Tag Archives: spirituality


Been awhile. I still adore you. I’ve had to do some solitary work, some secretive soul searching. At this juncture, I have taken to drinking (a bit), I am working my way through the Bible (just started Numbers), I’m uncomfortable with my long-standing 12 step philosophy, I just got a fabulous bow rehair from Goering, and I built a rolling basketball system as a result of Cody starting in a mini basketball team.

My Bible reading and uncomfortableness with 12 stepping are interconnected, as you might have guessed. I have been struggling with a definition and/or verification of a higher power since I began my spiritual/religious journey, but every once in a while I have gotten a whiff of a feeling associated with my childhood religion. So it wasn’t completely forgotten, apparently. It is in there.

I’ve really been trying to find the meaning in the 12 step programs. I guess when you’re seriously striving to do that, you dig deeper and deeper into your spirituality, otherwise it seems you will continually reach an impasse within the steps. So I kind of went to the source, as it stands for me. It seems the words and the stories and the chronology of the Bible have resonated quite deeply. I even have tried out a Bible study group. But along the way, I attended a High Holy Day service (Yom Kippur, post- the Kol Nidre performance), and it struck a deep chord, so I may end up becoming willing to convert back to my original religious persuasion. Now, don’t get me wrong, I am still deeply rooted in an atheist’s mindset and philosophy. So I imagine my version of Judaism will be unique, incorporating personal quirks that allow me to remain true to myself. I guess this wasn’t meant to be easy for me.

I’m also suspecting that it may not be possible to be a believer and a non-believer simultaneously. I mean, it is possible, but it’s not productive. It keeps your spirituality stuck in second gear. Are atheists supposed to possess spirituality? There’s a continuum, between atheism and religious devotion. What if you want some of each? Are you asking for the having and the eating of the cake?

On a different note, playing the Beatles tribute tonight was pretty religious. In the sense of the religion they espoused – love, love, love; peace; incredible harmonies, tunes and musical manifestations; fellowship; friendship. It was rather cathartic given what transpired in our country this week. I wondered what the largely Trump-supporting audience gleaned from it. It certainly made me wish the fab four were still around spreading their philosophy. We could certainly use it. I think I will have to do whatever I can to encourage those sorts of ideas and sensibilities in my circles.


2 things: I think I really let my physical attitude to cello get in the way. I was observing that I am really not just a performing monkey. I have a very nuanced sense of rhythm and pacing. I have a keen ear for colors and sound. What I was noticing was that I perceive essentially as much as conductors do. This is not something I am normally aware of in myself. It is in my mind and in my ear. And in my heart. And my spirit perhaps. Where does it start? That’s a good question. Even in my writing one sees a heightened perception.

So I would like to (re)consider my extra-cello possibilities for music making. But what it also reminded me of is that I don’t have to be so body-aware, body-conscious, body-obsessed. I am more that just a physical performer. There is much bizarre emphasis on entertainment around here. I don’t know if being in an orchestra heightens that or subdues it. Perhaps this has been a long time coming. Perhaps I’ve never really gotten in touch with my spiritual connection with music. Wow, why did I say that? Is that what this is? Is this from listening to the Big Book streaming? I always hate being cheesy, you know that. One of my many evadings from a sense of a higher power.

I’ll get around to the second thing, but not tonight.


Forgetting. Forgetter. What do you do if you’re the master of forgetting? I thought it was just certain things about which I am forgetful. But apparently not. There’s another expression – selective memory. You remember things in the way that you want to remember them.

I’d like to live my life in less of a fog. I’d like to wake up in the morning with a clear sense of what happened to me the night before. And I’d like to have continuity from the night to the subsequent morning. I used to have that. I feel it was stripped away from me. I think I am fairly thin skinned. Which could be a good quality when it comes to making sincere, expressive music on a cello. But a not so great quality when navigating life’s tribulations, when trying to make sense of life’s bizarre complications.

I pray for my HP to help me tonight. I’ve strived for so long to handle things myself, as perhaps I’ve been taught by example in my family of origin. Of course I admire them if they can indeed accomplish that. That is exactly why I have attempted it. It’s fantastic if managed. But is it not also admirable to admit that I am not indestructible, impenetrable? To admit what is more representative of reality? That I need? That I have needs. That I need others.

Sitting there in that meeting tonight just felt good. It felt good and right to lean into the fellowship there. To allow myself to feel community. And by extension, to feel my god. A power greater than myself.

Isn’t god a little bit more comforting than a functioning modem? I should seriously consider that choice. I should consider a lot of choices. I should not just forget. I should reconsider. I should remember. I should recall. I should reconnect. I love my HP. With all my mind, soul, heart, and body. Just as a good jew should. I don’t ask for much. Just that my HP can hold my hand. That (s)he can guide me from tonight to tomorrow morning uninterrupted, unfettered. That (s)he can be there for my memory, my memories.


Venting. Airing. Not trapping. Not contracting. Living. Loving. Being surrounded. Being alone. Being inhibited.
I’m like a moth. Involuntarily drawn to things. Drawn away from the truth, drawn to vacuousness. I exist in hieroglyphics. I am nomenclature.
No. Don’t. If you doubt it, then go.
A lack of discipline. Of all things! Difficulty integrating ideas coming from different directions. Assimilating. Star Trek put a bad spin on assimilation. Ha. Is compartmentalizing so great though? The right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing.
Everything I do erroneously is for safety. For protection. Ha. Maybe I’m just protecting myself from being alive. I am nearing death. Here I come! How bloody ironic. To think I have any say in death’s inevitability. I remember thinking that Buddhism seemed obsessed with the subject of death. But isn’t religion generally like that? Is Judaism? Depends which denomination. But Buddhism seems to be very direct and honest about life and death. Very, very direct.
Since I’m now delving into my religiosity and spirituality, it causes me to notice how other lifelong practicers have journeyed through and beyond questions such as these. It turns out I’ve only just started scratching the surface.
The more I learn, the more I realize how little I know, like Sebok noted.


So, I hate God, and God hates me. Is that what I believe? I never knew it. If I feel God’s love for me, then I guess that means I am capable of feeling His hate. Love and hate are not miles apart. We have to find the wisdom to put distance between them. Without that wisdom, they are easily conjoined.

So I should write. I should do work. I will otherwise be unable to do step 10. I will keep hurting others, and myself. I feel put upon. I feel there is no one looking out for me, anymore. I used to feel my parents were.

Am I powerless over food? And what if I am? Can’t I just die a peaceful/painful death and call it a wash? Who really cares? Aren’t we all going to die anyway? Shouldn’t I go out with some pleasure and excitement? Do normal people ask question after question after question? Only if they’re practicing their question mark typing.

What is my bottom? Is it physical, emotional, intellectual or spiritual? Haven’t I proved I can hit physical bottom enough times? Maybe I need an intellectual bottom. Like the robot in Star Trek. I need to intellectually admit I am at a total loss. Logically. Or is it spiritual? Do I need to realize I should not give up on my own soul? That it is worth something. That it is worth saving. I am not very in touch with my soul. That would explain a lot of the agony and angst, consternation and confusion. I don’t cherish my existence. I don’t think I matter. Perhaps my physical self doesn’t matter much. Perhaps it could just continue to take crappy care of itself and die a simple death, and nothing would change much. There would be some sort of eulogy and obituary and some tears shed over my physical self.

and then

Yesterday and today my mind has been opened. I am rereading Love Is A Choice and responding equally strongly as however many years ago when I first read it. I imagine I have a different array and even a different level of things to reflect the information against now. I have kicks that I get on with different books and authors, or different people, and like I said in the last blog, I wish I knew where my central beliefs and passions lay so as not to sway with the breeze so much. I love a book (or a person) that states its ideas unwaveringly – I always have. When will I get to that point myself?
I do feel like this particular book has many of the ingredients to help me dissect and then reattach myself to the world and to a life less based on ups and downs and confusing, fleeting passions. It speaks of a life which accounts for all the many layers and interests inside us all.

originally published on 9/23/06


I’m now trying to monitor my food intake more diligently. I’ve even started going to a support group of sorts for this purpose. I’ve met some nice people in the process. It’s one of the 12-step groups. I’ve had some experience with other ones but took a hiatus for a while to explore other philosophical approaches to my instabilities, only to return when they became ineffectual. I have a nice array of addictive and compulsive options in my repertoire, so it helps not to be overly worried if I am having a good day (or week) with my dietary situation. I can always apply the steps to some other vice.
Actually a lot of the steps don’t pertain to the chosen addiction, but rather to one’s life story and the not-such-nice things one may have a propensity to do to oneself and others. These correlate to the steps which designate some kind of higher power, helping to remind us that we are not all-knowing or all-powerful. To keep us humble.

Humility is actually kind of a cool thing. But hard to sustain, as it turns out.

originally published on 1/21/09


People like to say that only very stupid or very wise people are happy. I was thinking that there may be some crossover there which could explain that connection. Krishnamurti talks about the futility and destructiveness of thinking. I would certainly place him in the very wise category; he also appeared a happy person.

What about the difference between rationalizing and brainwashing? We all admit we rationalize at times, but is there that big a leap to consider us brainwashed? I think I get brainwashed many times a day. It’s very frustrating if I end up believing for a time that I have discovered something that is real; the bubble is burst when I discover how easily I can be otherwise convinced. I seem to be swayed by pretty, shiny things.

I am thinking that you may be able to develop the ability to choose the things that will brainwash you. If you are not under the misapprehension that most things represent some kind of reality, you could develop more wherewithal and say in what you allow to penetrate your mind and heart.< And God? Is he/she/it more-so a path to a docile, sheep-like mentality, or transformative spiritual interconnectedness? Or as previously noted, are those two states oddly interwoven? originally published on 1/6/09


I’m still stuck on the prostrations I put myself through unnecessarily. Why can’t I avert the hoops, mind games and overstraining and get right to the well-balanced enlightenment? I have a theory about that. (I know someone who would groan at those words.) Is it possible that somewhere inside I believe that the best way to enjoy the high is to sink into the depths of despair beforehand? Is that my perfect setup? You see, if I skip that particular setup, it’s just possible that I won’t even know when I’ve hit the moment of elation.

That would also explain why an identical situation feels so different on different occasions. It’s the context, or what preceded it. This seems to go along nicely with the Buddhist philosophy I’ve been reading up on. Nothing is real; nothing is as it seems to be; all is impermanent in this life. The high that I think I am feeling is only thus by contrast to the low. The goal should be to bypass all of these swings up or down, and keep your eye on altruistic aspirations for all sentient beings. I’d like that.

originally published on 3/25/09


The Buddhist stuff is amazing because I keep finding it proven in my daily activities and experience; I have to work very little to convince myself of its veracity. I also like a philosophy that has its roots in the truth of everyday life rather than seemingly arbitrary edicts and deities. Indeed, there’s just enough of an unknowable, afterlife element to qualify it as a somewhat comforting religion instead of just a philosophy.

originally published on 3/25/09