Between

Allan W. Anderson, Ph.D. was a gifted religious linguist and a teacher at the Philosophy and Religious Studies departments at San Diego State University. He was well-known for his eighteen one-hour dialogues with J. krishnamurti, which were broadcasted on TV in 1975 and were later published as a book and DVDs set entitled ‘A Wholly Different Way of Living’. It is said on his website that “his soul was that of a poet, his pen and mind happiest in verse.” I am happy to share here two of his poems. The first poem came with this introduction: “Our natural state abides in the time between times which is the timely, the ever present and unprecedented now, obedient to the suasions of Heaven in which is perfect freedom—the freedom from having to choose. Visionary matters are notoriously difficult to communicate and prose is not the happiest medium to convey them. So I shall try a poem and call it: Between.”

 

Between

Who can wander for a lifetime
In the valley, on the hill
And not see the face of heaven
On the swift and in the still

On the swift and shining waters
In the smooth wet-molded stone,
Wide heaven beds among them
Lies where all the leaves are blown

And the wafted leaf in autumn
Comes, like us, to find its ground
Falling where the hand of heaven
Cups the seeker and the found.

~ Allan W. Anderson

 

~~~

 

Then

In those days there came such sounds
As now I never hear
All songs that fall upon a child
Before he looks on fear

For then the whirr of tiny wings
The language of the leaves
Came fresh as whispers from the sea
When ocean heaves

In days when we were very small
And in that ageless long ago
Before the Real was dreamed
The wonders met were plainly known
To be just what they seemed.

~ Allan W. Anderson

 

~~~

Between’ is from ‘Inner Directions’ website

Then’ is from ‘Songs from the Mifflinger Sea and a little cove of Nonsense’

Picture by Alain Joly

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Read Pr Anderson’s essay on ‘Inner Directions’ website, ‘Bearing and Understanding’ and the beautiful homage, ‘Remembering Allan W. Anderson

Bibliography:
– ‘Songs from the Mifflinger Sea and a little cove of Nonsense’ – by Allan W. Anderson, Illustrated by Leslie Rhea Lewis- (Xlibris)
– ‘A Wholly Different Way of Living’ – Krishnamurti in dialogue with Professor Allan W. Anderson – (Gollancz)
– ‘On Krishnamurti’s Teachings’ – by Allan W. Anderson – (Karina Library Press)
– ‘Reflections on the I Ching’ – by Allan W. Anderson – (Xlibris)

Websites:
Allan W. Anderson
Inner Directions

 

I Want to Tell About

This poem came to me while at a retreat:

 

I want to tell about 
The beautiful questions 
And the answers that work magic on our minds 
That invite us to greater openness 

I want to tell about 
The heat that keeps the pot of inquiry burning 
Pushing the knots and aches 
Into the dissolving flame of consciousness 

I want to tell about 
The silent walks between satsang and the dinner table 
The ‘hi’s, the ‘hello’s, the ‘hola’s, and the smiles 
The friendly faces coming closer and closer to my heart

I want to tell about 
The mountains in the distance and their horizon line 
The shady presence they acquire at twilight 
As the sky lights up a soft pink behind shredded clouds

I want to tell about 
The voices and laughters popping up around the swimming pool 
The long conversations with friends, the relentless diving 
Into the silence and beauty lying in the background of our retreat 

I want to tell about
The sharing of that simple realisation with you all
The keeping in my heart the love I felt
Until we meet and melt again in another placeless place 

 

~~~

Text and photo by Alain Joly

~~~

 

 

It’s Totally Beyond Me…

Before we enjoy one of Miriam Louisa Simons’ poems, let’s have a look at her painting above. It is part of what Miriam calls ‘the breathscribe series’. In her own words: “A simple horizontal stroke was laid down, its length being determined by the amount of paint in the brush – or by the duration of the exhalation of my breath. On the inhalation I reloaded the brush. I was entranced by the patterns that emerged as I breathed my way across and down the surface.”

~

it’s totally beyond me…

Sitting this morning at summer’s window
wondering
what quirk of destiny’s unfolding
led
to the conviction of separation in
a human mind

How is it possible to so thoroughly
believe
in something (a solid independent ‘me’)
that has never been able to be proven
to exist?

How is it possible to turn this
phantom
into a seeker who desperately
desires
to be free of itself and its stories? (huh?)

How is it possible to
avoid
the in-your-face obvious and
inescapable
truth
that the present presents with
every nano-second of aliveness?

How could anything so
simple
available
uncomplicated
and unavoidable
turn into a mystery, a concept
that would fuel galaxies of
religious and philosophical
thought-worlds?

It’s totally beyond me…

(literally and figuratively)

But it’s bloody marvelous all the same.

~ Miriam Louisa Simons

 

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Artwork by Miriam Louisa Simons 
(‘Coral Sea’ – acrylic on textured canvas)

~~~

 

Miriam Louisa’s different blogs:
this unlit light (with more of Miriam’s writing and poetry)
The Awakened Eye (Miriam’s blog on Art and the unknowable)
Echoes from Emptiness (from Miriam’s notebook)

– Miriam Louisa’s poetry page on ‘One The Magazine’.

~

DE50897D-6F8F-43B4-B149-44EDD7EFA8CBMiriam Louisa Simons is an auto-didactic artisan and a teacher of art and design, textile art and craft. Over the years, she has also been a facilitator of workshops exploring creativity and consciousness. Out of a lifelong dedication to spiritual inquiry, she is the creator of several excellent blogs on the non-dual journey. In her own words, she is now gloriously retired to studio practice, scribbling and quiet wonderment. “My work, as I see it, is to cultivate the garden of creativity by being so wholly present that I am absent, disappearing entirely into the movement of making, and marvelling at what gets made. Later – often much later – meaning might arrive. Or not.”

Wondering Mind Studio (On Miriam’s artwork)

~

Suggestion:
Voices from Silence (other poems from the blog)

 

The Old Mansion

Two short writings, poems, that came to me while at a retreat:

 

The old mansion was taking it all
The songs of amazing grace 
The whispers of friends chatting softly

It was a week where beauty took its share
Giving to all and giving to me
Showing what an allowing space can do

It was like a burning fire 
Infused by the warmth of many happenings, 
Of each of our sweet hearts,
Leaving ashes of love behind

 

~~

 

The vales and tops of Wales
Have come our way another time 
For a meeting in consciousness 
Another beautiful embrace

Between unease, heart openings
Questions were put into the fire 
Grappling with an understanding
Asking for a dissolution 

But there was more for us to come
For it blossomed against all odds

In the old mansion nothing less
Than an apotheosis of Love

 

~~~

Text and photo by Alain Joly

~~~

 

Suggestion:
Voices from Silence (other poems from the blog)

 

 

The Last Truth

9DF6C27B-1BF6-4BED-949F-40F4B6360333 man had left his village in search of enlightenment. After many long years, from hardship to hardship, he had become a vagabond, a pariah in our towns. One evening, he landed in a dense forest. He made a fire and thought of everything he had seen, lived and understood: pieces of light, of truth… but nothing like an awakening. He was a little discouraged when he heard a bird singing at the top of a tree: “I have the last truth, I have the last truth. It is for whoever will come and get it…”.

The man then began to climb to the top of this tree. Climbing was difficult and dangerous. As he climbed towards this last truth, he had to fight against vertigo. He was guided by the song of the bird without ever seeing it. He finally reached the summit and, bathing in a sumptuous golden light, he saw the sun set, the stars appear but no bird. However, the voice, coming out of nowhere and everywhere at the same time, said to him: “You came to receive a last truth, so receive it and leave to offer it to everyone who will believe you.”

At that moment all his questions were changed into answers and his answers into questions. The light became shadow and from the shadow was born light. All these pieces of scattered truths came together to form a whole, new, multiple truth. So his last truth became his first. His heart began to smile and his smile began to say the words of his heart. Then, without descending from the tree, awake and light, he was able to continue his way by riding some winds of wild wisdom.

Since then, this tree of passage, of metamorphosis, which was a wild tea tree, is venerated. Some of us offer or receive some of its leaves, attentive to everything that, in the golden glow of a cup, they could tell or sing to us, sensitive to any call.

 

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~~~

Text found in my computer attic, source unknown
(Translated from French by Alain Joly)

Photo by Carol Brandt

~~~

 

Website:
Carol Brandt Photography

Suggestion:
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The Intelligence of Chaos

The first line of this poem: ‘Trust the intelligence of chaos’, is a phrase borrowed from Jeff Foster. I was inspired with these few lines after reading it…

 

Trust the intelligence of chaos

It wants to find its way
Through layers of you

It wants to knock at your door
And make you open your heart

It wants to be protected by you
And let itself melt into your emptiness

It wants to see that it is not a bad guy
To be looked upon and pushed away

It wants to be found inexistant
In the inexistence that you are

It wants to be your friend
Claim your love again and again

It wants you to know that it cares
You only can find its implicit order

 

~~~

Poem by Alain Joly

Photo by Nicki Gwynn-Jones

~~~

 

6E052D74-E6E9-433B-A389-30CB554DE9B1Nicki Gwynn-Jones is a British photographer currently living in Orkney, a group of islands north of Scotland. She has a passion photographing birds, and the coastal life around, full of a wilderness shaped by wind and water. In 2012 she was awarded a Fellowship in Visual Art by the Royal Photographic Society. 
Nicki’s Websitenicki gwynn-jones

 

Suggestion:
Voices from Silence (other poems from the blog)

 

Hymns to the Dawn

The Rig Veda is the oldest Indian text, a corpus of hymns that have been ‘seen’ by sages, or rishis – these ‘sacred poets’. They are hymns to Agni – the fire, to Soma – the drink of immortality, to the Gods and to nature (the Sun, the Earth, Heaven, Night, Dawn).

I have chosen to share here some hymns dedicated to Dawn. They are simple to understand, full of tender and beautiful imagery. They symbolize the eternal beginnings, the very ones that presided over the birth of the Vedas 3500 years ago. Dawn is the goddess Ushas, the beautiful maiden who infuses life with her beauty and qualities. Shardha Batra writes, “She is the pregnant silence at daybreak, which pulsates with a nebulous promise of fresh hope, dreams to be fulfilled, battles to be fought and conquered. Her gentle yet sure vibrations suffuse the most tired of souls with new potential.”

Also, the dawn symbolises the passage from darkness to light, and was bound to become this strong archetypal figure described by Sri Aurobindo: “Night in the Veda is the symbol of our obscure consciousness full of ignorance in knowledge and of stumblings in will and act, therefore of all evil, sin and suffering; light is the coming of the illuminated higher consciousness which leads to truth and happiness.”

 

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The stars were yielding reluctantly to dawn and there was that peculiar silent expectation when the sun is about to come; the hills were waiting and so were the trees and meadows open in their joy.”
~ J. Krishnamurti

 

Dawn on us with prosperity
O Ushas, Daughter of the Sky.
Dawn with great glory, Lady of the Light.
Dawn Thou with riches bounteous One.

~~

The radiant Dawns have risen up for glory,
in their white splendour like the waves of waters.
She maketh paths all easy, fair to travel, and, rich,
hath shown herself benign and friendly.

~~

The goddess Dawn has eternally shown before,
and the bounteous goddess shines here today.
So will she shine in future. The ageless and immortal Dawn
moves on according to her eternal laws.

~~

Shedding her light on human habitations
this Child of Heaven hath called us from our slumber;
She who at night-time with her argent lustre
hath shown herself e’en through the shades of darkness.

~~

Arise! the breath, the life, again hath reached us:
darkness hath passed away and light approacheth.
She for the Sun hath left a path to travel
we have arrived where men prolong existence.

~~

Singing the praises of refulgent Mornings
with his hymn’s web the priest, the poet rises.
Shine then to-day, rich Maid, on him who lauds thee,
shine down on us the gift of life and offspring.

 

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From Rig Veda (1. 92, 113, & 124) – Translation by Ralph T.H. Griffith

Picture by unknown artist ; Mandala by Elsebet Barner

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Bibliography:
– ‘The Rig Veda: Complete and Illustrated‘ – Translated by Ralph T. H. Griffith – (CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform)

Websites:
Usha, vedic goddess of new beginnings – by Shardha Batra
– The Vedic Dawn: Goddess Usha – by Sri Aurobindo
Sri Aurobindo (Wikipedia)
Vedas (Wikipedia)

 

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