Monday, April 20, 2009

Direct From The Heart.

It is rare in these days for an artist to climb out of their persona and perform exclusively with talent and no artifice. I as well as millions witnessed that in watching and hearing Susan Boyle sing. I was reminded of identifying with the physical illusion, being judgemental and mean spirited all based on a lie. The sheath that encloses the essence means nothing. The essence means everything. If we were all blind who would are friends be?


Julie said...

Hi Allen, that was brilliant - thanks. I loved watching the audience recoil in horror - a rolly polly 48-year old woman with bushy eyebrows, who has never been kissed just did a pelvic thrust on stage! But she sure made all that crap irrelevant by the time she got done. If only being blind meant seeing with the heart. How do you get to a place of objectivity or create an interior space where you can really see people without pre-judgement? the difference betweeen acting and reacting? It ain't easy because solitude and silence are often required. What? slow down and be reflective? We place so much importance on being an "active" member of society. What about becoming a receptive member of society? You know, to see people and things like you did when you were a kid.

I just watched the movie Meatballs again with Bill Murray - his character Tripper knows what I'm talking about.

high five Allen,

In order for anything to express itself, it needs to be held in positive regard. But this regard is not a judgment of a thing as beautiful when it is not. The positive regard is the capacity to experience the particularity of the things of the world in an attitude of silence and waiting.

The heart says yes there is something here to behold beyond what I think or feel about it.

The heart does not strive after meaning, but rather allows the things to disclose themselves.

- Robert Sardello

Allen Bloomfield said...

Dear Julie,
Welcome, you ask a profound question as to how one gets to a place of objectivity. Suppose you hear a knocking at your door and have no idea who is there. You open the door and there is standing your Father. For a second or less you see him as he really is, then all the recognition, preconceptions, and ideas associated about him raise up and impose themselves upon him. In that nanosecond before objective seeing had occurred. I believe that through the process of recognizing the lies we hold to be true about ourselves also applies to everything else in the creation as well. In Vedic math One is seen as the highest or largest of all numbers. They have come to this conclusion because it excludes nothing, contains everything and realizes the unity in all things. If you see yourself in all things and all things in yourself then you see everything as it really is.
I am delighted to hear from you.

Julie said...

thanks Allen, I hear you. Just got back from getting a coffee and the paper; there was an article about Susan Boyle:

"It's not that we're facing up to the collective hypocrisy that Boyle reveals to us. We're congratulating ourselves for cheering her on and having the cockles of our hearts warmed by her. We're deluding ourselves about our honesty and fairness. Simon Cowell knows this, too. Everything is an illusion.

And every time Ellen DeGeneres grins and says, "Inner beauty is important. But not nearly as important as outer beauty!" we know we agree. We know it's hypocritical but we enjoy the joke. Now we will delude ourselves that we believe in inner beauty, too. At least in certain cases, like when the person has a great voice and deserves a break in the showbiz racket. We've probably been hoodwinked into this. We are hypocrites. We are idiots."

Man, that makes me want to forego my coffee and head straight for cognac or celebrate 4/20 two days in a row. A little early in the day for that I guess...

It also made me think about the role fear plays in our lives, the affect, the weight. In an interview Michael says, "I don't know why I have so much misguided angst energy. If I did I could disperse it in a positive way, I wouldn't have it. That's why people go to shrinks." I think about the time in which you and Michael were born - such fearful times...and of something James Hillman said:

"I would rather say the unexamined life is indeed worth living. More: life is not a riddle; how monstrous to consider it so! 'O taste as see!'"

Question for you - not sure if it's from the same interview but Michael said something I thought was intriguing. He said, "I want to be solvent." I can't help but think of this in the alchemical sense of "solutio" but I wonder if you had any comment on it?

And another question: in the Ed Ward book there's a picture of Michael happily reading away on his back deck....what book is it? I have seen it before, it's a paperback Penguin Classic - the cover looks like a mosaic with some bearded guy looking upward. I would get a kick out of knowing what book that is.

I have this fear you're gonna throw down that cork whiffin' Mark Twain quote now....(intentional cheek) - ha ha.


Allen Bloomfield said...

I could not agree with your observation more.
Thank you very much.

Allen Bloomfield said...

Dear Julie,
The ego, claims responsibility for all good acts as well as condemnation and blame for all negative actions. The truth has no importance to the ego's self image It is the impostor of the true Self.
I am not sure I can accurately respond to the "being solvent." My guess is Michael may be using the word as free from encumbrances. We grew up in an environment that placed great emphasis on being productive and responsible for your debts. Michael rebelled against this work ethic and got delinquent with the IRS. This may have prompted the comment. As for rage, the source is most often am idea an individual holds from a past experience that is so threatening that it does not arise in ordinary consciousness. Under skilled analysis this can be seen and then resolved. Because emotions move so quickly it is unlikely that they can be redirected at will. All rage and anger always grow out of fear.
I could not make out the book. From the expression on his face I would guess was one of Bukowski"s.

As to the quote about Susan Boyle, that is not what I experienced. As Salingers says, I am a lover of long shots. I am very moved when an audience stands up in recognition of a great moment. Once that moment passes all the theories and beliefs flood in in order to explain or justify the event. I Know what I felt and need only to say Amen.

Julie said...

Dear Allen:

When moments like Susan Boyle happen, our hearts expand, we occupy more space and the world falls in. Walls come down and we come together from out of our isolation and separation to celebrate our humanity - we are open to the sheer joy of it. And it is valid.

The article tried to negate this, to cast doubt - a death by definition. What a shame.

We need to honour the moments that move us by simply letting them move us. I was trying to get at this kind of movement with the "solvent" comment.

Michael's life is important to me simply because he allowed me to get a clear view of the human heart; and with that, a glimse at my own humanity. I was moved by him.

I love quotes, and I'll end with two:

"Our humanity comes not from a complete absence of fear but from a courageous, unending struggle with it. And the intention of this struggle is not to achieve absolute victory, but to grow in our humanity. Love is really very little under our control. At best, we can work to make ourselves adequate vessels of love so that it can flow through us and ultimately, into the wider world."
- Robert Sardello

"...But the Dwarf answered: No, something human is dearer to me than the wealth of all the world."
- Grimm's Tales

Thank you for your kindness and patience Allen.


Allen Bloomfield said...

I am sincerely grateful for your thoughts. The light in you shines bright. There exist through out history great spiritual teachers who clearly describe the qualities in all of mankind. My path has led me to the East. The words Sat, Chit, Ananda are the names and sounds of these characteristics. All knowledge, eternal love, and Bliss are our true nature. Unfortunately we do not have access to them on demand.
Suffice it to say that they are always present yet covered over by a husk of ignorance. Yet we all have had experiences where they are recognized, be it only for a moment and then the habitual cloak descends. What I am trying to say is that if Michael's life sparked a understanding of how things are then God Bless that. Whenever the Self recognizes the Self in any form in this creation there arises an affirmation as to who and what you are. Susan Boyle was that lighting rod to millions. It could also be the bag lady or a fly. I once read that there is no ground that is not Holy ground. I know this to be true.

The act of listening can connect you to it all.

Best regards fellow seeker,

Allen Bloomfield said...

Dear Julie,
Was it something I said? I look forwards to your feedback.
One last point on Ms. Boyle. I read in the Times that the motive or reaction of the millions of people who have seen her on the net is that they feel a sense of self congratulation for being magnanimous about her, over looking her physical attributes. That they feel warm and cuddly bonding in this liberal acceptance. As they pat each other on the back for their magnanimity, they coo heaven is at hand.
I think that's a crock of shit. More people than not saw that beauty is recognizable in all forms and talent amplifies this.

Julie said...

Now don't you go making me feel special Allen! Yes, it was something you said and I come back and re-read your responses often. They are like little prayers and I cherish them. I didn't respond to your last comment because I felt we had reached a wonderful conclusion, ya big silly.

Look, I don't have many people in my life who are interested in the things that are of great importance to me. When I sent my first comment my hands shook like crazy; I was really afraid. So you can imagine my surprise and relief at the kind of caring and understanding I received from you.

I read an article the other day directly calling into question Susan Boyle's talent. It's just sad. I want to love the humans but oh man. It was a moment people, could you please just celebrate it? Last year I took my TV to the dump, just couldn't take it anymore. I think it was the Wives of Orange County and a Tila Tequila marathon that did me in.

It's hard to believe but it's been 20 years now since I first read Carl Jung - the idea of the collective unconscious made me so happy because it helped me feel less alone; my struggle was part of the human condition. And the journey started there. James Hillman wrote a chapter called "The Parental Fallacy" and that just blew me away - the freedom and peace it gave me I can never thank him for. It allowed me to gain objectivity and brought me closer to understanding the truth. What a gift.

Please understand you have done the same.

with gratitude,

Allen Bloomfield said...

Dear Julie,
I simply enjoy hearing from you and was not seeking any praise. I wanted to be sure that I was communicating to you clearly. The direction of our conversation has moved towards those epic questions of Who I am? Why am I here? What is my purpose? Everyone at one time or another asks these questions but few ever dedicate themselves to finding the answer. I can only speak from my own experience and share that with you.
Many years ago when I was 10 I woke up in the middle of the night and sitting across from me on the other bed was an elderly man, my first reaction was to scream out and with one look from his eyes I knew that I was in no danger, in fact just the opposite effect of peace and stillness and love. If he spoke I could not recall what was said, all I knew was that I was loved and totally content just being me. I drifted back to sleep and awoke wondering if what had occurred was just a dream. Whatever that meeting was it produced an impulse in me to seek out that moment of awareness again.
Some 16 years later I found a school of human development and attended it for 26 years. This was a real school similar to those that existed in the renaissance. It embraced the great philosophical and religious teachings and had created a practical structure for applying those teachings to everyday life. You could participate in music, mathematics, science, economics, wood working, calligraphy, all directed toward the higher levels of understanding. Most important was that those who attended or tutored were good company which reinforcedand stimulated the teachings. I also recognized that one could not go very far by oneself alone. A group of like minded individuals was necessary to create a special energy for this work to advance.
A chick must exert effort to free himself from the shell also a man must make an effort to become liberated. They speak of a Holy man who one day was approached by a devotee who wanted to know God. His Holiness said come with me and leeds him to a large barrel of water. He told the student to put his head under the water. Then the Holy man proceeded to hold him down for over a minute. Once released the student was gasping for air, his Master said when you want to find God as much as you want the next breath, then we can begin.
Your friend,

Julie said...

woo wee, am I ever glad you responded Allen. I was thinking I may have insulted you with my gushing or worse appeared dismissive. So I am happy and do not consider you a man who seeks praise. I wanted you to know that I feel blessed. So that's why you got gushed.

When I was around 7 I had a dream that I was walking down the path to the library near my house. The path forms a T and is lined by a fence. On the other side of the fence was a ditch. To the right was the library, to the left was a forest with cool dirt paths where kids rode their bikes. As I turned towards the library I looked up and crouched on one of the branches of the trees that hung over the path was a little boy. He was angry and in alot of pain but without saying so, I knew I was the cause it. His face was dirty and tear-stained. He then said, "You don't deserve to live!" and lept on me. I fell back into the fence and then into the ditch. I woke up before the ditch water got into my mouth.

I have paid the price for living in my head. This dream has stayed with me my whole life and I cannot shake it. I know why I chose the path to the library. Because it's harder to play in the real world; to engage with it. And I know it's what I must do; to return to the world. I've got a great game face and I can smile and nod with the best of them but it will never be enough.

I know why it's taken me 20 years to get to Robert Sardello. I know what the task is he is setting before me and that is to bring soul back into the world. I look out into the world and I don't see it anymore. I am sickened by the way we treat the world and the way we treat each other. The world makes my soul shrink.

And I know what is behind the illusion, I have both felt it and have seen it. I have always known. I grew up on the west coast, by the forest and the ocean and I spent alot of time alone. I have always known the world is as alive as I am and it has always wanted to play with me. And my joy knew no bounds.

But it's become harder and harder to see this invitation from the world and from others. And I want it back. And I know that it's really the only thing worth fighting for...and I know my real work is only just beginning. I think we now have to do the inviting, it's up to us.

I don't want the world to appear dead, an object, our possession, a resource and therefore under our control to do as we will. I know I have to engage with the world again in order to bring it back to life. But how? So that is where I'm at and what is before me.

I know it involves patience and silence and waiting. And trust and the ability to receive....

"I know I am august,
I do not trouble my spirit to vindicate itself or be understood, I see that the elementary laws never apologize,
I reckon I behave no prouder than the level I plant my house by after all.
I exist as I am, that is enough,
If no other in the world be aware I sit content,
And if each and all be aware I sit content.
One world is aware, and by far the largest to me, and that is myself,
And whether I come to my own today or in ten thousand or ten million years,
I can cheerfully take it now, or with equal cheerfulness I can wait."
- Walt Whitman

100 squishes and 1 ungushy thanks,

Allen Bloomfield said...

Dear Julie,
I have tried three times to write back about your recent comment. Each time for some strange reason My response has been lost. If you are willing to write to the webmaster Mike and give me your phone number and a time convenient for you I will be happy to speak with you in detail about your post. Please don't make a big deal out of this. I only want to be a friend.
Allen B.

Julie said...

hey Allen, just sent an email to

I hope I didn't spook you?