Said the Captain,
The Son of a Captain,
Whose Father was Captain before
We drive for the
Nethermost edge of the world
Where we'll meet
The great captains of yore.
We are told
That they wait us
Were a hiatus
Is known on that distant black shore.
But the devil will greet us
And slyly intreat us
With the lie
Just a little bit more.
The Rise of Silence
They believe that we are no threat.
And they are right.
Yet little do they know
The power of Silence
Though immersed and surrounded by it.
They rarely notice
And certainly, never give ear.
For there is too much to say.
Too much to do.
Too little time.
They are too busy
While all the while Silence grows.
With deafening stealth.
Silence only knows.
But those who listen
For the end
We all suppose.
The end when noise
Has worn itself out
When words have had their say
When scheming, toiling, and anguish cease,
When all that’s left is deathly Silence,
That will be the day.
The day when silent
Hearts are still.
And noise is done away.
And then break forth
When Silence speaks
And earth bursts forth
In radiant Life
The fruit of silent
Through woeful noise.
And then crying, weeping
The chattering horde
In rocks and hills
And corn whisky stills
With the one thing they can’t abide.
For hide as they will,
The Silence still
Will find them there
And chase them
God only knows where,
Till Silence reigns
From plane to plane
Be our reward
For bearing the grief
Of their unbelief
Yes, they believe that
We are no threat...
And they are right.
Retreat seems to be the answer to the problem of outward evil.
All else is war.
It seems that we must forsake our ground,
Renounce our claim,
And prefer even to die
Rather than participate in a world where we see others as our enemies.
The Beggar's Bowl 3 - Scalable
And that means that
During the lean times
You will not buy my Merchandise.
You will not need my t-shirt or coffee mug.
But perhaps, if you find what I say to be valuable,
You will let me live.
For this reason, now and then, I beg.
It is part of a scalable model.
And while I can,
I'll sell you books,
And things to hang on your wall.
But too, I ask that you'd consider
Dropping a few coins into my hat
If you can spare them.
You can click the donate button on this website
Or contribute to my Venmo account: thetracklesspath
Or to my paypal account: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Family is the basic unit of existence.
It exists above as it does below.
And all other social structures
Will eventually fall away.
But family is biological,
And it is biological because
It reflects the nature of the soul.
The Death of Dogmatism
Dogmatism is dead.
Well, no it's not.
But it is dying.
And it is because of the internet.
Fewer and fewer people are interested in creeds.
They do not want to be pitted against their neighbor for a trifle.
And they seek out the truth they need for its own sake.
They do not need you to tell them what it is.
And so, to them, your Master of Theology degree
Is worth the paper it is written on.
For they can see past all that
To the thing that unites
If they choose to,
Look that is.
And more and more, they are.
They want the truth that helps, that's all.
And most, I think, are content to keep their differences to themselves.
And I believe that it is a good thing
That the dogmatic are rendered
More and more impotent.
And yet, they rage on,
Insistent that theirs is the only truth, the only way.
But sooner or later, that spirit will die away with the brightness of His coming.
The Last Great Age
There was the stone age
And then the Iron age.
After that came the middle ages
And then the industrial age
And the information age.
And there are those who claim
That the next great age
Is the Augmented age:
The age when AI will tie us all together
With augmented faculties.
It is a manmade Utopian ideal
To which many of the brightest minds
Are bending their wits at present.
But the augmented age will fail.
It is too complex for man to handle.
It is a leaning tower of Babel.
And when it falls,
Confusion will follow in its wake
And from the ashes will then rise
The last great age of man:
The age of gifts.
And for those with eyes to see,
The seeds of this last great age are being planted even now
In the hearts of those who choose to live by the gifts of God and man.
It is the only Utopia there ever was or ever will be.
Where Books Fall Short
Only the lesser part of Truth can be bound up in a book.
The greater part must be revealed by the Holy Spirit.
It is the sealed portion promised
To all those who have faith
Like the ancients.
Writing takes time
But publishing takes longer.
And it's all work and I rejoice in it.
However, there are many things
That I desire to say in the days that I have left.
And the less I spend my time on publishing,
The more time I have to write.
And so I am going to try to outsource.
I figure that the cost to publish one of these short thoughts
Is probably about five dollars, maybe ten.
I am still in the process of figuring that out.
But for the sake of simplicity, we'll call it five.
Therefore, If you would like to sponsor an episode
By sending me a fiver,
I would greatly appreciate it.
My Venmo account is thetracklesspath.
And my Paypal account is email@example.com.
All of the funds will go toward the cost of publication, however,
I pray that you will consider adding 50 cents for me.
A little change that I can spend
To support the ones I love.
God bless you always,
The Last Judgement
It seems like institutions are bound to judge by outward things,
Or not to judge, as the case may be,
Though those who do not judge are short-lived,
Since the criteria for acceptance and full fellowship
Is the standard by which institutions are defined,
Just as a person is defined, to some extent,
By what they allow into their lives.
So, a nation, a church, a university, or club,
Must decide upon some measurable standard to which its members will adhere.
And the standard gives them something to shoot for,
A measuring stick by which they may try to figure out if they are good.
And many, especially the strong, through constant effort and sometimes prayer
Will rise above their baser natures to stand triumphant upon the pinnacle of their institution's standard.
These are the bright ones whose faces hang in halls of earthly glory.
And if the standard of the institution reflects, to some extent,
The reality of heavenly things,
(I say to some extent because no earthly standard
Can perfectly emulate the wisdom that resides on high.)
Then the heavens may also smile down upon the "winners" in the group.
And, when it goes just right, it is beautiful in its own imperfect way.
However, institutions and the outward standards they employ
To define themselves and their members
Have an ugly underbelly.
For one thing, they are fraught with the plague of the ambitious:
Those who have no interest in the spirit of the standard
Accept as a means to set themselves up
Upon lofty seats in the synagogue.
And without the help of God, It is nearly impossible to detect these wolves.
And even if detected, it is rare that they will let their seats be taken.
For this reason, institutions corrupt with age.
For the ambitious love to promote their friends
And before long, the leaders have gobbled up the food
That was intended for the children of the sect,
And rule in what they believe to be the house of God as self-made Gods of glory.
The other ugliness of institutions and their outward means of judging
Is the weak: those who are not strong enough, or smart enough, or ambitious enough
To rise from their baser natures, and claim their place in the gilded halls of earthly fame.
And without the help of God, the losers are no easier to judge than the winners.
Nobody knows whether another's failure is because they could not or would not.
God only knows.
And surely, the standard is not to blame. Where would we be without standards?
But for those who can forsake the glory of their institutions,
There is a better way to judge.
And those who judge by this last judgement know each other at a glance.
They are their own fraternity. They overlook the outward thing in favor of the real.
And in the end, they embody the best and most perfect spirit of the standard
To which institutions aspire, namely that of lifting another up,
Not through outward ceremony, but in respect and esteem.
"I love the man who tries," they say,
"And in my heart his face is hung with a thousand wreaths of glory!"
"I will be his friend," they say. "I will pretend that I'm no better than he."
"For who knows but what I am not."
How Great Is That Darkness
Before you decide to enlighten others with your perspective,
Make sure that your light is not darkness. Will it uplift?
Is there some enobling truth that you impart?
Or are you simply tearing down
Something you disagree with or do not understand
Because you think you know or are too afraid to listen?
Remember that truth is its own advocate.
Be a seeker,
And if your words resound the truth,
Those with ears to hear will hear.
For the acquisition of truth functions upon the principle of addition,
And woe unto those
Whose only light is to remove what they perceive as a mote in their brother's eye!
And great, great, is the darkness of him who thinks
That poisoned darts can heal.
For left himself, he would drag the world down
To nothing more than a reflection of his own opinions.
And that is because he believes that he is doing the world of service.
But I know that this message is for those who have stepped into the light.
The Time When What Is Is
The time has come when what is is.
And you can no longer sanctify it by your ceremony.
Nor can you desecrate it by coveting your own supposed power.
For that which was once bestowed on man
Shrivels in the bright light
Of His dawning.
And divine knowledge will finally give meaning
To all the symbols that approached the real.
So that, we will partake in the thing itself
Or die clinging to the shadow
That preceded it.
I thought that for this edition of the beggar's bowl,
I would speak about my plans for retirement.
First of all, I do not intend to retire
Since I love what I do.
But if the day ever comes
That my body is too old to work,
And my fingers too knarled and ugly to write,
Or if my voice gives out and I am unable to speak the truth that burns within me like an unquenchable fire,
Then I will beg.
And I will pray for those who help me.
That is what I will do for those who choose to let me live another day.
That is my plan.
And in the meantime, I will practice.
I pray that you will consider helping me in my work.
And if you can find it in your heart to give me fifty cents,
I will do my best to spend it wisely
In the loving of my family
And in the necessary expenses of my calling.
And for those who do,
Thank you. You will be in my prayers...always.
And here are the places that you can contribute:
The Falling Leaves of Promise
They are moving out, one by one,
From the system that promised so much
And now cannot deliver the pleasure that it promised.
And as they do, they leave chaos in their wake, prescious chaos...
Like the heat that beats down upon a smoldering mass of leaves.
I always loved the Fall, so silent, so pure.
So reminiscent of a thing I couldn't place,
Accept in the memory of other cool and dying days,
And in the precious recollection of childhood feasts of love,
Of family, and of all that exists when work is put away
And we remember what we were working for.
And perhaps that's what they are doing,
Going home to the reason,
Forsaking the scream of getting more
And choosing family over the press and pressure.
If so, then I look forward to the dark and fertile soil
With which God will plant his garden
In the Spring that follows
His Long Winter.
The Completeness Doctrine
There are many
Whose faith relies upon a completeness doctrine.
They believe that the truth may be found
The way a shiny pebble may be found
And carried away in one's pocket.
They see the acquisition of Truth as an event and not a process.
And so once they believe that it has been secured,
And bound up within the creed,
They relax into the knowledge
That it is theirs to keep, and theirs alone.
But they do not realize that such truth never comes alone.
It is always accompanied by falsehood.
There are wolves among the sheep.
And ignorant among the best of us.
So that no framework is without its flaws.
And it is our job to look within
And seek help from the divine
To weed out all that is not true,
Not for the sake of setting others right,
But so that we may see the truth more clearly for ourselves.
But know that when you do,
There will be those who will renounce you as a heratic,
And all because you cannot swallow
The completeness doctrine.
They want you to be all in,
But for those of us who want the truth at all costs,
That is not enough.
Calling This a Podcast
From now on, I will be calling this a PodCast
Since nobody reads poetry anymore.
And if something rhymes
Just pretend that it's coincidence.
And do your best to forget that I'm a poet.
I will do the same.
Though we may not see eye to eye,
I am able to overlook our differences
In almost everything
Accept the doctrine of infallibility.
It is the one thing that truly rankles me.
Some say that their pope is infallible,
And others their prophet,
And others their book,
And others their interpretation of the book.
And that is fine as far it goes.
And it's almost true on certain days,
And in certain ways when the wind blows just right.
But then again it's not.
It's too lofty,
And if even God,
While veiled in flesh,
Refused to be called good.
How do we dare do any different?
Thanksgiving Day Message 2022
It is Thanksgiving day,
And I just wanted to take a moment to express how grateful I am.
Last night I felt as if I had crossed a finish line. But don't ask me what that means.
And since life is one long race, the end of one race is the beginning of another, and then another, until the end.
Nonetheless, I feel so grateful to be the thing I am today. And perhaps that is the race that I have finished: the race of becoming.
And surely that race will go on and on for thousands of tomorrows.
But today feels like the culmination of many yesterdays
And something to be thankful for.
How grateful I am for the chance to exist in this world!
I pray that God will bless you on this Thanksgiving Day in all that you're becoming. And I thank God for what you are today.
How does the man of God grow rich?
In the same way that the deer, and the elk,
And the moose grow rich,
By natural process,
And by unexplainable divine intent.
What else can explain the growth
Of the glory of the males
Of these species.
And every year their rack grows larger.
But unlike the worldly man
Who hordes his cache of fame and wealth,
These kings of the forest shed, each year,
The symbol of their age, and power, and wisdom.
So, the man of God is much the same.
Through natural process
And by unexplainable divine intent
He grows great through the bestowal of divine gifts
Only to shed these gifts
To the betterment of his fellow man,
Until he reaches that poverty
In which lies the seeds of wealth.
And the process starts all over again.
And every time he lets go of his worldly possessions
And allows himself to become empty,
There arises renewed faith
In God's ability to do it all again.
The Loss of All
He is going to allow us to suffer
Because he wants us to know Him.
We have worshipped
But we have not fully known
And we cannot fully know
Until we have suffered with Him
The loss of all.
The Valley of Ruin
Ruin is a gift.
Within the context of ruin,
One can reassess and recalibrate.
But the unrepentant will not do that.
And I cannot help them here.
I do not speak to them.
But for those who've always known
That something wasn't quite right
With all their self-made glory,
Ruin opens the portal
It breaks down in preparation
For that which God will build up.
It kills and strips to the bare bone.
In preparation for a more glorious resurrection
When sinews and flesh will come up upon them
And we will live and not die.
But the path to such things
Does not lead down roads of glory.
It leads through the valley of dry bones,
Through the valley of ruin.
Finding God's Pain
People make choices to avoid pain.
Some avoid immediate pain
And mind-numbing choices.
Others make choices
To avoid future pain
By being responsible
And looking out for their future selves.
But if we choose to follow God into the trackless path,
We will discover that inevitably,
He will lead us to embrace
Not only the sweet but the bitter.
And it is only in this way
That we can be freed from our aversion to pain.
Only then can we come to be pained
By that which causes God pain.
Hacking the Flow State
You cannot hack the flow state without undesirable repercussions.
A fruit tree does not set a goal. It lives according to its nature and suffers well the pruning, and thereby, in due season, gives forth fruit.
Letting Go Of Earthly Pleasure
They blindly imbibe in earthly pleasure
But that won't work for long
Because all earthly bliss
That does not unite us
In heavenly bonds
And the end is close at hand.
And the day will come when you will need
The help of unseen helpers.
For that reason,
The best strategy is to forego momentary pleasure,
To forestall the impulse toward the profane
And wait upon deliverance
Unto the sublime.
And if you can't,
To seek the help of God.
But the prophets and the sages
Have been saying that for a long time.
And perhaps we now must reap what we have sowed.
Surely...the time has come.
And the message has gone forth.
And the end is at hand.
And perhaps in that
Some, if not many, will be redeemed through suffering.
But how black the night that comes,
How unspeakably terrible,
You do not know.
For the world will be wrapped
In what will appear to be endless night.
So that, in comparison,
All that which you believed to be evil
Will shrink increasingly
To ever paler shades of grey.
And some will run headlong
Into all that they feared with a will
And with loathing of the light.
And others will turn with yearning hearts
Toward the unseen place of glory.
And when the darkness has had its way
And the world with all its pomp
Has descended into the pit.
Then, with key in hand,
The mighty one will come and seal all those
Who do not love the light
Unto the thing that they desire.
I shudder to think of it.
But there is hope for them
Who have not killed the truth within.
And may heaven shed its mercy upon them
In whom still lives the love of light!
And deliver them from darkness!
One step at a time.
For there, just on the other side
Of that great night to end all nights
Shines the brightness of a world reborn.
And you do not know how bright it shines!
Its pillars rise heavenward
And glisten in the light
Of everlasting truth.
And for all those who can forego
The delights of earthly pleasure,
Or at least begin the journey
Toward the holy place,
There awaits unseen helping hands
Ready to lift them up and point the way.
And the time is now.
The clock has already tolled the hour.
And the only thing left to do
Is to turn the refiner's fire up
And discover who is who.