Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Gault Site Tour, Part 1

Last weekend Tomas and I drove to a fairly remote area well north of Austin for a tour of the Gault Site, home of the Gault School of Archaeological Research. Initially I was not so excited at the notion of tromping around in the heat of our current drought, days often over 100 degress Fahrenheit. However I AM a major fan of mammoths and I knew that mammoth remains had been excavated there.
      Turned out to still be fairly pleasant (at least in the shade!) around 10 AM when we got there, temp rising fast though. Thank goodness before too long our guide led the pack of 30 or 40 folks downhill into a ravine shaded by towering broadleaf trees where the temp dropped significantly. Plus, this was the site of the actual dig itself.
      Gosh! On the way to the current excavation site under a canvas roof, we were shown an image cut into a mossy rock surface, believed to be made by an 18th century Native American artist, of a church! See?

      This didn't seem entirely thrilling considering the decimation of aboriginal peoples and cultures ever since the first Missions were established ihereabouts. Still interesting. Far more amazing to me, the next stop brought us to a marker where the remains of a baby mammoth were found.
      Whoah! Just as I did at Fort Robinson, Nebraska, when I stood on the spot where Chief Crazy Horse was assassinated, I felt a tingle all over my entire body. It seemed as if timelines radiated from my matter in every direction to/from the Universe simultaneously. The place has a memory! Or is it merely in my cells? No diff, probably… "As Within, So Without," you know?
      Turns out this meadow with some magnificent big trees, holds phenomenal amounts of midden material--that is prehistoric garbage dumps going back at least 13.5 millennia, maybe even 15 thousand years or more. Includes remains of the oldest known architecture in North America, in the form of a square "floor" of stones.
      OK, I'm ready to find a bit of shade:

      So before we adjourned for a picnic lunch under one of those fantastic big trees, we got a glimpse of the dig proper… these dedicated diggers have unbelievable patience, removing the dirt crumb-by-crumb like ants! Over 2 million artifacts have been removed from here, including the oldest artworks in the Americas in the form of engraved stones.
     You can see these folks at work, as we did, and I almost felt like a voyeur peeping in on some sacred ritual:

      Amazing stuff, as the Folsom culture that produced such beautiful flaked blades flourished here, and we got some cutting edge info (pun fully intended!) on dates for humans in the Americas--could be 15,000 to 25,000 before present.
      Unless of course you count those Atlantean tourists--ahem!
      (More next time, in Part 2… meanwhile you can look at

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Mandevilla Deva

Blossom as you climb upwards in perfect balance upon gravity. For gravity, as you are aware, is a gift, not the cause of any suffering. Resistance to gravity that may cause imbalance can bring about challenges to your equanimity.
      As your blooms open while you ascend in the process of living, your inner colors are revealed to be shared. Your heart is exposed.
      So do not fear; feel instead the surge of intensity that means you are totally alive in this Garden of Paradise!
      Breathe deeply and allow this to calm the pace of your radiant heart--allow the wondrous collaboration of heart and lungs to remind you of your deep cellular connection with all green growing things.
      Your blossom, the inside-out exposure of the colors within your heart, reveals and demonstrates the deepest roots that connect you with all living things of this Garden planet.
      Indeed, there is a single Ancestor for all stardust in the common point of origin for everything. However, Life on earth, of which you are a self-selected representative, has a host of original Ancestors.
      You are the Holy Child of this Holy Family of Life.
      Your stardust, the sacred matter that emerges from the great surge of Love itself, does the dance of living.
      Life weaves the fabric of existence; existence is woven of Life. For Life is all that is. And yet in the Garden there is the story of Two Trees--for the chance of discovering and learning that One pulsation comes and goes through both.
      All numbers are for the opportunity to learn there are no numbers.
      There is, rather, truth.
      Truth emerges from the deepest root of stardust; sprouts and grows, unfolds and unfurls, send forth leaf and blossom, as it climbs in perfect balance upon gravity--without resistance or effort, rather it simply dances. Blooms.
      This Holy Child you call the Mandevilla makes visible the colors within the heart you share.
      Keep silence and feel this.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Everything Is New: Always! All Ways!

For the first time so far, two blossoms of the Egyptian Blue Lotus have opened upon our upper lily pond. We planted it there just last year and during 2010 it produced a series of exquisite blossoms, one at a time. Now I suppose the roots, down underwater in their unseen pot have grown.
      Quite often I hear people (including myself) say "There's a first time for everything." Then sometimes, "There's nothing new under the Sun." Of course, it's not an either/or matter, if anything is!
      Perhaps my favorite Creation story is also about the simplest I know and it makes total sense when I sit on the little limestone bench and ponder the actual Egyptian Blue Lotus. From that unseen Source below the surface, which you could call the Void, the bud mysteriously rises to the surface, and lifts its pointy little green head into the air. When the gentle, warm morning Sun grows bright enough, the magick happens--the flower opens and the perfection of the world comes into being. Most mysterious and amazing of all is that the flower and the Sun create each other.
      The Egyptians said the Sun God Ra was born from the center of this flower and it does have a fragrant, golden heart. Plus those clever Indus Valley people to the East gave rise to similar stories of Brahma, the Creator appearing upon a lotus.
      As I mention in THE 9 REALITIES OF STARDUST: A GUIDE TO BEING HUMAN IN THE UNIVERSE reality is actually always, all ways plural: realities! There is never just one, unless you're talking about Oneness itself, which you cannot effectively speak of at all, for it simply IS! Words create; words also limit. Both/and.
      Is all that confusing enough? No worries… just let it ripple on by and open it's petals into the gentle early morning Sun, as the god called Nefertum: Beautiful Young Lord Of Morning Who Creates Himself By Loving Himself.
      Now allow the flower itself to speak of Creation and Love, only not in words

Monday, June 13, 2011

My Power Animal Is…

I used to feel that I could not possibly have a single, particular Power Animal, or personal totem in the animal kingdom. I've always loved animals, and indeed have special connections with quite a few such as Turtle, Praying Mantis, Road Runner, Seahorse, Frog and of obviously the kitties I live with! I mean it's like talking about sacred places when the whole world is sacred, right?
      Then something happened that helped me stop thinking quite so much, and it came to me in a flash.
      By this time, I'd been practicing Ho'oponopono for a while since I read the amazing book ZERO LIMITS by my friend Joe Vitale and his mentor Dr. Ihaleakala Hew Len. It's a totally necessary book for the New Millennium that inspired me to do the Self-I-dentity throught Ho'oponopono training with Dr. Len in person late in 2007. One thing I love about Dr. Len is he doesn't want followers--he just wants you do "get it" and do the cleaning all the time. Plus he insists that everythign is sacred and everyone is perfect just as they are. This is a form of surrender to what IS.
      Ho'oponopono is about constantly cleaning your own inner energy, instead of trying to fix or change people or situations outside of yourself.
      This is not at all a passive thing, rather it's actually "getting it" about the way life works best, usually for the first time ever! What makes it really work is when you accept 100% responsibility for everything that shows up in your awareness--not because you are to blame or should take credit--simply because you co-created it by participating in your life. The basic cleaning practice is to do silently say to yourself, repeatedly, "I'm sorry, please forgive me, thank you, I love you… " Not as  emotional statements, simply repeat those as cleaning tools because they're the most powerful things you can say. Especially "I love you." Eventually this cleans your unconscious mid enough to erase your problem when you reach Zero.
      A few years later I was reading some totally different book about the Medicine Wheel or something and it suggested finding out my Power Animal. My mind raised all those objections I started this blog with, but then instead of thinking, I just cleaned on it. "Why am I resisting this idea?" Bingo, almost immediately came the clarity of what Dr. Len calls a Divine Inspiration and I knew.
      It's not some cool Native American type creature such as Eagle, Wolf, or Bear. Nope, this puppy named Bruce grew up in Thailand and every morning a line of these wise and gentle behemoths walked along the road in front of our house at daybreak.
      Now, about 50 years later Tomas took the picture up top for me, of a lintel over the door of an old building in Fredericksburg. Isn't life an amazing adventure when you pay attention?
      Whatever you may think about that, just clean on it.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Happy For No Reason

This morning Tomas and I decided to walk down by the Blanco River not far from our home. He brought along his new camera purchased to photograph birds for the new edition of his A HILL COUNTRY NATURE BOOK that he is working on. He's been capturing images of birds and other creatures right here in our garden, including the elusive, rare and seriously endangered Golden Cheeked Warbler! This effort requires a lot of patience and persistence.
      At any rate, this morning though it was almost 9 AM and the days have been heating up around 100 degrees or more, it proved still pleasant due to a lot of big puffy cloud castles passing over. So we descended to the river, trickling low with a lot of bony limestone showing due to the drought and lack of rainfall. Seems like forever since we've really had nice storms. Still, the native forms are so tough and adapted to this climate of extremes, and life thrives along the shores.
     Still we know that our beloved planet has reached a tipping point, though it seems that much of humanity remains in denial. Our species has created an environmental crisis, in large part due to overpopulation and encouragement of out-of-control consumerism, along with militant corporate domination on a global scale. Really, I'm not an alarmist--it's simply that we must open our eyes and face reality! As always, this problem we've created can only be addressed by us. Our species is at its best in such as self-created crisis, and we're now awakening to it.
      Time to change. "The world has changed," as the voice of Lady Galadriel says at the beginning of the exquisite films of THE LORD OF THE RINGS with which the New Millennium began. Is it ironic I should quote a fictional character in regard to such a serious and real situation? Perhaps, and yet Tolkien's Elfkind are wonderfully attuned to world situations…
      Now to return from such a sober aside to this morning's stroll along the river park: I found myself feeling uncommon patience and delight in every detail of my awareness. Beneath the towering cypress trees along the shore we paused frequently while Tomas sought photos of little birds that came and went. Whenever my thoughts appeared, I simply did my Ho'oponopono cleaning, silently "I love you, I love you, I love you… " and my mind would dissolve back into the void of simple presence.
      At one point, Tomas aimed his lens at a Green Heron that stalked the shallows by the far shore (as you can see above). I felt my Inner Smile widen. My eyes rested as lightly as little birds upon all I saw, including those cloud castle, pulsating reflected upon the calm river ripples.
      "I was sort of slipping into feeling One with everything," I murmured.
      Tomas grinned. "I noticed."
      He had, for in fact he's a sort of Elf Prince, as AM I. What a blessing it is, to feel so happy for no reason at all!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Wisdom Of Mae West

Most folks are familiar with the wit of legendary actress Mae West. Yet how many are aware this woman was not only brilliant, but wise?
      I had heard one story about how self-centered she was, that at dinner parties her eyes would glaze over unless she was the topic of conversation. However Charles Eagle Plume told me that when Miss West visited his famous Indian store, she proved to be soft-spoken, gracious, polite and she wore a tasteful white silk pant suit, plus she had "…the softest, most beautiful white skin I've ever seen."
      A series of synchronistic associations led me to study that woman more closely. Sometime late last year, a mention of the great American writer Gore Vidal led me to think of his novel MYRA BRECKINRIDGE, which I recalled trying to read as a kid back in the '60s. I only found the "dirty" parts interesting at the time, having no clear idea of what it was all about. Though I knew that it was made into a film and heard that Miss West came out of cinematic retirement to participate, again, I missed it. Now I'm able to appreciate that crazy as the book is, Vidal's prose is exquisite.
      Then I discovered that the film was also available in a restored version. MYRA the film turned out to be a lot more fascinating than I expected, having always heard how awful it was. What a curious artifact of the late 1960s! Raquel Welch acts her little heart out in fine style and Mae, as always is, well, Mae! I'm not saying its a great film, yet it's definitely, significant and funny, well worth seeing or even owning if you collect films.
      Even the notorious SEXTETTE, the great woman's swan song turned out to be quite wonderful! She makes it so.
      This led more recently to a Netflix review of Miss West's older films--which I realized I had only glimpsed bits of on TV long ago when I used to watch television. I'd never really studied her films with a brain. The best of those, in my opinion are GO WEST YOUNG MAN and SHE DONE HIM WRONG. The latter two demonstrate that the great woman was a lot more than a saucy, suggestive wit: she was also an excellent actress. SHE DONE HIM WRONG is truly a great film.
      Only the biggest revelation about her came with more research into who Miss West really was. Turns out that privately those who knew her found her to be loving and generous. She was not merely a sensual creature; she worked extremely hard at her writing and forever persisted in her projects. Indeed she appeared at just the right time to promote healthier attitudes towards sensuality and ironically, about the independence of women. However her statement, "I believe with a passion in myself" is what impressed me most. Her self-respect and positive thinking were astonishing!
      Among my treasures now is a superb bio, mostly in her own words from extended interviews Miss West gave to Charlotte Chandler just a few months before she died in 1980: SHE ALWAYS KNEW HOW.
      What choice reading this is, because, indeed she did know!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Are We Chimps, Or Are We Bonobos?

Would you rather make war, or make love?    
      A close friend of Tomas and mine often comments about human behaviors that we observe in terms of our resemblance to our two closest primate relatives. In genetic terms, we're extremely close to both the Bonobos and the Chimpanzees; evidently about 98%+ of our DNA is identical with theirs. Though the exact percentage may be debatable, that's not nearly so important as the fact that we are very closely related.
      The differences are less significant than the similarities.

      In evolutionary terms, humans diverged from the other great apes around 5 million years in the past, those Gorillas, Orangutans, Chimpanzees and Bonobos that share our basic overall design. Clearly the Chimpanzees and Bonobos are much closer to us in terms of genetics and physiology than the other two great apes. However the Chimpanzees are far more aggressive than Bonobos, their females go into heat periodically, and they tend to mate doggie style. In some other basics, such as females being sexually receptive all year long and a design that favors front-to-front coupling, the Bonobos resemble us a lot more. Also their females have full, pendulous breasts, and they are highly sexual by nature.
      In terms of behavior, we have strong similarities to both these close kin. Chimpanzees are less likely to share food until they are satisfied, and disagreements often lead to violent fighting. Chimpanzees males are possessive of females and often fight over them.
      Bonobos, on the other hand, are more inclined to share food amiably and their common means of conflict resolution is to engage in frequent erotic sharing, quite indiscriminately. Indeed, this last tendency is so striking its sort of a "MAKE LOVE, NOT WAR" mode.
      Of course this does not mean Chimpanzees are bad and Bonobos are good. Rather there are significant differences in their behavioral patterns. Plus they are after all wild animals, however intelligent and similar to ourselves. Still we can learn a lot about ourselves and about our options from them. We can benefit from respecting all animals a lot more.
      Our friend often shakes his head when he observes selfish and aggressive human behavior: "Chimps!" he says. "Not all that many people are like the Bonobos," he adds.
      "We need a lot more of that Bonobo behavior, don't we?" I say. "I don't just mean promiscuity, of course. I mean the loving part. The non-violence."
      "Humans have strong resemblances to both," he says. "Ours is the species that has invented nuclear weapons and also developed poetry and Yoga." Our friend shakes his head with an ironic smile.
      "I guess the difference is that we have conscious choice," I say.
      "Yes, but only if we choose to use our choices!"
      Good point!