echoes from emptiness

when the colour drains from life

when the colour drains from life

 

my tail waggeth not

yet this crazy Love’s still here -

how mysterious!

 

you’d think it would flee

when the colour drains from life

but it just flows on

 

flows on – in and through

ev’rything thought, felt and known:

my refuge, my Love!

 


 

“crazy Love”? – what else can I call this Unknowable Presence that is not-other; that embraces ALL in its theatre of awareing, without preference or judgement; that isn’t a feeling, emotion or experience, yet makes these knowable; that is here, ever here, throughout the days and nights of this life I deceitfully call ‘mine’, yet know to be ITs own?

 


Image source


 

nothin’ left to lose …

I’ve had an encounter with an ear worm. You know, those catchy tunes that keep playing in your mind ad nauseam.

It’s amazing the lengths tic-toc thinking will go to, to ensure some activity is going on. I’ve found the only effective antidote to be a kind of meditation where you just plonk yourself down (or not) and cast attention in the worm’s direction without any intention to “stop” it. Brain worms loathe the light of attention.

This worm was fun (for a while), as my mind played with the lyrics. I jotted a couple down before returning the wriggler to sender, from whence it has failed to return. Maybe it’s back in Janis’s pocket…

 

Janis Joplin, 1970

“Freedom’s just another word
for nothin’ left to lose.”*

-

Love is just another word
for when you disappear.

 

Peace is just another word
for right and wrong conjoined.

 

Heaven‘s just another word
for no one left to choose.

 

More stanzas on the nondual theme, anyone?

 

[Later – they just keep coming… ]

 

Me is just another word
for God knowing Itself.

 

Joy is just another word
for thankfulness enthused.

 

Praise is just another word
for wonderment expressed.

 

God is just another word
for What’s beyond all words.

. . .


* Lyrics from Me and Bobby McGee, by Kris Kristofferson


Image: Janis Joplin, whose version of this song was her only number one hit. It was included in the album Pearl, 1970. Source: Wikimedia Commons


 

who are you when you aren’t there?

Drawing by Michael Leunig

who are you

when you’re not constantly

re-minding yourself

on social media?

 

when you’re not sharing

your selfies, your mundane and mediocre

daily details?

 

when you’re not broadcasting

your insights, your threadbare, faded

knowledge?

 

what do you see

when you’re not there

telling yourself the old stories

(identify – label – judge)?

 

when there’s no observer

standing separate from

texture, color, energy?

 

when time and space

disappear, taking out your memorybank (poof!)

leaving . . . . . . . . . what?

 

who are you in that apocalyptic instant

when you realise that

every hard-earned conviction you hold

concerning

awakening

enlightenment

salvation

freedom

is merely an empty concept?

 

who are you when you aren’t there?

 


 

[conceptual answers not permitted; keep emptying!]

 


Drawing by Michael Leunig – it also accompanies this post from the early days of ‘the echoes':

sitting in this leaky boat called ‘me’


 

summer haiku

 

Sulphur Crested Cockatoo and Jacaranda

 

a shock of silence!

the crested cockatoo has fled

purple blossoms sigh

 


Image credit


 

(it’s not just old age, either)

 

Echoes from Emptiness: Backyard Bauhinia

 
Under a new moon, at the turning of the earth towards summer, I sit at my table out on the deck, the candle flickering as the last stragglers of the bat community head over east, and I, a being once so addicted to “everywhere-but-here”, a global gaddabout of the first order, so easily seduced by salubrious memories of living and working and loving in Europe, North America, India, the Homeland (Aotearoa New Zealand), always ready to go – go – go now, am wallowing in a ridiculous contentment that consumes all desire to spend precious energy fleeing the inexplicable luxury of just this.

How, when my inhalation blesses me with the fragrance of Jasmine, Lavender, Wisteria, Orange and Mango blossom and I am giddy with double delight* at the excessive glory of the huge Bauhinia in my backyard, could I pine for any other clime?

How, when Kookaburra, Currawong, Magpie, uncountable Lorikeets and a host of unidentified cheepers and warblers chorus so insistently at 4am could I wish for a dark, cold, silent dawn elsewhere?

How, when greeted, like this morning, with a sky of powder-blue that throws the Border Ranges and Mount Warning into a chiaroscuro of subtle tones of silver, could I long even for those beloved Alps of my childhood?

I bless the land life has brought me to. It wasn’t my call, and it hasn’t always been easy. But I know beyond a shadow of doubt, it was, and it is, exactly where I need to be.

I am at last able to say – I love I love I love this sunburnt country.

And the weird thing is that it’s not about Australia at all.

I am simply and hopelessly in love.

 


Image by yours truly: Bauhinia blakeana – also known as the Hong Kong Orchid Tree. More info here.
*Treble delight actually – the tree is a dynamo of insect activity, and the Rainbow Lorikeets never draw breath.


“sunburnt country” – lifted from Dorothea Mackellar’s poem: My Country.


game. set. match.

match. set. game. Photo: Shutterstock

 

One of the most prevalent and persistent myths swirling around the concept of awakening, is that those who have been obliterated by the irreversible EUREKA are instantly and henceforth rendered exempt from all the trials of the flesh that plague “the unenlightened”.

The mind loves to employ this fantasy to critique even the sagest of sages. (“How could someone like a Krishnamurti or a Ramana become a victim of cancer?”) But more sneakily, it turns its scorn upon one’s own delicate understanding.

It loves to hold up one’s (so-called) unattractive qualities – one’s addictions, physical ailments and emotional irruptions as proof that one hasn’t understood anything of import. Really.

What sport it is to watch and listen to this chattering, taunting, would-be bully. For a while you return the volleys. But it doesn’t take long to realise it’s a game without end and you grow bored – you know the score already.

So you serve your Ace straight up.

You simply ask whether the rock-solid immensity of Awareness is being affected, in any way, by whatever is coming at it.

The answer is always the same.

Game. Set. Match.

 


Jiddu Krishnamurti

Ramana Maharshi


In tennis, an ace is a legal serve that is not touched by the receiver, winning the point. – Wikipedia

Image: Shutterstock


the shock of seamless intimacy

 
Miriam Louisa Simons: the shock of seamless intimacy

 

when the myth of separation erases itself

from the mind’s story-trove

one free-falls into a view (there’s no choice about it)

that’s viewerless

the shock of seamless intimacy is usually hair-raising

devastating, humbling

no separation! outside & inside – same!

repeat: same!

- – -

all those stories one tells oneself about oneself

and the mythical others

all those resolutions made in the aching lostness:

practice! diligence! discretion!

all those stern exclusions: the egotist, the phoney

the ignorant, the ‘evil’…

all those fantasies about embracing

some Unknowable Immensity

aye

all those comforting conclusions; certitudes acquired

along a streaming lifeline

gone – synapses wiped

- – -

only this Nothing that excludes nothing

remains, on Its knees

utterly undone

fully full

and excruciatingly sweet

- – -

 


Image source unknown. Please notify me if it’s yours, so credit can be given. Thank you.


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