Thursday, August 4, 2011

Involved, not 'attached'

I haven't been blogging much because I've been so involved and attached to the endless and senseless debate in Congress about the debt limit.

So, I've been serializing my mystery novel "Murder on the Block".

(Here's an aside: It was a real exercise in vulnerability to put my fiction in my blog. And I've heard nothing about it from anyone. It was a risk I took and I'd like some response. I've checked my blog for comments---Nada. If you've read the work, I'd like to hear from you. I don't care if you liked it, loved it, didn't like it, hated it. I'd just like to know. Don't comment on my blog. That's a real pain to look at. Send me an email at with your thoughts about the mystery. Again, I don't much care if you thoughts are negative or positive. I just want to hear some. Thanks.)

So, tonight I reminded myself of how to be Involved and not Attached.

I have a demonstration of that. Take a paperback book and put a piece of paper--a piece of typing paper, a napkin, your phone bill--in the book. Then fold the book.

"Involved" means, literally, "in the 'volutions'" or, more understandably, "in the folds".

Then, unfold the book and remove the paper you put in it. That piece of paper is "involved", but not "attached" as the pages of the book are.

That is, it seems to me, the way we--you and I need to BE in life. We need to be 'involved' but not 'attached' to the ebb and flow of history, the give and take of events. We need to be inside of them and a part of what is happening, but for our souls' sake, we need to be detached, able to step back from the day to day and live "from" another place.

I was just out on the deck. The bird traffic, which is enormous, across our back yard, has died down as darkness begins to descend. But the evening bird songs continue.

I was reminded that the birds of the air don't care about the Dow Jones Average, or the Tea Party or the debt crisis in Europe. They live on, detached from what seems so vital and consuming to me.

Let the birds' songs inspire us to be fiercely 'involved' in what is happening around us, yet 'detached' from all that is political, social, cultural, theological, so that we might view it from a bit of distance and 'come from' that 'safe place' back into our world.

Jesus always retreated to lonely places to pray after a time of activity. He was deeply 'involved' and yet 'detached' from the crowds and the world that swirled around him. Not a bad model. Not a bad way to "BE" in the world. Coming from 'who we BE', rather than being attached to the storm and drung of life and be defined by our attachment to all that.

I thank the birds for reminding me.

I can 'come from' a place of detachment and peace and emptiness and power rather than trying to 'get to' a place of peace.

Good advice from the creatures of the air....

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some ponderings by an aging white man who is an Episcopal priest in Connecticut. Now retired but still working and still wondering what it all means...all of it.