Tag Archives: Spirituality

Dragonflies and Catalpas

My shadow was short this morning.

I had hit the trail late and the sun was close to being directly overhead.

I should have started earlier, much earlier, because it was already 90 degrees and with 70 percent + humidity, it’s stifling out here.  The air is heavy, thick, hard to breathe.  Kind of like you’re underwater, but it’s hot water.

More like thick steam.

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A Moment of Reflection – WTF!

In the past couple of years or so, a small cohort of friends and I have entered into our retirement phases.  Retirement from careers, that is, not life.  In fact, one might say life begins anew at this time.

We suddenly have time to do the things we want.  Of course, we have to figure what those are.

And I was having a discussion with one of those friends yesterday about this very topic because he asked me to read over a article he had written about his experiences and how he is now free of the toxic environment in which he worked.  It’s a good piece and I hope he publishes it somewhere.

If you’re a Facebook friend you will have already seen this, but here is the reply I sent him after reading his piece.  With a couple of minor edits and spacing added for flow  . . .

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Tse’itsi’nako – “Thought Woman” Being Woke – Part 1

Yesterday, I posed an open-ended question regarding women’s and men’s gender roles and the concepts surrounding modernity’s spin on “re-awakening” in these roles.  And the comments have been great and insightful!

But before I travel down that path of personal pontification over what I believe I’m currently witnessing in this regard, I wanted to relay another story.  A story about a matriarchal society.  And in some ways, I’m not sure it’s accurate to call it that.

Perhaps “balanced” is a better word.

Now I love aboriginal creation stories.  Some people refer to these as myths, but I would say no one story is better conceived than any other and we might all learn something if we stop and take a breath once and a while.  Open ourselves up to wider perspectives.  Expose ourselves to other cultures and different avenues of thought, reasoning, creativity, and belief.

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Neurocognitive Scaffolding

Disclaimer:  Beware – today I dive into a more technical piece of work versus my more poetic stuff 🙂

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I always love it when new terms of art are coined.  The coupling of words and formation of short phrases to describe something, a concept, possibly already known or possibly a new formulation.  It seems to be the perpetual motion of researchers, politicians, and wordsmiths alike, to boil a concept down into a few short syllables to describe something of monumental proportions.

Why?

Well once the label or buzzword or soundbite is created, no one has any need to reference the material supporting it, or even read and digest it for that matter.  It sort of becomes a “given.”  It is a self-explanatory definition that generally becomes universally accepted.

It is the same philosophy journalists use when they try to tell the whole story in just the headline.  Reading the story becomes superfluous, and with lowering attention spans many readers don’t make it past those headlines.

You might even compare this practice to that of our ancient ancestors drawing pictograms and petroglyphs on cave walls.  Reducing an idea to its most elementary form in an attempt to communicate.

Actually, I think images may even be more powerful than words in the sense that they convey detail that encompasses all of the senses that can cross language barriers.  Some days, I would prefer petroglyphs to the written and spoken language 😊

But, should simple or even complex phraseology be given such deference?

I’m not sure.  Such practices have the potential to oversimplify.  And in the case of journalists, many times their stories don’t match their headlines – not even close.

So where am I going with this?  Well, I stumbled upon a new term this week involving our aging brains.  “Neurocognitive Scaffolding.”

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Great WaterLeaf

Yesterday, a friend took me out to a conservation area I hadn’t visited before.  It was a beautiful Spring day as we drove, and then hiked, deeper and deeper into the woodlands.  We emerged from the Midwest Jungle upon a fifteen, or so, acre lake.

As we strolled about, I noticed this wildflower.  It was in a small cluster of like flowers, but this small grouping was the only one of its kind along the shore.

I haven’t positively identified yet, but it looked pretty close to a flower called the Great WaterLeaf.  And I thought, I like that name, even if it’s not this plant because I see so many wildflowers have been given a name with the first word being “Common.”  Like Common Milkweed or Common Dandelion or Common Clover.  And I don’t regard any part of Nature as being “Common.”

So whether or not this flower is the Great WaterLeaf, I find it to be “Great.”

Enjoy 🙂

Great WaterLeaf

Great WaterLeaf 2

Trajectory

It’s been said that in order to write, one must read.  And I get it.  Not only do you learn how to compose by seeing other styles of writing and how words flow together, but you get ideas.  And there are lots of ideas floating about out there.

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Soulmass

Lately I’ve read some interesting blogs pointing out just how insignificant we, as humans, are.  And I’ve read others about just how meaningful life is.  I guess opposites attract 😊

Frankly, I’m torn, because these thought experiments bring me back to another interrelated concept and that is “purpose.”

Just what purpose are we supposed to fulfill?  Or, stated another way, why are we here?

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Serpents and Milkweeds

I was out of breath as I reached the top of the bluff.  But it was worth the hike.  I now had a falcon’s-eye view out over the South Fork of the Snake River.  Absolutely beautiful.

The sprawling flood plain to the East was fully plowed and planted.  Potatoes, wheat, and alfalfa.  And maybe a few specialty crops lay low in the distance.  Broccoli, cauliflower, rhubarb, and cabbage.  Casting different hues of green.  Forest green to fern, to mantis, to dark pastel, to castelton.

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The Star Beneath Our Feet

The wind picked up as I hit the fourth mile mark.  The warm breeze wrapped around my face and lifted upward and to the East.

It had been a cool fifty degrees when I started my trek an hour and a half earlier, but once the sun crested thirty degrees above the horizon the temperature had been in a steady climb and was fueling the wind gusts that reminded you that the invisible vapor we breath is a powerful force.  One not to misjudge.  It is tornado season after all.

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Chicory

Well, I’ve slowed down a little on my writing.  Time is a proportionate thing.  Right now I’m in training.  Training for my next adventure.

So as training time increases, time for everything decreases.

But since I’m out and about as part of my training, and since it’s Spring, it’s time for wildflowers and flowering trees.  I guess I’ll stick with the Photo Journal until the right combination of forces conspires to persuade me to tell another story.

Enjoy 🙂

LOGOz

Photo: Chicory – an amazing plant. You can use its roots as a coffee substitute.  And now for the close-up of the close-up . . . Hope you like the color Blue.

Chickory+C1

Beauty – Adaptive or Arbitrary

A number of days past, I made a post titled Wildflowers where I pondered the evolutionary adaptations of plants.  How their beauty, shape, and the perfume of their flowers attract certain pollinators to ensure the propagation of their species.

Naturally, I simply enjoy their beauty, regardless of how it came to be. 😊

Then yesterday, I stumbled upon an article discussing the theories of “adaptive adornment” versus “arbitrary beauty.”*  And I must admit, those terms are much more scientific and deliberately descriptive than my own ponderings.

It seems that Darwin had a second theory apart from natural selection – sexual selection.

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