Sometimes it seems the magic is gone forever from my life. All that remains is chores, living like an unwelcome fugitive, dodging the condescending cruelties of householders who bring in more money. Pretty grim.
But suddenly that changed. Today the magic is back, full force. Coming out of the blue, encouraging messages from strangers sparked me back into the writing mode.
It started this morning (Saturday, April 18. 2015) with an email notice. A recommendation had been voluntarily added to my [now cancelled] LinkedIn profile. “Insightful, ground breaking, immensely important.”
Shortly afterwards, a delightful, koan-like message (re: Humanity) appeared: “Very acknowledgeable am smiling please carry on.”
That me jolted out of my funk. After thanking these messengers of the Universe (no naming names, so as not to offend anyone), I continued, responding to overlooked messages I earlier hadn’t had the heart to answer. One simply said, “Hey Patricia, Thanks for the new post.”
Another wrote, “Patricia, Good morning, I trust you are doing well. Take good care.”
After that, I checked an abandoned blog site to see how old friends are faring there. I was delighted to find a post from an earlier commenter whom I thought I’d offended beyond repair. Resonance with my work showed he’s following through in his own way. He wrote:
We tend to miss that our immediate environment is part of a much bigger ecosystem whose dynamics and ramifications extend far beyond our limited grasp of space and time.
Though delighted, I kept my response short: Well said. Agreed. : )
But I still had questions about writing. If I should I continue, in what in direction? I’ve been stuck on the topic of intentional communities, which has stalled on the drawing board for months. The content continues to elude me. Outlines only generate more questions.
Further, one LinkedIn connection who’s now occupied elsewhere rejected the topic, assuming communism is what I have in mind. (No way!) Another connection with enormous potential to do great good has taken a different direction, choosing to engage in a family-run start-up.
I considered listing my doubts and inviting comments. But that didn’t click either.
So now, in thinking about the “interesting” timing of encouraging emails, I remembered that today – April 18th – – is a new moon, traditionally associated with new beginnings. Before checking for a description of the day’s potential, I “knew” I should first consult my old, best friend, the Book of Change.
That’s when the magic kicked in big time.
Granted that the I Ching (especially useful as a vehicle for entering the fourth dimension of time-space where synchronicity comes into play) is outside the comfort zone of some professionals. Nevertheless, please stay with me. After all, it has also been the enduring, practical foundation of leadership training in Asian cultures for many thousands of years – with good reason.
Be that as it may, I queried for direction. The resulting hexagram COMMUNITY was directly to the point of my concern. The CSBOC reading for #13 is:
A changing line in the second place reinforced the concluding warning against selfishness: Avoid special interest groups. Selfish and corrupt motives bring downfall.
The resultant change, were the warning heeded, is #1 – CREATIVE POWER, which further reinforces the text.
The changing line in the fourth place reads: If you have become isolated, understand why and correct yourself.
This warning line pin-points a major problem. If heeded, the resultant change would result in # 37 – FAMILY, the cornerstone of community. I take the concluding warning very personally: Avoid roles not suited to your nature.
This returns full circle to my immediate dilemma. As a writer, my topic – the uncertainty of human survival – puts me in the role of a Cassandra relative to the larger, defiantly oblivious society. Being the messenger of an unpopular warning, though it seems my calling, can be isolating, not to mention unrewarding. It results in lifestyle issues with no immediate solutions in sight.
Nevertheless, I persist in believing that as increasingly more people find themselves in desperate social and economic straits, readiness will increase and my time eventually will come. The funding needed to support the intentional communities I envision will eventually materialize.
The situation reminds me of the dilemma faced by the warrior-charioteer Arjuna in the Bhadavad Gita. Those who opposed him were corrupt relatives, which posed a great conflict. Was it morally right to take sides against family, even if they were in the wrong? Forced to make an apparently no-win choice was paralyzing. On the battlefield, overwhelmed, he put down his weapons and refused to fight.
But at this crisis and turning point, his chariot driver, Lord Krsna, revealed his true identity. With inspirational encouragement, he encouraged the warrior to take heart, stand firm and win the righteous battle against evil.
Similarly, the communities which timeless scriptures encourage, of which Einstein wrote, and of which I am thinking, are not based on biological or even cultural kindred, but rather on resonance of heart and mind. Communities connecting kindred souls, if you will. And in this, the exceedingly dangerous times in which we live hold magical seeds of opportunity. From Two Sides of a Coin:
Whereas most rulers suffer the unanticipated consequences of ignorance, pride and greed as shock, humiliation and undoing, sages intentionally harness the forces of nature to positive ends. Thus it is, that throughout history, at the right time, in the necessary circumstances, leaders of ordinary and humble beginnings have catapulted to extraordinary levels of accomplishment, effecting broad political and social change.
By voicing the collective yearnings of the suffering masses, perennial sage-leaders shed the light of eternal hope on times of greatest darkness. By inspired words and living example, they recreate ever-new the Gita’s vision of opportunities hidden within the outward experience of hardship.
For as sages know, “when social degeneration reaches critical mass, regeneration follows.” From Passage 78 of the Tao Te Ching:
Returning to this morning’s magical COMMUNITY reading: another next bend in the road occurred. Surprisingly, the changing lines combine to produce a most inauspicious outcome: # 9 – FRUSTRATION, which begins:
External factors you may not even be aware of will cause FRUSTRATION. New projects will not work out now. . . Your choice is either to wait patiently or to leave the situation.
It concludes by advising, Avoid major commitments.
So, turning to what I saved for last, I asked, What is the nature of the frustration in building intentional communities? The answer, when I checked the astrological description of today’s new moon was this. Timing. Major planets of communication and reform are currently going into hibernation, so to speak. Retrograde.
According to the calendar, the correct decision for me personally is to wait until the end September and into October. For the time being, continue to patiently endure unavoidable frustrations.
For others, for many other reasons, there will be other choices. What is consistent across the board is that building effective intentional communities will depend on an army of Arjunas, each of whom listens to the inner voice of conscience represented by Lord Krsna rather than to the dictates of their particular biological families or immediate social, political and religious prejudices.
Sometimes I wish I could win the largest lottery in history, as if that would end current frustrations. Yet I know bringing in money that way cannot solve the deeper problems. It would not influence hearts or minds, persuade the public of the wisdom needed to ensure human survival. For this, patience is required. So it is no accident that first three letters of PATIENCE are also the first letters of my name.
Today’s magic provided the immediate encouragement now needed to keep writing . . . balanced with acceptance of long-term timing. May my telling of it encourage fellow Arjunas-in-waiting, those who also will, when the time is right, God-willing, be ready to build on common ground.