Today is vacation. I fed the donkeys and the birds, went to the mailbox, and that was it. Slept quite a lot, as much as sleep would allow. Up for a few hours, asleep for a few hours. Weary and wore out. Didn't want to do anything. I think I've abandoned the blogathon. Ten days of writing after somebody else's "prompts" I feel like my head has been underwater and I needed to come up for air. Yesterday I wrote on my own again. It felt refreshing, so much that I don't want to go back. The blogathon is coming to nothing for me, anyway. Yesterday's theme was to write about risks. The prompts are turning to the business of art, and I'm so not interested in going there I remind myself I have a choice. This evening, not wanting to write, read or anything, I put on a fairly recent James Bond movie, one with actor Daniel Craig, Quantum of Solace. The surrealist title tells zero about the story. Not that there's a story. It's a rapidly paced sequence of events punctuated by guns going off. I couldn't help but reflect on the common belief that killing solves problems. Watch television a few minutes and you'll see at least one gun. The worship of the gun has become about as intense as the worship of money. It comes under the news editor's rule of thumb: if it bleeds it leads. The world of media plays to the third grade level and defends it saying, it works. I'm remembering in the time of Women's Liberation much talk about getting soap commercials off the air of moms doing laundry. Corporate defense: it works. We're in a time of low-bid architecture and exposure to appeals to our lower selves through ongoing commercials and the varieties of entertainment coming out of Hollywood. On Sundays when I see tv, I'm continually glad I cut out exposure to commercials a very long time ago, 1961. I know nothing of television since then except seen at other people's houses. I see so few commercials that when I see a hundred or so during the race, especially pizzas that look like coronary bombs, I see quite obviously they're appealing to the stupid in me. I cannot give my attention to an appeal for ignorance every day and let it soak into my mind by repetition several times a day. I don't want advertising jingles in my head. I don't want that in my world, so I don't participate. My world is wonderful without television. I have none of that continuous coercion in my mind. I want the world to be without tv, but I can't do anything about outside my world. In my world, I'm free of it. I see it on Sundays by choice. Fortunately, I forget all of it by the time I arrive home.
selfie by cheyanne
One of my own rules of thumb is never buy anything advertised on tv. That's near impossible, but I do pretty good. About all I buy after utilities, food and gas is very little. I buy books and cheap dvds and the occasional cd, none of which is ever advertised on tv. I stay away from Walmart too. Occasionally, something I need comes up and Walmart is the only place I can find it. That's not more than once in two or three years. Even when things cost more in Sparta, I'm one to put my resources into the local economic flow. What little bit I shop makes negligible difference to local businesses. It's not even principle. I don't put much confidence in principles any more. I also do not ever imagine logic, reason or foresight could have a role in anything. It's more practical than a principle that guides me to spend as much of my money at home as I'm able. I stopped drinking Coke when I learned the corporation was hiring death squads to kill union activists in Bolivia. I can't do anything about it, but I don't have to participate in it. Of course, the corporation has so many other product lines, I probably use toilet paper made by Coca-Cola Inc. I do my best to participate the very least in an economy I see goes counter to the soul of humanity. Again, I can't stop it, but I don't have to be an assist if I don't want to. I can't avoid contributing to the world of international corporations that make me ask if a corporation is a person, then is a person a corporation? Some people are, but not anybody I know or would want to know. A great part of my absence of ambition to make a lot of money is I don't want to wed myself to the belief system I don't believe. I remember in childhood and teens feeling so jealous of this lifetime, I wanted it to be all mine, my own, not have to pretend sophistication because I make a certain amount of money and it's required. I don't want to have to go to classical concerts in full dress and stand around in the lobby during intermission to be seen there.
selfie by cheyanne
One of the great guidelines of my life has been the words attributed to Gandhi, my own paraphrase, Be the way I want the world to be. Not the exact words, but close enough for a rule of thumb. Perhaps I wish there were more empathy and compassion going about among people. I can't do anything about it outside myself. I don't rule the world, nor do I rule anyone but myself, and self not well. Without access to prayer I couldn't even fool myself into believing I rule my life. If I want the world to have more compassion going around, I can activate it in myself. When I think and act with compassion, it has a front and center place in my world. It is a part of my world. When I regard others in the world around me, the world I live in, neighbors, people I know, relatives, the animals I see regularly, with compassion and empathy, my world is suddenly characterized by compassion. I don't need to wish the whole world would do that way. I don't need to missionarize and browbeat the people around me with the Truth. I live it. What I put out comes back to me. I put compassion out into the world and compassion comes back. I have compassion all around and within. I need never wish there were more compassion in the world. I want the world to be without racism, but again, I can't stop racism in Moscow, Kansas, or Paris, Kentucky, or New Haven, Connecticut. That's way out of my range. But I can be without racism in myself. I regard someone of another race or religion or nationality the same as I regard my own, with the same respect. I see no reason to be otherwise. It is the god within that is who we are, not our race or beliefs about God. Skin color is no more than the color of clothes we're wearing on a given day. It's the difference in cultures that has us believing the difference is one's shade.
vada by cheyanne
I don't like racism, I don't have to do it. Again, I don't do it, there is none in my world. It means the people I'm drawn to are non-racist kinds of people, and then there's no racism in my world. I don't want the ignorant minds of Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh in the world, but, there again, nothing I can do about it. I choose not to give them my attention and suddenly they're not in my world anymore. I can't stop them from being in the world of American politics, but I can pay no more attention to them than I pay attention to politicians in India. I am training myself to care no more for anything to do with American politics than I care for the politics in some place in Africa I've never heard of. Ignoring it does nothing to diminish it "out there" in the world of no interest to me. I pull them into my world paying attention to them. I stop paying attention to them and they cease to invade my world. My world is devoid of them. I saw some pictures and headlines today on facebook of Palin making silly analogies from a children's book. What do I care? Cartoon characters good for the Comedy Central channel. As long as I pay them no mind, they are not in my world. However, I carry enough contempt for Dick Cheney to pull him into my world whenever I see a picture of him. I feel a clenched fist within, would want to go back in time and have him aborted. Just that kind of thinking pulls him into my world the same as if I had respect for him. When I pull him into my world, I can let go of him fast and send him back to that world out there. In my world his name has no more importance than Putin's. The world I would want to live in would be a world without them. My world is, indeed, without them. Simple as that. They're someplace else. They only come into my world when I pull them in. I don't pull them in and I'm free of them. It's my choice. I choose to leave him and all the rest of them in their world. I'll keep my attention in my world. They have no place in my world. My world is people living their lives, doing what they have to do. I care about the people in my world. I like keeping my mind closer to my heart.
the blogger by cheyanne