Still me…

Today was a day that I wish I never lived.

Today was a day that I was grateful to be alive.

Today was a day, unlike any other.

Today was just today, and for that I’m grateful.

Nothing bad happened amongst the mix.

Nothing upset me more than this.

It was a nothing day, amongst the rest.

For that I’m grateful, although that wavers, the judgement upon it all can’t be.

Today, it was….still just me.

I should feel guilty for being so selfish, I should be fraught!

Ha ha! But I’m not, because, to be able to reflect upon my lot from today or tomorrow or yesterday on how to be…reminds me that I am…just still me.

The end…

This space…life, as it grows dim, do I dare to let him in?

He has haunted me from my youth, since I awakened.

I was 8, a day which gives me fright. But I then saw there that life was IT.

This IT I’ve called it ever since. A blessing, one would or should suppose, but not for me all these years as I’ve posed.

Posed for what? To reach an age that today is defined from yesterday. I’m old.

We will, I hope, live much longer, but that doesn’t mean I’ll grow any stronger.

Rather, the clock defines us still. Will not, will wither, will it be it as it may.

Not to dismay, it is our plunder, our way upon this earth asunder.

As for me, I will stand up tall and take my fate, as much we all.

Slay me now or slay me yet, I take my odds on life’s sure bet, that we will know when to end the show and be as yet, another remembered.

Life…

So many of us are tired, with Covid and with life, especially if we are older. Perhaps it is the bell ring of our time in this form of being that we call Life, nearing its end? As for me, I welcome the great, the best of sleep ever. This life tires me. There is no ultimate solace, no here and now release from its daily grasp upon our souls. Nothing other than our sweet repose, asleep, in peace, forever. 

To be able to see our end in such great light, surely brings us up to our lifelong fight, for this for that and the other thing. Time now, me thinks, to sing! It is not that which we have feared! Rather, I suspect, a thing to actually be revered.

Life, on the other side…

Time to write. I have a dear friend recently diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer. She has 3 months to 3 years to live. Either way, it’s terminal and her time will be up. Fact is, our time in this form of being that I call, “Life” is short. Even shorter than we think, especially as we get older. When we are young, the time-to-the-end seems long, but as we age, that time distinction seems to shorten, which I suppose is natural and normal.

That said, we resist the notion of dying, and that is normal and natural too. In my experience, my resistance to dying and death was much stronger when I was younger. As I have aged, the thought of not-being is, I must say happily, not as daunting.

Here’s why I think this: Life is bloody challenging! Life for the most part it is a huge challenge and struggle, to do it right. And there’s the rub — “to do it right”. Doing it right for me here in Canada is completely different from how that is defined in another country and culture, like Egypt, or Zimbabwe. Every culture, every group of different people, have their own definitions of what, “doing it right” actually is. Even within our own culture we have big differences in opinion about how we should live our lives, which brings me to my main point.

If there are so many differing ideas and opinions about how we define living life well, what is the real value of OURS compared to THEIRS? I don’t think there is ANY value, idea or opinion about Life and how it should be lived that is any “better” than any others — anywhere. I’m not talking about stuff that includes killing others. THAT is another matter that I think boils down to common, fundamental human religious or political ideas, values and opinions — a topic for another time.

So, getting back to my point, I think that the things we hold true to and value, in the perspective of world-cultural viewpoints, are relative and perhaps even meaningless. This doesn’t mean that we need to give up on our particular world-views. Rather, recognize that the way that we think about some things are very relative, and realize that a new view gives us FREEDOM. Freedom to let go, to relax and to in some other way enjoy life — as it should be!

And when this form of being that we call Life comes to an end, I think for many older people — especially those very old or sick, it can actually be a relief — freedom from the pain and hardship. An end to this form of being called Life, yes, which is an unavoidable and inevitable end for us ALL eventually. We don’t know what’s on the other side! It could be glorious!!! That’s certainly what I’m hoping for…

What is the answer?

Vainglory hope is the answer. How many people have been puzzled by life, hoping desperately to find an answer to the meaning of it all, but die before they find it? I think most, like 99.9 percent.

“Oh, Tim’s full of doom and gloom tonight!”. I may be. But you know, I’m 57 now (2016). 7 years ago, were it not for modern medicine, I’d be 7 years dead. What’s that all mean? That “God” has some plan for me, which is why I’m still alive today? I doubt it. If he has, I haven’t figured it out yet, 7 years later. I’d like to hope that God had some sort of special plan for me, but you know, at this stage of life and living, I’ve learned a lot, and am ok being a bit skeptical now.

The fact is, as I said above, most people die before they figure life out, before they have their epiphany, before they have the “Damascas Road” experience. That’s just the way it is. Why? I dunno.

What can we make of these dismal statistics? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. I don’t think we were created for “something special”, folks. Yes, we are each unique and wonderful human beings, but that’s as far as it goes, I think. Whatever we can give or do through to the end of today is itself a huge blessing. I know.

As the bible says, “For today we live and tomorrow we die”. Maybe that’s really it! If we can keep that in mind each day that we awaken, then we might make a difference in the lives of the people around us for that next day’s grace. If we don’t, well…no one will really notice. Oh well.

Today is all we have, folks. Tomorrow is a crap-shoot, a blessing if given…another day to make another day count for those around us. Let’s do at least that.

Recurrence?

Today, I’ve had some recurrence of the same symptoms I had which led up to my September hospitalization for Pulmonary Emboli (Lung blood-clots). Coincidentally, and thankfully, I have been scheduled for the last 2 months for my 6 month follow up with the specialist tomorrow. They will be doing another lung-scan and an echo-cardiogram. Hopefully those will show that all is well, although I cannot dismiss the way I have felt today, so I will most certainly tell the specialist about that.

I am feeling better this evening, but today’s experience certainly brought back the stark reality of it all, brought back my awareness of how much the entire colour of my life changed when faced with the possibility of suddenly dying. It could still happen from this condition. Pulmonary Embolisms can re-occur, even while on the medication—“Warfarin”, a blood-thinner, or as many seem to enjoy telling me it is called, “Rat Poison” because it really used to be used for rat-bait.

On Friday, I successfully completed an hour long work-out at the gym: 20 minutes on the Elliptical machine, with minute and a half “sprints” on it every five minutes. That was followed by a half hour of aerobic circuit weight training, using lighter weights with higher repetitions, which also elevates the heart rate. Then I finished up with ten minutes of running on the treadmill. 2 months ago, I could only do 5 minutes on the elliptical machine and about 15 minutes of weights! I’ve been feeling incredibly healthy for the past couple of months, going with that routine ever few days. My resting heart-rate is around 60, my blood-pressure around 130 over 83 (including today). But today frightened me, jolting me back to the September horror. So, I rested for the whole day. Hopefully tomorrows tests will show no “new developments”. I do hope.

All those who I love have been uppermost in my mind today…I don’t want to leave them, not YET!

But the point that I want to make tonight is how significant and impactful it was having that sort-of near death experience, back in September. It coloured and completely changed the entire perspective and course of my life. Knowing that I could—bam—suddenly die was a very sobering (I’m still working on that too!) and frightening experience. However, on the day that it happened in September, when the doctors were talking to me as if I was not going to walk out of the hospital, I was completely resigned and even open to it. I was strangely peaceful inside. I wasn’t afraid to die—but I WAS terrified to leave the lives of my loved ones. This was not a selfish rumination. Rather, I was thinking about them, because I wanted to stay on as an active part of their lives for what I believed I could give to them, and which I still believe, yet.

That is my dream tonight. God willing, that as I recovered in September, so tomorrow I will continue to be free to pursue the most important things in my life…to fully love my loved ones and to continue this amazing and wonderful journey that I began back in September to completely discover who and what I am, so that I can BE that person and in turn bless not only the lives of those closet to me, but also if God so grants, a lot more people around me in this refreshing, warm sea of humanity.

Indeed this is my calling. A hope, to be fulfilled.

Thank YOU, dear readers for being a part of my dream.

Blessings to you all,

Tim

trilliam 
The Trilliam, a native flower of Ontario.
As a very young child, I discovered them flourishing in the forest behind our home.
My delight in their beauty spawned a life-long love and appreciate for them and all flowers.
Each human, each individual, is just as beautiful as these.

Life and the Spectrum of Consciousness

When we look in the mirror, we can see ourselves and know that we exist, that we have a independent identity, an independent awareness of life. What does a worm think when it looks at itself in the mirror? How could we possibly know that!? No one knows how to communicate with a worm! But is it aware of itself like we are? The answer is not “No”! The answer is that we don’t know!

I believe that consciousness—awareness—exists throughout the entire spectrum of life-forms. Recent studies have shown that many animals seem to have a sense of being self-aware, (especially dolphins incidentally). But it is not “self” awareness that I’m talking about here. I think that the total spectrum of consciousness is actually “Life” being aware of ITSELF.

A worm experiences the world completely differently than we do. Birds, elephants, snakes, flies, even single celled amoeba’s see and experience the world in a different way than we do. Bat’s and dolphins “see” with their ears! Each life-form has their own unique means of living and experiencing the world. There is even evidence to suggest that plant-life is in some sense aware.

If we put all of these forms of life together—all of the things that are “alive”, that have the life-force within them—from plants, to amoeba’s, to insects, to reptiles to fish to dolphins and whales, to mammals to humans—if we add all of those individual experiences together, isn’t it possible that the total sum equals the whole? Our separate awareness might instead be Life looking through us at itself! The only way that life could in any sense be "aware" of itself in totality, would be by creating the entire spectrum of plant and animal species, making us its witnesses, its observers, seeing itself through our eyes: Life itself seeing itself, as it totally is.

An exciting concept, don’t you think? Something to think about.

T.

Lived a good life…?

I recently overheard two people talking about an elderly friend of theirs who had recently died. The first expressed regret, saying how sad she was to hear the bad news. The second responded by saying, “Oh, don’t be upset, she had a long and good life. She always had the best of everything. You don’t need to feel sorry for her dying!”.

You may have heard people respond in a similar way. Perhaps even you think this way. If you do, WHY?

To me, every single life is precious. The loss of any life creates an instant blank spot in the whole saga of humanity. There never has been and there never will be another human being created just like them!

And, if someone you know dies—even if they are very elderly—in the blink of an eye something has been taken from your life personally, something that you have previously been able to reach out and to touch, and to hug, and maybe even to hold, and now it—they, are gone forever. Yes, their memory remains, but you don’t need to rationalize their disappearance! If you cared at all about that person, then it is perfectly normal—and I’ll dare to say it’s completely “sane” to feel the loss of their presence in your life!

A loss, YES, but at least never forgotten.

T.

Forgetmenot-Flower

Every day is a new day!

I have written about this before…about how “Tomorrow” is  a “New Day”. Indeed, it IS, my friend, whether you think so or not!

Every day in our life is a day that we DID, that we now have done…whatever it is that we did yesterday, that we can let go of, that we can ERASE from our past…because when wake up tomorrow…it will be a NEW DAY.

Life, the Universe, God, what-have-you, gives YOU and ME this gift each and every day. It is OUR CHOICE to accept it or to reject it.

Accept it, and I promise you that your life will change…in ways that you cannot imagine.

Join ME tomorrow morning…with a “New Day”, will you?

I hope to see you there!

“Blessings”

Tim

Love

  • The Christian religion describes love as this:

“Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. Love bears all things; believes all things; hopes all things; endures all things” (1 Corinthians 13) and “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12: 31, Lev.19:18)

  • The Islamic religion describes love as this:

"No one of you is a believer until he desires for his brother that which he desires for himself. " (Sunnah)

"Not one of you is a believer until he loves for his brother what he loves for himself." (Islam. Forty Hadith of an-Nawawi 13)

Mohammed is said to have said:

"Seek for mankind that of which you are desirous for yourself, that you may be a believer; treat well as a neighbor the one who lives near you, that you may be a Muslim [one who submits to God]." and "That which you want for yourself, seek for mankind."

  • The Buddhist religion(s) describe love as this:


    Buddhism involves the complete renunciation of oneself in order to take on the burden of a suffering world. The strongest motivation one has in order to take the path of the Bodhisattva is the idea of salvation within unselfish, altruistic love for all sentient beings.

These are just a few of the many religions around the work, but I think it is safe to say that the ideal of most religions is the propagation of love—to show compassion and tender care towards others. Even Humanisms “Manifesto” states:

Humanism…affirms…the greater good of humanity…(is) inspired by compassion…values in human welfare…(is) committed to treating each person as having inherent worth and dignity…(is) concerned for the well being of all.

Simply reading these passages my stir ones heart to feel love and compassion towards others. Those ideas resonate with something inside our hearts and minds that is real—we just know that it is, and that it is a good and wonderful thing…and that it is something we want to do, to act upon, to reach out to touch the hearts and minds of our fellow human beings…for about 5 minutes a week—and that’s if we go to church every week! The rest of us think that way about 5 minutes a MONTH, if that! The rest of the time we go around killing each other, figuratively or literally.

Why is that!? Perhaps it’s not our true nature to love people that way? Perhaps our nature is mostly selfish? Perhaps that’s what we really are in essence? Does that give us an excuse, then, for not acting in a loving way towards other people? In fact, it DOES!

It does, but is that ok? Of course not! As Hal David wrote in a famous Burt Bacharach song,

“What the world needs now
Is love, sweet love.
It’s the only thing
That there’s just too little of.
What the world needs now
Is love, sweet love-
No, not just for some
But for everyone…”

And so how do we DO that? How do we love our neighbours? Indeed. What is needed is a fundamental transformation from deep within our psyche. How do we achieve that? We cannot in a million years achieve it. Effort is futile. It can only be seen, realized, comprehended. We already have it! It’s already there. How do we see it? In some sense, that is a gift. I think the key is simply to be open to receiving it—by opening our hearts and minds to the possibility. Do that, and it will come. This is something like Buddhist “Enlightenment”, Christian “Christ Consciousness” or New Age “Cosmic Consciousness”. Once achieved (although it cannot be “achieved”) a profound, selfless love for others ensues.

The statement creates questions, raises objections, demands clarity. Let’s address those my friend. Join me.

T.