“DEATH”

Is death like stepping off a cliff –
And falling forever?

Is death the loosening up of our atoms
And then returning them to the ground,
To the air, or even into deep water?

Is death a matter of disappearing to one’s self –
And then, shortly after, to others as well?

Is death memory
Gone irrevocably bad?

Is death the end or beginning
Of life beyond life?

Is death a gift taken back –
The kind of negative surprise we’ll slowly learn to accept as we age?

Is death a truth no one can bear –
Or a self-love that can disappear overnight?

Is death a fairy tale –
Told once too many times?

LETS ABOLISH ZOOS – AND PRISONS TOO

Let’s abolish zoos and prisons too.

Who needs to wear business suits inspired by 19th Century Prussian officers?

Let’s get rid of suburban office complexes,
With their marble lobbies and tacky bowling alleys.

Moreover, who needs another Colosseum-style football stadium
Filled only seasonally – and never more than once a week.

Let’s also devalue TV-marketed diamond jewelry –
And especially, magazine ads for expensive Swiss watches.

Let’s get rid of our fleets of gas-powered cars and trucks
Since it’s now realistic to go “all-electric” –
Using natural sun and wind to power our transportation.

Let’s re-orient ourselves toward healthy, holy spiritual “light” –
And truth and beauty, as well.

Let’s fall in love with God all over again –
Especially the God who secretly lives inside our heart.

Let’s decide to be reincarnated, today, as the promised return of Jesus –
Most especially if we’re female.

As the Nike brand says –
Let’s “just do it!”

 

JESUS SAYS

Jesus says: “Build my church with love” –
Not stones.

Jesus says: “Build my church with truth” –
Not nationalism.

Jesus says: “Build my church with justice” –
Not prejudice.

Jesus says: “Build my church with beauty” –
Not inside a parking lot.

Jesus says: “Be like me” –
The “me” that’s the same as the true self you.

IS THIS SO DIFFICULT TO UNDERSTAND?

God may be more like a quality, a mode, or a channel – like spontaneity or freedom –
Than a person or thing.

God also has no ascertainable “size” (like a universe or multi-universes)
And certainly doesn’t have the kind of “power” allegedly possessed by comic book heroes –
God is actually more like “love” or “truth” or “justice” or “beauty.”

God also is not a number – no matter how infinite –
Instead, God is a word that anybody can say.

 Nor is God an ancient idea, even if once brilliant but now frozen in space –
Rather, God is always moving – like wind or water –
In other words, God is always a surprise to human beings.

One can’t “swear” by God, much less even know for certain God exists,
Yet it would be a mistake to give up on God
By adopting some substitute – like science, technology, or some political ideology.

Invisible, God, nevertheless, is always present.

God knows what we want and, more importantly, what we need
And is happy to provide us with the latter – whether we’re ready or not.

God takes our hand, and gently, kisses it.

God gives us a lifetime of gifts which, invariably, we forget receiving.

Here’s one of God’s gifts – right now:
Close your eyes and turn around three times – then open up your eyes again –
Everything you see from that moment on – and for the rest of your life –
Is a gift from God!

Is this so difficult to understand?

“BEAUTY IS TRUTH’S SMILE WHEN SHE SEES HER FACE IN A PERFECT MIRROR” Rabindranath Tagore (from “Fireflies”)

The “perfect mirror,” of course, is God
Who reflects back beauty whenever truth is being spoken.

Beauty also requires a kind of innocence –
Like the open look of a child
Whose mind is absolutely clear
And fearless.

There’s another kind of beauty, however, that’s created by the application of cosmetics –
Where blemishes are hidden and the face simplified –
So that, from a distance, one “appears” beautiful –
Coming closer, however, is always a different matter –
When everything becomes transparent – especially any artificiality.

True beauty is like a wave …. falling ….
True beauty is like the spontaneity of young children –
Especially their playfulness.

A few years after he became a young adult and totally open to God,
Jesus, arguably, became the most spiritually beautiful person in the world
And that’s why the authorities determined to kill him ugly
When, however, as a largely unforeseen result, he became so infinitely beautiful
It was almost impossible to look directly at him and live.

This is still the case for those who worship true spiritual beauty today.

AN ENLIGHTENED WOMAN

What’s an “enlightened” woman like?

She has patience, wisdom beyond her years, and an irresistible sense of humor –
She’s spontaneous and spiritually free –
A person anyone would want to become friends with
Even if they only passed her once in the street.

What does leadership from such a woman look like?

Like family – a loving family –
Where everyone’s supported to be themselves
Where everyone gets what they need and aren’t ashamed of asking for it –
But, also, the kind of leadership Alexander once demonstrated –
Running out ahead of his army – straight towards the enemy –
So fast everyone had to run even faster to catch up and protect him –
A woman, like that, running out in front of us all.

What values does such a woman have?

Love, for sure – a person convinced about the effectiveness of love –
Someone who tells the truth – (there’s never doubt about anything she says) –
Justice, of course – everyone rightfully expects they’ll be treated fairly by such a woman –
And she’s peerlessly beautiful – especially in spirit
Which shines radiantly through her face, eyes, and gestures –
Just being near her feels like we’ve arrived in Heaven –
The angels singing “yes, yes, yes.”

What does an enlightened woman look like?

Like a female Messiah –
Like an Avatar of God –
Or even “God in human form” – perhaps like Jesus – come back female.

Let’s resist building temples for her – that would be too much of a male thing to do –
And simply start rejoicing when she finally arrives.

 

WHAT IF REALITY IS THE SAME AS GOD?

What if Reality is the same as God –
And we could trust that what we see is reality.

If so, then, to the extent we denigrate reality
By shading truth, ignoring beauty,
Or just being mean –
Wouldn’t that be a slap to God’s face?

If God also is the same as “the Good”?
Then not caring about what’s good
Would be equivalent to dismantling God –
In other words, the failure to reinforce loving kindness in our society
Would permit government officials to hurl migrant children into metallic cages
And, coldly or not, walk away.

God has been knocking at our door –
To the secret entranceway to our innermost self – i.e., to our “soul” –
God wants, most of all, to sit calmly in our heart’s chair –
And be enthroned, emblazoned with light, in our minds.

Yes, God has been calling for a new people –
And wants such people to be “real” –
As “real” as God is –
Not just a bunch of egos, actors, and manipulators.

God primarily wants “makers” – people who’ll make the world “work”
For everybody
Acknowledging that sufficient wealth is available for us all
To be satisfied –
Joyful –
And beautiful as well.

God says it’s time to re-arrange the ancient ideas still extant in the present
So that love takes first priority in human institutions –
And that all of us can feel free to ask what God wants –
Not just what God might, reluctantly, be willing to put up with –
Or what a religion, bearing Jesus’ name, might eventually come to accept –
And, certainly, not some kind of eternal unmediated capitalism.

Don’t be scared,
Don’t get angry –
You can trust God.

So let’s be naïve together – all at the same time –
And venture out into the night – under the distant flickering stars –
And say “yes!” to everything God loves,
Has loved, and wants us to continue loving in the future.

DISTANT TRAINS

Distant trains whistle low and away –
While crows in treetops insist upon their greater importance.

Jesus says, “You’ve forgotten everything that’s real about me –
By insisting I have the power to “save” you –
But I don’t.”

Distant trains whistle low and away
Taking people away to camps –
The same people whose grandchildren
Are now maniacally creating camps for other people.

Those raucous crows up in the treetops have been insisting upon their importance
Like politicians who create “reality” shows –
Where they lead fools by their noses
Down entertainment ramps to political slaughter.

It’s a mindless show put on to entertain an essentially mindless audience –
A performance filled with rage and spit –
Literally, an “All-American War” against reality –
So that God can’t be seen through all the smoke and carnage –
So that God won’t even decide to show up.

These days –
Lives lived without beauty are no longer seen as tragic
Because Americans simply don’t care –
Now that the truth is a commodity for sale
And love simply another word – just like any other word.

WE ALL KNOW WHAT TRUTH IS

We all know what Truth is – when we hear it –
It’s shocking –
Especially to the person who first expresses it.

We all know what Love is –
Sweet –
The sweetest thing ever –
Even more than the earliest appearances of mother
And, certainly, more than an elegant blue Tiffany box
Containing the hoped-for gift of our dreams.

Beauty is on the rise, too, isn’t it?
Coming in like the tide –
A surprise to be opened first thing in the morning –
Discovering the friend you’ve waited your entire life to meet –
And it’s you! –
The person you never expected to encounter “face to face.”

Sometimes, people come into the world surrounded by radiance –
With the kind of beauty that shows they’re one of God’s best friends –
They stay awhile – but aren’t recognized by anyone –
Even though they’re “seen,” in passing, by literally everyone.

You can identify them by the spiritual “odor” they leave behind –
When, later on, you start wondering –
Really, who was that?

THINKING ABOUT BEAUTY

One can’t “see” beauty except through love –
In fact, beauty will refuse to come into existence without its presence.

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One can’t “recognize” beauty without truth
Because, without it, one can only make out a fuzzy, indistinct façade.

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One can’t “enjoy” beauty without justice
Because injustice causes us to forget everything else.

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Beauty is “fresh” … “fragile” … and always “temporary.”

***

Beauty is the most valuable thing that’s actually not a “thing.”

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Beauty is like God – evanescent – so we’re often uncertain about its very presence.

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Beauty’s central to what makes life worth living.