It doesn’t really matter any more

Tuesday May 6, 2008

Making slow progress today, after a fitful night, I found this quote in my entry for June 18, 2005:

“But I’d better say: I have no religion. I don’t need any, don’t practice any, I don’t pray, don’t meditate, don’t confess and don’t atone, I am no sinner and no saint, no eremite and no philosopher. I just live, amidst this colourful world, again and again enjoying the experience of the immediate nearness and the deep community with every thing existing, and based on the insight that everything belongs to one all embracing totality which becomes manifest in me like in all other things, and so gives me the security to live in the present, to enjoy day by day whatever they may bring.”
 
Yun-Men

It set me back for a bit, did that. Made me wonder if I ought not to think about it. I decided against:

A remarkably few years ago
I would say that I am such and such
and that I do thus and so.
 
Then, losing certainty, I relented,
forgot my such and such,
and stopped my thus and so.
 
Now, happy at last,
I find it doesn’t matter
either way.
 
–John Bailey
  Somerset, May 2008

So, pottering in the garden with Dolly watching fondly from her favourite stepping stone in the sun, I picked up a few weeds, and sighed quietly over some slug-nibbled blossoms. And it doesn’t matter, really, either way.

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16 responses to “It doesn’t really matter any more

  1. Dolly=wise cat

  2. This earthly being may say it doesn’t matter either way, but you know me, not so sure about that. Admittedly I take on too much matters. 🙂

  3. What matters is this “Now, happy at last”. Then I too think, it doesn’t matter either way.

  4. That’s a keeper.

  5. Thanks John, for sharing so much of yourself with all of us. I love your poem.

  6. Your poem stopped me dead in my tracks, John, especially in light of the fact that you have just put into a really wonderful poem, exactly what I have discovered. Thank you.

  7. A much more elegant way of saying, “Don’t sweat the small stuff.”

  8. Okay. I’ve gotta ask … where are these waykewl little symbol thingamajigs coming from? (I like mine a lot, thank you.)

  9. The little symbol thingamajigs are a new feature from the wordpress guys, Dee, generated from your name or email addy if you don’t have a wordpress profile with a photo/’avatar’. I like yours, too!

    Re the little poem… thanks, guys!

  10. Mary Lee said what I would have said, had I thought of it first! 🙂

  11. That kind of thing should be printed out and taped to one’s monitor.

    Long time, no read, John.

    jl
    ~http://timewaits.com

  12. john i enjoy your blog very much 🙂

  13. This strikes home today, after I was in the grocery store and a lovely man began with the “Do you know what a Christian is?” and “Have you read John 3:16 in the Bible?” and so on and so forth.

    We’ve all been through it, but after the first minute or two I find it very tiresome to have someone trying to “save” me. My smile begins to feel less genuine and I just want him to go away.

    I don’t need saving, thanks. Happy quite as I am.

    I wonder why we feel we ought to be smiling and polite to people who do that? My standard response these days is a loud: “How rude!” I get truly inventive with the invective if they don’t take that as a hint.

  14. Wow, wordpress put a cross — is that appropriate, or what?

  15. Shirley, in PA

    Oh John, how very beautiful. You have a wise soul.

  16. John,

    Perhaps I don’t have your courage, or at least I’m not ready to make use of what I do have before I know what I want to say and how to say it.

    I think his heart is in the right place and just because I find his attitude condescending, and yes unintentionally rude because of that, doesn’t mean I want to be harsh. I would like to find a gracious and kind way of giving him the message.

    I note that people like him tell themselves (and their audience) that the reason they do it is because they love their fellow man so much, while they are displaying such intolerance for the beliefs and lifestyles of others.

    If this guy keeps it up, he will find he has tangled with someone who will set him straight about what he can and cannot press upon her. I don’t have endless patience. But I do believe it is more important to be kind than to be right (that’s paraphrased from somewhere) and I hope to say my piece in that spirit.

    Not that “How rude!” wouldn’t be kind, I guess, in comparison to what I’m really thinking!

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