Off The Beaten Path

When the path ignites a soul, there’s no remaining in place. The foot touches the ground, but not for long.

Most people—by which I mean most of us who grew up on the outskirts of the American Dream—grow up, get an education, find a steady job, and then after time has passed, maybe fall in love and get married.

Yet in reality I started working at the ripe old age of fifteen years old, fell in love numerous times, got married then divorced, partied like a cliché, and never managed to graduate.

In other words, the order I have chosen to live my life is well on the opposite end of normal and most, more than likely, consider crazy.

Since my adolescent years, even before surrendering my childhood to puberty, I’ve despised the idea of working a stagnant, nine-to-five, cubicle ridden job.

I mean hell, I wanted to be a pilot when I grew up. I found it fitting for my personality, all winded and flown. Maybe that is why I have come to admire writing so much, because these words often carry my mind away with them, while giving flight to my soul.

In my late teens and early twenties, after I had managed to burn a few bridges with some that were close to me, as well as the local law enforcement, I was eager to find my way elsewhere, and I wasn’t the only one who wanted to see me on my way.

So after much deliberation as to what I wanted to be at the age of twenty-three, I decided to head west to try and figure it all out. I went in search of a place where I could find and be myself tried and true. I went looking for me.

It was a simple, rather happy-go-lucky sort of idea: running away from all that you know, on the prowl for a freedom that had its roots firmly embedded beneath a dream bound by a white-picketed fence with a few beautiful children running wild, all the while living a life so carefree.

But I didn’t necessarily want the security of mediocrity, or at least that was what I told myself. I found that I was at ease on the road. Something about it felt like home. I was relaxed, readily patient to find my niche, no matter what it took.

It was then that I found myself forty-two hundred miles away from my home. The first leg of the search for myself had led me to Denali, AK. I had one friend at my side, only to be surprised as I stumbled upon the lifelong kind of friends when I arrived.

Still I was sort of terrified, yet somewhat excited about having not any idea as to what my future held, or what I might find. That summer is still etched with perfection amongst the canyons of my mind. The winds of life had carried me to the place I was supposed to be. I was at home not knowing where I was going next, and it was an ecstatic feeling.

There was nowhere to go but everywhere to be, so I just kept rolling right along through life like a star shooting through the night. Little did I know though that I would soon find a place where my restless carbon dusted bones could settle down for awhile. It was soon thereafter my time in Alaska, I found my way to the place I have called home for almost eighteen years now, that being Lake Tahoe.

There was a budding counterculture vibe taking root in Tahoe back then, still is, and probably was long before I arrived. It was a vibe that vibrated deep in the depths of my magnetic soul. I felt like a cicada longing for the light of paradise in the night, I couldn’t contain myself. It was my kind of place and I didn’t want to leave.

I managed to lockdown a steady job playing Chef at a little off the beaten path ski resort, just south of Tahoe, nestled away in the beautifully serrated Sierra Nevada.

Even back then, not so long ago, at the turn of the century, a place like Lake Tahoe cost a lot less to live than it does today, though it was quite easy to exceed the cost of any given liver on any given day. Life was wild, livable and lackadaisical, always on the go just to slow it down.

But I was always broke, working like a slave on a snow farm, all so I could afford to stay comfortably alive, while wetting my whistle with the blowing winds of adrenaline, if you know what I mean? Man is quite the universally thirsty race. Always thirsting for something one doesn’t need.

Lost souls like my own were running from all corners of the country to this metaphoric fountain of youth, on the hunt for just a hint of never-ending bliss.

My newfound friends and I were hellbent and determined to live a not so ordinary life far and away from any attachment, for a life we could call our own.

Yes indeed, life was headed in the right direction of love and light. I had found my niche. Yet even still, knee deep in myself and paradise, something was missing.

I soon began to realize that no journey carries one as far unless, as it extends into the wild around us, and that is as far as it goes into the wilderness within.

Before I continue the journey, now is the time that off the beaten path these written thoughts of mine must go…

All throughout time, yet not so much as of late, man has been eagerly pursuing, ever so curious at the precise whereabouts of “Heaven on Earth.” This exact curiosity could, and should be applied to ole Christopher Columbus. When he set sail upon the ocean blue, he went looking for bliss, in search of a different kind of freedom, and by God, he found it.

While the pilgrims brought with them bits and pieces of purity, scattered about spirituality, they also brought with them violence and supremacy. Let’s be honest, Plymouth Rock stood as promised with the poise of paradise and the white man was going to call it his own at whatever cost. And to make sure to institutionalize paradise, they, of course, quickly created a bank and a university.

Still spiritual men and sacred clerics throughout history believed without knowledge—even warning those on the hunt for something else—that to be aware of a certain inner kingdom was the foundation of freedom long built in a man’s heart. And to find that freedom, man had to travel to all ends of the earth just to find himself. And just as Augustine spoke of the path, “it is not with steps, but with yearnings,” to truly find one’s self.

See the journey has always been about moving away from one’s “fallen” condition. The condition in which we are not free to be who we are to be without the need to please. You see, freedom is about the journey and not the arrival. And to finally come to understand that after all this time…

Paradise simply exists in you, the person, the self, the untethered soul, but mind you, it is the radical self in its uninhibited freedom. It’s the beast, stripped of pride, no longer weighed down by the winter clothes of ego, call it a spiritual and enlightened nakedness if you’d like.

It’s instinct unleashed. It’s the soul set free from one’s own stupendous ways. It’s a light within that rises with the sun upon the land of milk and honey. It’s an inner salvation that shivers ticklish up the spine.

Yet how I came to the realization of all of this took thousands of petty mistakes along this journey through the depths of myself. And if I may be exact, it was up until this precise moment. Better late than never one would guess.

Til the next time…

—BeLove

Feed The Flow…

It is of hope to me that some would come to discover that the most impenetrable landscape, that the most unusual adventures are the ones seen and experienced from within.

Clearly creativity springs from something that rises, rolls, surges, and spills into us rather than from something that just stands there hoping that we might, however circuitously, find our way to it.  In this sense we never “lose” our creativity.  It is always there, filling us or else colliding with whatever obstacles are placed in its path.  If it finds no inlet to us, it backs up, gathers energy, and pushes forward until it breaks through.  The only way we can muster its insistent energy is to spin it in a positive way as to continuously mount barriers against it, this is so it can be diverted away from the channels that are poisoned by the destructiveness of negativity and negligence. 

If we are gasping for creative energy; if we have trouble holding onto the imaginative, the morality of our own creation; if we struggle to focus on our personal vision, acting on it, or following through with it, then something has gone wrong at the spring of the source, between the headwaters and the tributary. Perhaps one’s creative waters are flowing through a polluted environment, whereas the pollywogs of imagination are killed off before they can grow into maturity. But more so than not, if creativity is bereft of constant flow, sometimes you have to let it build, like a pile of driftwood gathering from a Spring runoff, holding its own, until it’s time had to come to break the damn levee…

My mind may have well gone ahead and volunteered for any one of the dozen marathons going on this time of year. It was moving constant and in all directions. These marathon states, how should I describe their phenomena? In a marathon state I infinitely lack something, my heart swells to the point of sickness, it feels like a tearing eagerness ripping at the fabric of my being. This two and a half, “going on twenty” year journey into the creative depths of myself has bled through a lot of things that spill from the core of me.

The sentient part of my soul often wishes to express itself in ways most are not accustomed to. There are some symptoms of an overdose of caffeinated emotion. Or it could be that these butterflies intermingled with a heavy heart and lightheadedness were just some subtle vibrational twitches in the direction of all things synchronistic and full of surprise. I have at times had sense of being the instrument of a higher power. I often feel that I’m either being used as an example of human error or as a mere shadow of the suitable things to come. Which in the sense of excitement and deliberate expectation, was pushing me closer to the edge.

I was not so completely unrealistic that I failed to ask myself whether by a sensible person I meant myself. It was evident I had become one of those proud sensitive kind of gentlemen who liked to give so much trouble because I have been adorned with this passion for such internal matters that seem of slight interest to any so-called sensible person.

As I found my way swimmingly to the edge of the bank, I gathered my things with what little bit of wit I had left. My smile went wide with the framework of contentment. I had fallen under the influence of all things speculative and metaphysical. It was time to approach the premises of universal eagerness, asserting that the appearance of mankind on this earth as a whole, was a good thing, a little bit more immature and held to a lower lack of accountability then generations passed, but nonetheless curable in the esoteric sense.

I was starting to become keen again, to the peculiarity of things, within the depths of which certain secular tendencies often touched on “not” telling the truth. It’s these thoughts that sent my mind into frenzy nowadays, with their accelerating rhythms and paradisiacal philosophical deliriums that provoked the explosion of layers of an unknown consciousness deep within me. It was my hope that by reducing the strength of these outlying forces, that I might not run through the fire, perpetually on the edge of chaos before throwing myself into the depths of the river, all the while panting with joy and amazement.

I was becoming altruistic in the realm of all that is romantic in a short period of time, this writing, somehow had it’s hand in the digging of the depths in the trenches where which I often dove headfirst. I often think that the sickness in my heart somehow spread into a sort of high-strung emotional poetic disorder. This is how I sometimes felt, and still do from time to time. Too often I am washed over with a sense of being, poisoned by an eagerness, and a congestion of tender impulses finessed with fever, spun with all of it’s enthusiastic dizziness. Love did after all bring out my deepest peculiarities.

It’s not to be considered a bad thing at all; I’d be one to guess that it belongs to the nature of this path that leads to my own sort of inner salvation. And so it is that owing to my eagerness, I began to connect breathing with joy again, and owing to the gloom of sickness, I looked to connect that joy with light, and owing to the absurdity of my own thoughts, I allied the light that shone upon the walls around me with the light that burned inside me.

I had materialized myself as one of those Hallelujah and Glory types. Furthermore concluding that man, this one in particular, is nothing but a continent of creative divide. One minute you are creating this, the next that. Though it belongs to those who are sensible, they are the ones who look to offer their personal experiences as a helpful lesson to the rest, hoping to energize the hearts and minds of others and do right by them—an intensive sort of public relations project. And for those who share no sensibility, or offer no empathy, let them be as they may. They will wake up sooner or later.

There are times when I see all of these thoughts of mine with copious amounts of idealism spread about. But there are other times when to me, all I see is pure external delirium, a toxic entity of animosity spreading far and wide, burning the fields of indigenous love, and sucking God’s Muse dry of Her very own blood. With everyone so sold on gold and the so-called good, it has become much easier to bat an eye at evil while we tuck it into bed for the night. But it is a certain gold that greed seeks, and there is certain honey hued Inner gold that builds and spills from within.

Some will only understand this once they themselves are sufficiently stripped of their hodgepodge of ideas, considering little by little the blandness of ordinary conversations, that are often too careful to avoid the essential subjects, such as the purpose of life, and the path to the other side. Instead some are left to measure just how dull it can be to waste time playing solitaire when going up against the stacked deck of subversion.

Though it is of hope to me that some would come to discover that the most impenetrable landscape, that the most unusual adventures are the ones seen and experienced from within, where beauty blossoms with the ordinary, where each moment can be richly unique, where the splendor of honey-filled joy is found where it’s least expected, if only one knows at which angle to capture the light, which in my opinion, is an angle that bends from within. Maybe they would finally realize that once they reached the Stairs that leads to door of the Inner Kingdom, they would see that everything else is barren poverty.

I have grown exhausted of everyone looking at everything with a negligent set of eyes. In my refusal to participate in the decline, I no longer wanted to be one to trample millenniums of wisdom, or to accept the reign of cynicism and the establishment of barbaric beliefs. Nor would I any longer find comfort in being an accomplice to the establishment of greedy manmade ideologies, all of which spread one way or another with the idea of repressing consciousness, all the while converging on the excessive accumulation of possessions. I had to find myself hidden in the midst of them all. I finally came to understand that with this undertaking, in spite of its discretion, very well could capture a collapse better than anything else. So off to set the foundation of an Inner Church I went, as it is so to speak, I took to the canvas of God.

We’d all be much better off, if we all went to work on ourselves, as much as we go to work just to live.  As I get in the car to drive to work, this river, this valley, it swells subtle with summer and new beginnings. Life was being drawn in the grass with the glowing green of growth. As one last thought runs through my mind, I find it unfortunate that we have been to the moon, we have charted the depths of the ocean and the heart the atom, but we have been standardized with this fear of looking inwards at ourselves because we have grown customary to the belief that this is where all of our contradictions will flow together within the confluence of the inner river.  But it is only if ourselves, would allow the decongestion of our ability to choose the ethical choice between what is right and what is wrong, we would find that free will ain’t so bad after all.

In closing, man is an ever-flowing river of creativity until the very last breath he draws. There are no limits set by this eclectic and electrified universe upon man’s cosmic totality, or his multiplication power. Each man sets his own limitations in accordance with his desires. He may Be a tiny stream which gathers little energy and carries a weak current or he may be roaring river, with the weight of eleven hundred and eleven cubic feet flowing through him at all times. This is true of all the energy borrowed from the universe by all of us. It is there in infinite quantity. The gauge for the kind of flow each of us have within us is set by ourselves.

—BeLove

Plain As Hell

One little spark can set a whole wilderness on fire. Just a spark.

Let the wolf delight, to howl and to bite. For God has made him so.

—BeLove

If energy is delight and enthusiasm is beauty, the wild depressive knows more about delight and beauty than anyone else.  Who else has so much energy and exuberance?  I believe the psyche fleeces a certain strategy to increase depression. Isn’t it Freud who said, that happiness is nothing but the remission of pain? The more pain—the more intense the happiness that follows.  But there is a prior origin to this, and the psyche—it does create hell on purpose.

On Purpose

All life is, is pondering between then and now, between birth and death, seeking answers to the most influential questions.  Such brooding doesn’t always make us any saner, and some may sink into drink, when the answers they seek drive them a little too wild.  It has always been me versus madness in my life, and madness has proven much stronger over salvation.  But not this time around and I will tell you why.

All this thinking, writing, with it’s feeling sometimes seems to count for nothing. It’s naught but an attack behind the allied lines of my mind—seeking the beauty of my thoughts—and as of late the only effect is except it has worn me out.   The noble idea of being a poet or a writer has made me feel at times like a clown or a fool. Maybe humanity no longer needs art and inner miracles.  It already has so many outer ones.  

So before I can carry on with the green and lovely shades of this wilderness within, I must venture into the darkest and most arid corner of my mind.  This is the only way that I feel like I am being genuine with you all. It is true that the only way out is through.  

Sure I could fake it and pretend that all I saw was graced with gloriousness, but over the past week it hasn’t been that way for me.  I hold close with confidence that by getting this off my chest, the path will clear itself of my well-worn mind’s debris.  It is time we talk about hell.  

Horrors Of Hell

Hell is the state of the soul powerless to come out of it’s prideful self; it is absolute self-centeredness, dark and evil isolation, and the final incapacity to love.  It means to be engulfed in an agonizing moment, which yawns with the abyss of infinity, so that the pain plays repetitively in the mind, while stabbing sharp through the heart.  Hell creates and organizes the separation of the soul from God. 

Hell is not God’s action upon the soul, retributive and punitive as that action may be—it is the absence of any action of God upon the soul, the soul’s incapacity to open itself up to God’s influence and its complete severance from God.  

God’s Mercy

The horror of hell is not something inspired by thoughts that God’s judgment will be severe and merciless.  God is love and mercy, and to give one’s fate to Him means to overcome this horror. In reality the horror is to have our own fates left in our own hands.  It is not what God will do to us, but what we will do to ourselves.  Hell means that we don’t fall into the Hand of God but instead we abandon ourselves to our own devices.

Every soul is sinful and subject to darkness and cannot by its own power come into the light.   The soul will feel inclined to pass into the twilight of dreams written upon semi-existence.  Its own free efforts cannot bring it to true and being.  It is in the essence of Christianity that we see this designed by these two scriptures.

“The Son of man is not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them.”

Luke 9:56

“I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.”

John 3:17

The coming of Christ should be seen as not an outward threat of judgment, but an inward recognition that salvation rests within—salvation from the hell that we have so maliciously spent our entire lives preparing for ourselves.   The coming of Christ is the turning point for the soul of man, which builds up the Kingdom of God instead of digging for the depths of hell. 

 Salvation Within

Without Christ, our Savior, the Kingdom of God is unattainable for man.  Man’s moral efforts alone do not bring him to it.  If there is no Christ and no change of heart connected with Christ, hell in some shape or form is inevitable, for man cannot help but create it.  The essence of salvation is liberation from our own hell, to which all creatures naturally gravitate.  

Hell will not come into eternity, it will remain in time, and hence it cannot be eternal.  One of the voices that howls through my soul tells me that all are doomed to hell, because all more or less doom themselves to it. But this to the fullest extent is reckoning without Christ.  The other voice that speaks from the goodness of my heart, says that all must be saved, that man’s true freedom must be enlightened from within, without any violence being done to it—and that comes through Christ and is salvation.

In the midst of this spiritual awakening, I no longer think of the devil as outside the human soul, he is engrained in it and means that it is abandoned in itself.  Christ frees the soul from the devil.  Hell, without question exists, yet it is revealed to us in experience, and it may be our own lot. Hell belongs to time and is temporal. Everything that is in time is temporal. The victory of eternity over time leaves hell and its so called powers behind.

Hell’s Intimidation

The idea of hell has been turned into an instrument of intimidation, of religious and moral terrorism. Our real horror is not in the threats of a transcendental Divine judgment, but in the immanent working out of human destiny from which all Divine action has been excluded.  The most merciless committee is that of one’s own conscious; it brings with it torments of hell, division, loss of wholeness, a fragmentary existence.  The only judgment God shall enforce upon us is a downpour of grace upon the creature. His judgment establishes true realities and makes them all secondary to the heights of Heaven, not in a permissible but a metaphysical sense.  

I now see something hideous and morally revolting in the idea of eternal torments as retribution for the sins of a short moment of life.  Eternal damnation as a result of things done in such a short period of time, known as life, is one of the most disgusting manmade nightmares.  But one thing is unquestionably true:  after death the soul rich in Christ goes on to Heaven, the soul that never believed in God’s Power goes on to some other plane of being, as it lived before birth.

The Answer Is Christ

The life in our world between birth and death is merely a crumb compared to our destiny, incomprehensible when regarded by itself, apart from the eternal purpose of a man. It is Christ alone that can conquer the horror of hell as a manifestation of the creature’s freedom. This is the last and final demand that dictates the conscious—to have the conscious and the courage to direct all the power of your creative spirit through Christ to free everyone from their own hell. And the rise of hope in this belief is the only way through this wilderness within.

Author’s Note

It has been a rough couple of weeks. My depressed mind has been taken over by the grind and has been working overtime with work and all else in between. But 2019 is going to be here in the blink of an eye and I will be spending a few days in one of my favorite places in the world, Alabama Hills, just outside of Lone Pine, California.  I have to leave town with just my camera, my tent, my bible, God, and me.  Once again, I have to find myself.  I must take this beast within and seek some holy waters for the sake of baptismal purposes.

As Christ said, the seed in the ground must die.  To be a seed in the ground of one’s very life is to dissolve into that ground in order to become fruitful.  One disappears into love, in order to “be Love”

I am finally getting somewhere with the book, so with that being said, this blog will only be posting once a week on Friday’s, starting this Friday.  Hope you all had a merry everything and have a happy always. Thanks for stopping by. Til the next time.

-BeLove