Breathless Living

Sunday last. A brief stop for a bowl of soup at The Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle.

Absorbed in the drama and costumes, carried away by the poetry of the fine cascade of notes flying up from violin and oboe, the recitation brings unsought emotion and then…. And then the performance is over and for just a brief moment there is silence. A balloon of silence, a moment between ending and the audience responding. Hopefully with cries of appreciation and wild applause. But what of that pause, that pregnant pause so full of potential. A response is in the air.

Apart from the obvious pauses in ones day, week, year and life time there is a natural pause which gets missed in our breathless way of living. And that is the pause, if you bring your mind to it, between an out breath and an in breath. Just wait, pause, at the end of the out breath and with no effort at all the in-breath comes of itself. Sort of snaps in with ones ribs expanding back, sideways and in-front. Try a pregnant pause. Discover that balloon of silence. What comes out of ones mouth, words, might be changed in the process of pausing. Take care not to hold your breath though!

BAD – Buddhist Action Day

Well I am always glad to get behind collective activity which lends itself to the good and BAD err….sound good! Sorry I couldn’t resist! So if you are part of a Buddhist group or community why not clean out a ditch, mend a footpath or…well there are so many possibilities. Linking up with groups such as The Woodland Trust, National Trust and similar organizations might provide suitable work for willing hands.

Would you or your organisation (in Britain) be willing to run an event during the Diamond Jubilee year in July 2012? Each major faith community has been offered a month in 2012 in which to organise inclusive events based on various themes. The Buddhist community has been offered a month – July – in which to run events that have an environmental theme. We have chosen July 3rd as our official ‘Earthkind – Buddhist Action Day’ but your events may be planned for any time during July.
Earthkind – Buddhist Action Day. The Network of Buddhist Organisations.

Please let me know if you/your Buddhist community are organising something during July. I’d love to join in if I’m nearby(ish), already I’m thinking of heading towards Telford in the Midlands.

And do remember to let the NBO know what you have planned so they can publicise it on their website.

Another Pair Of Hands

Help, with walking poles

Thanks to the web hosting people for advising me.

Test Post

This is a test post. I’m trying to correct something that happened behind the scenes as a result of my attempting to make a post from my cell phone yesterday. If you see code above the top of the site, black type on a gray background I know about it and am attempting to mend the situation. Until then I’m not able to make posts. Perhaps an early night for me…

The Warp And Woof Of Communication

I thought this would be about knitting. But it isn’t. I thought it would be about potential. Realizing potential both individually and collectively. But it isn’t. Thus have I struggled these past days to talk about the warp and woof of communication. As we know Warp and Woof is used as a metaphor for the underlying structure on which something is built. A relationship. A family. Society. A monastery. An interest group. An individuals life. Warp and weft are the vertical and horizontal threads woven together to make fabric. Cloth or fabric, used metaphorically, have a similar meaning to warp and woof. The fabric of her life as a working mother, for example. The weaving together, the warp and woof of her life. I love the image invoked here. A drawing together in a dynamic way. These metaphors are used to indicate something whole and positive. Knitted together, not tied down! Perhaps this post is about knitting after all!

Here below is a quote from a blog post titled Potential on Warpandwoofknitting. At first one might think this is a knitting blog and indeed knitting features in many posts. However the warp and woof, the underlying fabric of the blog is something much bigger, broader and foundational. If I were to name the cloth it would be Love, Compassion, Humour and Humility.

The yarn pictured below (in this blog post) is a wool/silk blend I spun up. It has lots of shine and beauty on it’s own, and took up space on my coffee table for quite a while just because I loved to look at it. Eventually though, it needed to be worked up into something useful and became this hat, and another with some little gloves for Mom. So pretty! It is kind of stretching the metaphor to go too far with this, but midlife is kind of feeling this way lately. Full of potential.

Warp And Woof Knitting

Anybody who knits knows it isn’t only about making a piece of cloth which can be worn, draped and otherwise enjoyed by oneself or by others. The knitting itself brings about something foundational to ones being. Feeds the spirit somebody wrote me recently. A drawing together in a dynamic way. Positive. Nourishing.

Mention the warp and woof, or the foundational fabric, of our human interactions, communication, and the response would most likely be a grimace or a groan I suspect. Not always of course. Our common experience of human interactions, communication, more often than not doesn’t bring to mind nourishment, or nurturing the spirit, nor a drawing together in a dynamic way. And as I write that I’m reminded of how expression through the arts, both high and everything else do have the effect of nourishing and drawing together.

So perhaps I’m thinking of the utilitarian communications we use every day, getting business done. Getting ones point across. Expressing a view. Selling or buying – anything. Negotiating, persuading, manipulating. Verbal and written expression between us humans can be an emotional mine field can’t it! Wars are won or lost on words. Reputations ruined by words or more like the warp and woof behind them. What is the foundational fabric of our human interactions?

What is it that can transform a mine field into a beautiful garden? Is that even possible where competing needs and wants drive people into corners rather than weave together as a cloth? The best of gardens have an integrity, you enter into a garden. There is diversity of colour, texture, height. There are arresting features, a fountain, a statue. There is the compost area and the less than sightly behind-the-fence areas as well.

Leave a mine field not maimed for life, one is relieved to have left. To say the least. Leave a beautiful garden and some of it comes with you. As would a perfume.

In terms of human interactions keeping true to the Precepts, nurturing Love, Compassion, Wisdom and Humility goes a long way towards leaving ones room or computer or table – encouraged. As with midlife so too with human interactions, they hold great potential – for the good.

Happy knitting people! And if you have a sense of humour, knit and have hours and hours free, read Whodonnknit. Life will never be the same again!