Thursday, July 9, 2009

you are it


8x10
ink on newsprint

You Are It
We have the habit of always looking outside ourselves, thinking we can get wisdom and compassion from another person or the Buddha or his teachings (Dharma) or our community (Sangha). But you are the Buddha, you are the Dharma, you are the Sangha.
–Thich Nhat Hanh
_______________________________________

we all have within us buddha nature
we must strive to expose it
_______________________
Moral convictions based on spiritual enlightenment and rooted in human experience are just as real and certain as mathematical deductions based on physical observations, but on another and higher level.
The Urantia Book, Page 2077 (195:6.12)
From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows
_____________________________

Friday, June 26, 2009

choices



this is tommy

boxer..merchant seaman..story teller.. and friend _

he has been one of the most inspirational people in my whole life

tommy said as he knew he was dying

"this is just part of the deal"

8x10 acrylic on canvas

published in the current issue of birmingham arts journal



Choosing Harmony



As thinking human beings, we can choose not to act and speak in a manner that is demeaning or shameful. Our natural proclivity for righteousness, or the ability to feel shame, can become our guide in behaving harmlessly and in harmony with other beings. Without it we would be untethered and absolutely free to act selfishly and destructively without impunity.


–Ajahn Sumano Bhikkhu
_________________________




its all choices..

if we can but keep our mouth shut until our brain catches up to our speech ..

if we can realise that what happens next will be the result of our action now..

then we will benefit greatly for that



_____________________



The happy and effective person is motivated, not by fear of wrongdoing, but by love of right doing.



The Urantia Book, Page 1572 (140:4.6)



______________



From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama

Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock

Flow freely

And the train whistle blows

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

wisdom



The Metamorphosis of Wisdom


Wisdom is that which makes a vessel into a teacup when it is filled with tea, a sauce dish when it is filled with sauce, a rice bowl when it is filled with rice, and a medicine pot when it is filled with medicine. There is no set method in the functioning of this wisdom. It is simply that which knows how to utilize things according to the case at hand.

–Kusan Sunim

___________________________



wisdom is not so much learned as it is aquired. that is why it is so associated with age. wise people seem to be older people. this though is not necessarily true however and wisdom is not automatically aquired with age. we must open our hearts and minds in order to aquire wisdom.

____________________


the beginner has many options

the expert has none.


idea from i believe 'zen mind beginners mind'
__________

From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama

Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock

Flow freely

And the train whistle blows





Monday, June 8, 2009

change your mind


Change yourself, change the world


Trying to change the world without changing our mind is like trying to clean the dirty face we see in the mirror by scrubbing the glass. However vigorously we clean it, our reflection will not improve. Only by washing our own face and combing our own unkempt hair can we alter the image. Similarly, if we want to help create conditions that foster peace and well-being in the world, we first need to reflect these qualities ourselves.


–Lama Shenpen Drolma
From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows



Tuesday, June 2, 2009

essentials of peace


Make Peace with Your Mind
For the spiritual power of peace to touch every person on this earth, it must radiate out from a profound peace within our own mind: across political and religious barriers, and across the barriers of ego and self-righteousness. To this end, we should seek an inner peace so pure and stable that we cannot be moved to anger by violence or to selfish attachment and fear by those who view or confront us with contempt and hatred. We can achieve such stability only by purifying the mind’s poisons—ignorance, anger, attachment, jealousy, and pride; then we can clearly see that war and suffering are but their outer reflections. The essential difference between true peacemakers and those who wage war of any sort is the presence of extraordinary patience and discipline in the minds of the peacemakers as they work with these pervasive poisons. If we truly understand this, we will never allow ourselves to be defeated from within or without. –Lama Shenpen Drolma
we can never have world peace until we are at peace with ourselves..with our neighbors..our community..with everyone....everyone... someone will go first....i will try.

From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Saturday, May 23, 2009

creative living

Religious living is devoted living, and devoted living is creative living, original and spontaneous. The Urantia Book, Page 1097 (100:4.1)
Just Do It

All success, great and small, whether in spiritual or temporal affairs, derives from your stock of merit. So never neglect even the slightest positive deed. Just do it.
Dudjom Rinpoche
Religious living is devoted living, and devoted living is creative living, original and spontaneous.
The Urantia Book, Page 1097 (100:4.1)
acrylic house paint on pole
From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

rights and responsabilities


remember this tyrant?
'the snicker'
pen and ink on paper
today is voting day in lipscomb to replace district 19 state senator for the remainder of this term.
alas at 10:30 this morning 10 people had voted at the firestation in lipscomb. the rest will unquestionably gripe for the rest of the term. voting is not only our right .. it is our responsability. we have no other way to have any say so at all in how our country is run. we have seen what can happen.
be a part of america and vote..in all elections. your vote counts. hopefully voting will pick up here later in the day.
From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Saturday, May 9, 2009


we are at the art feast in avondale park

birmingham alabama


see yesterday for 'today'


_______________
From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows




Friday, May 8, 2009

today

wasteland
16x20
mixed media
can be seen at art feast in avondale park tomorrow
______
Everything that Happens Will Happen Today
david byrne
i dont care for the song at all but the statement is true
___
yesterday is dead and gone
tomorrow's out of sight
kris kristofferson
___
'plan as if you will live foreverlive as if you will die today'
james dean
___
From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Lasting Happiness

Being sensitive and responsive to human need creates genuine and lasting happiness, while such kindly attitudes safeguard the soul from the destructive influences of anger, hate, and suspicion. The Urantia Book, Page 1575 (140:5.16)

mother teresa
9x12 block print
available



***
The Path to True Happiness
Everything in life changes. The path to true happiness is one of integrating and fully accepting all aspects of our experience. This integration is represented in the Taoist symbol of yin/yang, a circle which is half dark and half light. In the midst of the dark area is a spot of light, and in the midst of the light area is a spot of darkness. Even in the depths of darkness, the light is implicit. Even in the heart of light, the dark is understood, acknowledged, and absorbed.
–Sharon Salzberg


________________________________


Henry James once said to his young nephew,
"There are only three things important in human life:
be kind, be kind, be kind."
______________________________
***
From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Saturday, April 25, 2009



It's Hard Work Being a Control Freak
We don’t need to control the world. We don’t need to defend ourselves against it. We don’t need to preserve anything. We only need to be here—totally, completely, freely—responding to the actual occasion.

–Steve Hagen, from Buddhism: It’s Not What You Think
_________________________
we will again be today at the baa space at magic city art fest..
________________________________
From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Friday, April 24, 2009

art

________________________________________________________________

i will be at the birmingham art association booth at the magic city art festival at linn park today.....space 349

_________________________

From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Thursday, April 23, 2009


No use fretting over gold, beauty, or fame;Nurturing these, how can we calm our Fluttering heart? Non-attachment brings deep truth, And a truthful nature brings immortality. Empty your heart. Sit quietly on a mat. In meditation we become one with All; Tao billows like the vapors in a mountain valley, And its supernatural power wafts into our soul.
- Loy Ching-yuen 1879-1960’s)
________________________

hopefully i will be able to again update this blog somewhat regularly. we have/have had guests. i am trying to set up our [birmingham art association] space this weekend at magic city art festival in linn park.
of course always if it isnt one thing its another.....my mother said that often.

we [birmingham art association] will be at the magic city art festival this weekend at space 349 in the cultural district
________________________

From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Sunday, April 12, 2009

sunrise

easter sunrise service
9x12
watercolor
my oldest daughter carrie at sunrise service
on the bayou in tarpon springs fl
______________

Be Gentle
"Be gentle; love even your enemies; be tolerant."
Jesus, To John: The Urantia Book
_______________
Not Just Wishing
I cannot help but observe that we often are content
with merely wishing and praying for the happiness of others,
whereas for our own purposes we do everything we can for our betterment,
not just wishing!
-His Holiness the Dalai Lama, from Becoming Enlightened
__________________
From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Thursday, April 9, 2009



Transforming Misery
The difference between misery and happiness depends on what we do with our attention. Do we, in the midst of water, look for something elsewhere to drink? Transformation comes from looking deeply within, to a state that exists before fear and isolation arise, the state in which we are inviolably whole just as we are.
–Sharon Salzberg, from Loving-Kindness



From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Saturday, March 28, 2009


Where Fear Ends
Fear is finding fault with the future. If only we could keep in mind how uncertain our future is, then we would never try to predict what could go wrong. Fear ends right there.
–Ajahn Brahm from Opening the Door of Your Heart
From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Thursday, March 26, 2009

awake





awake

for morning in the bowl of night

has loosed the arrow

that puts the stars to flight........

Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam




it neednt be complicated


WAKING FROM A DEEP SLEEP
If somebody is waking for the first time from a deep sleep, she might see the midnight stars. But if she waits long enough without going back to sleep, she will begin to see not only stars but the dawn, then the sunrise, and then the whole landscape being lit by a brilliant light coming from the sky. She will begin to see her hands, her palms, her toes, and she will also begin to see her tables, her chairs, and the world around her. And if she is clever enough to look at a mirror, she will also see herself. Similarly, the truth of the cessation of suffering is a personal discovery. It is not mystical and it does not have any connotations of religion or psychology. It is simply your experience.

From "Awakening and Blossoming," in THE TRUTH OF SUFFERING: and the Path of Liberation. Forthcoming from Shambhala Publications.



________________________

From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama

Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock

Flow freely

And the train whistle blows

Monday, March 23, 2009

fewer mistakes


How to Make Fewer Mistakes

We all make mistakes from time to time. Life is about learning to make our mistakes less often. To realize this goal, we have a policy in our monastery that monks are allowed to make mistakes. When the monks are not afraid to make mistakes, they don’t make so many.
–Ajahn Brahm, from Opening the Door of Your Heart

***********

"Defeat is the true mirror in which you may honestly view your real self."

Jesus, The Urantia Book, Page 1740 (156:5.17)



_____________
From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Wednesday, March 18, 2009





dogwood
6"x12"
acrylic on canvas




painted from a tree outside my studio door







Unawakened, we continually encounter unseen difficulties, and compounding our problems, when we encounter such difficulties we curse and blame all those things on others.
When we awaken nothing really changes
This life becomes a good life when we realize that it is a good life, that we are given all that we need and that we are never abandoned by great compassion and wisdom.
Discovering that this life is a good life means waking up to the truth that both our difficulties and our gifts are opportunities, that even our deep karmic limitations are great teachers for understanding reality and experiencing the joy of liberation.

jeff wilson





From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

collards are planted



garden caretaker
acrylic on fencepost

he doesnt do any planting..just oversees it
he also calms any angry spirits and maintains harmony.

let us dig our gardens and not be elsewhere: Let us take long walks in the open air... Let us bathe in the rivers and lakes... Let us indulge in games... Let us be more simple: simple and true in our minds above all. Let us be ourselves. —Robert Linssen
__________________________________

yesterday i planted collards . they are planted to the left where you see the green rows. the green is rye which i grew there in the winter. rye adds nitrogen to the soil. what you see directly behind the post is all clay..i tilled it up but it will have to have some soil conditioners and manure and such added to it. lots of it is also shaded quite a bit by a pecan tree out of the picture to the right. directly behind the post is a row of onions. lots of pole beans grew in that row last year.
the flags you see further back are prayer flags. they have prayers for peace and compassion and well being printed on them. when the wind blows the prayers are blown out to everyone. i love to see them blowing.

***************from the promise land in lipscomb alabama; where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock flow freely....and the train whistle blows***************

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


the image is adam kadmon [jewish mysticism] .. primal man..the essence of man..before the garden..'everyman'
linoleum blockprint 9x12

______________________________________


"This world is only a bridge; you may pass over it, but you should not think to build a dwelling place upon it."
Jesus, The Urantia Book, Page 1735 (156:2.1)
****
we dont exist as separate beings but as 'everyman' .. like a piece of a hologram ..we have always/never been .. we will always/never be..we are .. now..this moment
we will do well to recognize what we all have in common rather than focus on our differences
****
When a traveler arrives at a hotel, he negotiates a price for a room and informs the staff of how long he will be staying. But as he gets comfortable there, he may begin to feel like the hotel is his home, and after a while he forgets about moving on. When the management tells him that he must give up the room, he refuses to leave. “This is where I live! Why should I leave?” There is some misunderstanding, and it leads to strife.
When we start to identify with our bodies and minds and think of this life as ours, then we are similar to the traveler who doesn’t want to leave the hotel. We have a wrong idea about this temporary stopping place, and we find ourselves always in struggle and conflict.

Ajahn Chah, from Being Dharma
from the promise land in lipscomb alabama; where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock flow freely....
and the train whistle blows

Friday, March 6, 2009

scratching my head again

this is so incredible that a few lines of it are enough
i have no paintings to illustrate this
_____________________________________

this is yesterdays news but has me so baffled that i must print it. im sure most have seen it in the paper.

the jefferson county commisioners have approved a recommendation to purchase 6 garbage cans ['chase park' litter receptacles] for the new bessemer county box...er courthouse .. at a cost of $8341 [$1439 each]....when in the same breath they say 'the county doesnt have the money to staff the courthouse'..never mind everything else they cant afford.
these are adult .. educated..men and women that we ...i sadly say... elected..and that we pay to make decisions for us.
_________

i dont generally write too much about politics but.......

i welcome comments and suggestions


From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Monday, February 23, 2009

where tomatoes come from
















here.. across the road from the house is the chicken lot
it is referred to as the chicken lot because it is where ..........




this chicken ....ahem ..rooster....lives
with......










these chicks...er..hens.....

******

in the spring there will be another garden in the chicken lot where just as in past years ...amongst other vegetables such as collards..squash..okra..beets..pole beans ..cabbage..and various peppers...will grow a.....
























tomato such as this one ..which was........



painted in the studio


fin


as you might see i dont have much on my mind this morning.....
what a wonderful way to be


From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

compassion

Where Does Compassion Come From?
Seeing the suffering in the world around us and in our own bodies and minds, we begin to understand suffering not only as an individual problem, but as a universal experience. It is one of the aspects of being alive. The question that then comes to mind is: If compassion arises from the awareness of suffering, why isn't the world a more compassionate place? The problem is that often our hearts are not open to feel the pain. We move away from it, close off, and become defended. By closing ourselves off from suffering, however, we also close ourselves to our own wellspring of compassion. We don't need to be particularly saintly in order to be compassionate. Compassion is the natural response of an open heart, but that wellspring of compassion remains capped as long as we turn away from or deny or resist the truth of what is there. When we deny our experience of suffering, we move away from what is genuine to what is fabricated, deceptive and confusing.
--Joseph Goldstein, Seeking the Heart of Wisdom


From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Saturday, February 14, 2009

great backyard bird count




great backyard bird count

http://www.birdsource.org/gbbc/howto.html


Twas the night before the Bird Countand all through the house,the birders were sleeping,just dreaming of grouse.They had mapped out their dayto find a Blue Jay,or perhaps watching owls cathing their prey.Their scopes were all ready,their binos were toodon't forget your tripod, your camera, your guide,or your coffee, a sandwhich or your favorite hot stew.You can count from your window, our car or on foot,and if you get lost remember stay put.What this weekend will bring,may remind us of spring,Just remember have fun,as you are watching a Hun,and when the weekend has passed,we will tally our birds,in the hopes that we have massed,more species this year than years in the past.


**************


12th Annual Great Backyard Bird Count
February 13 – 16, 2009
COUNT FOR FUN! COUNT FOR THE FUTURE!
Dear Great Backyard Bird Count Participant,
Only four days remain until the 12th annual Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC).
Here are just a few quick reminders and updates:
Ø To enter your bird count checklists, go to http://birdcount.list-manage.com/track/click?u=2a4ad41227581082052d3f85f&id=a553debcb4&e=eda1017db2 on the weekend of the count and click on the big “Enter your Checklists” button. Note: This button will not appear until 7:00 AM February 13.
Ø Don’t forget to upload your images for the GBBC photo contest! You can submit photos from February 13 through March 1 (a link to a page where you can upload photos will appear on http://birdcount.list-manage.com/track/click?u=2a4ad41227581082052d3f85f&id=31528193e5&e=eda1017db2 on February 13). A select number of photos will be posted in the online gallery during the four days of the GBBC.
Ø Check out the GBBC blog at http://birdcount.list-manage.com/track/click?u=2a4ad41227581082052d3f85f&id=cacc69de17&e=eda1017db2, run by Audubon’s Senior Scientist, Rob Fergus, and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s Science Editor, Laura Erickson.
Ø Don’t forget to play Eagle Eyes! Hone your birding skills as you wait for the count to begin.
**********************


From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

You are the Dharmakaya



Dharmakaya

Dharmakaya literally means the "body" (kaya) of the Buddha's teachings (Dharma), the way of understanding and love. Before passing away, the Buddha told his disciples, "Only my physical body will pass away. My Dharma body will remain with you forever." In Mahayana Buddhism, the word has come to mean "the essence of all that exists." All phenomena--the song of a bird, the warm rays of the sun, a cup of hot tea--are manifestations of the Dharmakaya. We, too, are of the same nature as these wonders of the universe.
--Thich Nhat Hanh

************
photo
colorado waterfall with carol at the top
*********************
With realization of one's own potential and self-confidence in one's ability, one can build a better world. Dalai Lama



From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Monday, February 9, 2009

chicken lot ponds and preserves


Watercress Darter National Wildlife Refuge, near Bessemer, Jefferson County, Alabama, was established by the Service in 1980 to provide protection for the endangered watercress darter

The watercress darter is a small, very colorful fish measuring up to 2.5 inches in length. The fish is currently found in only four sites in the upper Black Warrior River drainage near Birmingham, Alabama.

***
this is a ...small [4x6] watercolor ... i painted of a portion of a creek at the preserve here in bessemer as i sat with my feet in the water

****

not long ago at another local preserve for this fish a caretaker opened a dam killing off a number of this rare species. the damage has been repaired and a number of the fish survived....but that doesnt make much difference to the ones who were killed that day. and it doesnt make much difference to the goldfish in my pond.

for one reason or another goldfish in my pond over in the chicken lot began to die off a few months ago. i figured all of them had died. the pond developed a lot of algae....i mean the water was thick with it. thinking there were no fish in it yesterday i dumped about a cup of chlorine in it. i figured kill off the algae then start anew. alas this morning when ebbie and i walked over .. as we do most mornings .. we saw that there were 3 dead goldfish floating on the surface. i didnt feel very good at all about that.... after all i could have used a 'fish safe' algae destroyer designed for just that purpose... and i have some of it here. because i had no idea that there was anything living in the pond i used the chlorine instead as it would work faster.

neither me nor the fellow at the preserve had any intention of causing harm ..and .. i dont suppose the fellow who opened the dam on the darters was any dumber or less responsible than i was.........certainly to the fish it didnt matter.

****

From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows


Thursday, February 5, 2009

time or money



water color of st joseph sound dunedin fl

the choice


A few years ago, a very rich businessman decides to take a vacation to a small tropical island in the South Pacific. He has worked hard all his life and has decided that now is the time to enjoy the fruits of his labor. He is excited about visiting the island because he’s heard that there is incredible fishing there. He loved fishing as a young boy, but hasn’t gone in years because he has been so busy working to save for his retirement.So on the first day, he has his breakfast and heads to the beach. It’s around 9:30 am. There he spots a fisherman coming in with a large bucket full of fish!"How long did you fish for?" he asks. The fisherman looks at the businessman with a wide grin across his face and explains that the fishes for about three hours every day. The businessman then asks him why he returned so quickly."Don’t worry", says the fisherman, "There’s still plenty of fish out there."Dumbfounded, the businessman asks the fisherman why he didn’t continue catching more fish. The fisherman patiently explains that what he caught is all he needs. "I’ll spend the rest of the day playing with my family, talking with my friends and maybe drinking a little wine. After that I’ll relax on the beach."Now the rich businessman figures he needs to teach this peasant fisherman a thing or two. So he explains to him that he should stay out all day and catch more fish. Then he could save up the extra money he makes and buy and even bigger boats to catch even more fish. The he could keep reinvesting his profits in even more boats and hire many other fisherman to work for him. If he works really hard, in 20 or 30 years he’ll be a very rich man indeed.The businessman feels pleased that he’s helped teach this simple fellow how to become rich. Then the fisherman looks at the businessman with a puzzled look on his face and asks what he’ll do after he becomes very rich.The businessman responds quickly "You can spend time with your family, talk with your friends, and maybe drink a little wine. Or you could just relax on the beach."

author unknown

*************************

i have never subscribed to the idea 'time is money' or that i could get ahead by working a lot of overtime. my theory is.....if you cant make it in 40 hours then you have either the wrong job or the wrong lifestyle. the only reason for working overtime would be if it would prevent the sky from falling. ive tried to live by this idea all my life. and ive never stayed on a job i disliked for very long. maybe ive done it wrong...but im happy..out of debt..and pursue my passion [art].

my objection to the idea of chasing every dollar thats out there isnt because im lazy or have no ambition. i work here everyday....im not at all a couch potato. the deal is that the lure of money is a carrot dangling before us from a stick. we never seem satisfied while occupying our time with the chase. we always seem to need more.... to keep up with the jones..to find financial security..its never enough.

there is a middle path which i try to travel...that is to be happy with my work..to be able to provide for my needs .. put a little under a rock ..and have a little for those in need. and i use a little for things i want while trying to remember that they will not provide lifetime happiness for me. i of course like the idea of financial security but i try to remember that it is folly to think we will ever feel financially secure and that even if we did we are subject to having the rug pulled out from under us at any moment....as has just happened to many.

this is not ingraind in my being but it is my ideal.

**********

"if you have the coice between time and money...choose time." anonymous wise man


From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows






Monday, February 2, 2009

like everybody else or not

"It has bothered me all my life that I do not paint like everybody else.”Bold
henri matisse

tempera [poster paint ] on butcher paper
13x22
after 'woman in a blue hat'
henri matisse 1905


i try to keep a large sheet of butcher paper..its cheap..on an easel for sketches , experiments and such sometimes just to get moving. i drew this hurridly one day with conte crayon from a print off the internet. on another day i painted it with tempera..also cheap..and i liked it. later i mounted it on masonite and will frame it someday.


i make no claims for these paintings i do after others work but i think i gain from it. ive always liked matisse and i like this painting . my brother mentioned the other day that he liked it so here it is.

********
it surprises me that henri would be bothered that he didnt paint like everybody else. woe to art if every painted alike....it seems to me...everyone doesnt see alike.. or at least i know i dont see like everyone else or paint like everyone else.
interestingly i was at a friends loft just yesterday....she is an artist herself but also has quite a gallery of other interesting artists. i had stopped to look at a particular painting which caught my eye...she said "dont you think she paints a lot like you do?" and indeed i thought she did too. i cant remember her name but i might be interested to meet her. im not sure if she is local or not.
i dont try to see or paint differently .... i just do.. just as i believe differently from many others. it just happens. carol would say its my nature. she drives me crazy saying that. any way some people like the way i paint and say so but others just walk right on by showing no interest whatsoever. i dont think that is a matter of right or wrong or of good or bad..that is the individual part of us all although i beleive we are all connected...each a small part of a whole. look at music. to me all new nashville country music sounds pretty much alike ... now look at [or listen to] jazz.... not much of it is alike is it....think about it. very possibly no one else sees or thinks about this issue itsself the way i do. i better leave it at that before ...............

**************
“I don't know whether I believe in God or not. I think, really, I'm some sort of Buddhist. But the essential thing is to put oneself in a frame of mind which is close to that of prayer.”
henri matisse


From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Thursday, January 29, 2009

causing reality

thoughts



"the soul attracts that which it secretly harbors..that which it loves.. and also that which it fears...it reaches the height of its cherished aspirations...it falls to the level of its unchastened desires - and circumstances are the means by which the soul receives its own."

james allen...as a man thinketh



*********

this 8x10 is acrylic

i have reproduced it here

in grayscale for the effect

********



All experience is preceded by mind, Led by mind, Made by mind. Speak or act with a corrupted mind, And suffering follows As the wagon wheel follows the hoof of the ox.

All experience is preceded by mind, Led by mind, Made by mind. Speak or act with a peaceful mind And happiness follows Like a never-departing shadow.
~ Dhammapada (1-2) sent to me this morning by my friend pat


what we experience is our reality

our experience is a consequence of our actions [determined by our thoughts]

thus by our thoughts we cause reality

try it for yourself sometimes

try "the power of positive thinking".. try compassion..try seeing the good*

try it for a while

it isnt ingrained in my being as of yet but i have practiced it enough to know its validity


* i see no sensible reason for trying the opposite. it would be an an unpleasant experience im sure



From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows



Tuesday, January 27, 2009


"Today we face many problems. Some are created essentially by ourselves based on divisions due to ideology, religion, race, economic status, or other factors. Therefore, the time has come for us to think on a deeper level, on the human level, and from that level we should appreciate and respect the sameness of others as human beings." - Dalai Lama
water color and ink on paper
8x10

Friday, January 23, 2009

let go

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The Greatest Spirit Reality
Love is the greatest of all spirit realities. Truth is a liberating revelation, but love is the supreme relationship. The Urantia Book,
Page 1608 (143:1.4)

*************************


dont wait til you can...just do it


yesterday on the treadmill ..i walk not run and carefully at that..i really did "let go". did you know that you can dance on a treadmill? not because you are on a treadmill but in spite of being on it. and sing too. i dont mean mutter along under your breath..i mean sing out..using all your breath.

i had my mp3 player with me. first i listened to 15 minutes of 'bad buddhist radio' talking of right view'. then i put the music on. now if i sing accompanying myself with my guitar it is usually pretty basic 3 chord older country honkytonk music. that is partly because it is easiest to play..but i do like it. i used to listen to it on am radio..i dont even think there was fm then...and sing when i was a kid. but id really like to be able to really sing ...so sometimes i just do it. i did yesterday...sang out...mostly leonard cohen type stuff like 'dance me to the end of love'. i just dropped all inhibitions and really seriously sang out. i didnt care if the windows were open or not. i think i really wanted someone to hear me. by now im not going very fast on the treadmill but no matter.

then i found myself doing a few steps in time to the music and i found i could adjust the speed so that i could dance right there on the treadmill. now i dont generally dance in public tho i certainly did back in the day. seems like when i quit drinking i lost my dancing skills. anyway i started dancing the afternoon away there on the treadmill. i dont mean any hokey jumping around aimlessly flapping my elbows but dancing....modern jazz maybe type dancing. soulful stuff like tango is.

i always wanted to learn to tango. and i still do. when we lived in florida we had a neighbor ..edie..who stopped in frequently to chat or drink tea or espresso and sometimes eat some soup if i had made any. she liked my art. she was a little older than us but not by much. during ww2 she had walked across poland with her mother and sister and a horse and wagon. anyway edie knew how to tango. i dont know how she ever learned ...she is married to a great guy a slovak of some sort who would much rather fool with a steam engine of some sort than partake in social or cultural events. he is a great friendly guy though and stopped by on his bicycle in the mornings some and drank coffee on his way to look for treasures alongside the road. so anyway no matter how she learned ...and maybe he did tango with her at some time regardless of my profiling...she could do it. i only learned this shortly before we moved here else i might quite possibly have learned from her.

i have found a place here....nearby anyhow....not in lipscomb ... so maybe there still is hope if i can but convince carol to go.

meanwhile its nice to know that you can dance on a treadmill.


From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

bodhisattva

"This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness." - Dahli Lama

this is not to dismiss the validity of anyones religion or their particular practice but simply to say that if our heart is right and we endeavor to to be kind and compassionate to all of mankind then we are on the right path.

a non buddhist woman..a christian i believe..blind and an artist.. created this buddha image for her son who is a buddhist.

name tags just dont necessarily mean much

i originally was going to put up an image of mother teresa unquestionably a bodhisattva as her life was dedicated to helping others the poor...the poorest of the poor...regardless of their race, sex, religious beliefs or lack thereof or any other differences. i liked however that the mother was able to overcome the difference in the beliefs of her and her son and to do something that was meaningful to him and his belief without thought of trying to "convert" him.


From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

meaningless rant



Downtown

9x12 linoleum blockprint on paper

certainly not the crowd that was in dc yesterday for the inaugriation. it is amazing that there was any order at all ..or could it have been that ther was simply no room for being disorderly.

twice i have been to dc. both times with the "run for the wall" a motorcycle group of mostly veterans that begins in california and travels across the nation on motorcycles to join in 'rolling thunder' ...a parade and demonstration held in honor of and to bring attention to pow/mia's...pows from all wars who are still unaccounted for. we rode only a few hundred miles each day for we stopped and placed wreaths on memorials alon the way and at va medical centers to honor those veterans and we stopped at schools sometimes letting the kids sit on the bikes. we camped each night along the way.

i got on one year here in bessemer as they traveled past the 19th st approach headed to chattanooga. another year i met up in meridian mississippi where we slept at the rodeo arena.

that year we rode in the rain all the way and spent memorial day weekend in the rain in dc. when i got on there would be maybe 100 or so bikes but picking up riders along the way we wouls end up in roanoke with maybe 600....where we joined another part of our group who had taken the northern route. in dc various clubs and groups joined us until on parade day we filled the pentagon parking lot.

all in all it was quite a interesting and moving experience....especially as the first time i went it was the memorial day following '9-11'. maybe ill post some photos sometime.

i didnt know what i was going to write when i sat down here but this wasnt even in my thoughts til i mentioned crowds in dc.

i went up to the studio earlier just to...???.. in spite of the cold i decided to paint just a little. as i was about to quit i picked up an atomizer to spray some water and tho it was full it didnt spray. the water in it was still frozen. i asked my self "self what in the world are you doing up here?." and i closed up and came down the hill and put another log on the fire.

more later maybe....im having some coffee now


From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

the new revolution

The Little Red Hen
Sara Cone Bryant (Retold from Joseph Jacobs)

One day as the Little Red Hen was scratching in a field, she found a grain of wheat.
"This wheat should be planted," she said. "Who will plant this grain of wheat?"
"Not I," said the Duck.
"Not I," said the Cat.
"Not I," said the Dog.
"Then I will," said the Little Red Hen. And she did.
Soon the wheat grew to be tall and yellow.
"The wheat is ripe," said the Little Red Hen. "Who will cut the wheat?"
"Not I," said the Duck.
"Not I," said the Cat.
"Not I," said the Dog.
"Then I will," said the Little Red Hen. And she did.
When the wheat was cut, the Little Red Hen said, "Who will thresh the wheat?"
"Not I," said the Duck.
"Not I," said the Cat.
"Not I," said the Dog.
"Then I will," said the Little Red Hen. And she did.
When the wheat was threshed, the Little Red Hen said, "Who will take this wheat to the mill?"
"Not I," said the Duck.
"Not I," said the Cat.
"Not I," said the Dog.
"Then I will," said the Little Red Hen. And she did.
She took the wheat to the mill and had it ground into flour. Then she said, "Who will make this flour into bread?"
"Not I," said the Duck.
"Not I," said the Cat.
"Not I," said the Dog.
"Then I will," said the Little Red Hen. And she did.
She made and baked the bread. Then she said, "Who will eat this bread?"
"Oh! I will," said the Duck.
"And I will," said the Cat.
"And I will," said the Dog.
"No, No!" said the Little Red Hen. "I will do that." And she did.



*****************

in the coming days

lets not forget the story of the little red hen

we have hope

we have a new beginning

let us not think that the future is left up to our new president

the future is the responsibility of all of us and president obama



**************


From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Saturday, January 17, 2009

near the beginning of the gulf war i painted an arab holding an injured [or dead] child. i would like to post it here but i cant find a photo of it.
the original was traded to [get this...i love this part] a muslim woman ..an artist friend of mine and a wonderful person.. for a copy of a beautiful photograph she had taken and framed ....of a torah scroll.

an interesting transaction???

here is where the painting would be

********************

the united states really needs to take a stand against israels treatment of palestinians. im not at all advocating war nor is this a statement against the jewish religion. the palestinians are a people in their own right and deserve a country of their on including rights to the holy land just as jews and christians should.
what israel is doing in gaza is about as unholy as anything i can think of and is totally inhumane. it makes me sick.
i can only hope that president obama will take a stance on this massacre.
sneering george bush and condoleeza rice really need to take pause and look i inside themselves for their action and/or inaction on this.

it is beyond "right" and "wrong"


*************************************************

"it came to me that every time i lose a dog they take a piece of my heart with them.

and every new dog who comes into my life gives me the gift of a piece of their heart

if i live long enough, all parts of my heart will be dog, and i will become as generous and loving as they are"

author unknown

.......

i really want to go out and work on ebbies cart today but it is cold enough that i dont stay out very long at a time

good fortune to all




From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Tuesday, January 13, 2009



primal concubine



Among the most delicate and beautiful of creatures she ..at the height of her loveliness.. falls into a deep trancelike sleep never to awaken but never to die
It is from this spell that some .. those who wonder and dream ..those who see magic ..that join in the dance and hear the music in their head.. those that look into the sun and bathe in the springs
Are born and then love


small pen and ink with watercolor
*****




From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Monday, January 12, 2009

BIRMINGHAM PEACE PROJECT


click on image for better reading

we will do well to recognize what we all have in common
rather than dwelling on our differences

From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Thursday, January 8, 2009

a gift from the tyrant




what a touching gesture


isnt it nice that the bush clan can leave half a million dollars worth of china for the whitehouse. just what they need. did the old just need replacing or have they been eating from paper plates all along.
a great many people eat from dishes from the thrift store. some dont have enough to eat to cause concern about their tableware





'sneering tyrant'
ink on paper

it will be gift enough for the tyrant to just be gone.

there is brush to be cut at the ranch.


12 days to go.


"a bone to the dog is not charity.


charity is sharing the bone with the dog


when you are just as hungry as he is"


jack london






From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

killing for peace

KILLING for PEACE


how many civilians must be killed to buy peace?
isnt that a stupid question?
it seems that in most if not all the wars going on right now ..in the name of "religion". "peace", "democracy" and other such 'desirable' things.. more innocent civilians and children are being killed than bad guys.
this baffles me
shall we just keep killing until everyone who differs from us in any way is dead..until each of us is the last one standing.
then have we won? proudly put our foot on the chest of dead mothers and children and raise our guns in victory in the name of our cause? ......we have WON peace.....

oil on masonite

painted during some war news
[there is plenty of it]





















the madonna

16"x20 oil on canvas

painted from my wife carol and daughter

represents that all mothers are madonnas and

that all children are the blessed one

*********

"What triggers you can get less and less in your life. But, you know, if you're trying to avoid being triggered, I read something recently where someone said that's like becoming a celibate nun like me or monk and then trying to get rid of all the sexually attractive people in the world in order to keep your vows. You know, it just doesn't work. You have to work on your side of it, you know? ."..........................pema chodron

**

"This lousy world, this lousy people, this lousy government, this lousy everything. Lousy weather, lousy blah blah blah blah. Pissed off, you know, it's too hot in here, it's too cold, I don't like the smell and, the person is too tall in front, and -- too fat next to me, and they're wearing perfume and I'm allergic, and just -- unnnh! So he says, the analogy is that you're barefooted, it's like being barefooted and walking across blazing-hot sand or across cut glass. Or in a field with thorns. And your feet are bare, and you say, this is just, you know, it's really hurting, it's terrible, it's too sharp, it's too painful, it's too hot. Do I have a great idea! I am just going to cover the whole, everywhere I go, I'm going to cover it with leather. And then it won't hurt my feet anymore. That's like saying, "I'm going to get rid of her and get rid of him and get the temperature right, and I'm going to ban perfume in the world and, you know, there will be no, nothing that bothers me anywhere. There -- I am going to get rid of everything, including mosquitoes, that bothers me, anywhere in the world, and then I will be a very happy, content person." We're laughing, but it's what we all do. That is how we do approach things. We think, if we could just get rid of them or cover it with leather, then our pain would go away. Well, sure, because, you know, then it wouldn't be cutting our feet anymore -- I mean, it's just logical, isn't it? But it doesn't make any sense, really. So he [shantideva] said, "but if you simply wrap the leather around your feet" -- in other words, shoes -- then you could walk across the boiling sand and the cut glass and the thorns, and it wouldn't bother you. So the analogy is, if you work with your mind, instead of trying to change everything on the outside, that's how your temper will cool down. "

pema chodron

***

we can never have world peace until we are at peace with our neighbor

From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows




Monday, January 5, 2009

jones' dock



the baithouse


jones himself was quite a character. one of his many enterprises was this baithouse on the anclote river. it was never really a moneymaker but it was frequented by a range of motley characters.. shrimpers, mullet fishermen, winos, hangers on, and such... both night and day. the boat in the center brought back cuban refugees during the mariel boatlift in the early 70s. i ran a bait shrimp boat [not in the painting] from here. it was a source of quite meager income for me when i met carol. she went with me several nights to pick shrimp and make coffee. most of the boats around there were older and some in ill repair. much later she told me she was terrified each time but went with me only as part of her plan to capture me [we have been married or shacked up for 30 something years]. up town at ruth pantas' goldcup restaurant needing a deckhand for the night with a few beers i convinced one afternoon a townsman 'smokey' a carnival worker to go with me. about halfway up to the shrimp grounds smokey asked me.."how much will you make tonight?"..."if i give you that will you take me back to the dock right now?". i kept going and he suffered through the night. he was afraid of everything we caught in the nets. im not sure if he ever forgave me. those were interesting if lean days. ive had lots of jobs but never a career but most of the jobs have been quite interesting. i wouldnt have stayed with them otherwise. experiences were always more important to me than money.

the painting is oil on masonite. it was sold but is around 12"x18".

*****************

there is no news that i know of here in lipscomb today.

yesterday i planted some rye and clover seeds in the rows where i plant vegetables over in the chicken lot. i had them leftover from planting in my clover patch here. the rye and clover should introduce lots of nitrogen to the soil for spring planting over there.

good fortune to all

From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows





Friday, January 2, 2009

karma and the pit

karma
The word [karma] penetrated the Western consciousness, from the Buddhist point of view at least, in somewhat distorted guise. It is often called the Law of Cause and Effect, so it is about the consequences and actions of the body, speech and mind. And consequences are very important in Buddhism. Any action that is willed, however subtly, by the person who performs it will always produce a future "ripening" and ultimately a "fruit" of similar moral quality, because in the human sphere karma operates in an ethical manner. So an unethical action will produce a come-back of like kind in this life or some future rebirth; and the same goes for morally good or indifferent actions that are willed and freely undertaken. In the Bible it says something similar: that we reap what we sow. If we want to progress spiritually--or even just live with minimum aggravation--it therefore behooves us to be very careful how we speak and act, for there is no way we can escape the consequences.
- John Snelling
************
primal abyss
...16x20 oil on canvas...
**
coming up from the abyss..ascent of man
**
sisyphus .. condemned to roll a boulder up and over the edge of the abyss..only to have it..as he neared the top..to roll back down again
The workman of today works every day in his life at the same tasks, and this fate is no less absurd. But it is tragic only at the rare moments when it becomes conscious
being abstracted it is not entirely clear but at the top left of the painting is village. it is separated however by a great chasm from the trail of man coming up from the pit. having escaped the fire they nevertheless are still separated from their goal.

**
i have heard of [i belive this is true but it really doesnt matter] a tribe somewhere on the continent of africa that is/was doomed to spend their entire life..whole families..generations of them..down in a mine pit ..either gold or diamonds. supplies adequate for their existence were sent down to them but they were never allowed to come up from the pit.
************

From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows


*

Thursday, January 1, 2009

happy new year

happy new year

a new beginning

here is adam kadmon [jewish mysticism] primal man


the essence of man... haveing always been


9x12 block print


drawn at a sketch group and carved on a linoleum block and printed on paper


************



"The world is in fact a seamless and dynamic unity, a single living organism that is constantly undergoing change. Our minds, however, chop it up into separate, static bits and pieces, which we then try mentally and physically to manipulate "--John Snelling, Elements of Buddhism


***********


the beginning of a new year


i am of course going to start the new year with blackeyed peas, pork, and cabbage.


today as everyday is also the beginning of the rest of my life...and at any moment could become the end of it....if there is really an end .


"plan as if you will live foreverlive as if you will die today" james dean


*********



From the promise land in Lipscomb Alabama
Where golden eagle table syrup and buffalo rock
Flow freely
And the train whistle blows