Saturday, July 23, 2022

Morningstar....The Journey takes a new path

 It is with a heavy heart I would like to let friends know that our beloved Morningstar passed away this past week after a valiant battle with cancer.

It is so hard to grasp that our feisty, compassionate and caring friend will no longer post her much read thoughts on her blog and allow us a glimpse into her life.  She and I started our thoughts around much the same time and over the years, met several times. She was as lovely, funny and full of life as her words showed her to be and although COVID and other issues prevented us from meeting for many years now, we kept in touch.

Morningstar's strength, courage and determination through the trials and tribulations that life threw at her were indisputable. She met adversity - mental, emotional and physical - with courage and grace.

I am just so thankful that she met her Sir and has enjoyed such a wonderful, fullfilling and loving bond with someone who clearly understood and appreciated the gem she was.   Her love and care for her Little One was a lesson to all of us in compassion, and faith and her loving hands will be sorely missed by a little girl, now bereft of one of her greatest champions.

My heart aches for her Sir Steve who whose firm, kind hands gave her the harbour she sought her entire life.  The bond they shared is not often found and for those of us who read about his benevolent and guiding spirit to our friend were  so very happy she had found her other half.

My deepest and most heartfelt sympathy go out to both Sir Steve and the Little One.

Do not stand at my grave and weep
I am not there. I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning’s hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there. I did not die.

Mary Elizabeth Frye

As an early riser, when I see the last star glinting in the wakening sky I will think of her.

Wednesday, August 25, 2021

On god...

 Einstein's reply to someone who asked him if he believed in God:

- I believe in the God of Spinoza.

Only those who had read Spinoza understood...

Spinoza spent his life studying holy books and philosophy, one day he wrote:

I don't know if God actually spoke but if he did, this is what I think he would say to the believer:
Stop praying and punching yourself in the chest!
What I want you to do is go out into the world to enjoy your life.
I want you to have fun, sing, educate yourself... enjoy everything I've done for you.
Stop going to those dark and cold temples you built yourself and say it's my house!
My house is in mountains, woods, rivers, lakes.
This is where I live with you and express my love for you.

Stop accusing me of your miserable life,
I never told you there was anything wrong inside of you, that you were a sinner, that your sexuality or joy was a bad thing!
So don't blame me for everything they told you to believe.
Stop rehashing sacred readings that have nothing to do with me.

If you can't read me at dawn, in a landscape, in the eyes of your friend, your wife, your man, in the eyes of your son... You won't find me in a book!
Stop scaring yourself.
I don't judge you, I don't criticize you, I don't go home angry and I don't punish.

I am pure love... filled you with passions, limitations, pleasures, feelings, needs, inconsistencies... and gave you free will...

How can I blame you if you answer something I put in you?
How can I punish you for being who you are, if I am the one who made you?
Do you really think I could create a place to burn all my poorly behaved kids for the rest of eternity?

What kind of God can do this?

If I were so, I wouldn't deserve to be respected.
If I just wanted to be revered, I would have populated the earth only with dogs. ..
Respect your fellow man and don't do what you don't want for yourself.

All I ask is that you pay attention to your life, that your free will be your guide.
You and nature are one entity.... so don't believe you have power over it.
You are part of her.
Take care of her and she will take care of you. I put and made everything good for you accessible and made it difficult to access what is not.

Don't put your genius looking for what's bad for that balance.
It's up to you to keep this balance intact.
Nature knows how to keep it very well, just don't disturb it!

I made you absolutely free.
You are absolutely free to create a heaven or hell in your life.
I can't tell you if there's anything after this life, but I can give you some advice,

Stop believing in me this way,
Believing is supposed, guess, imagine.
I don't want you to believe in me, I want you to feel me in you.
That you feel me in you when you take care of your sheep, when you approach your little girl, when you pet your dog, when you bathe in the river....

Express your joy and get used to taking just what you need!
The only thing for sure is that you are here, that you are alive, that this world is full of wonders... and that in all these wonders you are able to know exactly what you really need.

Don't look for me outside,
You will not find me....
I'm here... Nature,
The cosmos... It's me.

Excerpt from Baruch Spinozza

Thursday, August 12, 2021

On the fleeting nature of life and time ... Part the Third

 Rosemary died in 2006 - of cancer.

It hit me remarkably hard considering it has been the better part of 30 years since we have seen or even talked to one another.  But my heart actually ached!  She was an incredible mother - compassionate, caring, understanding - and I thought with a pang of her children. In 2006, her youngest K would have been around 20, her older son B. around 27- so in a sense, "adults"- but in reality still children.   There is something so difficult about losing a parent even when you yourself are so much older - at 20 (today) kids are still feeling their way.

What struck me the most was the absolute WASTE .... the sense that the world was a poorer, sadder place without this beautiful soul in it! 

Rosemary was someone who made a difference in this world. She was passionate about care for mothers and their babies. She felt strongly about making the birth experience a positive one for the mother, the child and the family and with determination made her dream happen. I can only imagine the multitude of women for whom she was a midwife and for all those that her efforts to make midwifery reputable and a genuine option were instrumental in creating wonderful memories.

As someone who had a really toxic and traumatizing birth experience with my third birth due to misogyny and the patriarchal nature of our medical system, I often regretted not having a midwife there to intercede for me and thrilled when I heard about her successful campaign to start the College of Midwifery in Toronto and the acceptance (often reluctant!)- of the medical field to accept properly trained midwives as genuine, positive and professional options for pregnant women.

I lost my faith a very long time ago.  Brought up Irish Catholic - I make the distinction because there most decidedly is one -with Catholicism with a matriarchal bent (Ireland's matriarchal history ensured that Mary figured largely in the Christianizing of that green island), was always enjoined to "speak to his mother, he can't say no!" - healthy dollop of compassion and caring, and remarkably little hellfire and brimstone.   But maturity, scandal after scandal, awareness of the absolutely MISOGNY and patriarchal nature of the Church inevitably undermined, eroded and ultimately destroyed my faith.   

Bottom line, I could never rationalize believing in this supreme being nor comprehend his supposed constant surveillance with what were clearly inequitable and grossly unbalanced realities.   Neither do I believe in karma.  My experience has been a lot of crappy things happen to really good people and a lot of fabulous things really happen to people without an ounce of decency in them.

Rosemary's death simply supports my belief.

Why her? Only 49 when she died of a terrible disease. And while I didn't know her intimately, I knew her long enough to be able to know that she was an incredibly amazing human being.  Someone who made a difference in the world - who made lives with whom she crossed paths better for knowing her.  Whose actions in her short 49 years continue to this day.

I looked at my life and have to question, why her and not me?  I have not made a huge impact on anything in life. In many ways, I feel I have wasted any potential I might have had - starting off strong but then fizzling out - and in the end making few waves and drifting through time and space with few ripples and no long-term effects.  

I see her death as another nail in the coffin of my former beliefs - a confirmation that indeed this life is a crapshoot and ultimately without meaning.

Rosemary's death is a true tragedy and I mourn her passing.