Joshu said, “You see only the stones and not the bridge.”
The monk said, “What is the bridge?”
Joshu said, “What do you think we are walking on?”
~~ Smart Bee ~~
“Zensense: The Wisdom of Joshu”
Today’s picture, which seems to go so well with the entry from the Wisdom of Joshu, is, truthfully, one of my own, taken on a train trip in 2013, when I visited a friend in Oregon…. I took the picture though the train window, while crammed into my tiny little cubicle, laughingly referred to as a luxury compartment by the thieves who run the trains…. I know, the bitterness kind of takes away from the peace and tranquility implied in the photo…. Still, it came out rather well, don’t you think? I do, but, then, I do have some investment to say so….
All that aside. I like the koan from Smart Bee’s stash of the sayings of Joshu; the title, “Zensense, The Wisdom of Joshu” is my own fictional contribution, which I made up because I thought it was an appropriate word…. I may have coined the word ‘Zensense’, but, I’m not sure, and I’m not going to claim it without knowing for sure; it’s pretty neat, all in all, in more ways than one, a good word to describe the category of ideas we get from Zen koans, or other examples of Zen Buddhist philosophy…. and, it should make it much more convenient to talk about the category, just as if it were lumped into one of the concomitant categories, like Nonsense, or Common sense, etc…. Bonus!
Now I’ve established that, for what it was worth, (I’d guess about $2.95, retail, with a drop to $2.00 on EBay….), we can, legally, go on to our regularly scheduled nonsense. What do we have on tap for today? Your guess is, naturally, as good as mine; this process is fully randomized. I have little to no idea of where we’ll end up, until shortly after I begin writing.
Even then, it’s always a hit and miss issue, as to whether we end up anywhere worthwhile. I try to make it, at minimum, interesting, or funny, but, as with any human endeavor, I frequently fall short, often, spectacularly enough to make me question why I do this at all…. Fortunately, I also possess the quite human ability to deny reality at the drop of a cliche, so, it all works out in end…. or, somewhere near the end….
On that note, with visions of endings cluttering our viewscreen, I think we should probably get on with the business for which we came today…. Once I get the memo telling me what that might be, we’ll get right on it. In the meantime, I think we’ll take advantage of that little hole in the barrier I see just ahead, and dive into the unknown, unguessed future that awaits us in the pearl beds…. See, that one right over…. wait for it….. THERE! Dive, dive, dive…..
Shall we Pearl?
AGE, n. That period of life in which we compound for the vices that we still cherish by reviling those that we have no longer the enterprise to commit. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”
All the recent rants you’ve seen here on ECR in the last few days have been generally involved with calling out the lies our Beloved Ruling Class tells us on a daily basis. I try to be fairly light in my treatment, always including what I would term a joke of two, usually at the expense of one of the more vulnerable pundits, such as one of the Shrubs, or Tony Blair, or Dickless Cheney; you know, the assholes. Any who, I figured today, I would shoot for even more comedy, by going with the man who always did it best…. Here is someone’s compilation of his funniest work, all pointed in one direction…. Enjoy, ffolkes, George tells jokes, but, every damn one of them rings with the full volume of TRUTH….
Today, I plan to avoid any undue unkindness in my writing. Therefore, I’ve decided for today to NOT compose a fresh rant, as I am, oddly enough, not dubious about how it would turn out. Without going into too much, or, for that matter, any detail, allow me to say I’d either be arrested, or at minimum, receive my first hate mail, a fate I have somehow managed to avoid, in spite of publishing my email address for the entire web to find… I consider that to be merely a chance happenstance; it’s less depressing than to think I’ve never offended anyone… It’s also better than assuming nobody who isn’t already in the choir ever comes by to read what is here….
When I’m being truthful with myself, I admit to the probability of the latter being the correct case. But, right now, I’m lying to myself, and pretending it’s nice of me not to subject y’all to any of what is currently running through my head…. I am of the firm opinion, for the first time, better in than out….
That doesn’t mean I can’t at least make an indictment, if only by using the Metaphorse, that powerful tool of literary nature which saves us closet activists from complete obscurity…. Here, then, is an old-school pearl with a series of comments on our beloved ruling class, and the sham of a government we have inherited, thanks to the inattention of the general public, and the inhumanity of the oligarchs…. Enjoy!
“de-moc-ra-cy (di mok’ ra see) n. Three wolves and a sheep voting on what’s for dinner.” — Smart Bee
“There is but one element of government, and that is THE PEOPLE. From this element spring all governments. “For a nation to be free, it is only necessary that she wills it.” For a nation to be slave, it is only necessary that she wills it.” — John Adams (1735-1826), Letter to John Taylor, 1814
“We lie about the truth, that’s what ruins us here. And do you know why we lie about the truth? Not because we like to, but because we are scared to death of it. If we looked the truth in the eye nine out of ten of us would run to the graveyard and demand to be buried at once.” — Babbaluche the cobbler
“Don’t ever tell anyone they ain’t free, ‘cos they’re gonna get real busy killin’ and maimin’ just to prove they are.” — Terry Southern (script for Easy Rider)
“If you attack Stupidity you attack an entrenched interest with friends in government and every walk of public life.” — Robertson Davies
“If liberty and equality, as is thought by some, are chiefly to be found in democracy, they will be best attained when all persons alike share in the government to the utmost.” — Aristotle
“I hope in the future Americans are thought of as a warlike, vicious people, because I bet a lot of high schools would pick “Americans” as their mascot.” — Deep Thoughts by Jack Handey
“During his 1956 presidential campaign, a woman called out to Adlai E. Stevenson “Senator, you have the vote of every thinking person!” Stevenson called back “That’s not enough, madam, we need a majority!” — Smart Bee
Oops! Did you see that? It seems one of the pearls included is NOT part of the indictment, but, rather, an expression of how it all got the way it did, in a fashion…. Can you guess which one of them gives us a clue to both the cause of our current state, and the way to correct it? I can, but, then, I did write it…. Feel free to leave your answer in the comments…. or not…. I’m betting most of y’all will ignore this part, and rush on to the poem…. but, I’m a cynic, so, what do I know?….
Here is one of mine, from a couple of years ago, written soon after breaking my long hiatus; it’s a few thoughts and impressions about, as we call it around here, LAL, or, Life At Large….
Powerful words playing hide and seek in my mind,
teasing with subtle cruelty, pretending to be kind.
Grand visions and flowery verses of beauty and truth
evaded my inner eye all through the days of my youth.
Affable interludes interspersed with allegorical wit
softened the crimes, against all reason, to finally acquit.
Time became at once an enemy, and an ally
Never once compelled to provide an answer why.
Giving gifts of simple kindness are their own pay,
spreading ripples of compassion are felt far and away.
Love given freely is precious, we are ever told,
increasing love received, more than a hundred fold.
Living long and with passion has centered my soul,
allowing me room, and time, to choose my own goal.
Now that I’ve gone past any need to pretend
I love everything in life, even knowing it will end.
This pearl, for reasons unknown to modern science, or, for that matter, to me, is damn near perfect! Go figure….. Enjoy!….
Now green in youth, now withering on the ground;
Another race the following spring supplies:
They fall successive, and successive rise.
~~ Alexander Pope ~~
~~ The Iliad of Homer, Book vi, Line 181 ~~
“As for life, it is a battle and a sojourning in a strange land; but the fame that comes after is oblivion.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, ii, 17
“Let us be thankful for the fools; but for them the rest of us could not succeed.” — Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens) (1835-1910)
“Life is full of little surprises” — Pandora
“After I’m dead I’d rather have people ask why I have no monument than why I have one.” — Cato the Elder (234-149 B.C.)
“In handling a stinging insect, move very slowly.” — Lazurus Long
“In his private heart no man much respects himself.” — Mark Twain
“Remember that man’s life lies all within this present, as ‘t were but a hair’s-breadth of time; as for the rest, the past is gone, the future yet unseen. Short, therefore, is man’s life, and narrow is the corner of the earth wherein he dwells.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, iii, 10
By mountains pil’d on mountains to the skies?
Heaven still with laughter the vain toil surveys,
And buries madmen in the heaps they raise.
~~ Alexander Pope ~~
See? All in the wrist….
Today’s Pearl is brought to you by…. the wonders of modern technology. Obviously. Since I don’t have any piece of whatever advertising you may see here, none of that part of it concerns us. All we know is what I write, which isn’t either predictable, or kosher, (hell, it’s barely classifiable at all….), though we do make it without any of the proscribed ingredients…. Well, okay, we don’t put any faith in there, but, all the rest of it is part of the recipe. We leave faith to those who require the panacea of its embrace…. Me, I’ll take my reason, and doubt, any day….
Which statement brings us, fortunately, to our closing for the day…. I hope you enjoyed today’s nonsense and angst; if not, well, just remember what you paid for it….. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes….
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest Carole, Mark,Theresa, & Richy
and everyone else, too…
When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.
Which is Why….
Sometimes I sits and thinks,
I just sits.
gigoid, the dubious
PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.
“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch
À bientôt, mon cherí….