I’m transfixed by this chaps photographs. Can’t say more than that as it is just too late to write more. Look out for the series Mistakes by the Lakes of childrens bus shelters.
It’s not a matter of Knowledge,
It’s not a matter of Perception,
It’s not a matter of Understanding;
It’s a matter of Reception.
From a good Sangha Friend.
Ah good! And thank you.
It was my turn to start the ball rolling with this months Field of Merit Newsletter. Each month there is an original article written by one of us. Unfortunately I ended up using a photograph I’d intended to use here in my article. Well here is the photograph anyway and if you would like to read the article that goes with it you can access it via the Newsletter Archive.
The post is not only about the joys of eating Dandelions and other vegetation plentiful at this time of year or about foraging in general. Though it might have been since I am enthusiastic about eating what grows out in the wild. I always have been enthusiastic however not a very active practicing forager. There is a reason for that. And it is the same reason why you don’t see campaigning on Jade. Yes, sometimes there will be a link to something that desperately needs spiritual merit injected into it.
It is good to work to relieve suffering, including taking up a cause. Many effective campaigns are started by people whose lives have been touched by an incident which propels them to help others in similar situations. In a way, and it’s a long story, Jade Mountains is the answering of a vow I made when I was 13. My brother had seriously gone off the rails mentally and had been taken to hospital. I decided I would find an answer or solution to his plight. Simple as that. The Teachings and practices of Buddhism are what I found. Eventually. So here I am doing my best to point to a way out of suffering, or rather to transcend suffering. Buddhist practice transforms the lives of those who take it up and keep going without falter. Fundamentally it is a life of faith which can influence the lives of beings universally. The spiritual difficulty of championing a cause comes when one can’t put it down!
My mission, if I have one of those, is to help point out a way to put things down. Not to encourage people to pick things up! While at the same time engendering compassion.
It is notoriously difficult to photograph creatures. The smaller they are the harder it is to have all the moving parts distinct and visible with a facial expression they would be proud of! In the case to these two Jack Russell Terriers, parked outside of a local sandwich shop, I had a lucky break. The man in the shop explained that they were advertising.
We are constantly on the move physically aren’t we, let alone the shifting about in our heads! Even when sitting still doing nothing in particular one part or another is moving. Wriggling, adjusting position, raising an arm to adjust clothing, crossing and recrossing legs. Our face is constantly animated even when not talking and simply listening to somebody else. I notice this particularly when using a webcam to talk on Skype. If the other person is animated, shifting about a lot, it can be disturbing and general restlessness can set in on both sides of the screen! The non talking head can be as expressive as on a silent movie. On the other hand I’ve sat in on a Skype call with several people on camera who were not restless and that was a deeply moving event. At times we all fell silent together. It wasn’t planned to be that way.
Talking on-line and being able to see oneself in the ever-present tiny pop out window and getting constant feed back is great real-time feedback. It is showing up habits of how ones speech is augmented by well established mannerisms. And how physical discomfort or fatigue effects the quality of the speaking too! The other day I saw this happening and seeing and hearing the feedback I quickly switched to a more supportive chair. That made all the difference. Without that visual feedback I’d probably not have noticed the fatigue and slogged on regardless. That is my habit!
I am not advocating for rigidity or for obsessing about body language, not at all. More that how we are in ourselves has an impact on those we are with. And the more we are within our own skin the more others may well be encouraged to do the same. Here is the first photograph I took of the two dogs.
The truth will set you free.
But not until it is finished with you.
― David Foster Wallace, Infinite Jest
Food for thought here.