My New Year, New Gong
Yesterday was my birthday, my personal new year. A good time to restart the broken Gong and to learn the lessons from having it break.
The Internet hasn't been available when I've needed it in recent days. An opportunity to go inward and let what's needed for this next phase bubble up spontaneously.
What does that mean for the blog? I'll tell you, and then I'll show you with the first post in the series, tomorrow..
I'll be continuing with the "cycles within cycles" format, including three blog posts in each nine-day period. This one, the introduction, is extra. But now, each of these nine-day periods will have a theme. Each nine-day period will SPELL something.
Last tangent from the Gem Show:
As a person drawn to bright shiny objects and who picks up rocks, it's easy for me to think the word "touchstone," and to think it as a stone that you touch, and so a talisman, a symbol of go(o)d luck, a reminder. And of course it is all those things.
But there's more to it--more to it literally, and therefore more to it metaphorically--in a way that calls me, at least, to level up, up!
seeing in the best light
"Frame" and "reframe" have been a recurrent theme lately.
- Trying to provide for family, or wanting to deplete fossil fuels to the point of no return?
- Dressing provocatively, or wanting to maximize vitamin D absorption?
- Sharing the benefit of hard-earned knowledge, or trying to sell more books by whatever means?
- Deepening my mindfulness, or starving myself?
I'll be writing more about this, but let's start by looking at the word "frame" itself.
between two fires
Since we've just been talking about monkey minds and about attention span related to sentence length, it's only natural that the word of the week should be
If we take a look at what we're saying when we use that word, it'll come clear that really there can be no such thing as attention deficit; it's all a matter of quality.
private confessions, public confidence
A keystone principle of my work as an editor is confidentiality. I believe this is crucial, whether we're working on a poetry collection or an academic thesis, a science book or a cookbook.
No matter the subject matter or genre, my client is pouring heart and soul into the project. If I'm to help him or her produce their best possible work, the art that's in truest harmony with their creative impulse, s/he must be comfortable confiding in me, confessing to me, trusting me with sh*tty first drafts and skeletons in the closet.
Ad here's the paradox: confidentiality gives birth to confidence!
process not product
In creating a blog, in performing a gong, in writing a book, in planting gardens, in the march of days, nights, seasons, there's repetition everywhere. What do you associate with repetition?
- "practice makes perfect"
- conscious replacement of memes
- focus, mindfulness, creation of second nature
- "fake it till you make it"
- "why do I have to sweep the floor/eat/pull weeds when I'll have to do it all again later?"
- So many words I could pick for "word of the week" here ! To push against the negative aspects of repetition, I chose "rote."
talking back to books, books talk back
As a young person, I bought into the idea that books were unalterable. I remember lying on the grass for hours with an eraser, cleaning up my used copy of Herodotus's Histories, not wanting someone else's notes on his Greek or his content, offended that this previous owner had presumed to write on the book!
But in reality, we've been talking back to books for as long as... well, actually, for as long as farming and economies of scale gave us the free time to do so. The root of "scholar" and "school" means...