmosphere surrounding it all.

Painting by Barnett Newman 1949

Barnett Newman “Concord” 1949

In this place, he knew that to dwell in the past, would not allow him the sensitivity of response to the changing atmospheric conditions of right here and now, thus the words “be here” were in fact the command that he chose to follow. To be in the future, was certainly foolish in the way that the present was working out beyond his knowing of what it could and would bring, so that though he pondered what might be, he did not give any weight as to how things might manifest, for it was not his realm to make the future fit his idea of things. What was to be, would be perfect and in balance, harmonious with the Truth of Life. Anything else he knew, surrounded around his ideas and concepts about reality and therefore not important in his meditations or his being upon the Earth.

His experience told him, to let go, to let go of anything that held him to some limited concept about himself and the world about him. His life was not personal in that way. Interestingly it was when he began to understand this small seed of Light that the Voice also began to be heard more clearly.  Encouraging him to continue. Inspiring him in creative new ways to approach what he thought only to be ritualistic and dogmatic. And in this way, his perspective on what had True Value began to grow in his heart. For he realized that though he was responsible for his being, here, the joy and pleasure of being, and achieving had rewards far beyond what he could conceive in his own imagination.  In this way, to let go, meant that he was to let the struggle, the fighting, the anger of the world to move out of his heart, step by step, and to focus on the Truth of Life: The Source from which emanated that which was real and right and true. The essence of allowing these specific stanchions that had begun to grow of Truth in one’s heart, allowed for the start of many new things to grow out from there, even unto the beginning of a clear start; something so True that all things could be subsumed under it, that grow from it, or that are moved out of the heart by it.

North Carolina Mountains

photo by author

It was of course only a beginning point of understanding. A Causative Truth in lieu of a reactive response to the world. This was not a quest as he understood it from before, but a fire that resided deep in the heart of his heart, that called his name. To hear what it said to him as he moved about the world was in fact the True Quest and the Passion through which he was willing to give his whole life to.

The Nature of this Rich and Still Place moved from a state of constant Creative Activity in Darkness into a place of Morning Light, allowing for the newness of the crisp rising Dawn to be discovered and experienced moment to moment with the intoxication of Clarity.

The time of judgements of what would be good and what would be bad, was moving out of his heart, leaving the beginning of a realization of the actuality of Reality. It was to begin to set him free within himself and also all that was outside of himself. It was no longer him against them, no longer the fight. But the cognition of the Reality as to what was meant by “us”. Not the expression of outer forms. Not the trying to be in agreement with others. But that part of him, which recognized the core within himself also began to recognize that core of each one he met and interacted with, beyond the words spoken with the lips, to that which resided behind the walls built to protect oneself in imagination. The Truth of the core of oneself and of others.

How freeing to move thusly. These new tools that he was being given, were much greater than his understanding to use them, though as he practiced with them, learning how to wield the power that was innately within them, they were becoming not as an extension like unto a piece of metal in the hand, but that which began to move out directly from his heart. No longer something apart from him to pick up, but something that moved from within and manifested outwardly.

Thus the night’s meditation culminated as the morning sun began to rise. A new beginning. A new dawn. A new day. This moment. He breathed deeply and luxuriously, appreciating the essence of life. The morning mists were rising and revealed a battle field that was strewn with the dead forms of many valiant warriors, yet the dead can not speak, nor move. It was time.

He laid down his weapons, removed his armor and all that no longer made any sense to carry forth, in realization that all True Power, Wisdom and True Grace were elements that emanated from within and had no need of weapons as such. From within the Space of the stillness of his heart, the Voice sounded from within again, “Journey to the East”. His heart pounded in response and smiling unconsciously, he harkened toward the Dawning Light.

 

Political Revolution or Revolving Solution?


There was once a gathering of people, who worked during a time of great strife for the accomplishment of the Vision of a Goal. These people saw that there actually among them one person that embodied the willingness to stand in a place of Clarity and of Responsibility, to not only hear what most people were not willing to hear, but to act where most people turned away.

This was a time of dark clouds that covered the land and like most dark times, there were certain ones, who designated themselves as task masters, who thought that they were a privileged group, destined to hold others responsible for their level of comfort. And at first it did not seem like such an aberrance of spirit to the many, for there was always more to do on a day than what could actually be accomplished, so that having someone above them who also seemed to provide for them a certain order to things seemed reasonable enough.

As time moved on, the task masters, realizing that others were willing to let them have their way even if they mumbled, began a process of increasing their own treasures at more and more the expense of the others. It became very apparent that the efforts of the people were being directed to fulfill the lives of a few of the fortunate task masters.

By now the sentiment of the people were in one accord to get rid of the task masters and find a new way of living. A way of living that functioned for the benefit of all.

How many ways and how many times has this scenario played out in history? And to what end? Always to yet another task master, who knows that this time it will be to his or her benefit in lieu of being at the bottom. And the people seem to tend to respond to and believe the next task master, as this will be the one who will not allow the power and wealth to deter them from the responsibility of the others.

And yet, without the understanding of the Vision of the Goal, every one who is placed in a position of power and wealth, eventually is corrupted by the same elements of privilege and allows the responsibility of the many to go by the wayside.

There was this one man though, who did stand in a place of Clarity about the Understanding of the Goal. And as he was actually recognized by his peers, he was elevated and brought forward to represent the Reality of the Truth of what the people needed at that time.

So he was put into a place of Privilege because of his understanding of Responsibility, and this one, held to the specific Opportunity that was given unto him.  And of course, because of that, there were those who did not trust to him, even though they themselves helped to get him in that position.

He saw that there was a necessity for a change in direction for the many and as he stood in that place of concatenation, the agitation of discontent began to develop around him. Even among the chosen few that started in agreement with him and all those who perceived the beginning point that he represented.

Now, there were two especially close ones that assisted in the advising of council to the one, and it seems that these two were very dear to the one, each in their specific ways, and each because of the specificity of their understanding of the True Goal. The value of understanding that each person represents a certain individual relatedness to life and has his or her place under the sun, was at least one of the assets that endeared the chosen one to the people. It was this same asset that was underlying all that the one attempted to accomplish yet it was the very thing that separated him from the others, only because the willingness of the others did not move them enough to come to understand.

In fact, the essence of this understanding was something that could not be transferred by conversation but only by the self-realization of each one individually. The one realized that the diversity of people and ideas actually added a dimension of perspective through which he and those who understood could gather a better and more fuller understanding of what was moving at the time. He did not take it personally, that the surrounding ones did not see this as the Responsibility, though he knew that it was his own responsibility to let the factors be gathered within him. He knew this responsibility as an active moving force through which he could allow a greater understanding of things. These two who were close however, even advisors to the one, felt that each one of them understood their own answer; the specific answer as to how things needed to function for the benefit of all, even though it excluded all those who did not see things their way!

Apparently they did not come to a place of rest within themselves so that they could begin to understand what the one was doing to lead and to bring, first a core of understanding of certain ones together, and then a sense of unification that would expand out. They thought they saw the answer without the need of Listening. So there grew a tension within the family of the Privileged few, that festered in a way of undermining the efforts of the one to allow the Understanding of the Goal to move out to a few more than just himself.

Without patience, there is no starting point for real understanding, and as things seemed to indicate, the willingness to stand still and allow the tensions to dissolve into nothingness, and the Understanding to come into that tranquil and empty space, the actions of the privileged few began to harden into two ways of thoughts.

This to the dismay of the one, yet without a willingness of the few to stand still and hear the True unifying answers there was nothing he could do himself.  To voice his thoughts would be to watch the Understanding be drowned in a sea of controversy in such an atmosphere. All he could do was set the example of a place of stillness and allow the wisdom that emanated from his being to set good seeds.

It was not long after such a glorious beginning point that things began to become stylized in the way that other task masters work, for such is the way of task masters. Without the fluidity of realizations that come from an awareness of constant change, and being in a place of tranquility allowing for the newness of life to be actualized, task masters think that the control of functions via rituals and the dogma of ideologies can replace the true essence of Understanding in this moment. That is, what opportunities are coming to point now and how to work with them for the benefit of everyone included. That would be in the name of Selfless Service, so that everyone who responded to the call would be included in moving together toward this Greater Understanding.

Patience is just a beginning point in the active, pleasurable and uplifting range of Responsibility that each one is capable of, and it initiates the phase that sets the seed to Great Accomplishments.

The new task masters who eventually moved into the place of the one, even came to the point of identifying exacting roles and functions of each person, and of course how that would benefit everyone as long as he or she was at the top levels.

And of course, eventually the people became disillusioned, and the task masters, realizing that the others were willing to let them have their way even if they mumbled, began a process of increasing their own treasures at more and more the expense of the others.

And of course, it became very apparent that the efforts of the people were being directed to fulfill the lives of a few of the fortunate task masters…

And of course, how else could it be, that by now the sentiment of the people were in one accord to get rid of the task masters and find a new way of living.

A way of living that functioned for the benefit of all.

Hahaha! Until next time. There is more to come!

The Invisible Building of Frank Lloyd Wright


Frank Lloyd Wright circa 1895. 28 years old

Frank Lloyd Wright was actually born as Frank Lincoln Wright on June 8, 1867 (d 1959). About this time in history, the Arts and Crafts Movement (1834-1896) in England had been initiated by John Ruskin’s ( 1819-2000) writings and also by the efforts of William Morris (1834-1896), also while America was still licking the wounds from a civil war (1861-1865). Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) was given to his writings and speeches on an international level.

Frank Lloyd Wright, for all the capabilities and talents that he was given, could not produce what he produced in any other period of time! It was a specific time period and he was apparently listening from a place that allowed him a larger perspective and viewpoint.  Ergo he was able to draw unique creative solutions for his architectural designs, ones that set him apart in such a way, as to initiate a trend for others to follow.

House Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright

House Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in Oak Park, IL.

One question that comes to mind is that how does one think or hear on a larger perspective?  That sounds romantic and sexy!

It would seem that in the first place, one would have to be able to consider the fact that there was indeed a place of higher perspective, that could be accessed by one’s self.  Maybe even a place one’s true self is aware of, a place available to each one of us.  If we were to subscribe to that thought, then the practical approach might begin with a questioning attitude.  How can I get to know that place?

By what we have seen in the world, the idea of being in a higher place kind of brings images of someone apart, one who is maybe sitting somewhere on a mountain top for instance! Though obviously, what I am referring to and thinking about is that place inside of each one of us, that is quietly still and remains still in spite of what goes on around one.

Is it not that place of stillness that we can begin to relate to larger things?

Space is the breath of art.
Frank Lloyd Wright

The world has other plans.

It seems as though, as we come into the world, the right of passage to enter into the atmosphere of the place and time that we are born into, is almost like entering  through a.. grocery store. Hahaha! It is a grocery store that holds an unbelievable amount of variations of limitations that we can chose from!  So we are given a shopping cart (pushed in front of us!) and away we go, loading this limitation ( I like the sound of it…) and that one (how cute!), and of course, some of those limitations are presented to us from those special ones that we call our parents and significant people in our lives. With all the best wishes for these ones, they have been working with their limitations and are willing, generally on a subconscious basis to help us agree to take them onto our lives.  To this we add our own choices of wonderously interesting limitations and whalaa! How great is this! Now we can go into the world, pushing our shopping carts full of stuff to see who will agree to our great and beautiful choices in limitations that we just bought and who will be willing to share them. Do we see anything here that might be different?

Falling Waters by Frank Lloyd Wright 1935

To listen then and act on a larger perspective might actually begin with a realization of the fact that these limitations of which we are so fond of are actually in a cart that we are pushing along and not who we are!  Letting go of the shopping cart of concepts and ideas that are limiting in Nature that we have acquired might allow us the space to begin again, just without the shopping cart.  Do you believe that is possible? Do you think the world will agree with you?  Hahaha!

Life always rides in strength to victory, not through internationalism… but only through the direct responsibility of the individual.
Frank Lloyd Wright

Pushing a shopping cart is a choice. There is almost no limitation that we have chosen to hold onto that is actually a real limitation! It was just accepted as a gift and by the way, something that we can let go of. Nice.  Actually by the same method that we share our cherished limitations, that is by thought, word and deed, we can also share unlimited attitudes by the agreement of not subscribing to limitations of thoughts, words or deeds.  Just listen to the world. It becomes so obvious as we move to allow something different in our lives. The thing here is not to become fixated on what are the limitations but actually what is not limiting, and to let go to what is true, about your true self, and about others! Even those close-in.

At the Guggenheim Museum

The heart is the chief feature of a functioning mind.
Frank Lloyd Wright

Frank Lloyd Wright was nurtured from the point that he initially came into his mother’s womb, not just with the caring of a mother with child, but also with the idea of him becoming a great architect. She was so instilled with the idea that this one would accomplish on greater levels, that she bought him building blocks as soon as he was able to play as a child.  She also managed to home-school Frank, using Fredrich Froebel’s ideas on children and learning, a teacher whose ideas that were as unlimiting as could be expected at that time in the consciousness of the body of man on Earth. This heartfelt idea of hers, that he would be a great architect was the well of water from which her son grew up with on a daily basis.

Well, we can see that there was a certain amount of expectation that he would naturally be available to hear and likewise perform on a different level, and that expectation was surrounded by the caring of someone close-in. In this case it was his mother, but more importantly was the sense that there was a level of agreement and pressure for the accomplishment of this goal.  Did I just say a “P” word? How much do we appreciate pressure in our lives? Or do we steer away from it when we feel it?  Ask any mother about the pressure of birthing something beautiful and real.

Taliesin West. Wright’s former home

Isn’t that the essence of pressure? It either brings us closer to something or moves us away depending on our response to the situation. The pressure of his mother’s vision moved into agreement with Frank, and that pressure was translated into the field of architecture bringing the fruits thereof.  Though as all things change, the time came for the need to let go of her son, as he became involved in his new relationships, and by what we know of history, she was seemingly unable to do so.  Her presence persisted through his own relationship with his wife Catherine, and his second wife, Mamah.  Though it was his second wife that physically helped his mother to make a transition, for her and all concerned.

The thing always happens that you really believe in; and the belief in a thing makes it happen.
Frank Lloyd Wright

Circa 1940’s: Olgivanna (40’s) and Wright (70’s)

Frank Lloyd Wright left us a lot to think about in the architecture of one’s life, and our purpose on Earth.  Lessons that we know are to continue from moment to moment. How fun!

Stay tuned. I would enjoy your comments and thoughts!

Bibliography

Brainy Quote. Brainy Quote. 2012. 2012 <http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/f/frank_lloyd_wright_3.html&gt;.

Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. Frank Lloyd Wright Biography. 2012. 2012 <http://www.cmgww.com/historic/flw/bio.html&gt;.

—. Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation. 2012. 2012 <http://www.franklloydwright.org/about/Overview.html&gt;.

Secrest, Meryle. Frank Lloyd Wright, a biography. New York: Alfred A Knopf Inc., 1992.

The Music of the Unknown


Explorers Lewis and Clark

Lewis and Clark: An Adventure into the Unknown. (Image may be subject to copyright)

I was wondering about the elements of newness that seem to be appearing all around us, and it brought up thoughts about the essences of exploration and how that translates into our lives.

Ships of Columbus

Exploring New Waters

If we think about the explorations of the well-known and celebrated ones like Columbus, for instance, who sailed into the Unknown in the face of the Dark, or like Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, who moved across uncharted lands in search of a new route, there is the beginning sense of what an explorer at heart might need to come to terms with.  The definition according to the Free Dictionary of an explorer is: one who moves into territory that has not been discovered or revealed before this time and place. If we take a road trip or other adventure, that sense of newness to one’s surroundings begins to feel real. New surroundings, new people new events happening outside of our control…in a sense, we can realize how we might translate the awareness of being in a place of new surroundings moment by moment.

Where do new things come from? Is this not from some place called the Unknown? In our experience how do we interpret the Unknown? Is this something to be feared? Or loathed to look at? Are we comfortable with the elements of our lives and of what we hold in our hearts so that we can look at what is to come with a certain steadiness and joy?

Map of the Elemental Particles of the Universe

Elemental Particles of the Universe

The Unknown can mean a shift in the change of direction of our lives and it can signal the nuances of a subtle influencing movement of world patterns which affect our lives. Would it not behoove us, in our own interest to wonder, how can we befriend this mysterious place called the Unknown?

We realize, that looking backwards, the explorers of the past exercised a certain ability to examine the concepts, ideas and consciousness of their time and to review those things that were accepted, in order to move into a place of new ideas and discoveries. Whoever the explorer was, did not accept for him or herself what the status quo was, and had to be willing to let go of what was known for something that was, well basically, Unknown!

Hmmm. Interesting. Do we just forget what we know? Or as we might listen patiently to a friend talking to us, do we allow for a space to be present within us to question what is and not jump to the conclusion that we know the answers? Most of us have grown up with the essence that to be an adult in our society is to hold onto certain truths and not to question them, but to figuratively and literally go down with the ship to protect them. And why would we do this? Because our elders did the same? Because it promotes our society? Because to question would create an instability with the agreements that are in place?

What constitutes the status quo? Is this about the continuum of a procession of ideas and concepts that are being carried forward by the willing ones? And what if some of the foundational ideas and concepts were flawed to begin with? I think that we all know this to be true, yet how we move from a place of realizing an inequity and allowing a change to take place can be a daunting task in our own minds. The reality is though, is that the Reality of Life exists with or without our attempts to form it in some imaginary place in our minds. Hmmm. The words come to mind of “Let go”. That is, let go of the attempts to form a reality apart from Reality.

We know that there was something that each individual explorer needed to realize and move through in order to accomplish what they did.  In order to meet anything that is coming towards one, there is the need to turn in that direction!  One cannot meet the energy by turning to the side or to the back, or even turning to peek at it and then move away.

Energetically then, if we would like to be in a place of exploring new discoveries, creating new things and bringing new ideas into form, it makes sense that one needs to be able to free oneself from looking behind oneself, so that one can be sensitive enough to meet what is coming toward one in this moment. Easy for you to say, yet easily enough to do too! And like most patterns of behavior, one must desire to be in a place of Reality in order to unlearn old patterns, and allow the new ones to form. This is where the amount of desire and willingness to let go of an old viewpoint of one’s self or other’s around one, or one’s surroundings becomes the vehicle for change and infuses one with the uplifting energy of the explorer’s attitude.

Meriwether Lewis had specific things to meet within himself as he moved across the US.  Those things that he assumed from being on a farm or in the city, had to be questioned as he saw the new territory unfold in front of him. In a sense it would have meant working with the factors that were at hand and in front of him, so that he could begin to realize what was in the new territory. An animal was not just another animal, nor a tree a tree, a rock, the vegetation…all were new in some way, yet in order to see this, he had to leave his current ideas and concepts behind him, and with the curiosity of a child not assume that he knew anything.

Lewis and Clark exploration

Map of Lewis and Clark’s Exploration

In essence one needs to be able to let go of the past and to be present, so that one’s surround can be re-examined, re-thought, and re-visited with new ears and eyes! Hahaha! So simple and yet so tricksy a statement! Yet I think that we are onto something!

To the degree that we might be able to stand in the place that we are now, and be present, there begins to develop an element of appreciation for the things that are around us and those things coming in from the Vastness of the Future, as well as those things that are receding into the past: a separation in fact, of the Known and Unknown. A place that is new, exciting, and to be explored!

exploring color

A Sense of Exploration!

How interesting!  How fun and challenging!

Would really enjoy to hear your comments! And let’s meet again in the next post!

Scratching the Surface: Barnett Newman


American Artist Barnett Newman

Barnett Newman

There was a man by the name of Barnett Newman, who was born about the turn of the century, January of 1905.

Barnett Newman was born in New York City, where his parents owned a clothing manufacturing business. He studied philosophy in the city college, and then in agreement with his father, he worked his family’s business.

His sojourn led him to attempt a number of positions in a number of different fields including painting, writing, and substitute teaching. At one point he attempted to develop a magazine that would promulgate the rights and saga of public and civil workers, calling it “The Answer”.  In another attempt to provide something on a larger scale, he offered himself as a write-in candidate for the position of mayor for New York City!

It would seem that in each one of us is the spirit of the sense of a larger ability to accomplish. Not something to aspire to, but more of a knowing that we have this capacity to do so.  What most have settled for is a small version of that realization, leaving much of potential in the ethereal unrealized.

Barnett found in 1948, on his birthday a moment of realization that brought his capacities and talents to a point of understanding something of the truth of his potential.  Something that stirred his imagination in the reality of why, what and where his place was in the universe.  A place that signified an understanding of the revelation of the underlying foundation of art.  That realization allowed for a beginning point from which a change in the direction of art could begin to appear.

Any art worthy of its name should address ‘life’, ‘man’, ‘nature’, ‘death’ and ‘tragedy’.

Barnett Newman

As he stated and I paraphrase here, it was not something that he consciously chose, but rather something that was created through him.  The implication was that there was as much in the invisible as there was in the visible, in the creating of art, in life, and in living.  This specific moment of understanding allowed him to focus the rest of his life to bringing it to others through his art.

Barnett Newman: Concord

Did the world want to hear that specific message?  The truth that the foundation of art, as in life, was at once simple yet filled with seeds of specific interpretation and manifestation? That each one of us are here for the purpose of revealing the simplicity of Life?

Barnett Newman Painting Onement

Barnett Newman Painting Onement

I hope that my painting has the impact of giving someone, as it did me, the feeling of his own totality, of his own separateness, of his own individuality.

Barnett Newman

Almost exclusively, the art critics of the time eschewed him from the collection of other contemporary artists. At one point, in 1952, the Museum of Modern Arts had an exhibition called “Fifteen Americans” in which they excluded Barnett from the group, a clear response of not understanding the presentation of his work. It took yet another six years until 1958, that MoMA included his paintings in a traveling exhibition called “The New American Painting”, which was shown across Europe.

It would seem that if we chose to let the world define us, we would become a cog in a large, and overrated manufacturing machine, creating products, buying things, and paying interest and taxes to sustain the machine’s existence.  There are moments of joy, moments of compassion and glimpses of truth interspersed between the grinding of the days, until finally the energy and life force is used up and one is no longer needed by the machine.  Is this the price of allowing our talents and capacities for creation to be thrown aside, like they were some kind of interesting dream that we remembered for a moment?

Artwork of Barnett Newman Wasko Man in the Night

Barnett Newman Wasko Man in the Night

If we are convinced on the one hand that what is to be accomplished is right for us, in this time and place, then where would we place the value of recognition?  Is for instance the value of doing something for recognition more important than the doing for the pleasure of responding to the inner realms of the heart?  To the degree that we can begin to understand why it is we do what we do, the purpose of our lives is in fact, brought to a point of delicious joy and satisfaction. It is the kind of satisfaction that supersedes the quest for recognition, though as the value of what is accomplished finds response in others, then a certain level of recognition is attained naturally and organically.

I prefer to leave the paintings to speak for themselves.

Barnett Newman

Clearly we must each one make certain choices in light of the circumstances that are presented in front of us. The world will always present choice “A” or “B”. That is how we know that it is a worldly situation!  The world is full of limitations.  The truth is, from the foundation of reality, is that there are no limitations to the ability to create. We all know this at some level.  The revelation of the visible is what the centering of the world is about, but the essence of the freedom to create begins in a place called the invisible, and the world has no hold on that.  Even if one is deep in the buying and selling of worldly things, true freedom stands clear, and untouched.  Yet the essence of a seed planted is that it will grow, if properly nourished and cared for, and that which is conceived in a safe containment and atmosphere will find a way to the light. And so it will be with the nourishing of our larger self in due season.

B. Newman, J. Pollock, and Tony Smith

Barnett Newman, Jackson Pollock, Tony Smith at the Betty Parson's Gallery

How fun! Stay tuned because there is certainly just a scratching of the surface of the truth of our lives here. Always a pleasure to hear your comments!

Works Cited

Barnett Newman Foundation. “Chronology of the Artist’s Life.” 2005. Barnett Newman Foundation. Dec 2011.

Newman, Barnett. Barnett Newman Interview Chromatichouse on Youtube.

—. “Barnett Newman Quotes.” 2001. Brainy Quotes. Dec 2011.

Philadelphia Museum of Art. “Barnett Newman.” 2011. Philadelphia Museum of Art. Dec 2011.

Pressurized Painting: Jackson Pollock


Jackson Pollock

Jackson Pollock

The life of Jackson Pollock, whose avant garde works of art in the 1940’s -50’s in America, helped identify and change a direction in the expression of art on canvas for America and the world at large.

Jackson Pollock was born in Cody, Wyoming in 1912.  His parents moved the family a number of times during his formative years, and by the age of eight, his father finally left the family.  Jackson was the last of five brothers, and he found himself relying on his older brothers for support and guidance as he grew up.

Jackson on the steps

Jackson seated on the steps

Some say that through his brother, Charles Cecil Pollock, his interest in art was established.  And in truth, he did follow Charles to NY in search of an art education, by means of the Art Students League. In a sense though, would it matter from whence came the beginning point, as the art that was produced, the inspiration and the creativity, came from the source of the heart of the one known to us as Jackson?

It would seem that Jackson began to open up to the opportunity for this expressive medium and this new direction in life began to form.  There is a funny and twisted element that moves in the world: it has a way of circling back around to one as soon as one commits to an uplifting direction.  The world will throw stones at anyone who dares to move upward!  In one sense this is figurative speech as it manifests itself as a pressure from the world to stay as small as you can, because if you change, guess what?  The pressure is redirected in the direction of the world for it to change!

The world will challenge one, the minute one realizes that the capacity to live a life that is full of richness and accomplishment is that which is inherent and lies inside of one. The world wants us to believe that it is not possible, nor a reality!

It seems that at certain times, Jackson Pollock felt the pressure of a world saying that he was not capable of being a great artist, and when his response was turned in that direction, he seemingly moved toward it, dissipating life’s resources with bouts of alcohol. You know if you are drugged, somehow the voices within you are quelled for a time, and life can happen without one’s direct input. To answer the voice within and come into agreement with the possibilities of the richness of the experience of life, the agreement needs to hold steady while the world cries like sirens in some stormy sea passage.  Sound familiar?

Stenographic Figure by Jackson Pollock

All rights reserved by the artist and the graciousness of the moma.org website and collection…Stenographic Figure by Jackson Pollock

 

Jackson Pollock apparently worked with many factors in his life, some that appeared to twist his ability to handle pressure. Though for each one of us, is pressure a given? The question boils down to how much do we care to hear that voice of inspiration?

“The modern artist… is working and expressing an inner world – in other words – expressing the energy, the motion, and other inner forces.”
Jackson Pollock

With the use of alcohol one could only surmise that it eased the pressure of the vision and the great capacities and talents of Pollock for a moment.  Yet when he was sober, there he was, faced with this tremendous talent inside of him and the inspiration of creativity moving to be unleashed.

If we think about the events that occur to us each day, do we hear the choices that can be made concerning the direction of our lives?  That of either uplifting our lives or succumbing to a response of little interest, no interest or unconcern toward our circumstances: it is our living experience. If we choose to pay attention, there are certain nuances of pressure that come to focus in us.  We can choose to be aware of these pressures and listen to what they are attempting to say to us… or not.

The choice is ours to make.

Painting by Pollock

The Key

“The strangeness will wear off and I think we will discover the deeper meanings in modern art.”
Jackson Pollock

Stay tuned there is more to come! Thank you for your inputs and comments!

Works Cited

National Gallery of Art. “Jackson Pollock.” 2011. National Gallery of Art. Oct 2011 <http://www.nga.gov/feature/pollock/&gt;.

Pioch, Nicolas. “Pollock, Jackson.” 2002. WebMuseum. Oct 2011 <http://www.ibiblio.org/wm/paint/auth/pollock/&gt;.

Pollock, Jackson. “Jackson Pollock Quotes.” 2011. Brainy Quote. Oct 2011 <http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/j/jackson_pollock.html&gt;.

various. “Jackson Pollock.” 2011. Answers.com. Oct 2011 <http://www.answers.com/topic/jackson-pollock&gt;.