Fishbowler

I make art in strange places and blog about it.

Tag Archives: God

A More Spiritual Time of Year For Me

Buddhism Grunge Flag

The following are this week’s spiritually related writings–a change of direction for my blog perhaps though as you may have noticed Fishbowler never had a particular format which in itself IS a format I suppose.

Read whichever parts you like.

Comments are always encouraged.

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I stepped out of the trailer heated by the wood burning stove to look thru the smoke and up into the stars. I saw a grid. It was not symmetrical and the pattern was not obvious to me but each star was connected to each other star through thin bars of light. Blinking and turning my head did not dispel the vision. I saw this way for about 5 minutes. It gave me an overwhelming feeling of being on stage. I was being watched and this felt fine. I remember feeling like I was under an immense structure of girders.

Thinking today about this event, which happened in the late fall of 2011, I think about the idea of a grid of light and I think about the myths and stories attached to the zodiac. I think about the light that illuminated the moment of my birth and just this moment I realized that if the zodiac makes any sense, it is because light radiates and meets up with me from certain points in space at every moment.

Space and time.

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My friends; they have a myriad of beliefs and I appreciate this. It teaches me to stick to what I know and that is that every person is correct. Every person directs his own path and he is correct. The more he trusts in his own succinct view, the MORE correct he is.

Now how can everyone be correct? Too many conflicting ideas out there for his AND hers to be correct. Isn’t this view nonsensical?

But how could I tell someone their desire is wrong? If someone has a desire, a certain need fulfilled by their belief set then who would I be to suggest that you want the wrong thing?

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Laurette,

I’m not a Democrat.

I needed to tell you this and I preferred to do it in a letter. haha.. I’ve never heard you say a single bad thing about Republicans or Libertarians, which is what I am, but I just want you to know this fact. I don’t want to mislead and I don’t want an awkward moment to arise.

I felt the need to tell you this tonight because I was just talking with a friend (online) and she’s a big Christian. Earlier I was talking with a big Democrat and I’m learning how best to talk with those who believe differently than I do.

I like Buddhism, as you know, and as a Christian, she wanted to tell me I’m not a Buddhist if I don’t follow all the deities, etc. It reminded me of the feeling I got from another friend who is a Buddhist and she does the deities & stuff. She made a comment once that made me feel the same way.

I’ve been reading books on Buddhism for the past 10 years and I’ve never come across any need for deities. HA! that’s me.. that’s what I like.

So, I just love this path in life. I love finding out these things, how to maneuver the best in the world and how to love people properly.

I saw a quote tonight from the Dalai Lama:

“Love is the absence of judgement.”

This reality is so simple it’s absurd!

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A comment I left at this blog:

http://www.existentialbuddhist.com/2013/07/a-meditation-on-politics/

I think I’ve found my new favorite blog sir… sorry, I can’t remember your name as it’s not in front of me.

The first post I read here was the one on non-theistic Buddhism. I’d like to let you know it came up first when googling those words and I found that post to be a perfect one. I read every comment there and had a rare feeling: that I would not be able to add to the quality of this post & comments. So I did not comment. David is a great sounding board or devil’s advocate–whatever–for you here. They say a relationship (even one online) should have 70% similarities and 30% differences. You have things to discuss.

I’ve been coming into a phase of life that I’d call more spiritual. I’ve been meditating every night and my pursuits are toward the spiritual suppositions of this world. I had to get away from the political ponderings. In that arena so much is based purely on fear that it lead me to understand that what’s missing here is faith or basic spiritual foundations. This is the age we live in. I believe that spirituality is simply connecting or feeling that which is bigger than myself. My definitions are always as broad as possible.

So conversations I’ve had recently have been with religious people, one from the tradition of Christianity and one, a Buddhist. I looked back to realize that they were insinuating the same thing: I shouldn’t call myself a Buddhist if I don’t believe in/pray to (or fear) the pantheon of deities and demons that exist in certain lineages of Buddhism. It struck me like a moment of inspiration to see that these two people seem to have a similar taste for deities which I’ve never had a need for. I do, however, enjoy the beauty in such.

Exactly the same sets of desire inhabit and populate the political throngs. Some put all faith in particular leaders and others revere particular ideologies, but it seems the rare breed that looks to the day-to-day base existence of what lies before him and what can be seen with the eyes and to erase labels.

I used to call myself Agnostic and in politics Independent. Lately I’ve been saying I’m Buddhist and Libertarian. It came to seem easier to label myself when discussing views with others. I’m guessing this human predilection has to do with the duality of this maya, this “reality” that we embrace.

So often the labels simply get in the way as others have certain ideas about the nomenclature that I’ve chosen for myself. Logic would point to the fact that they don’t embrace the label as deeply as I do, otherwise they would choose the same label as I. I don’t wanna’ feel pessimistic about this catch 22. Do you have any thoughts to share with me on the subject?

I LOVE to hear that your Roshi is also a Jesuit. That’s incredibly intriguing to me. I can’t imagine the depth of his views on the “supernatural”. I’m sure there’s the repeated quizzical suggestions from others that he’s spiritually schizophrenic. This repeated question, alone, must have given him much to ponder and digest for others’ subsequent consumption. I have more to say about these two particular religious traditions and their similarities (from my own observations) but will save that for another time. Maybe a blog post of my own. http://www.Fishbowler.wordpress.com (HAHA! In this novella of a comment I got to work in a plug!)

We’re such a bountiful and varied species that it seems there is no particular unified human perception but rather an unlimited spectrum of glorious perspectives. It could be suggested that God’s creation is really here to look at its own self and see the universe within the mind of humanity.

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A Snake Parable

It is not clear if the snake was once a man. It seemed as though the powerful snake had always been there, always hungry for power.

Early on, the snake was only twice as powerful as man and he struggled alongside man to retain and expand his power. The snake’s advantage allowed him to advance to twice that of man and then twice that until his rate of growth over man became exponential.

There was once a time when the snake was loud and obscene and he ruled man ruthlessly with displays of public cruelty. He challenged man. He worked his slaves to build fortresses of gold for him and he whipped thousands of men and killed thousands more with ease. He humiliated man for sport.

The snake had an unquenchable lust for material wealth and he knew that he had to keep man producing. The snake had nothing without man. He started to devise ways to expand his stable of men, which brought him more and more wealth. Intervals of war and peace were pastimes of his design.

As mankind grew, the snake’s power continued to grow at unfathomable rates until his growth became unknowable to man. The snake had become invisible, and with time, memory of the snake began to fade into myth and fantastic stories. His very existence had become doubtful to man. Mankind started to see himself as his own ruler.

This pleased the snake as he silently wrapped himself around the world. His bidding was being done at the behest of man rulers but all under his own control.

Myths began to proliferate regarding the divinity of the rulers and some became known as gods. Man will follow man, even if that man is a god.

The snake was still the highest in earthly power and he spent his time plotting and playing games to amuse himself and he wondered how such a lowly and lost race could continue living, deceived, day after day, in such defeat. He took time to observe the ways of man and the snake saw how man’s passions kept him alive in the face of adversity and he saw men die purposefully for what they believed in!

The snake only believed in material gain and since all the wealth was his, he surmised that mankind was illogical, despicable and absurd and existed only for his own amusement. “Something that acts so absurd must be a toy!” he thought. “What else can I make them do?”

The snake had started to observe that the mind of man directed itself toward meaning outside of this world and stories of myth and religion were prevalent and key to the rule of societies and nations. To the snake, man was foolish and this world was all there was.

It was at this moment that the snake said to himself “Mankind is crazy. Mankind belongs to me. I will make mankind destroy itself!” He began a new game. The various gangs would destroy each other!

The snake allowed religions to grow powerful until followers would die in opposition to other religions. Eventually mankind had stopped recognizing itself as one. Divided, the most powerful groups of mankind overcame the others.

Man worshipped nature and then man worshipped gods. Man worshipped various forms of wealth and men divided into nations to fight over all of these.

Man became skilled at dividing itself and the snake found this new game to be ingenious. The snake had found passive entertainment.

Watching man’s foolish endeavors, the snake had long ago lost the power of imagination. His wealth was still growing, still consuming, after all these centuries, but his spirit had withered and died. He had stopped creating.

With his invisible body wrapped around the world, the snake had nothing to do and had no interest in devising a new game. All he knew was hunger because he wanted to keep growing.

Man had worshipped at the altar of beliefs, but when he stopped possessing and started sharing these scattered beliefs, man led himself to full self-knowledge. Man was always looking for what was missing but the knowledge of his own completeness became undeniable. Mankind is its own creator. Together we are God.

The snake had become a soulless, invisible, devouring carcass. His power was empty. There was no he anymore. Man realized that he, himself, had created this snake. Fighting emptiness will devour itself.

Conflict was the only thing feeding the snake. Once mankind quit dividing and fighting, he found his own peace and the snake, did indeed, devour itself.

Last Church, The Legend Starts

Ever been to Goldfield? It’s in the middle of Nevada, and here, we’ll be sharing the story.

Saint Michael Mark is the patron saint here and legend has it an alien came to inhabit his body since the age of 23.

Father Sorg is a wandering monk from the Mysterious Order of NadaDada. This band of nomadic creatives worship in various locations including motels.

Sorg has come to join Michael Mark in his quest to edify the world and call attention to the teachings of Jesus Christ:

“This monument is to the teachings of Christ, not the bullshit from the Bible, etc. but the stuff that’s inside you.
Jesus was the most influential person I’d come across. He seems to touch everyone in this world so i decided to give it a kickstart.
I knew these people came from the stars… from the dust and to the dust. Since I couldn’t get off this stupid fuckin’ planet and away from stupid fucking people, I decided to build a monument to the mind of Christ, the philosopher, the poet, the dreamer. The man who knew what unconditional love means.
He knew that anything was possible if you believe it. A human being can do anything he wants to if he thinks he can. There are no limitations.
If you think there’s a planet out there with two suns, there is. If you think there’s such a thing as flying saucers, there is. If you think you can write a book, you can. If you think you can be an artist, you can. If you truly believe in God, you will find a way to contact him.”

Together, they’re forming the International Car Forest of the Last Church. It will be a place where artists are invited to come and find themselves.

Follow this blog (at right) to stay up to date.

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