Monthly Archives: January 2019

Armoury Show…

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The prosperous town of Armore was built next to a forest.

Late one night Old-Man-Log came out of the forest and sat down in the middle of the town’s market square.

He opened up the palm of his right hand and started cackling.

The next morning as the sun came up he was still sitting there cackling at the palm of his hand.

The towns-folk of Armore gathered around him to learn the source of Old-Man-Log’s amusement.

There in the middle of his palm was a little red man who was dancing.

“Who is that little red fellow?” asked the townsfolk falling over themselves to get a better look¬† at him.

“Why, his name is Mammon,” said Old-Man-Log, “see how he dances and spins for your amusement growing redder and redder?”

“Let me see…”

“And me…”

So it went with the towns-folk of Armore as they pushed and shoved and trampled each other in order to get a better look at the spectacle being played out before them…

At the end of the day when Old-Man-Log returned to the forest forty of the towns-folk lay dead.

*

The next day Old-Man-Log was sitting in the market square again and this time the crush to see his show left eighty people dead.

The day after that, the death toll was one-hundred-and-sixty.

Finally Old-Man-Log said, “People of Armore, why do you put up with this day after day. Don’t be killed. Pick up stones and stone me.”

Without hesitation the towns-folk of Armore immediately picked up stones and threw them at Old-Man-Log.

They stoned him from all directions and before long he lay dead.

*

But then the dead man’s body began to stink.

The stench was so bad that people fainted and died.

The wind blew and wherever it carried the foul smell people died.

The dead man opened his mouth and spoke, “People of Armore, why do you put up with this. Don’t be killed. Bring your hauling ropes and haul me away.”

*

Without hesitation the towns-folk of Armore immediately ran for their hauling ropes and tied them around the body of Old-Man-Log.

They began to tug the ropes but Old-Man-Log’s body was hard to shift.

The towns-folk tugged harder and one of the ropes snapped. The men pulling the rope fell on top of each other and died.

Another rope snapped killing more people and then another with the same result.

The dead man opened his mouth again, “People of Armore, why do you put up with this. Don’t be killed. Sing me my song.”

He sang it to them, “Pull our log/Old-Man-Log/Pull our log…”

*

Altogether the towns-folk sang the dead man’s song and the body began to move…

It moved so quickly, sliding along the ground that whenever anyone stopped for breath they were run over by the body and killed.

When at last Old-Man-Log was sung back into the forest the few towns-folk that remained returned to their homes to sleep.

Next morning when the towns-folk of Armore awoke they remembered nothing of Old-Man-Log.

It was as though they had been intoxicated.

*

Threshold…

rs-266*

We live with hidden presences.

The village street, its air heavy under the hot sun, its surface baked hard beneath our feet, is lined with dwellings.

Vessels of the, as yet, unknown…

Before we enter any one of these home-steads we are confronted by a labyrinth painted in brightly coloured sand.

As the morning sun rose through the sky the Mistress of the House laid out this elaborate design and we cannot now enter her dwelling without passing through this pattern, the new focus, of those auspicious natural forces.

A protective screen now guards the home.

We cannot see that screen, we can only see the focus.

A reflection of the inner workings of cosmos has been externalised at the boundary: that line which divides inner and outer; the pure form from the purely chaotic or accidental.

The boundary is always fraught with danger.

It represents the primal division at the heart of all things.

A wholeness has been rent so that creation can occur.

This labyrinth is a symbol but it is also both more-and-less-than any symbol. As the day progresses it will be worn away by many feet entering and exiting the house. The coloured sand will mingle with the dust of the street. The symbol will lose its true form like the stone temples and that illusory stability which sees them abandoned when their utility is spent. They are both constructed, despite the appearance, merely to capture the momentary, unpredictable reality of the unseen.

Labyrinth and temple express an untold reality as that which is hidden but held in external form.

Both are held open for the invisible yet still, in other ways, sensed powers.

Both then hold these powers in partial and temporary control.

Both mark a transition from inner to outer and suggest movement to come…

Like all vessels of divinity they are potential turning points.

They contain and obfuscate.

Imbued with powers of their own they yet point beyond themselves to the divine wholeness.

We forget this at our peril.

*

A Border-Land of Spirits…

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We do not doubt the immortal nature of the Spirit in Man.

Neither do we care to speculate on its probable state or condition in any future life.

The Spirit, breathed into Man by the Great Mystery,

ultimately returns to the one who gave it.

After being freed from the body it is everywhere and pervades all nature.

So much reverence is due to the disembodied spirit we do not name the dead aloud.

Ohiyesa

The Great Mystery: Dreaming…

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The mysterium conspires with the

animal world whose souls so resemble

the purity and innocence of a human child.

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It recognises the miracle of life

in both seed and egg

and the wonder of a harvest which

springs from an ear of corn.

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This solitary communion with the unseen

can be rendered, a mysterious feeling,

and it has been called, ‘the dreaming’,

although it may be better understood as divine consciousness.

– Ohiyesa

*

The Great Mystery: Crowds

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The mysterium needs no

shrines or temples

save those that nature provides.

*

It may be met in the shadowy

heights and aisles of a primeval forest,

on the sunlit expanse of virgin prairie,

the dizzy spires and pinnacles of naked rock,

and beyond, in the speckled vault of the star-lit sky.

*

All who live a lot out of doors

know the magnetic force

that accumulates in solitude

swiftly flees when confronted

by the faceless vagaries of a crowd.

– Ohiyesa

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The Great Mystery…

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Approach to the mysterium

is silent, solitary

and free from all self-seeking.

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It is silent because in comparison

with the mysterium all speech

is feeble and imperfect.

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It is solitary because the mysterium

draws closer to us in solitude.

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It is free of self-seeking because

the souls of our ancestors

ascended to the mysterium

in wordless adoration.

– Ohiyesa