Saturday, July 12, 2008

Snyder seems to be going downhill fast. More and more people of dubious quality keep moving in, especially into the rental houses. I left my driver’s license in the glove box of my unlocked car the other week, and it vanished. The new kid up the street stole one of Collin’s fireworks. I’ve been awakened in the middle of the night by raucous partying. And two nights ago it was a verbal spat at such a pitch I’m sure it could’ve been heard over most of town. That was from John’s old house--some really high quality people living there! His yard has become a tangled weed-infested lot with junk piled everywhere and dogs on short chains.

Anyway I heard the woman screaming at the top of her lungs, hysterically, but the only thing I can make out was something like, “You never spend any time with me. He’s more important to you than me.” The level of this woman’s rage and hysteria was truly remarkable.

And as I lay there tossing and turning and drifting in and out of sleep I kept having thoughts about how largely egoless I’ve become and how that really changes everything. The extreme level of upset that woman was gripped by is a result of ego. It’s an identification with “me” as an isolated dot, a “me” that tries futilely to manipulate other isolated dots to meet its own egotistical needs. A “me” that will always be sorely disappointed. So much of the suffering in this world is due to ego.

When you largely transcend ego, you also largely transcend suffering.

A little while ago I had the treat of seeing a beautiful vivid orange oriole in the side yard. Earlier in the week I had seen him and his mate in the tree right outside the front door, so they may have a nest nearby or they may just be in the neighborhood because one of Joe’s trees is flowering magnificently right now. And then about five minutes later, the oriole was followed by a blue jay (they don’t show up in my yard too often). I’ve always loved jays even though they were a nuisance when I had bird feeders.

I’ve been doing a lot of reading lately on the Internet about permaculture. It seems to be a way we're reconnecting with the earth and the particular ecosystem to which we belong. Still, there’s something missing I sense. I can’t quite put my finger on it yet, but I’ll let it incubate.

I think it may have something to do with there still being too much human willfulness involved, too much ego imposed on the landscape. Granted, there is a highly developed level of mindfulness in creating these balanced and self-supporting systems. And yet they are being imposed on the land. I think to be truly integrated into an ecosystem, we have to tune into the spirit of the land and resonate with it, asking ourselves, What wants to manifest here?” Rather than merely mimicking a healthy ecosystem, we need to let the ecosystem birth our human endeavors.

I’m sure there are some who are practicing this deeper kind of permaculture but I haven’t come across anyone trying to articulate it yet.

I need to get better at articulating my ideas about the land. It all seems like such a vital piece of the puzzle and no one else is addressing it. I need to be able to share what I’m learning.

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