Resurrection can mean many things

roseofjericho1.jpgJust when I start feeling a little guilty about not posting more frequently, a tiny bit of rain falls. Today the Nonist reappeared after a long drought with a metaphor to share in the form of the Resurrection Plant (also called the Rose of the Virgin or Rose of Jericho). I love Nonist’s site. It has been around a long time in internet years, but rather than worrying about posting on any set time schedule there only are posts that are meant to be there. Each one is a gem and today’s is no different. In turn this has made me feel better. Roses of Jericho do what they are meant to, when they are provided the opportunity, no more, no less. This little plant has been around hundreds of years and survives because it has learned to adapt to lean times. But like the nonist, sometimes I do wish anxiously for rain.

(UPDATE: Oh, and that reminds me. Here is something I’ve been saving that is related to that. These two things work together nicely I think).

A couple poets, a little song

ginsberghands.jpgNothing like finding a couple beatnik poets wandering around a cemetery visiting an old friend’s grave to make me want to post again. This time it’s Dylan and Ginsberg visiting the Edson Cemetery in Lowell, Massachusetts in where Kerouac was buried, set to the beautiful song Time Out of Mind. Very reflective. Kerouac died at age 47 and his marker reads “He honored life.” Pretty short life but he certainly did make the most of what he had.

I found this because of this clip to the upcoming movie I’m Not There due to be released this November in the US. I can’t wait to see Cate Blanchett play a young Dylan. There is something really interesting that happens when women and men exchange roles in movies.

Then something I’ve been meaning to post anyway but hadn’t found the right moment until now, Ginsberg telling an interviewer how he’d like to be remembered by singing a sweet little poem called Father Death Blues he wrote after the death of his father. But what is that little instrument he’s playing? Not a squeeze box, but sounds like a little organ or accordion on his lap. Might have to get me one to go with my ukulele and my concertina?

This is your brain on compassion

thurmanoncompassion.jpgBob Thurman became a Tibetan monk at age 24. I was surprised to learn he was the first American and Buddhist scholar to be ordained by the Dalai Lama. In his Ted Talk, (filmed in 2006 and posted just recently) Thurman has some great things to say about self awareness despite couching it in terms of technology which I suppose is due to the nature of the venue. But he really gets rolling around the six minute mark. It struck me because I’ve always considered how heartbreaking it is to be compassionate if it means taking on another person’s pain. He explains this paradox of how embracing someone else’s pain actually makes us see ourselves differently. And most remarkably, the way to help those who suffer is by having a good time. You have to listen to him to really make sense of this, but in part the key to compassion is that it is more fun (and by this I think he means rewarding) than focusing on only yourself. He asks, what is our brain for if not for compassion? What is it for indeed…not to worry about how we achieve our own happiness in this lifetime, but contributing daily to the happiness of another is our brain’s greatest gift. So to heck with all that worry about my next paycheck, who will I make happy today?!