Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Turning Point (6.24.09)

"At the still point of the turning world."

                                          [TS Eliot:  Four Quartets, Burnt Norton]

I cannot really explain it, other than in that phrase.  Or the stillness of this icon.  Pointing to "heart-work" :   Deep calling on deep.

Four Quartets, a poem I have long pondered.   Now read this!  says this exquisite review of it, from which I select one pertinent quote: 

Perhaps the greatest conundrum of human existence is time, its evanescence balanced by its relentlessness. We can only understand it in the presence of things, such as the "drained pool," itself a metaphor for time; and we can only understand things in the context of time, their creation, existence, and passing. And, beyond that, most crucially, is what we cannot see or hear or experience as duration, what those of a spiritual bent, "the unseen eyebeam", perpetually seek: "for the roses/Had the look of flowers that are looked at". For Eliot, as he says later in Burnt Norton, we can only find that "at the still point of the turning world", where time and being eternally intersect

                             [Christopher Guerin's review of Four Quartets]

Turning Point:  To the still point.

"A condition of complete simplicity
(Costing not less than everything)"
                                       [TS Eliot:  Four Quartets, Little Gidding]

For a long time I've been torn two ways.   Always I have struggled with that.  Always, till now, the need to engage actively pressed upon me.  Not now.  Now, it would seem, I have said and done what needed saying and doing.  I have no more to say.  Not here.   Not now.

Some know how to contact me.  Others know who those "some" are.

I hold you in my heart.  Even more than before.  I am drawn deeper.  Everything points in that direction.  I am at peace.

I bid you Peace as well.



| Leave a comment
I will miss you, Thera...
Be well.
I hope you are have a good time TheraP. I hope you are enjoying what you are doing.
I hope you and your husband are well.
And I hope you will drop by from time to time.
I have love for you TheraP.
"Of any stopping place in life, it is good to ask whether it will be a good place from which to go on as well as a good place to remain." (M.Bateson)
You will be missed greatly. Yet, I know that you have the wisdom to know what is best for you. And that is what I wish for you, only the best!
Peace. Ah, how I envy and yet celebrate your achievement.
You know, in farming and ranching, the best way to conserve our resources is to let a field lie fallow for a season or two, not to cultivate it at all; or in ranching, to allow a pasture to revert to its natural grasses and to permit no animals to graze it for as many seasons as it takes for the land to recover from the stress of production.
As a society that is moving ever-forward, ever-faster, we have lost the art of lying fallow, of regrouping, regenerating, allowing our resources to recover.
People have forgotten how to THINK. Even when they are out in nature, running or hiking, so many of them have headphones--they've forgotten how to listen to birdsong rather than programmed music. There is always NOISE in the background of our lives, and we have left behind the stillpoint.
There was a time in my life when I took a whole year just to lie fallow, creatively speaking. I mean, I still FUNCTIONED of course--I had things to do like everyone else. But I quit pressuring myself to produce produce produce. In my spare time, rather than writing, I read. Or thought.
Or did Yoga out back of my house in the nude. (So far, none of the animals have complained, and we have no neighbors for miles. Kids grown and gone. I do, however, have to make sure I'm not expecting the UPS guy to drive up. Wouldn't want to send him careening into therapy for the rest of his life ha ha)
Doing that, listening to the wind in the trees, I learned that the earth has a breath; it goes in and out with the pattern of the wind and with the cycles of the seasons. In winter, it is quiet, but it always comes back.
I'm honored to be one of the "ones" who has a way to contact you my friend, and do please remain present in my life, for you enrich my soul.
Still wise I see. Nice to see your name again.

It is an ongoing struggle that I conceptualize as remaining centered or grounded in the midst of turbulence. We need our silent times, though for me it is not for the silence, it is to reconnect with that part I consider my essential self. Sometimes I conceptualize it as "integrity." Sometimes I sense it as my anchor; others as my compass. The reality for me is that it is all of that and more.
I have never been successful at disengaging from the world and the cries of the world. I have reached those places where it feels that I have said and done all that I can say or do.
We all have our own quests and our own processes which are uniquely ours. I recommend that you listen to that inner self - that true self. It is a self that provides us with context, insight, and direction. In my life it has never brought me "peace" in the usual sense of that word, but it has brought me peace with myself and the way forward.
May your quest bring you healing and wholeness and renewal.
Some days I feel like my pilot light has gone out and I have to create sparks to get it going again. I used to think of it as my own personal starlight, flickering on and off, but I realize now that it is not my own, but rather a starlight shared with every living breathing soul.
Be well TheraP.
Hi TheraP,
I am happy for you to honor yourself in every way that serves you.
And I offer, not to persuade you otherwise, but to say 'also', that deep can be in the world, it can be in full throttle engagement... to be deep does not require being removed.
However following the flow of what guides you to depth is highly recommended:)
Love & Blessings

TheraP -- we release you, however reluctantly, from our constant cacophony of wing flapping to the tranquility of virtuoso birdsong in your own garden.
Please come back. In the meantime, know that we know the value of what you have given to so many, here and elsewhere.
As you would say, Namaste.
Wing flapping?
Thera is so loved. I sure hope she knows it.
Oh, sorry, Bwak. My comment was not directed at you, but rather it was an attempt to describe in our collective, restless, often irritable flurry. You, in contrast, are the best bird, ever, associated in my mind with a combination of astute comments and otherwise, comforting coos.
I didn't mean to get ruffled.
(shuffles feet.)
I never got Eliot
I think I know at least in part where you are at with this Thera. The marketplace will always be here, and there will always be room for another water vendor by this river of ideas. Be well.
What’s Up With That?
To TheraP

You encouraged me
there was little
Politics seemed hopeless
and poetry less.
You taught me courage -
strength to my heart,
a smile to my pen.
You gave me sunlight,
desire to be
in the middle of now
You make me shed a tear Stato. Well said!!!
Eliot. A good place to spend time. Make sure to come back when the wind blows you this way, Thera.
Dear TheraP,
I's time to be Time to yourself. You have given more than your share. Now go fill up your own cup.
I wish you many nestsful of young, hopeful, brave robins.
And we will see you here again, or somewhere else, when the moment arrives for it.
Love to you and yours.
Where's that proofreader?!
IT's time to be in Time to yourself.
I have no more to say? That simply cannot be true, but I think I understand where you're coming from.
I hope all's well with and for you.
Take time. Take time off. Take time for yourself and those you love.
But taking off for good and forever? I hope not for a bunch of reasons including selfish ones.
Everyone needs respite of course and rest and rejuvenation. But I hope that doesn't mean you'll no longer be heard from at all. It's important that every voice be heard and that all hands pull in the same direction as you know. Yours is one of the more important voices in the chorus here certainly. Your words have had a wide and deep impact here. More so than most anyone else.
I've been missing your contributions of late anyhow, but thought it temporary as you'd indicated. Pax Vobiscum!
T. S. Eliot Quotes
I don't believe one grows older. I think that what happens early on in life is that at a certain age one stands still and stagnates.
It is obvious that we can no more explain a passion to a person who has never experienced it than we can explain light to the blind.
It's not wise to violate rules until you know how to observe them.
Knowledge is invariably a matter of degree: you cannot put your finger upon even the simplest datum and say this we know.
Let's not be narrow, nasty, and negative.
O Lord, deliver me from the man of excellent intention and impure heart: for the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked.
There is not a more repulsive spectacle than on old man who will not forsake the world, which has already forsaken him.
This is the way the world ends, not with a bang, but a whimper.
We know too much, and are convinced of too little. Our literature is a substitute for religion, and so is our religion.
Where is the Life we have lost in living? Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?
“You are the music while the music lasts.”T. S. Eliot
In conclusion TheraP your avatar speaks volumes. YOU were the music to this site.
Why didn’t we discuss T S Eliot more fully? Who can I trust, to help me understand, if not you?
“I have fought the fine fight, I have run the course to the finish, I have observed the faith. From this time on there is reserved for me the crown of righteousness.”—2Ti 4:7, 8.

This is the way the world ends, not with a bang, but a whimper.
More like with an awfully sad *sigh*
You know what. This is one of the reasons I really do love you Bwak. no kidding
Take a look at the blog after this one - for a place where you can read some thoughts on TS Eliot - and more...
"May the Lord fill our sails with fair wind, support our hulls in inviting seas, guide our hands upon the tiller toward pleasant places and bring us home, O Lord, to a safe and loving harbor."
I wish you well on your new journey
salam alaikum (peace be upon you.)
You were a good companion. You were generous with your thoughts but never tried to pull me out of my solitude and into yours. So I will try to do the same and simply say that I am always respectfully yours,

Thera, I admire you in so many ways, not the least of which is this decision, which I hope is temporary. You became so prolific a contributor that I wondered how you were managing your professional and personal life. Forgive me if I am nosily inserting my own ideas into something that is completely wrong.
Your every blog taught me something; your every post was positive and full of information, but I sensed a cost to you for all the time it must have taken. I have some of that "problem" myself, and you are once again an inspiration, even if I am completely wrong in my subjective assessment of things.
I wish you peace, sunshine, and fresh air, and I plan to get more of those myself -- your example will help me. See? Your therapy even works when you're not consciously participating.
Although I don't know how to reach you, I do feel lucky to have profitted by your many wise contributions.
Go well, and come back when and if you can, and when and if you want to. We all miss you, but you deserve a break!

Take care
Thera, I hardly remember what this place was like with you not here (you were taking some time off when I first arrived) and there will be a hole that no one else will ever fill.
In some ways I envy you. Life was simpler pre-TPM. I have had to back off some here to accommodate the new demands of my earthly world, but I can't bring myself to leave. I have watched you try to disengage and get sucked back in...I can see that a clean break may be in order, but I will miss you terribly.
I will stay in touch...
I love you, Thera.
Stilli, if anyone......and we all know who that might be...attacks, email me, OK?
I will spend the entire day, causing that person or persons problems.
I am sad. I am joyful at the support.
But I get angry.
By the way Stilli, I refer to one of your recent blogs, probably mostly in the chat rooms. But Your blog about how you face the future has had a real affect on me. I hope it turns into something more real than my current status.
But I think that blog is one of the most important essays on life I have ever read.
No kidding.
And for heavens sakes, do not abandon us right now.
We need you.
Thank you. Arthur. I appreciate you and your friendship so much! I hope I never need to take you up on your offer!
Rest easy...I'm not going anywhere. I may be quiet for a couple of days at a time, but I'm here. And you know where to find me if you need me.
This reminds me of riding the tubes in London. At first, you get your bearing of where you are, where you want to go and what it will cost for a round trip. Once you establish a daily routine, you get to know the people at various stations and engage in small talk about the weather, what's going on in the city and other of life's daily occurrence's. Eventually, you have to leave and the social friendships that were formed during your brief visit wither on the wayside of life's stroll thru time. Of course you can go back, but it's never quite the same because the fork you took is always slightly different from the paths taken by the casual acquaintances you once knew. I'm sure our paths will cross again in the future and we can share our thoughts and ideas to see each others perspective of the events shaping the world at that time.
In the old days I had a fire lookout tower job in the Gila National Forest. My computer was a slide rule. Just the cat and boxes of paperback books. And sunrises and storms and meteorite showers and critters and the sounds of the wind. I found something important during that time and the world got by just fine without me.
No one will think less of you for tending to your life.
Fondly, I wish you Peace.
i carry your heart with me(i carry it
in my heart) --
Peace, Thera.
Peace, Love and Light
and as we used to say, Later.
You found your shoes, didn't you?
I'm glad for you. And if they are ever temporarily misplaced again, we will be glad to see you.
Go in peace and know that your are loved.
My heart is filled to overflowing - with all the treasures you have given me - in these comments and in all that has come before.
My deepest love and gratitude.
I'm late to this blog but will leave this anyway, in hopes that you may check it once again.
For me Thera, you brought a spirit of tremendous civility, passionate inquiry and gracious hospitality in all your remarks. These three qualities had an enormous impact on the TPM community, and has left it a place that is so much more welcoming and a place that celebrates a wider diversity and creativity across bloggers.
Perhaps it was your avatar, Thera, but I frequently felt uplifted, like one does with music, when reading your comments.
I'm sorry that your song is moving into silence now because of what it means for the TPM community. But for you? I hope that you will find in the silence, an even deeper music for your soul.
Peace to you.
I will continue to check this occasionally. As I realize some may come "late" to this news.
Deep Peace.
Thera, I already said a couple of words in response over at my blog the other day. That was before I realized this was a (semi?)permanent absence. I'm not very good at these expressions of mixed feelings - a gratitude for your wise, moving, heartening, and heartfelt thoughts and your encouragement for timid newbies like myself mixed with the sadness that you won't be around creating and playing on threads around the place. I will miss you alot. You taught me so much, both to think better and feel deeper and stronger. The lack of your musical voice will leave a void for me. All the best for you and your husband, my dear lady of the manor.
I'll quote someone easier to understand than Eliot (though I love The Waste Land):

I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake.
Take care. Good luck. And thanks.
Thera, if there is anything I can offer, I'm sure you can figure out how to get in touch,
Your Servant,



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