Consider the Lilies of the Field…

Lilies of the field

…how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin…Behold the birds of the heaven, that they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns…

I have often wanted to be a tree. Preferably an oak; preferably in some far flung province inaccessible to man.

I have spent some weeks in meditation. Not on my knees or my backside. Not in some temple or man made edifice.

But in simple existence, simple awareness of the passing days, the season, the comings and goings of the world.  To feel the summer breeze, the gentle waving of leaves and branches. The dawn chorus, the cooing of pigeon. Waves, sky, hot and cold. Rain and dry. Beauty in nature and in art.

birds of heaven
birds of heaven

And then I spoiled it, I let the serpent into Eden, I picked the apple.  I stopped my flow, I ceased to let the world wind over and around me and I sought, once again, toil and the world of commerce.

It was an error to open my computer, a grave mistake to enter the dark caverns of the world wide web, the dark satanic mills of finance.

Would there have been any way of earning my daily bread which would have enabled the poetry to continue to flow? Or does “the world” always have to entail disillusion and anxiety, irritability and bad temper?

Gibson's mill
Gibson’s mill

I have been observing my moods carefully recently for a number of reasons, not the least my interest in experimenting with micro-dosing to expand the doors of my perception.

For weeks I have been walking, wandering aimlessly, enjoying pure existence. A sparrow, if you like, or an oak tree or Ent.  I have observed as I have wandered.  And I have let go, let all things pass.  My mind has taken very different paths, my thoughts have expanded. The predominant feeling has been one of pure harmless joy; an innocence combined with a great enrichment of the imagination. An expansion of my mind without even the necessity of a hallucinogenic door opener.

I then I blew it. I knocked on the dark doors of commerce; I spent some hours looking at financial arbitrage. I revisited the squalor of money and finance, of greed and business.

I became less observant but before the glass darkened too thoroughly, before the mirror became too opaque, I was able to notice what it was doing to me.  Irritability was the main evil and a far decreased ability to take pleasure in what was around me.

So I have switched it all off again; for a few weeks at least. Will I return to it when I am back in my study? Can it be done without irritation?  Can I learn to combine commerce with a joy in life?

I will have to try. And if I can not, I must switch off commerce for good. Close down the mill and head for the hills. Live in a green and pleasant land.

malham cove
malham cove

 

 

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