Saturday, March 31, 2012


I've been feeling discouraged this week. I've been thinking about people who are active in my community, and feeling bad that I don't do more. In particular, I was thinking of a woman who does gardening with kids in the neighborhood where a teenager was recently shot and killed. I should be there. I should be helping kids. I should be in the communities most affected by poverty and violence. I should be supporting gardening.

Instead, where am I? I go to a stupid job that just helps people who are going to get rich anyhow, some of whom will devote their lives to helping the military, or to some other way of making our lives less humane. I go to work, I come home, have dinner, meditate, exercise, and go to bed. Actually, I don't even have time to do all that. Sometimes, I skip the exercise. If I do exercise, I go to bed too late and am sleep deprived the next day.

I shared my sense of discouragement with the two people I talk with most often.

One agrees with me: yes, my life is indeed worthless. This is someone who has always put me down for not doing enough to change the world (though he does even less).

The other tries to provide a rational explanation of why I should not be discouarged, that I'm living a satisfactory life and should not strive for more. That too is wrong, because it tramples on my dreams.

It is not uncommon for people to be discouraged or sick. What baffles me is that after all these millenia of being human, the majority of people are still clueless when it comes to knowing how to be supportive of their fellow humans.

What people do, is they try to make stuff go away. They try to either make bad the circumstance go away by rattling off a solution, as if it the circumstance could be quickly solved. Or they try to make the person's feelings about the circumstance go away, by saying cheer up, it's not so bad.

If you know someone who is sick or discouraged, don't tell them they would feel better if they did X, Y, and Z. Don't tell them it's not so bad. Instead, just do two things: see the difficulty of the situation, and see that the person facing it is beautiful, wise, funny, and smart.

I am here. Don't tell my unhappiness to go away. This is me. I am not wrong for being dissatisfied. I am not wrong for being unable to make things better with a wave of my hand. I am not wrong for not living the life you have prescribed for me. My life is not what I dreamed it would be, but I will prevail. I will live my life to the best of my ability.

Friday, March 16, 2012

In darkness and in solitude, I dance

Since I became a druid, I've come to love darkness and solitude. I came to love darkness the first winter I did meditation. In winter, when I do meditation, I sit in darkness. The darkness envelops me. At the end of a day of harried exasperation, the stillness of dark soothes me.

And in solitude, I am free. Free of the demands of others. Free of being misunderstood. Free of arguments and loud voices. Free of advice-givers.

In darkness and in solitude, I play some music on the CD player. In solitude, I don't have to worry about anyone else's preferences. I choose the music that I most want to hear at that moment. I choose the music that soothes my soul at that moment. I adjust the volume to exactly what I want. I move. I dance. I dance to give expression to the music. I dance to give expression to my soul. No one is there to tell me I'm not doing the right steps. No one is there to tell me I'm not adhering to the beat. No one is there to see how dorky I look.

In darkness and in solitude, I dance. Sometimes I dance to Joe Crookston singing "still my soul feels heavenly bound." Whether I dance to that song or another, when I dance, my soul soars heavenly bound.

In darkness and in solitude, I find an enclave of bliss.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

More dreams

Yesterday, I was reading some of my old blog posts, including one from last October which said that my dreams are to live in a solar house, to live in an eco-village with family and friends, to be healthy, and to not have to go to a job which drains my energy and goes against my values. To that I would add:
  • To spend my time hiking, kayaking, cross country skiing, rollerblading, and dancing.
  • To have a room with lots of big sunny south facing windows, where I would sit and read in the winter.
  • To have a cool, breezy outdoor spot where I would sit and read in the summer.
  • To be on Mount Desert Island.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Walking through life

Sometimes life brings us pain.  Sometimes life brings us joy.  We can seek that which is good, but we cannot control what life brings us.  All we can do is keep on walking.

I am like the year, and people only want summer

I am like the year -- I have summer and I have winter. Most people want me to be only summer. If they see winter, they try to banish it. I don't like being banished. When I am around people, I try to be summer. But I don't have much summer to offer. That is why I don't like to spend much time around people.

I have a friend who is okay with me being March or November -- kind of tired or annoyed -- but who can't stand me when I'm January -- entirely sick and/or entirely depressed.

I'm not looking for someone who prefers me to be sick and depressed. I don't prefer to be sick and depressed. But unless someone can offer me compassion and acceptance when I'm sick and depressed, unless they can see through it, can see that I'm still the same joyful, optimistic, idealistic, funny, intelligent person somewhere deep inside, then they won't get much of me. If all they want of me is summer, they won't get much of me, because there's little summer to give.

Still trying to figure out who I am

Sometimes it seems that I am the opposite of who I used to be. I used to be idealistic. Now I am bitter and cynical. I used to want to save the world. Now I can't even save myself. I used to be energetic and loved climbing mountains, skiing, and rollerblading. Now I am tired and just want to stay home and rest. I used to love being surrounded by friends. Now I am a hermit. I try to avoid being around people. I don't like most people.

But I still love the same songs I've loved for as long as I can remember. I still love to dance, like I have for as long as I can remember. I still love the outdoors, like I have for as long as I can remember. I still love the same books I loved 20 years ago. I do like some people, and I'm still drawn to the same traits that I've been drawn to in the past.

I'm still the same person. But two weights press upon me. One is the weight of fatigue. The other is the weight of my job. It is because I live under these weights that I just want to stay home, rest, and be by myself whenever I get the chance.