Posts Tagged ‘religion

03
Aug
15

outdoor chapel…

“My father considered a walk among the mountains as the equivalent of churchgoing.” Aldous Huxley

My Father didn’t abide much with organized religions…his take “I’m never more in touch with God than when I’m working the soil in the yard.”

joshua tree, california, mojave desert, SwittersB

02
Apr
15

Inquisition….

Oh are you a true believer?

if you aren’t the machine will punish…

the full weight of the State, the talking heads and screamers

will make you obey. You must obey, you have no say.

Double standards and hypocrisy far and wide

Paving the way for atrocities and violence.

Do you have rights…not man given rights?

Do you? Do I?

What goes around comes around…not a good way to be!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA 

16
Feb
15

Darkness approaches….

Difficult to contemplate…the temptation, the impulse is to turn away and draw upon one’s need for love, harmony. The daffodils push up and offer hope. But, almost like a false Spring, the evil on the horizon cannot be ignored much longer. We are so tired of conflict. We quickly offer excuses for evil. Quick to blame ourselves as a whole than come to terms with profound darkness looming on the horizon. It comes and all one’s reflexive ‘blame us first’ will be swept aside in the realization that only a very dark response will crush like darkness taking our minds and hearts into long forbidden realms of reality. 

daffodil-Spring-flower-SwittersB

Beheadings, incineration in a cage, children waiting to be burned alive…hard to write feel good encouragements, while we go to great lengths to ignore and lack the moral clarity to denounce true evil in our midst. We turn upon ourselves in almost orchestrated distractions of name calling and indignation over self absorbed life styles.
ISIS collage

I don’t expect many ‘likes’ or supportive comments for a post like this. Most will turn away, staying immersed in their positive karma bubble. Some will stop following. Some may even chastise with the reflexive admonitions.

I am disgusted by what I see. Islam’s evil spawn abroad and in our midst must be called out and denounced. Weak kneed sympathizers & apologists will rue the days they listened to the manipulative Muslim Brotherhood & CAIR. Allow yourself to be more than sad or aghast when the children are torched in the cage. Get fucking mad!

I want to just study the daffodils, the new growth on the roses and smell the daphne. Their beauty seems less able to offer escape today. My warrior instincts stir when all I want to do is see the roses bloom or watch the geese fly over head returning to the nearby fields.

04
Feb
15

Guiding light…

“We sinned for no reason but an incomprehensible lack of love…” Peter Kreeft

crosses-bell tower-church-Portland-St. Andrews-SwittersB

 

03
Feb
15

nunnery’s view

girls, women vows voiced

given a view of the world

ornate sacrifice

window-wall-ornate-nunnery-Portland-SwittersB

27
Jul
14

Brooding & The Mind

“Let us not paralyze ourselves for good, by brooding on man’s capacity for evil.” David Sarnoff 

Brooding-Dark Clouds-Oregon-Nature-Photography-SwittersB

The mind, the power of the mind. A short bit of history, if you would…my father was a hillbilly boy from the holler near Panther, West Virginia. He was one of 11 children and for all intents out the door at 12 years of age working on the edges of saw mills and coal mines. In a few years he was off to war. To say he came from a harsh, sometimes violent, world is putting it mildly. He was quiet, he was fearless. He never graduated from 4th grade. He was self-taught, spiritual, philosophical and despite himself often a leader because of his dependable work ethic. He struggled with regrets, alcohol and an inability to show love.

Some where my father discovered The Science of Mind Magazine. A rag of a paperback magazine in the 1950’s. It had an impact on my father and he in turn was hell-bent on planting a seed in me: you have the power of your mind. You can change you, you can heal yourself, you can endure anything. As a boy of 12 or so, all I was hearing were the guys outside playing the sport of the season. I wanted to escape, but that was not the drill.

For a good few years, dinner would be finished and then I would sit upon a chair near my father. He would select a portion of his Science of Mind magazine and hand it to me. I had to read aloud the passage and then explain what it meant. Daunting. Reading aloud. Comprehending what I read.

In retrospect, he was being an amazing teacher and showing love and guidance his way. Out of the resentment I felt, grew those seeds of empowerment. This new age spiritual self awareness stuff that my wise, hillbilly father saw as worth more than sitting on a pew and taking guidance from someone else took hold. To him it was you & God. No church. A bit of the bible, your power of positive thinking and off toward the struggles of life.

How wise my father was. And, as usual, we don’t see that in the moment, but only later as life unfolds, unravels, boils over and we ultimately are faced with that core truth…it is up to you. Not once do I recall my father saying he loved me at any point in our lives. I only said those words to him as he took his final breaths, in his truly final moments of life. ‘I love you dad.” I stroked his grey hair as he chugged out his final breath.

Obviously this was my father’s way of saying ‘I love you.’ Those brooding clouds will come, how you handle the storms is, at least in part, up to you.

20
Apr
14

Untilled Fields

“Awake! arise! the hour is late!  Angels are knocking at thy door!  They are in haste and cannot wait!  And once departed come no more.  Awake! arise! the athlete’s arm Loses its strength by too much rest;  The fallow land, the untilled  farm Produces only weeds at best.”       Henry Wadsworth Longfellow  

photography-farms-plow-old-SwittersB

I most often take an image and find a meaningful poem, passage, quotation to pass along that enhances the image’s appeal. The plow in the field, overgrown and neglected, brought to my mind the passage of time, the changes within a family, the death of a farmer, the loss of will, the economics of farming, the history of what was.

So, I researched “untilled fields” for a meaningful passage. What I found was a stark, historical reference to tyranny, pagan/religious conflicts, death, spirits and fairies and beliefs melded into farmers in Scotland and Ireland that left land untilled for reasons in conflict with the monarchy, the church, the prevailing beliefs. Well, that was all too grim for my original inspiration…which to me is grim enough…the loss of local farms and family history. Still, as I do almost everyday, I learned something new. 

20
Apr
14

Happy Easter

Easter Bunny SwittersBThis poor, unappealing Easter Bunny sat forlorn, alone, neglected. The store was packed. Perhaps the shoppers prioritized their day, their life, for more important things…celebrating with family/friends. One could even hope there was a higher awareness beyond. 

I mean I like the Easter Bunny as much as the next kid, but this one was somehow off kilter.

28
Feb
14

Salvation Mountain: Leonard Knight Passed On

I have been intrigued by Salvation Mountain for a photographic experience for quite a few years. After several trips to the region over the years, I have yet to make it there. It would have been most interesting to be there while the creator of the site was alive. But, Leonard Knight passed on this past month. There are so many unique photography opportunities near the Salton Sea. We may yet make it to this area for exploration and bunch of ‘OMG’ exclamations.

“If somebody gave me $100,000 a week to move somewhere and live in a mansion and be a big shot, I’d refuse it,” he said. “I want to be right here. It’s amazing, isn’t it?”

Leonard seemed to have his spiritual self dialed in and I am sure his spiritual self is still wafting about Salvation Mountain.

salvation mtn la times

L.A. Times Photo Archive

niland-map

Salvation Mountain/Slab City on the map

Salvation Mountain from the air, Niland, California

06
Dec
13

True Religion of the Outdoors: Step Toward the Light

“Outdoor adventure and other recreational practices can express, evoke, and reinforce religious perceptions and orientations to natural and social worlds. Some participants in them understand nature itself to be sacred in some way and believe that facilitating human connections to nature is the most important aspect of their chosen practice. Such activities can be construed by scholars as “nature religion,” and profitably analyzed by comparing characteristics commonly associated with religion to the beliefs and practices of participants engaged in these activities.”

True Relig B and Trout

“Aquatic Nature Religion” three case studies that explore the religious, or religion-resembling aspects, of surfing, fly fishing, and whitewater kayaking. These studies provocatively ….conventional understandings of religion and pose anew the boundary question: Where does religion end and phenomena that are not religious begin?” Bron Raymond Taylor

xLast Light Heading In SwittersB 2

“Nature worship is often considered the primitive source of modern religious beliefs and can be found….Common to most forms of nature worship is a spiritual focus on the individual’s connection and influence on some aspects of the natural world and reverence towards it.”  (Wiki)

In its simplest manifestations for me, the outdoors is a sanctuary that renews, provides some indefinable spirituality and draws me more than any four walls of a church. I am not attempting to compete with formal religion or some Gaia/Pagan fantasy nor present the fervor of an ecobot.

Moonrise

I simply derive the strength and clarity for life from being outdoors more often than not. A True Religion for me and for many in my extended family. Whether it is fly fishing, hiking, backpacking, gardening or photography, being away from the pavement, urban sounds and the clock is an open door toward peace of mind and heart. 

smoke sunrise 2 swittersbx




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