Some of you already know or at least suspect that I’ve really–REALLY–gotten into Taoism lately.  Not the religion which developed from this understanding of ultimate reality, but the original teachings of Lao Tzu and Chaung Tzu.  It’s a profoundly simple and uncomplicated understanding of all that is, complicated only by it’s rejection of so much of what we regard as basic and true.  That being said and me rereading what I’ve written so far, it’s clear that nothing about this is particularly clear.  Whatever…

There is another book also alleged to be the work of Lao Tzu.  Lao Tzu, by the way (that’s btw for those who speak only text) may or may not have existed, an idea which somehow imparts the essence of Taoism–which, of course, is not pronounced tow-ism but dow-ism.  Go figguh.  That book is called The Unknown Teachings of Lao Tzu, Hua Hu Ching.  Now get this–and this part will be no surprise to those of you who like to have fun–Hua Hu is pronounced whahoo! (the exclamation point is mine, but what did you expect?  Ching is pronounced Jing.  Whoopee.

All that aside, on page 21 of Brian Walker’s translation of this tome, talking about the “mature person”who seeks understanding of the Tao, he says this:

          Gently eliminating all obstacles to his own understanding, he constantly maintains his unconditional sincerity.

          His humility, perseverance, and adaptability evoke the response of the universe and fill him with divine light.

All that is fine and respectful and such, but there’s something else, something utterly essential.  At the heart of the Tao with it’s constant rejection of all we westerners and most easterners regard as reality is it’s ability to laugh at both us and itself.  Really!  There may be no other body of take-this-seriously-’cause-we’re-ultimately-spiritual-and-divine literature with such a wonderful and instructive sense of humorous self-deprecation.  Humility, perseverance and adaptability are nice–don’t get me wrong–but if you can’t laugh, you don’t stand a chance of understanding Taoist understanding or truly loving this life.

5/52: John & Frieda, Dick & Barbara

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Disclaimer: Just in case I prove to be following in the footsteps of the late and sorely missed Emily Litella in all of this,

“Never mind.”

Published in: on May 13, 2013 at 11:06 pm  Comments (1)  

Have an Assault Rifle?

It occurred to me this morning while sitting in peaceful meditation that I do indeed need a high-powered assault rifle equipped with a magazine holding at least 100 rounds of profoundly powerful kill capability.  Had my meditative state been any less profound, this remarkable revelation would have disrupted it severely, perhaps even causing me to latch onto that thought, building an ever-greater structure of consequences upon it until becoming sufficiently engrossed as to miss the three chimes signaling the end of the meditation period.

[I interrupt myself here.  This post is not about meditation.  It is about my–and perhaps your–relationship to those weapons of significant destruction which have recently come under fire (‘couldn’t resist that one!) from the liberals.]

Most folks who support the individual’s right to own  an AK-47 or the good ol’ 30-06 (a.k.a. thirty aught-six), the recently spotlighted AR-15, Remington 870 (“most popular shotgun in the country”) or even a Glock 40 tend to put it in terms of the 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution.  That, as some will say, is all well and good, but justification via legality for owning one of these babies pales in comparison to the rationale supplied by actual need.  As one owner says,

“Guns, if they have a moral dimension, are good. Without guns, the strong can always dominate the weak; the many can always dominate the few; and men can always dominate women. A gun gives each person an agency equivalent to his (or her) moral standing. In my humble opinion, those who teach correct and proper gun use are doing G-d’s work.*

And there are a wealth of additional reasons to maintain one’s personal ability to wreak havoc from a distance.   Fear is usually at the heart of it.  But not always, especially among the truly brave.  Here’s mine:  it’s fearless and it begins with a photo:

Amsterdam Ave.

The photo is one of traffic outside my bedroom window at night.  Think about it: every one of those cars has a horn, a radio and probably one or more additional devices for amplifying sound.  In short every one of them is capable of–dare I say it?–ASSAULTING sleep, reading or other bed activities.  This I do not like, but O, what to do?  From seven flights up there is no way to tell which vehicle hosts that honking horn or offending sound system.  If the culprit vehicle had a blinking roof light or other visible sign of identification, an M-15 or other designated marksman rifle (DMR) sniper rifle would be acceptable–if, of course, I was fast enough on the trigger to select, aim at and squeeze off that well-aimed single shot.  Quite frankly, dear reader, that scenario goes far beyond my  sharpshooterial skill level.  An automatic weapon, on (or in) the other hand, would allow me to hit all, thus insuring that the actual noisenik received his or her ultimate comeuppance.

And, with the aid of a silencer,  I’m sure my neighbors would thank me for standing up for our community’s right to a peaceful night’s whatever.

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Now it’s your turn.  What is your reason for owning a gun.

  • To protect your loved ones?
  • To protect your valuables?
  • To protect your castle?
  • To defend your state via militia participation?
  • To kill coyotes or other varmints?
  • To have your way with small shop owners?
  • To show them who’s a victim?
  • To stand up for–or even enforce–your beliefs?
  • To quash opposing political or social opinions?
  • To feel like a real man or woman?
  • Just for a thrill?

Use the comments tab below to register your reason for big gun ownership.


Published in: on May 2, 2013 at 4:24 pm  Comments (9)