Tuesday, July 25
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"if we watch ourselves we are many people. All day long our field of consciousness is entered by autonomous complexes. If you can recognize them as such, you can steer them, either to keep them out of your system, or by going along with it and knowingly putting it aside again. But if you are possessed, so to speak, it means the complexes enter you involuntary and you act them out involuntary."
 - Maire Louise Von Franz
zen humanism
devoutin



Monday, July 24
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My Name
I guess you are kind of curious as to who I am, but I am one of those who do not have a regular name. My name depends on you. Just call me whatever is in your mind.
If you are thinking about something that happened a long time ago: Somebody asked you a question and you did not know the answer.
That is my name.
Perhaps it was raining very hard.
That is my name.
Or somebody wanted you to do something. You did it. Then they told you what you did was wrong - "Sorry for the mistake," - and you had to do something else.
That is my name.
Perhaps it was a game you played when you were a child or something that came idly into your mind when you were old and sitting in a chair near the window.
That is my name.
Or you walked someplace. There were flowers all around.
That is my name.
Perhaps you stared into a river. There was somebody near who loved you. They were about to touch you. You could feel this before it happened. Then it happened.
That is my name.
Or you heard someone calling from a great distance. Their voice was almost an echo.
That is my name.
Perhaps you were lying in bed, almost ready to go to sleep and you laughed at something, a joke unto yourself, a good way to end the day.
That is my name.
Or you were eating something good and for a second forgot what you were eating, but still went on, knowing it was good.
That is my name.
Perhaps it was around midnight and the fire tolled like a bell inside the stove.
That is my name.
Or you felt bad when she said that thing to you. She could have told it to someone else: Somebody who was more familiar with her problems.
That is my name.
 - Richard Brautigan
In Watermelon Sugar



Saturday, July 22
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I've Been Known
to spread it on thick to shoot off my mouth to get it off my chest
to tell him where
to get off
to stay put to face the music to cut a shine to go under to sell
myself short to play
myself down
to paint the town to fork over to shell out to shoot up to pull a
fast one to go haywire
to take a shine to
to be stuck on to glam it up to vamp it up to get her one better to
eat a little higher
on the hog
to win out to get away with to go to the spot to make a stake to
make a stand to
stand for something to stand up for
to snow under to slip up to go for it to take a stab at it to try out
to go places to play
up to get back at
to size up to stand off to slop over to be solid with to lose my
shirt to get myself off
to get myself off the hook
 - Denise Duhamel



Friday, July 21
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"Man seeks to escape himself in myth, and does so by any means at his disposal. Drugs, alcohol, or lies. Unable to withdraw into himself, he disguises himself. Lies and inaccuracy give him a few moments of comfort, the trifling feeling of escape experienced at a masked ball. He distances himself from that which he feels and sees. He invents. He transfigures. He mythifies. He creates. He fancies himself an artist. He imitates, in his small way, the painters he claims are mad."
 - Jean Cocteau



Thursday, July 20
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"We cannot live in a world that is interpreted for us by others. An interpreted world is not a home. Part of the terror is to take back our own listening. To use our own voice. To see our own light."
 - Hildegard of Bingen



Wednesday, July 19
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"How will you go about finding that thing the nature of which is totally unknown to you?"

"Finally, I set out to look for Meno. I had thought that his question would be part of a collection of aphorisms or fragments, like the fragments of Heraclitus. I had a clear picture of a book that doesn't exist. If I'd ever known, I'd forgotten that Meno is the title of one of Plato's dialogues. Socrates faces off with the sophist Meno, and as always in Plato's rigged boxing contests, demolishes his opponent. Sometimes while walking I catch sight of what at a little distance looks like a jewel or flower and turns out a few steps later to be trash. Yet before it is fully revealed, it looks beautiful. So does Meno's question, though it might only be so in the flowery translation I first encountered, out of context."
 - Rebecca Solnit



Tuesday, July 18
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"How will you go about finding that thing the nature of which is totally unknown to you?" I carried Meno's question around with me for years and then, when everything was going wrong, friends came bearing stories, one after another, and they seemed to provide, if not answers, at least milestones and signposts. Out of the blue, May sent me a long passage by Virginia Woolf she'd copied in round black letters on thick unlined paper. It was about a mother and wife alone at the end of the day: "For now she need not think about anybody. She could be herself, by herself. And that was what now she often felt the need of - to think; well not even to think. To be silent; to be alone. All the being and the doing, expansive, glittering, vocal, evaporated; and one shrunk, with a sense of solemnity, to being oneself, a wedge-shaped core of darkness, something invisible to others. Although she continued to knit, and sat upright, it was thus that she felt herself; and this self having shed its attachments was free for the strangest adventures. When life sank down for a moment, the range of experience seemed limitless . . . Beneath it is all dark, it is all spreading, it is unfathomably deep; but now and again we rise to the surface and that is what you see us by. Her horizon seemed to her limitless."
That passage from To the Lighthouse echoed something of Woolf's I already knew, her essay about walking that declared, "As we step out of the house on a fine evening between four and six, we shed the self our friends know us by and become part of that vast republican army of anonymous trampers, whose society is so agreeable after the solitude of one's room . . . Into each of these lives one could penetrate a little way, far enough to give one the illusion that one is not tethered to a single mind, but can put on briefly for a few minutes the bodies and minds of others."
 - Rebecca Solnit









  • ". . . as I have said often enough, I write for myself in multiplicate,
    a not unfamiliar phenomenon on the horizon of shimmering deserts."
    - Vladimir Nabokov