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Kali…..
….. is my petite cat’s name. Sundeep, my son, named her when he got her as a young kitten to spare her from an impending execution. Considering the circumstances, her name, Kali, is associated with a tremendously powerful and significant namesake, which I think quite apt, if not seemingly over- expansive for this diminutive in size, yet formidable huntress, and presence inside and outside our home since she arrived many years ago. She still looks so young!!

Yet from the vantage point of Hindu sacred writings, and from real life, it is obvious to them and to me, at least, that these bodies are mere vessels for each life using them for a time, and what we see as a simple little creature from the outside is often quite illusory, so who really knows what is concealed beneath her shell? Who am I to presume to know? Is this cat something beyond her corporeal existence? Most def, IMO, but who is to say with certainty what or who she is or is not? For all I know, I may have been enjoying the company of a goddess all these years, who was quietly sharing her time with me, which would make just as much sense, given the Goddess’ special qualities relative to time, life, energy and death ;-). Whatever or whomever she is beyond the shell, she has done these things nonetheless, and more!! Gifts come to me–do I notice properly? Have I lived in gratitude? Does my “becoming” reflect expansion of my gratitude? If so, then it perhaps was not a squandered gift, and perhaps will one day expand to a fuller measure that fills up most my remaining time and thought in my shell-leaving less room for the human frailties that come from suffering, weakness and fatigue of spirit and body, betrayal, insecurity, fear, and loss. One can only hope. I tenaciously persist in hopeful ambition that Iight continue to grow and learn and evolve and rise above these cages of my life, neither accepting nor rejecting self or other, but remaining open to possibility. Time will tell…

From Wiki: Kālī (Sanskrit: काली, IPA: [kɑːliː]), also known as Kālikā (Sanskrit: कालिका), is the Hindu goddess associated with empowerment, shakti. The name Kali comes from kāla, which means black, time, death, lord of death, Shiva. Since Shiva is called Kāla—the eternal time—Kālī, his consort, also means “Time” or “Death” (as in time has come). Hence, Kāli is the Goddess of Time and Change.

Although sometimes presented as dark and violent, her earliest incarnation as a figure of annihilator of evil forces still has some influence. Various Shakta Hindu cosmologies, as well as Shākta Tantric beliefs, worship her as the ultimate reality or Brahman. She is also revered as Bhavatārini (literally “redeemer of the universe”). Comparatively recent devotional movements largely conceive Kāli as a benevolent mother goddess.

Kālī is represented as the consort of Lord Shiva, on whose body she is often seen standing. Shiva laid in path of Kali, whose foot on Shiva subdues her anger. She is time manifestation of other Hindu goddesses like Durga, Bhadrakali, Sati, Rudrani, Parvati and Chamunda. She is the foremost among the Dasa Mahavidyas, ten fierce Tantric goddesses.

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I miss you but gratefully treasure the gifts our time brought to my life, and what might have brought to yours. That’s both the painful parts and the joy that all changed us both– all have a value. That can’t ever be taken from me–I wish for you joy, happy times, and satisfaction, and closeness to your loved ones, in good times and bad, and friends you can talk to when you need it, bliss and passion–all the important things.

I am always open to healthy friendships old and new, near or far, now or later, however we parted. Unhappy partings don’t have to have to be forever unhappy and needn’t decide the future if we choose a different happier authentic path that works for us both, learning from and forgiving past mistakes and misunderstandings, accepting each other, and growing something new and better.

I am not often one who chooses obliteration–but must accept that bridges between people need connections by both sides. I will be a bridge builder; how about you?

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I’m sure that it was noticed that I had to stay offline for a while. Why was not because of lack of motivation, desire, or enthusiasm. In fact in early 2010 I started losing ability to regulate vision, along with other sensory stuff, and I was lemonade especially around using computers are looking it anything with backlighting , and now I spend much of my time virtually in the dark. Recently I’ve been able to start doing some things online that I like this, using speech to type, and trying to grab some energy to continue to do artwork even in the dark, or at least extremely low light. Having “old people eyes”, that has a very finite tolerance period, as well, However I have explored frequently doing my drawings completely in the dark. When I’m at the doctors office sometimes I sketch while blindfolded from the harsh lights, using only my fingers of my op. cit. hand to the gates space and location on index cards. I’m always amazed at the drawings themselves that they are as coherent as they are. At those times I just draw what my mind is looking a.

I have lost some vision, some control over my vision, now intermittently have brief periods of total blindness and it has begun to affect other functional things like speech, so I’ve definitely had to make some difficult choices to preserve the function I have, and continue to do things that I love and be able to do them in the future. Blind services is working with me now, and I’m discovering more ways to express myself and connect, even from my bubble!!

I was one of his children, who was always afraid of the dark. It took a long, long time for that to change. And then this. There are no monsters that are chasing me now, or hiding in my closet or under my bed anymore, but I did want to make it a permanent part of my life, either. However at this point in my life, there’s been so much change over a half century, that I’ve almost become habituated to adjusting or adapting. like some sort of accelerated evolution. Each kind of change has inherently it’s own darknesses, and fear-evoking potential.

;

While I can only speak for myself, I found that rather than fighting it, whether it involves tearing down, breaking down, unraveling, deconstructing, reconstituting, recycling, repurposing, rebuilding, cyborging in ways that I would never have found them until I was there, embracing the darkness when it comes, facing things for which there are no handy or convenient answers or solutions despite sometimes great fear, for me, by letting myself sit with it and not turn away, i e been able, quite to my surprise at times, that I was led to find, in those dark places, not monsters, but rather very important missing pieces of myself that really mattered, and needed to be processed and integrated. The darkness that I feared WAS me, too, and what I was avoiding were lost facets of myself that needed air and space. 🙂

;

Being able to get so pulled into something that time and the world dissolve away, for example, was something that I always felt guilty about, because I had no sense of time space or physical needs. Now I’ve discovered that is a part of a larger gift, too. IIssas trying to tell me something important about what I need, my abilities that i have (vs disabilities or flaws), and is a beacon to things that I am passionate about, and really want to do, that I truly connect with, not merely things that I imagined I’m supposed to do or want to do.

External goals and structuring, for me, inhibit creative expression, so I just go with flow, and trust the process. What comes out is what needs to come out; my art is always trying to tell me something, as does everything that I do. Understanding the message may take more time to cook, but I think that’s how it needs to be for me. Whatever I am creating, external agendas and rigidly self-imposed ones, as well, inhibit me, and when I stop trying to control or don’t let others do that, my creative flow goes, and somehow always seems to work, however imperfect they may seem to the outside world, whether essays, posts, songs, singing, poems, or visual art, the best things come for me, when I let go to size the pool and I let go of the steering wheel and stop trying to drive the bus. Just trying to see what happens when I let go, always produces something interesting..

For me, it’s not about shutting out the controllers and critics who also have space in my head, or steeling myself to face that darkness when that child part of me is screaming, “run away!!” Giving space and focus to all of it when it comes, when it’s time, all feelings are liberating when they are given a place at my table. In my experience, if you’re lucky enough to have the ability to get lost in the process, I say fabulous!! Its a great gift!!! Give it room to grow!!

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    A Poem for My Children

(A True Story)
by Donna Earley

When I was young, I yearned to be
More like my forest family.
Anchored, bowing toward the creek,
My roots, so strong, would reach so deep.
I asked my trees to show to me
What I could do to be a tree.

“Precious child, we love you so,
You do belong, but you must know
Because your nature is to flow,
You must be free to come and go.
And though so small you still may be,
Someday a river you can be.

Then, when you’ve grown to your full flow,
Into the ocean you may go!
Imagine all that you might see
And how connected you’d then be!
Sometimes, you can return again
When heavens bring you back with rain.

Though anchored here we must remain
The times that you come back again,
Then tell us all that you did see
While you were flowing wild and free!
We’ll feel as if we went along,
And here you’ll always have a home,

Looking back each time, I knew….that what they said was right and true.

But flowing free did have a price,
And many things were sacrificed.
For every time I came back home,
A few more precious trees were gone.
Then one day, I grieved to see,
Apartments where my trees should be!

Now, not a single sapling left,
Tears flooded every place I wept.
Bricks, concrete, and asphalt too
Had taken what I loved and knew.
With grief so great, for years I flowed
Not caring more of where I’d go.

But time did slow me for a while,
And twice gave me a precious child.
While each one carried parts from me,
Each also had some traits of trees.
While little, they did gladly go
Wherever Mother chose to flow.

But each, in turn, declared to me,
“I feel.. I need to be a tree.
Your flowing life, inland or sea
May be what you are meant to be,
But Mother, we are not the same;
At times your flowing gives me pain.

I am part tree, and so I need
A place where roots can grow and breathe.
A forest is where I belong,
Where future saplings can grow strong.
Oh, don’t be sad, and please don’t cry.
My love for you will never die.

Go-be the river that you are,
But just don’t drift away too far.
You’re part of us, as we are you,
There’s still important work for you.
No matter what we choose to be,
Our Mother you will always be.

Just one request we have of you,
If you would try your best to do:
Your flow feeds us in many ways,
But floods can wash the soil away!
A gentle flow would be so kind,
And give us all much peace of mind!”

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