Spiritual traveler’s notes 14: ‘tongue’ (reposted 2021-07-09)

this is another random episode I took from my classic spiritual adventure series, a fun story that has not yet ended. it was a story based on visions, dreams, and spiritual encounters/inspirations that I received.

sound mind journal

I decided to repost a further episode from this 2014 series of my story and took this one out at random. Enjoy.

Traveler Ying and 25 teens and children discovered that they were walking downward into the depth of the earth. The gentle slope soon became steep and slippery with the sound of dripping water. They could feel the dampness. Some children slipped and fell and scratched themselves. Some fell into mud puddles. The older children had to carry the little ones and their pace became slow. There were twelve boys and thirteen girls. Each regiment had a balanced mix of older and younger children so each was able to take care of its own.

The underground tunnel seemed to lead to a river as they could hear the sound of flowing water, which became louder and louder as they approached it. At last they stood next to a dark…

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behold love: a haiku (and a prose)

tree at sunsetBehold love so vast

beyond my vision’s ship mast

sailing on with hope

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Sometimes he finds it hard to carry on hoping when he has waited quite long. He may feel tired and somewhat lonely when he is sailing alone facing the same tough and trying stormy or impasse situation. Yet in his deepest inner most he knows he is not alone. He has support. There are heavenly support. There are others on earth like him facing the same issue too, and silently sailing on in each respective hope-boat, fearlessly facing the same positive direction. The same goal, a safe harbor of solid rock for their weary anchor. Come what may: wind or rain or both.

Hebrews 6:18-20 New Living Translation (NLT)

18 So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us. 19 This hope is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God’s inner sanctuary. 20 Jesus has already gone in there for us. He has become our eternal High Priest in the order of Melchizedek.

A DICTIONARY FOR NAVIGATORS ON SPIRITUAL ROUGH WATERS 40: MORE WORDS FOR HARD TIMES

MOREMore words for hard times coping, or rather, overcoming, which is a better and stronger action word, with victory in sight. Hard times draw out the best in human, the tough ones who go on and become tougher still. The weak ones too must rise to their best and become tough and free from their bondages. Hard times test for the best in each. What victory-ensured word shall we read today from the book of victories -the Book of God, the Bible?

Yesterday we read from the alphabet L (for Look). Today we read from the alphabet M. MORE. The word is “More”.

The definition of the term “MORE”: “MORE” has something to do with “VALUE” in quantity and in quality. There are plus and minus involved in the matter. The word “More” will generate a further “More”. For that matter, the word “Less” will generate a further “Less”. Like the word “Lack”. Such quantitative terms are like an epidemics. They are reproductive.

For example: I could do with some more clothes: additional, further, added, extra, increased, new, other, supplementary. ANTONYMS less, fewer. he was able to concentrate more on his writing: to a greater extent, further, some more, better.

More of what for hard times combat? This is the crux of the matter. Let us read on from the Holy Bible New Living Translation (NLT). The boldness and the italics are added. My own notes are in bold letters and italics as well.

First, Jesus says what God values. He values your life far more than you can ever imagine. 

Matthew 10:31 So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.

Second, Jesus asks you to value your life too, above all else. 

Matthew 16:26 And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?

Thirdly, Jesus says that you have far more resources and power to do things (even like Jesus does) than you can ever imagine. 

Matthew 21:21 Then Jesus told them, “I tell you the truth, if you have faith and don’t doubt, you can do things like this and much more. You can even say to this mountain, ‘May you be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and it will happen.

Fourthly, when God gives you something He gives you the power to multiply. It is expected that you generate “MORE”. 
Matthew 25:19-21, 2919 “After a long time their master returned from his trip and called them to give an account of how they had used his money. 20 The servant to whom he had entrusted the five bags of silver came forward with five more and said, ‘Master, you gave me five bags of silver to invest, and I have earned five more.’ 21 The master was full of praise. ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together![a]’ 29 To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away.

what the clouds say today: a haiku (and a prose)

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Nothing to declare

fearing to share what forbear

stripping his heart bare

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The clouds often speak volumes. He likes to watch and record clouds. Clouds actually have mouths and eyes and they talk to each other with their eyes open and mouths shaped like a gentle smile. They are different from human. In the ancient times human lived simple and humble lives, aligned with the laws and wisdom of nature set by the Creator. They watched the signs in heaven and made their moves accordingly. They watched, smelled, tasted and listened to the visual and audio movements and sounds of the sky, the formation of clouds, the leaves and branches of trees, the structure and pattern of rocks, the colors of water, the voices of creatures, birds, insects, fishes and other living things in the wild. Human talked with their own language too. They communicated with purpose. They did not waste their voice. Often they uttered to warn, to reprimand, to guide, to build up. People’s lives depended on the right vocal utterance from the leader of the house or a tribe. Those were the days of survival in the wild. Human did not kill the wild for commercial reason. They survived for thousands of years with the wild things. Man who killed for his own commercial greed was outcast and despised by all and never considered a hero unlike what the movie may say today.

Gold Rush: a haiku

lighttime is set for now

northern-bound train in the know

heed the gold beckon

~~~~~~~~~Words of wisdom from the wisest and richest man in history:

3:14 For her proceeds are better than the profits of silver, And her gain than fine gold.

8:10 Receive my instruction, and not silver, And knowledge rather than choice gold;

8:19 My fruit is better than gold, yes, than fine gold, And my revenue than choice silver.

20:15 There is gold and a multitude of rubies, But the lips of knowledge are a precious jewel.

22:1 A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, Loving favor rather than silver and gold.

25:11 A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold In settings of silver.

(The Proverbs of Solomon, King of Israel)

two minds: To love at all is to be vulnerable

CS Lewis

a haiku for this story of the love of two minds:

a mind who ponders

met a mirrored mind of his

late but not too late.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken…””For Jack the attraction was at first undoubtedly intellectual. Joy was the only woman whom he had met … ”

Thirty great quotes from C.S. Lewis

1. “Friendship … is born at the moment when one man says to another “What! You too? I thought that no one but myself . . .” The Four Loves
2. “You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.”
3. “To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.” The Four Loves
4. “I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.”
5. “Some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again.”
6. “A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.”
7. “If we find ourselves with a desire that nothing in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that we were made for another world.”
8. “The Christian does not think God will love us because we are good, but that God will make us good because He loves us.”
9. “Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art…. It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things which give value to survival.” The Four Loves
10. “Eating and reading are two pleasures that combine admirably.”
11. “I can’t imagine a man really enjoying a book and reading it only once.”
12. “Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.” Mere Christianity
13. “No book is really worth reading at the age of ten which is not equally – and often far more – worth reading at the age of fifty and beyond.”
14. “To be a Christian means to forgive the inexcusable because God has forgiven the inexcusable in you.”
15. “We are not necessarily doubting that God will do the best for us; we are wondering how painful the best will turn out to be.”
16. “A man can no more diminish God’s glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word ‘darkness’ on the walls of his cell.” The Problem of Pain
17. “Love is not affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person’s ultimate good as far as it can be obtained.”
18. “There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.”
19. “God can’t give us peace and happiness apart from Himself because there is no such thing.”
20. “Crying is all right in its way while it lasts. But you have to stop sooner or later, and then you still have to decide what to do.” The Silver Chair
21. “I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept his claim to be God. That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God, but let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.” Mere Christianity
22. “Atheism turns out to be too simple. If the whole universe has no meaning, we should never have found out that it has no meaning…”
23. “It is a good rule after reading a new book, never to allow yourself another new one till you have read an old one in between.”
24. “I’m on Aslan’s side even if there isn’t any Aslan to lead it. I’m going to live as like a Narnian as I can even if there isn’t any Narnia.” The Silver Chair
25. “Pain insists upon being attended to. God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our consciences, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”
26. “I have learned now that while those who speak about one’s miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.”
27. “You can make anything by writing.”
28. “The homemaker has the ultimate career. All other careers exist for one purpose only – and that is to support the ultimate career. ”
29. “He died not for men, but for each man. If each man had been the only man made, He would have done no less.”
30. “What draws people to be friends is that they see the same truth. They share it.”

CLIVE STAPLES LEWIS (1898–1963), son of a solicitor and the daughter of an Anglican priest, was one of the intellectual giants of the twentieth century and arguably one of the most influential writers of his day. When he was four, his dog Jacksie was killed by a car, and he announced that his name was now Jacksie. At first, he would answer to no other name, but later accepted Jack, the name by which he was known to friends and family for the rest of his life.

As a boy, Lewis was fascinated with anthropomorphic animals; he fell in love with Beatrix Potter’s stories and often wrote and illustrated his own animal stories.  He also grew to love nature and its beauty. Lewis was raised in a religious family that attended the Church of Ireland. He became an atheist at age 15, though he later described his young self as being paradoxically “angry with God for not existing.” He eventually returned to Christianity, having been influenced by arguments with his Oxford colleague and friend J. R. R. Tolkien, whom he seems to have met for the first time on 11 May 1926, and by the book The Everlasting Man by G. K. Chesterton. Lewis vigorously resisted conversion, noting that he was brought into Christianity like a prodigal, “kicking, struggling, resentful, and darting his eyes in every direction for a chance to escape.” He described his last struggle in Surprised by Joy:

“You must picture me alone in that room in Magdalen, night after night, feeling, whenever my mind lifted even for a second from my work, the steady, unrelenting approach of Him whom I so earnestly desired not to meet. That which I greatly feared had at last come upon me. In the Trinity Term of 1929 I gave in, and admitted that God was God, and knelt and prayed: perhaps, that night, the most dejected and reluctant convert in all England.”

From 1941 to 1943, Lewis spoke on religious programs broadcast by the BBC from London while the city was under periodic air raids. These broadcasts were appreciated by civilians and servicemen at that stage. For example, Air Chief Marshal Sir Donald Hardman wrote:

“The war, the whole of life, everything tended to seem pointless. We needed, many of us, a key to the meaning of the universe. Lewis provided just that.”

The broadcasts were anthologized in Mere Christianity. From 1941, he was occupied at his summer holiday weekends visiting R.A.F. stations to speak on his faith, invited by the R.A.F.’s Chaplain-in-Chief Maurice Edwards.

It was also during the same wartime period that Lewis was invited to become first President of the Oxford Socratic Club in January 1942, a position that he enthusiastically held until he resigned on appointment to Cambridge University in 1954. He was unanimously elected to the Chair of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at Cambridge University, a position he held until his retirement.

In later life, Lewis corresponded and fell in love with Joy Davidman Gresham, an American writer of Jewish background, a former Communist, and a convert from atheism to Christianity. Lewis’s brother Warren described Joy:

“For Jack the attraction was at first undoubtedly intellectual. Joy was the only woman whom he had met … who had a brain which matched his own in suppleness, in width of interest, and in analytical grasp, and above all in humor and a sense of fun.”

After complaining of a painful hip, she was diagnosed with terminal bone cancer, and the relationship developed to the point that they sought a Christian marriage. Since she was divorced, this was not straightforward in the Church of England at the time, but a friend, the Rev. Peter Bide, performed the ceremony at her bed in the Churchill Hospital on 21 March 1957. Gresham’s cancer soon went into remission, and the couple lived together as a family until 1960, when recurrence of the cancer caused her death.

He wrote more than thirty books, allowing him to reach a vast audience, and his works continue to attract thousands of new readers every year. His most distinguished and popular accomplishments include Mere Christianity, Out of the Silent Planet, The Great Divorce, The Screwtape Letters, and the universally acknowledged classics The Chronicles of Narnia which is a series of seven fantasy novels for children and is considered a classic of children’s literature. Written between 1949 and 1954, the series is Lewis’s most popular work, having sold over 100 million copies in 41 languages, has been adapted several times, complete or in part, for radio, television, stage and cinema.

(The above is excerpted from various web sources)

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