Good morning ☕
Yep, I'm up: 5 am on the dot.
I could have done with an extra hour in bed but I counted "1, 2, 3" and hauled myself off the mattress, walked down the stairs and put the kettle on.
I wonder how many times I've done that?
(Apparently, it's around 13, 400 days since I left school, meaning I had to start earning my way through life. I thought it was going to be a bigger number but, still, I can feel all of those days... 😩.)
I suppose I do have a ritual but it's not one that I've deliberately fostered. Like everything else in my life, it arises, it plays out and until something else turns up (it could be a lot worse!) I'll keep at it.
Yesterday was yesterday: it came, it went and I ended up precisely where I expected. But then again, is that true? I only thought that. It could have turned out very differently.
Today, well, the highlight will be meeting up with my good friend Dave Smith. He's the guy I've written about here and elsewhere who's a world-class glass artist. I'm hoping that he'll let me take a few pictures of the piece he's been working on for Ludlow Blunt (see below) but if not, I'll perhaps take a few pictures of some of his other stuff. I'm meeting up to make sure all his shipping documents are in order. I'm particularly concerned about the risk of him shipping the piece to Ludlow Blunt because I know how many hours he's invested in the piece and its value. Below is a picture from Instagram that gives you an idea of what I'm talking about.
In yesterday's post, I shared the fact that I'm down another rabbit hole with the work of Dr Robert Saltzman. He's really (for me at least) ripping apart the whole non-duality scene. And that's a good thing. But more than that, having watched a beautiful couple of talks and interviews on YouTube, I realise, once again, how important it is for all of us to consider our direct experience of life and not get lost in the writings of others, no matter how wise or important they might appear.
In my case, if I ask myself what I know about my life, I can say as best I know that:
1. Everything changes;
2. The labels are not the forms — even or especially the ethereal ones; and
3. There is something here: we can call it "I am [here]" but it's more than that.
So what indeed? How does any of that help you function differently to how you're currently disposed?
Sorry, I can't answer that for you or anyone else.
In my case (Oh, God, here he goes again... ), I experience the world as something in a constant state of flux. That means, or so it appears day to day, that I don't take anything seriously because I know I'm dealing with a formless expression of the ineffable. Sure, I still express a view — I've got no choice — but it's not my view, it's just a view. In short, I'm the moved not the mover.
I know that sounds right out there but, seriously, nothing really matters when you apprehend that everything is formless and the labels never and indeed cannot describe the thing you're talking about. Perhaps the best expression of this, and I'm sure it's of doubtful authenticity, are the words that J Krishnamurti:
“The day you teach the child the name of the bird, the child will never see that bird again.”
To me, that's the essence of our conditioning.
I'm not saying that some labels aren't necessary to survive but there's a world of difference between asking for a glass of water (because someone told you that (1) that's what it is, and (2) you need to drink said substance to survive) and apprehending exactly what it is, even at a molecular level.
As to the whole I Am That thing — see I Am That: Talks with Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj — let's just say that if I ask you to describe this, just this, you'll probably wonder what the hell I'm prattling on about. Even more so, you'll wonder what's the point when you've no choice but to be here and that's enough. And I'd agree. It's far better to be fully alive to the moment — mindful of it if you like — then spend hours, day, and years of your life navel-gazing.
Anyhow, that's enough of my claptrap.
What have you got planned today? Anything nice?
One last thing: does January feel like the whole of 2020? I don't know, but it sure feels like it's going on a very long time.
Have a good one.
Much love ❤️, Ju.