Wings Clipped!

1-lemon-and-ginger-marmalade
Lemon & Ginger Marmalade

I never thought I’d have to say I have sustained a marmalade making injury! But I have. More than a week ago I was sitting in my chair, kitchen scissors in hand and a bowl of lovely lemons preparing to make a sweet brew. They, several kilos of them, from Spain via Crowd Farming were sent by a kind and generous friend. The Mangos from the same source via the same kind friend were pretty spectacular too. Thank you, again

There are consequences for sustained restricted movements. Physical ones. Snip, snip and more snips resulted in a bunched up muscle by my shoulder blade. It’s not rocket science, I knew the consequences but did I listen and refrain, or even take a break now and then? Nope. Don’t we just think we can ‘get away with it’?

Days on and in spite of my best efforts to allow nature to do what she does so well, to allow balled up muscles to release into their appropriate length, my ‘wing’ (arm and shoulder) has literally gone into spasm. My right arm is doing its ouchie thing. Nerve pain. Ouch! Triple ouch.

Help is on its way and in the meantime, my metaphorical wings are indeed clipped. If one can’t do that for oneself then circumstance will do it for you. I take this as a blessing. We are, after all, on our January Monastic Retreat when doing less is best, and recomended.

I’m over pity, both self-pity and the desire for pity from others. Just send merit if you would, please. My walking companion’s quiet sympathy is enough. Thanks. More on self-pity, perhaps tomorrow. I’ve lots of space and time now……!

Note on gratitude: This post is for a person who is in extremity physically and that tends to come with emotional/mental stressed outness too. A larger jar of Marmalade has their name on it. And another jar for a couple of chaps who look out for me, and I for them.

I sense you readers out there as I write. Thanks for coming back, it’s always a great boost to know you are there. Reading.

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Singing in Empty space

It is said
‘hold the space’.
Space without
edges?
Surely!
Yes & No.

Empty and full
empty/full
simultaneously.
Relationship
needs?
Yes & No.

Distinctions dissolve
and yet.
AND YET
The greatest
gift we offer?
Yes & No.

Unknowingly our conscious attention to nothing specific in the widest possible sphere, the sphere without boundaries, is the greatest gift. Born of patience, compassion, non-judgmentalism, holding back on opinions, allowing and above all, listening. With all the fibres of our being. Sounds good don’t it?

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Reflections on Suffering

This is a Eurasian eagle-owl seen yesterday at a local wildlife rescue centre.  Apparently, these creatures are long-lived and generally outlive their ‘owners’. Thankfully there are those who will look after them when this happens. Clearly these birds were born to fly. My heart goes out to such creatures.eurasian-eagle-owl Below is a copy of a comment I left to yesterdays post.

Reflecting now  I realize that context is all and not giving the details of my lived past days would have readers imagine I was finding humour at the expense of outright cruelty to those Camels. Far from that.

Sometimes what one encounters in the course of a day is SO ‘out there’ that one is taken past outrage and condemnation. One can however become numb with the onslaught of unremitting ‘madness’ to the point where cruelty, ignorance and tragedy become the norm. For many in this world, creatures included, numb is the only feasible response when death is close – frequently a slow death at that. There is no humour here AND if one cares to be still the smile in ones’  heart remains. Bigger, wider and unexplainable.

We have been living, we are still living and will continue to live with such levels of madness (suffering) in our world that the opposites, numbness and outrage, smash together taking one past the pain.  And still one engages.

‘Battle’ against ‘whatever it might be’, can become a way of life as can disengagement and passivity. We have the edge of a sword to balance on as we go onwards.

Painful? Frequently.

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Beautiful Camels!

Happy New Year dear Jade Readers. Perhaps because it has been a full day, preceded by many ‘full days’, or that it is New Year’s Eve and we are heading into yet another year of Pandemic, I just felt this news article in the Guardian newspaper HAD to be shared. But why?

It is said that retaining a sense of humour is the saving grace of the religious life. Please laugh, smile, raise your eyebrows in wonderment as we head into the year to come. May we find contentment, peace, joy and a smile in our hearts. Always and forever. And YES, this is a very sad business – Camel Beauty Pageant! Really?

Camels enhanced with Botox barred from Saudi beauty contest
camels

Saudi authorities have carried out their biggest crackdown on camel beauty contestants, disqualifying more than 40 “enhanced” camels from the annual pageant,

The camels disqualified in the competition, at the King Abdulaziz camel festival, were judged to have received Botox injections and other artificial touch-ups.

Botox injections, facelifts and other cosmetic alterations to make the camels more attractive are strictly prohibited. Jurors decide the winner based on the shape of the animals’ heads, necks, humps, dress, and postures.

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Winter 2021 OBC Journal

The next Journal can be downloaded in various formats here:

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Practice Within The Order of Buddhist Contemplatives