Posted by: John Samsen | January 29, 2012

Gems Among the Stones

Posted by: John Samsen | August 3, 2008

Love…a Sufi poem, by J.R.Samsen, 1980’s

 

LOVE…a modern Sufi poem

 

The Idea

 

Aurora’s pastel fingers caress the eastern sky

as waking birds with joyful song proclaim the dawning day.

 

*You are my dawn, and my heart wakes, singing

 

The Mechanism

 

Catalytic winds stir Earth in cycles of creation

bearing seeds and nourishment and Weather’s shaping hand.

 

*The winds of your mind blow new thoughts across mine,

which implant, grow, and bear Ideas.

 

The Energy

 

Sun’s warm radiation pours energy of life

into Earth’s waiting creatures, and they grow and multiply.

 

*You are my Sun, filling my being with Vitality

 

The Pattern

 

Circling Moon directs the work with luminescent gravity

inspiring rhythmic patterns for the music of Creation

 

*You are my Moon, moving my life in new directions.

 

The Quest

 

Mother Ocean’s offspring leave for space’s greater ocean

within each drop a memory of its primeval source.

 

*Your Spirit soars with mine, seeking the original Ocean of Love.

 

The Rebirth

 

The quiet night slips round the sphere and Love’s Ideas rest

Their joyful song of Life restored to face tomorrow’s quest.

 

*You blanket my weariness in the exquisite comfort of your Love.

 

 

 

 

 

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Posted by: John Samsen | August 3, 2008

Time Distortion

 

TIME DISTORTION

 

In the early years of the twentieth century, Albert Einstein was fascinated by the phenomena of light, which led to his revolutionary theories and a new concept of time. Others before Einstein had considered time to be another dimension of our world, a fourth dimension, but had not connected time to light , and light speed. The speed of light in a vacuum, as space was thought to be, had been carefully measured at close to 186,000 miles per second, and was believed to be a constant. Now for objects traveling at very high velocities, time would be seen to slow down, relative to our frame of reference. If a spacecraft were traveling close to the speed of light, a trip to another star system and back might seem to the astronauts to take a few years, but they might find on their return that a century had passed while they were away. This theory defied common sense, but was verified when precise clocks were synchronized and one put on board an orbiting satellite and the other left on earth. When the orbiting clock was returned to earth, and compared with the one that had remained here, a discrepancy in time was found which was exactly what the theory had predicted.

 

More recent verifications of quantum physics theory have shown that subatomic particles can interact with each other at a distance, in less time than light would take to travel between them, indicating that events at the microscopic level may occur in no time, or even in reverse time! An event may be seen to happen before it was caused!

 

Modern physics is telling is that our rigid ideas of the fundamental nature of our reality do not always hold up, that the world is more flexible than we suppose. Our common sense concepts hold up well in the scale of the world we know, but perhaps it is our beliefs and intentions that hold our world securely in the framework of the older, mechanical Newtonian ideas. Occasionally, people have paranormal experiences that do not fit within our consensual scheme of reality, and despite rigorous scientific testing, many do not believe in the reality of these perceptions. Despite my faith in the scientific view of our world, I have had many experiences I categorize as “paranormal”. Believing in the value of the objective scientific method, I have not accepted any of the explanations of such phenomena, but keep my mind open to further understandings. I know such phenomena exist, and they indicate that our perception of our world, and our mentality, is limited, but I do not pretend to understand how or why the phenomena happen. In past ages, paranormal phenomena were accepted as part of life, and usually attributed to “entities” such as ghosts, leprechauns, demons, etc., but with the gradual acceptance of the scientific concepts of our world, the old explanations were discarded, and the phenomena relegated to the category of imagined and unreal phenomena. I include some of my experiences for whatever value they may have for others in comparing their experiences, and opening their minds to wider possibilities. This is subjective, anecdotal evidence, and although sometimes corroborated by other witnesses, cannot be considered as scientifically replicable and verifiable.

 

 Time Distortion

 

In 1975, I participated in a 10-day intensive workshop presented by Dr.s Jean Huston and her husband Robert Masters. We students were led through a wide variety of experiential exercises designed to open our minds and bodies to greater potentials for our lives. One of the exercises was called “time distortion” Jean told us that we could alter our state of consciousness and mentally practice creative activities in what seemed to be a considerable duration of time, but would take only a short amount of clock time. To demonstrate, she called upon a woman who had often practiced this, and talked her into an altered state of consciousness where she would imagine having a famous composer teach her a new composition of his. The group chose the composer for her; in the first case, it was Scarlatti. After one minute of clock time, she rose, went to the piano, and played a wonderful new composition in the style of Scarlatti. She reported that it seemed like a long time had passed while she was learning the music. After that, the excited people in the group asked her to learn new compositions from Chopin. Beethoven, and other well known composers. This she did, brilliantly. I still have a tape recording of her playing these new compositions that sounded like they had been composed by the well-known music greats. Of course, this woman was already an accomplished and talented pianist, and knew the styles of the composers. There was no speculation that she actually encountered the discarnate spirits of those composers. This was shown as a demonstration of the creative potentials of ordinary humans, like ourselves. After the demonstrations, we all participated in experiments of time distortion, and imaginary practice of our abilities, with varying degrees of success. I assumed that subjectively we could alter our experience of time, but did not think it possible to alter time in the “real world”although some participants told of experiences in their lives where real time was altered.

 

Some time later, I had an experience of distorting time in the real world. I had made a date with a friend, and was to arrive at her house at eight o’clock in the evening. I was always a stickler for being prompt.  I planned my time carefully, and set out for the town where she lived, expecting the trip to take about an hour. After driving about ten minutes, I remembered something that I had wanted to bring along, and decided it was important enough to go back and get it, even if it made me late. After returning home, I got back on the road, and was twenty minutes behind. Then I ran into a traffic problem, and was delayed for another ten minutes. I reconciled myself to being late, and then an idea popped into my mind. I did not have to be late! If I set my mind to arriving on time, it would be possible. I had often set my mind to awaken at specific times during the night or early mornings, which had proven to be reliable. I visualized arriving at her town, and seeing a clock showing ten minutes before eight. I somehow convinced myself that this would happen, and I continued to drive without thinking about time, concentrating on driving in the “present moment”. As I arrived at my destination, I saw a clock in a gas station showing ten minutes before eight. Somewhat surprised, and grateful, I checked my watch and it verified that I had arrived early. Later, I reviewed the experience in my mind, and was sure that I had made the trip in an impossible amount of time, but still had a difficult time accepting the facts. I decided I would have to repeat the experiment, with careful documentation. Sometime later, I made a trip from Detroit to Yellow Springs, Ohio, for an interview at Union Graduate School. The reason for this trip is another story, which I may tell later. By the time my interview was over, and I prepared to drive back home, It was four o’clock. Yellow Springs was about as far from my home as Dayton, but not on I 75; quite a few miles of the trip were on secondary roads. I figured that with excellent conditions, I could make the drive in a little over four hours. However, it was beginning to snow, and the skies were darkening. I figured it would be late and dark, when I finally reached my home. I took note of the time, a little after four. Then I saw that I needed to tank up with gasoline, and stopped at a station on my way out of town. Cars were at both of the pumps, and there seemed to be a problem; Around twenty minutes had passed by the time I left the town. The snow was coming down heavier, and beginning to accumulate on the road. I was concerned about arriving home late at night. Then I remembered my experience of shortening time on a previous trip, and “knew” that I could get back much quicker. I visualized seeing a clock showing six o’clock on my arrival at the Detroit city limits. This would be doing the 130 miles in a little over an hour and a half. I did not think about the impossibility of doing this. I decided to “take my time” and not think about time at all, but do the drive in a fully aware state of mind. Soon the road became slippery, and cars and trucks were driving slowly, having trouble getting traction. My Volkswagen camper tracked securely, and I passed many vehicles, but kept my speed low knowing that stopping would take a considerable space. I was relaxed, and the time seemed to pass very quickly; soon I passed the Detroit limits, and when I saw a clock, it read “6:00”. My watch confirmed that I had indeed made the trip in record time, and later calculations showed that I had to have averaged over ninety miles an hour to have arrived so early. My old VW was incapable of going much over eighty, even on good, dry roads. I seldom exceeded forty five miles an hour during that drive. So, did I use this time-distortion trick many times in my life after? I attempted to use it a number of times, and sometimes it seemed to shorten the time, but I was never sure that it did. It required a special state of mind; an unusual acceptance of an idea that seemed to be at odds with our everyday belief in our reality. It required a suspension of ordinary thinking, and a long term focus on the awareness of the present moment. There seemed to be many distractions, and the farther away in time from those experiences, the more difficult it became to replicate them. It required a lot of effort to overcome my concepts of time, and my addiction to those concepts.

 

 

Shortly after my experiences of time distortion, I was visiting my family in Indiana. My father suggested we make a trip to a town in Ohio the following day. “ There is something I want you to see” he said, creating a mystery. All that he explained was that he and my mother had stopped in a little town, and had seen something remarkable. It would only take about an hour to drive to this town, so I agreed.My parents and I had a lively conversation and before long, we arrived. Dover Ohio looked similar to many small towns in northern Ohio. We stopped at a rather large house, with an extensive, well-landscaped yard. The house was now a museum, displaying many scale models carved by the hands of Ernest Warther. He had lived in this house most of his life, and from an early age, had been carving wood, and other materials. At one point in his life, he began to carve a locomotive. The scale model was well over a foot long, and was composed of hundreds, perhaps thousands, of parts. All of the parts were hand carved from wood he had collected; rosewood, mahogany, ebony, etc. No “store bought” parts were ever used. The scale wheels were flanged to hold to the tracks, and the articulating drive shafts were perfect. He used ivory for many intricate pieces, and the engine had pipes and other details of this material. After finishing the locomotive, he had carved a tender for it, that held many tiny pieces of “coal” carved from a black wood. Then he carved several passenger cars to complete the train. Their interiors were complete with scale seats, etc. Ernest eventually carved over sixty trains, to the same large scale, complete with carved rails on roadbeds of ties with carved gravel ballast. The cars were connected by carved air hoses, and supported on ivory coil springs. The wheels turned, having bearings of a self-lubricating type of wood. I had long been fascinated by scale models, and had built many, usually of aircraft; that is why my father wanted me to see this museum. I estimated that there were many thousands of parts in each of his trains, and tried to imagine how much time it would take to carve and polish each part. Figuring that it may have taken Earnest an average of fifteen minutes to carve each of the parts, if he produced many of each type at a time, the total hours to make all the trains should have been more than all the waking time in his productive lifetime. I did not see how he could have done it, even working ten hours a day, seven days per week. I spoke to Earnest’s son, who was guiding visitors about the museum, and told him that I couldn’t imagine how his father had time to create all the trains. “That isn’t the half of it” replied the son. “Dad also carved a working scale model of the steel mill he worked in for many years, with moving machines and people, powered by belts and pulleys connected with a sewing machine motor. Although he had only a second grade education, he had an uncanny understanding of machines. He also carved many other items, including elaborate chess sets, some of which he presented to U.S. Presidents. He created the large terraced property on an old water mill site, and built a playground for his five children.” By now, I was thinking about time distortion, and offered “I’ll bet he was never in a hurry, or pressured for time”. “Thats right”, the son said, “he was never in a hurry, and did not spend many hours at a sitting, but carved usually in the mornings spending the rest of the days with his wife and boys, or involved in his many other interests, like often taking his boys and their friends on hunts for arrowheads. He collected around six thousand arrowheads. He took many trips, often displaying his carvings, and enjoyed meeting and talking with people.” I was now sure that Earnest “Mooney” Warther, a descendant of Swiss clockmakers, was a master of time. As his son said, “he took his time” creating his masterpieces. He has been called one of America’s unrecognized geniuses, an artist, mechanical inventor, philosopher, collector, traveler, showman, and family man. The Smithsonian institute appraised his carvings and called them a “priceless work of art”. He was offered fortunes for his creations, but refused to sell them. “Mooney” Warther once said “Start right where you are, and act as if no one is trying to hinder you”. He also said “Everything has its own rhythm and tempo that is in step with nature, and if you can find the tempo of the task at hand, the work becomes effortless”.

 

Perhaps the ancient workers who built the many monumental and precise buildings we marvel at did not have our time addiction, but simply “took their time”, being proud to do the best work they could do, and the great constructions went up in just a few years.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

     

 

 

 

Posted by: John Samsen | August 3, 2008

Egoland

 

EGOLAND

 

Once upon a time, in an ordinary galaxy, on a watery planet called Earth, a strange creature evolved. For hundreds of millions of years, countless species of animals had come and gone without one QUESTION having been thought of, or spoken. Then, during a time of rapid climate change when many species were unable to survive, this creature, physically inferior to many predators, developed a language which enabled it to think in a radically different way. It was able to think about things as if it were talking to itself. It invented questions, and a logical way of analyzing it’s life, and its needs. This was a great advantage for it’s survival, and led to it’s domination of all the animals, and eventually, it’s planet.

 

It’s animal brain had long been creating concepts and images that represented all the important things in it’s life, and associated them with vocal sounds, expressions, and gestures, including such ideas as “come”, “go”, “eat”, “fight”, etc. Animal thinking was rapid and had been efficient enough to serve it well for millions of years. But then, as it’s new language evolved, vowels, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, and finally pronouns, were invented. He and she could now communicate much better with each other and “think about” things. They thought and talked about past events, and planned for the future. They thought about themselves, or rather, the image/concept of who they thought they were. And they made names for themselves.

 

Their minds identified with their imaginary descriptions of themselves, which were associated with the pronoun of the first person; “I”, in Latin, “Ego”.And, they wondered what had become of those individuals they cared about, who had died, and began to think about their own death, and how to find ways to avoid or transcend it. Anxiety had come to Earth.

 

Many generations later, after writing had been developed, myths about the origin of mankind were recorded in the literature of the first city states to arise in the lands between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. It passed from Ur through Babylon, and finally a modified version of the myths became the Hebrew book called “Genesis”. Like most mythology, it told of supernatural powers and magical events, and contained within it an analogy to important truths. Remarkably, it suggested how the first human thinking began; with the eating of the “fruit of the Tree of Knowledge”(language); after which, thinking about themselves for the first time, they took over the responsibility for their lives and no longer lived as innocent creatures, motivated by impersonal animal thinking. Ego had arrived on Earth.

 

As these first “Homo Cogitens” (thinking man) invented agriculture, animal husbandry, commerce, and civilization, they were creating a whole new world- Egoland, which exists only in the minds of people, although it severely effects all life on this planet. Almost all people are kept imprisoned in Egoland by the language that once freed them from the perils of animal life. Human thinking and communicating through language, creates concepts of separateness, vulnerability, scarcity, and insecurity which results in competition, strife, violence, suffering, and destruction of our environment, our planet. These people are US- egotistically named “Homo Sapiens”. Our human species does not yet deserve to be called “Wise Human”, especially as the side-effects of our ego-mentality are creating the possibly worst challenge to our survival we have faced since the great ice sheets advanced southward.

 

Many of us would not choose to leave Egoland if we were given the chance; One can leave only by surrendering the Ego, our personal identities, and our individual existence is dear to us, even though it means a life of isolation, insecurity, limitations, and lack of love. Egoland is not all bad, of course. Many people are caring and altruistic. Great music, art, and literature have been injected into it through individuals who are more open to creativity, even though their egos like to take credit for it. There is excitement, joy of discovery, and fun in life, and forms of attachment we call love. There are precious moments when we stop thinking and experience beauty, beholding things as they are, without the ego’s filters. But there are many problems, and the specter of death hangs over us all. We have become so addicted to our wonderful tool that we cannot stop thinking long enough to discover what we, and our world, are really like.

 

It is a fact that we are individual beings, in a world of many parts, and animal life evolved as individual creatures with individual lives. It is natural to deal with it in that way. This is our reality now. However, there is another way to perceive the world; as a whole, a unity. Our brains can and do perceive holistically. But we have lost our balance between the two ways of being in the world, and are losing the forest as we focus too closely on the trees.

 

There have been many people who have experienced life in a wider, more complete way. A life full of beauty, love, and peace. Although they came from a wide variety of cultures, and through the whole spectrum of human history, their essential message to us has always been consistent; that we should accept each other, and all things, in unconditional love. The great majority of these individuals lived quietly, influencing others by the examples of their lives, and are unknown to us. A few of these individuals have been remembered, mostly through religions that developed, based on inflated images of those individuals, and legends that elaborated on their messages and added dogmas which often were contrary to the original message. I am talking about those people who have been called “enlightened” or “liberated”; they were liberated from the illusion of being an ego self; They could experience the world as it is, free of the mental filters that distort and hide much of the beauty and love of living in this mysterious and wonderful world. They were often described as being in the world , but not of it. They were individuals, and acted and communicated as if they were individual personalties, but knew their self-image was only that, a description, a reference to their individual Self. There are many of these individuals in the world today, more than we know of. Many have not had dramatic transformational experiences, but seem to have evolved into more “spiritual” people over time, and some seem to have come into this life already open to a wider perception and experience of reality than the many who seem to be lost in the narrow world of the personal ego.

 

Understanding the concept of the ego-self is very difficult. Seeing how we are attached to, identified with it, is even more difficult. Becoming familiar with the descriptions many have presented to us can prepare us for eventually becoming aware.

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From Richard Alpert- AKA Ram Dass:

 

Your ego is a set of thoughts that define your universe. Its like a familiar room built of thoughts; you see the universe through its windows. You are secure in it, but to the extent that you are afraid to venture outside, it has become a prison. Your ego has you conned. You believe you need its specific thoughts to survive. The ego controls you through your fear of loss of identity. To give up these thoughts, it seems, would annihilate you and so you cling to them.”

 

 

From Eckhart Tolle; “The Power of now”:

 

The mind is a superb instrument if used rightly. Used wrongly, however, it becomes very destructive. To put it more accurately, it is not so much that you use your mind wrongly- you usually don’t use it at all. It uses you. This is the disease. You believe that you are your mind. This is the delusion. The instrument has taken you over.”

 

A little ego quiz:

 

To perhaps learn something about yourself, see which choices come easily to your consciousness.

Which of these pairs of statements seems more appropriate, more natural for you;

 

  1. I have a body; or I am a body

  2. I have a brain; or I am a brain

  3. I have a mind, or I am a mind

  4. I have a soul, or I am a soul

  5. I have an ego, or I am an ego.

 

If you, like most people, find it easier to say “I have these things”, then ask yourself “who it is, that has these things?”

 

 

     

 

 

Posted by: John Samsen | August 2, 2008

ABOUT

 Welcome!

This blog is my contribution to the expanding mountain of information regarding the search for self-discovery. There seems to be a growing number of people who are seeking “spiritual growth”, “self-discovery, and “enlightenment” . As a former seeker and one who found more than what I had thought I was seeking, I may have insights and understandings from the many unusual experiences in my eighty years of living that might be relevant to you, if you are a “hard core” seeker, and not one who is just looking to upgrade their ego-image to impress their friends. I am deeply grateful to the good folks who shared their dreams, explorations, and discoveries, especially about who and what we are, through books, other media, workshops, and personal guidance. Without this support group that actually goes back thousands of years, I would not have had this successful life.

 

 I’ve been playing many roles in my life, usually not aware that they were roles, and now I enjoy playing this one, the “wise old man”- maybe my last. Of course, I don’t take it, or much else, seriously. About the only thing I had going for me, as a kid, was a bright intellect, which did not endear me to my peers. Anyway, I studied many things and acquired a lot of verbal information during my life, believing that intellectual understanding was what I was seeking. In spite of myself, I was finally tricked into a real ego surrender, and “awakening”. In the thirty years since, I have regarded the intellect as a useful tool and often amusing game, but it is no longer my idol. Knowing that few persons have ever reached “awakening” through the intellectual pursuit, I have held back from trying to teach, or to produce “how to become enlightened” books. There has always been plenty of them out there. Not wanting to play the role of “Guru”, I kept a low profile for many years. As the eighty year milestone came around, I decided to share some of the thinking and understanding that has come to me, as much of it seems to be relevant to the modern, science-based, view of our bodies and our world that many of us share. In this blog, I will present a number of essays that have been leaking into my conscious mind from the still active side of my brain, maybe also channeled from other parts of our mysterious “being”. I still enjoy verbal exploration and explanation, and since many others apparently do too, I offer my take on many of the “big questions”. My hope, and goal, is enlightened living for everyone. I’m sure most folks are for it too. Imagine what our world could be like! I hope we don’t have to wait for each person to undergo a radical transformation. I see many people beginning to live “enlightened lives” without having gone through the “big bang” of ego-death and the “dark night of the soul”, as I did.  I think it is possible to gradually break the attachment to the personal ego through education and certain practices to develop awareness.

 

I have been a “born skeptic” and seldom accused of being reverent to any ideology, but am deeply reverent to Life. For the last thirty years, I have had freedom from fear, a certainty regarding “my” timeless existence, and the sense of peace and love, when I have sought it. Much of the time I am in my personal- ego mode, but I am observing it, not identified with it. I wish I could share my experience of life with all others, but each must discover it for themselves. I can only offer words, hoping to create cracks in the defenses of personal egos, and encouragement to keep on track.

 

I welcome comments, questions, and criticism. 

 

 

 

Posted by: John Samsen | August 1, 2008

The Journey

SELF DISCOVERY …….To thine own self be true…Shakespeare

 

To the “hard-core” quester for Self discovery, the goal is “awakening”, “realization”, “enlightenment”. Enlightened persons have told us that we can have the experience of being one with all creation, with Divinity. With the expansion of consciousness, we “remember” that we are eternal, a part of the sea of love from which all creation unfolds. This is the “mystic experience”. It is pure experience; thinking, reasoning, logic, have no place here in the absolute certainty of knowing. The depth of beauty, love, and bliss, is far beyond any sensory experiences. The “high” gradually subsides, and over time, the new consciousness becomes the norm. Thinking returns, and the ego is reborn; but if the individual has surrendered completely during the event, it is now observed as an “as if” identity. A role one can play or not, at will. There is a sense of duality; “little self” and “high Self” , “the Father and I are one”. If the experience is transformative enough, for the rest of one’s life there is a background consciousness of peace, freedom from fear, a quiet mind, and a deep “cosmic humor” that cannot take ego-life too seriously. In my case, the skeptical intellect is still alive, and can present logical arguments that refute the “reality” of the experience- that it is only brain phenomena, endorphins released by chemical and electrical changes in the brain, etc. What happens to “cosmic consciousness” when one is asleep, when one’s brain disintegrates from Alzheimer’s disease? Of course the brain is involved in our experience of being an individual person. I cannot give logical proofs for the reality of “enlightenment, but when I think of the intellect’s debunking there is a deep “chuckling” inside and a smile spreads across my face. Thinking pales in the light of “knowing”; the “heart” trumps the mind.

 

 

The obstacle to “realization” is identification with the ego-self. The person we think we are. This identification begins in early childhood, and we take it for granted. We have a sense of “I”, an awareness of self, and believe we are this individual person. “This is me; this person is who I am”. “How could I not be me?”.

 

I am a young boy. I am standing in the kitchen near my mother, who is washing the dishes. I think about the funeral, and how my great grandmother looked in the casket. Finally I ask “Will I have to die?” After a pause, my mother says “ yes, eventually; we all have to die, eventually. But you don’t have to worry, you have a long time to live. And, when you finally die, your soul will go to Heaven.” I think about this, then reply “what good will it do me if my soul goes to Heaven; I’ll still be dead!” Identification with my personal self-image was already complete. I had no sense of having a “soul”, let alone being one. An “angst”, an anxiety about my mortality, was planted in my unconscious and would motivate me to devote most of my life to a quest for an understanding of life. I sought “meaning” through a study of mythologies, religions, psychology, and the sciences. Eventually I would explore my potentials, and my mind. I learned a lot, but had no idea how strong my ego-defenses were; I could “talk the talk”, but did not fully understand what I was thinking, and saying. It took great losses and disillusionment to get me to the point of total surrender. Hopefully, many may get through the transformation with much less trauma, depending on the structure of their ego’s. As the sages have said, the intellectual is the “toughest nut to crack!”

 

The following poem flowed into my awareness almost complete, as if “channeled”. It was 1976, and I had been to a 10-day “human potentials” workshop presented by Drs. Jean Huston and Robert Masters. The theme for the workshop was the “Quest for the Holy Grail”, which we took as a metaphor for the quest for “enlightenment”. I have never considered myself to be a poet, but wanted a poem to include in a “thank you” note to Jean Huston, as I felt I had benefited greatly from the workshop. (Jean still offers great workshops and seminars, and I highly recommend them!). A couple years later, after my “metanoia, I had a deeper understanding of this poem.

 

 

The Quest

 

 

The saddle-weary knight surveyed the battle-littered ground.

Through grief-stained eyes and aching heart, defeat was all he found.

Spring flowers, crushed by armored feet, lay broken in the mud

where bodies, wet by crying rain had given up their blood.

 

A twisting trail of broken dreams had led him to this crest

where high-flung hopes and noble aims were finally laid to rest.

Ideals of Love and chivalry lay stained about his feet

the goal of higher, godlike man had fallen in defeat

beneath the swords of greed and hate, betrayed by Ego’s pride

and Eden’s gate still bolted stood, the Kingdom locked inside.

 

His youth was running down his face, at race with rain and tears;

his spirit sagged beneath the weight of fifty heavy years.

He let his tired horse go free, relieved of armor’s weight

and climbed the hill where he could see the castle, and its fate.

 

There lay his boyhood vision, a blackened, lifeless shell-

his golden dream of Camelot laid waste by flames from Hell.

At last he found the King he’d sought- cut down without a fight.

He’d died a frightened old man’s death, unlike a valiant knight.

 

The clouds of disillusionment swept in about his brain,

he screamed in anguished anger against the mindless rain

and tore away the sacred cross embroidered on his vest,

then trampled it into the mud that smothered out his quest.

 

From deep inside, he vomited all feelings, rage, and strife,

surrendered to the dark Unknown his name, his god, his life.

 

Then, as the sun broke through the mists and touched his sleeping face,

he wakened to a magic world of love, and peace, and grace.

He looked across the battlefield that still held death and hate,

but saw it now through wider eyes that opened Eden’s gate!

And in his weeping, soaring, joy we’ll leave him and his tale;

by giving up all he held dear, he finally found the Grail.

 

 

Do you catch a similar meaning in Kahlil Gibran’s great poem “Love”, from “The Prophet”?

(I consider his term “Love” to mean “awakening”, “enlightenment”).

 

 

When Love beckons to you, follow him, though his ways are hard and steep.

And when his wings enfold you yield to him,

Though the sword hidden among his pinions may wound you,

And when he speaks to you, believe in him,

Though his voice may shatter your dreams

as the north wind lays waste the garden.

For even as Love crowns you so shall he

crucify you. Even as he is for your growth

so is he for your pruning.

Even as he ascends to your height and

caresses your tenderest branches that quiver

in the sun,

So shall he descend to your roots and

shake them in their clinging to the earth.

…………….All these things shall Love do unto you

that you may know the secrets of your heart,

and in that knowledge become a fragment

of Life’s heart!……

 

 

 

 

 

 

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