- J. D. Salinger
Franny and Zooey
Matter is indeed infinitely and incredibly refined.
To anyone who has ever looked on the face of a dead child
the mere fact that matter could have taken for a time
that precious form, ought to make matter sacred ever after.
It makes no difference what the principle of life may be, material or immaterial,
matter at any rate co-operates, lends itself to all life's purposes.
That beloved incarnation was among matter's possibilities.
pragmatism - william james - 1907
Think of how easily we sometimes take for granted people,
even at times our loved ones.
How much easier it is then, to take for granted the things in our lives.
I remember when I read this quote by Vincent Van Gogh:
"But I always think that the best way to know God is to love many things."
It made quite an impression on me.
I have this tendency to live perhaps too much in the non-concrete world,
I like the abstract, the theoretical, the spiritual.
But I think the key is to find a balance between
the spiritual and physical worlds,
to live in the place where they meet.
I think that's where Love resides.
The formless within form, try to see it.
The energy within all things!
the coffee pot, the window pane,
the flower, the pinkie toe, the book, the heart,
they lend themselves, as William points out, so freely
to purpose, to possibility.
Let's give thanks for that gift,
and remember that it is also a responsibility.
When we think of the gun, the crude gesture, the atom bomb,
that matter lends itself just as easily to hate.
There is joy
in the hair I brush each morning,
in the Cannon towel, newly washed,
that I rub my body with each morning,
in the chapel of eggs I cook
in the outcry from the kettle
that heats my coffee
in the spoon and the chair
that cry "hello there, Anne,"
in the godhead of the table
that I set my silver, plate, cup upon
All this is God,
right here in my pea-green house
and I mean,
though often forget,
to give thanks,
to faint down by the kitchen table
in a prayer of rejoicing
as the holy birds at the kitchen window
peck into their marriage of seeds.
So while I think of it,
let me paint a thank-you on my palm
for this God, this laughter of the morning,
lest it go unspoken.
The joy that isn't shared, I've heard,
Everything is Waiting For You
Your great mistake is to act the drama
as if you were alone. As if life
were a progressive and cunning crime
with no witness to the tiny hidden
transgressions. To feel abandoned is to deny
the intimacy of your surroundings. Surely,
even you, at times, have felt the grand array;
the swelling presence, and the chorus, crowding
out your solo voice. You must note
the way the soap dish enables you,
or the window latch grants you freedom.
Alertness is the hidden discipline of familiarity.
The stairs are your mentor of things
to come, the doors have always been there
to frighten you and invite you,
and the tiny speaker in the phone
is your dream-ladder to divinity.
Put down the weight of your aloneness and ease into
the conversation. The kettle is singing
even as it pours you a drink, the cooking pots
have left their arrogant aloofness and
seen the good in you at last. All the birds
and creatures of the world are unutterably
themselves. Everything is waiting for you.