Saturday, April 24, 2010

Public, like a Frog

Been posting feverishly on public forums in the last few days - something that serious-minded friends balk at. As the highly perceptive R pointed out (in not so many words) - why wear a cloyingly earnest heart on a very public sleeve? One supposes it is so that stray kindred souls will recognize the process, perhaps benefit from the floundering and discoveries of another, perhaps feel more reassured about being misfits in a world full of smooth operators and blind bats.

Public missives left out by wise and slowly-wisening inhabitants of the WWW jungle are the last fistful of seeds scattered by the roadside. Most of the seeds will die parched and ignored, some will be eaten by birds, one or two will take root. The larger nursery is in another, more private place, but one has great faith in serendipity - having benefited from it oneself too many times to count. I salute you, tenacious scatterers of good quality seed.

This public talkativeness is also directly connected with the sun being so directly overhead right now. Soon it will be time to retreat again and do something more useful than talking to a faceless-world-at-large.
Was introduced to a slender booklet by a friend who has great timing with these things. A paragraph in it seemed particularly to resonate with my own reasons for being unable to repeat the sort of dark work I have done in the past. It will actually be a marvel if I live to write anything permanent and printed again. Anyway, I quote from the booklet:

'The next morning when I woke from sleep and looked around, I felt that everything I saw was beautiful. Everything, even the most unbeautiful detail, was beautiful. I was in a state of awe. The hut itself was a crude structure, not beautiful by anyone's standards, but it looked to me like a palace. The scrubby looking trees outside looked like a most beautiful forest. Sunbeams were streaming through the window onto a plastic dish, and the plastic dish looked beautiful!

The sense of beauty stayed with me for about a week, and then reflecting on it I suddenly realized that that's the way things really are when the mind is clear. Up to that time I'd been looking through a dirty window, and over the years I'd become so used to the scum and dirt on the window that I didn't realize it was dirty, I'd thought that's the way it was.'

Page 38-39
Now is the Knowing
Ajahn Sumedho


RC said...

what a lovely thought
I'm off to clean my windows! again!!

Anonymous said...

I like very much "tenacious scatterers of good quality seed" One feels that in the fullness of time those who have ears to hear will hear, those whose minds and hearts are ready will be fertilized. Meanwhile you can take solace in Wordsworth's lines where he says that "neither evil tongues,rash judgements, nor the sneers of selfish men, nor greetings where no kindness is, nor all the dreary intercourse of daily life, shall e'er prevail against us, or disturb our cheerful faith, that all which we behold is full of blessings".
From "Lines Composed a few miles above Tintern Abbey".
Lage raho Patil bhai, lage raho!

mridula said...

dear you,

have been taking great comfort in Nabokov who had this to say about what he chooses to create: 'For me a work of fiction exists only insofar as it affords me what I shall bluntly call aesthetic bliss, that is a sense of being somehow, somewhere, connected with other states of being where art (curiosity, tenderness, kindness, ecstasy) is the norm.

it gives me a lot of words to work with. of course I rest on the one 'kindness' more than any other.

Anonymous said...

Well said Mridula ji. Need more input like yours. If there's kindness in your book "If it is sweet" then i'd be interested in it, but am dismayed you think McCarthy's The Road an insult to the reader. Of course what's sweet to me may be poison for you. I find great kindness,nay passionate kindness-concern-no-nonsense awareness oozing out of almost every page of the book.

But if depictions of violence offend, avoid all his books entirely.

Wishing you great good fortune in scattering many good seeds, Mridula. Hoping the populace is not yet sated on mediocrity.

amruta patil said...

(This has absolutely nothing to do with the comments above)

Always intrigued at how the same people who'd endure drunken louches, drones, posers, gluttons, feet-draggers and makers of nonstop sexual innuendos and cut/paste small talk - are so irritated by the kind of things discussed here. Teachers, hermits and harmless/impractical such ;)

This garden suddenly crawls with spammers (the main reason why comment moderation was enabled on this blog), anonymice, vague nasties, and people crying "false prophet". what prophet?! and you could accuse this forum of being tedious at worst, but how much more 'false' is it than most things that fill our lives anyway?

PT the Axis said...

well thats what one gets for being in a trishanku state :) ... neither here nor there