The Art of…


I would like to propose the idea that thinking is an art. It is an art in the same way as is writing, photography, textile making, composing a song, painting, drawing, playing a piano or any other medium.It is a purposeful activity over which we exercise some control. Control is the key word. Thinking is not always conscious. The evidence that the unconscious mind can join in purposeful mental activity is overwhelming. For example: when you come up with the perfect answer just when you stop working on the problem. Your conscious mind turns to other matters and yet you receive the answer.

 

Thinking is any mental activity that helps formulate or solve a problem, make a decision, or fulfill a desire to understand. It is searching for answers, and finding meaning.

 

I believe, as do others, that our schools don’t teach our children how to perform the art of thinking. Thinking and not just experience a reflux of information is very different. With so much emphasis on testing, our children know facts and yet can not think through the facts to make good decisions for their own lives and for others. Without the actual thinking, it is easier for governments and religions to just move us along on the path they want us to take. The one that best serves their agenda.

 

Thinking in terms of tradition, often there is a basis for accomplishing certain activities. It is always a good thing to learn from the past. But there must be a balance between traditional activities and thinking about a better action or answer. Factual knowledge does not always guarantee success in solving a problem.

 

I am sharing this poem not because it is emotional, or better than any I have read here on WordPress. It does teach a lesson and I am sure that each of us will come up with parallel situations.

 

“One day through the primeval wood

A calf walked home as good calves should;

But made a trail all bent askew,

A crooked trail as all calves do.

 

Since then three hundred years have fled,

And I infer the calf”s dead.

But still he left behind his trail,

And thereby hangs my moral tale.

The trail was taken up next day

By a lone dog that passed that way,

And then a wise bellwether sheep

Pursued the trail o’ver hill and glade

Through those old woods a path was made.

 

And many men wound in and out

And dodged and dodged and bent about

And uttered words of righteous wrath

Because t’was such a crooked path;

But still they followed—but do not laugh—

The first migrations of that calf,

And through this winding woodway stalked

Because he wobbled when he walked.

 

This forest path became a lane

That bent and turned and turned again;

This crooked lane became a road,

Where many a poor horse with his load

Toiled on beneath the burning sun,

And traveled some three miles in one.

And thus a century and a half

They trod the footsteps of that calf.

 

The years passed on in swiftness fleet,

The road became a village street;

And thus, before men were aware,

A city’s crowded thoroughfare.

And soon the central street was this

Of a renowned metropolis;

And men two centuries and a half

Trod in the footsteps of that calf.

Each day a hundred thousand rout

Followed this zigzag calf about

And o’er his crooked journey went

The traffic of a continent.

 

One hundred thousand men were led

By one calf near three centuries dead.

They followed one hundred years a day;

For thus such reverence is lent

To well-established precedent.”

—Sam Walter Foss

 

Sometimes, tradition is nothing more than “well established” precedent. Sometimes the best answers are found within our subconscious; when we develop the art of thinking.

 

 

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The Thinking Man, Cleveland Museum of Art. Cleveland, Ohio

The Thinking Man, Cleveland Museum of Art. Cleveland, Ohio

A Big Heart


The Big Heart

 

Big heart,

wide as a watermelon,

but wise as birth,

there is so much abundance

in the people I have:

Max, Lois, Joe, Louise,

Joan, Marie, Dawn,

Arlene, Father Dunne,

and all in their short lives

give to me repeatedly,

in the way the sea

places its many fingers on the shore,

again and again

and they know me,

they help me unravel,

they listen with ears made of conch shells,

they speak back with the wine of the best region.

They are my staff.

They comfort me.

 

They hear how

the artery of my soul has been severed

and soul is spurting out upon them,

bleeding on them,

Messing up their clothes,

dirtying their shoes.

And God is filling me,

though there times of doubt

as hollow as the Grand Canyon,

still God is filling me

He/she is giving me the thoughts of dogs,

the spider inits intricate web,

the sun

in all its amazement,

and a slain ram

that is the glory,

the mystery of great cost,

and my heart,

which is very big,

I promise it is very large,

a monster of sorts,

takes it all in—

all in comes the fury of love.

—Anne Sexton

 

 

“Too many things are occurring for even a big heart to hold”

—From an essay by W. B. Yeats

 

 

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May Peace Prevail

May Peace Prevail

Asian Slave Trade: Kidnapping, Prison Ships, Humanity At Its Worst


IdealisticRebel:

This is a human rights post.

Originally posted on Peace and Freedom:

Muhammed Ariful Islam, 22, a Dhaka painter who was held captive on a ship before being abandoned on a remote island, cries at a government shelter in Takua Pa district of Phang Nga October 17, 2014.  Credit: REUTERS/Athit Perawongmetha

PHANG NGA ThailandWed Oct 22, 2014 1:05am EDT

(Reuters) – When Afsar Miae left his home near Teknaf in southern Bangladesh to look for work last month, he told his mother, “I’ll see you soon.” He said he expected to return that evening.

He never did.

When he reported for work at a house on the outskirts of Teknaf, a man there gave him a drink of water. Soon, his eyelids sagged and his head started spinning.

When he awoke, it was dark. He had lost all sense of time. Two Bangladeshi men then forced him and seven others onto…

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Convergence


Originally posted on belsbror:

“Outside, people!”

It was cloudy at noon with no forecast of rain. Another Monday was nearly half finished though not to everyone’s liking: a suspected long power outage was about to wreck havoc to normal educational activities.

Liza looked out the grounds to find a spot where she could be alone to write the rough draft of her report. She noticed a girl standing up from a nearby bench, leaving another with earphones on her ears.

Erika saw her coming. Though she never intended to have a chat with someone, she needed a sounding board about her dilemma whether to tell Leyla or not that his brother was in love with her. A stranger could give her an unbiased advice.

“Can I sit here?”

Erika nodded, sizing her up, trying to decide whether to tell her what’s on her mind.

“Can I ask you something?”

They laughed at the coincidence of them asking the same question at the same time.

“Go ahead,” Erika said, confident now she found a confidant of sorts.

“I like this guy, who keeps…

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Infidelity On Television Is Quite An Affair


Originally posted on Chocolate Vent:

Matters of the heart have long been fodder for TV plots, from soap operas to dramas to reality fare. But a new spate of shows is blatantly tackling the touchy topic of cheating.

And like the Facebook status says: It’s complicated.

Grace is cheating on Neil and so Neil cheats on Grace — but they love each other — in USA’s new drama Satisfaction. On FX’s Married, a hapless Russ is comically struggling with his sex life with wife Lina. (Both shows air Thursdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT) And now Showtime is prepping an intense drama set to debut in October called The Affair.

“A generation ago, you never talked about having an affair. Then Oprah got us all talking about these things. And now that we’re all talking, the next step is we’re living things out more and less afraid — and TV’s catching up,” says…

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The earth is but one country…


Originally posted on charles1958:

Baha’i scriptures, from the words of Baha’ullah; in: The peace Bible; words from the great traditions.traditions. Los Angelles Kalimat Press, !986, p.115.

It is incumbent upon every man of insight and understanding to strive to translate that which hath been written into reality and action… That one indeed is a man who, today, dedicateth himself to the service of the entire human race. … It is not for him to pride himself who loveth his own country, but rather for him who loveth the whole world. The earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens.

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