Riffing Mark in Lent.

Mark 9:30-50*

To reify** a parable. To make it concrete and real… the greatest of the foibles. The greatest of missing the mark… to put four corners on a great circle… 199A8920-6221-4675-8E2D-F3CFB6A2DA75

Missing the mark… to see or feel or stumble or … all of that, of missing the mark. So there is the parable … the declaration to remove, tear out… break off… The permission to cut, to drown, to … it is not permission at all… it is a charge of responsibility. All with a babe held in arms… to be passed with gentle love… all around from one to another.

Waking from a dream of being locked out of many familiar places. To have all agency stripped away. To have nothing but my feet… to trudge away from the ‘new’ and ‘special’ ways of seeing… the pivot that strips away all that is familiar. 3F99E1F7-AA26-4D74-84B6-E2C4404B37ABAnd… beginning that trek… with the first step. Suddenly understanding that the path that was so clear… now well shaken and stirred… 

The ‘new’ leader is ‘taking charge’… in ways that begin again. And… that is not the path that is of my path. All the friends and partners of that time are suddenly busy in the new plan… the wonder and comfort of that which was familiar and off being a part… is suddenly locked and apart. 

A new seeing … first as fear … to see that the change is coming quickly. A storm on horizon.

That which was … is now not. The tide has shifted and the harbor… comfort and care… the boat of my heart… is carried away on the tide and tested in storms. The whole of creation is about… dancing and howling and roaring… of a storming delight… in the maelstrom… far from a known land… held in creation’s arms… passed gently from arms to arms… Even as the owners of those arms … argue among each other… still the passing is with gentle kindness… The noise of the storming argument… does not touch the warmth of being passed from tide to tide… from rising sun to rising moon… from winds of the east, the north, the south, and west…4D25AEA9-CBF4-45F3-B6B8-69F89C487D3C

The joy of ‘those times’ is no less a joy. Those joys, are of the peace which passes all understanding. The gift of invitation to be in a moment of creation. That sacred shared moment of the whole host of creators… be they one, two, three… many… or beloved communion with just one other. All joy of a harmony … called forth in moment. A friend speaks of a shooting star… the wonder of moment… attempting to hold that moment… as holding back the tide… pushing the river back up the mountain… the preservation of a great flowing stream… that is alive with wonder.

All of this… in the tossing of night into day. The shifting of tide from rushing to slack and rushing again… the foment of waves… torn by a rip… Dancing winds … that rage back and forth… amid all … the sudden understanding of a peace which passes all understanding. The moment of that quiet kiss… the gentle passing of infant… from arms to arms… the voices… are a storm. The arms are the caring of all creation. 

So it is a gift of this lenten retreat… a gift of arms. The shift of storm… and caring arms.

The whole of the host of creation. A gift of this dawning day.BD56AAE8-84DF-4E65-AE1E-4FFD0DE14D77

*(They went on from there and passed through Galilee. He did not want anyone to know it; for he was teaching his disciples, saying to them, “The Son of Man is to be betrayed into human hands, and they will kill him, and three days after being killed, he will rise again.” But they did not understand what he was saying and were afraid to ask him. Then they came to Capernaum; and when he was in the house he asked them, “What were you arguing about on the way?” But they were silent, for on the way they had argued with one another who was the greatest. He sat down, called the twelve,

and said to them, “Whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all.” Then he took a little child and put it among them; and taking it in his arms, he said to them, “Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.” John said to him, “Teacher, we saw someone casting out demons in your name, and we tried to stop him, because he was not following us.” But Jesus said, “Do not stop him; for no one who does a deed of power in my name will be able soon afterward to speak evil of me. Whoever is not against us is for us. For truly I tell you, whoever gives you a cup of water to drink becaus

e you bear the name of Christ will by no means lose the reward. “If any of you put a stumbling block before one of these little ones who believe in me, it would be better for you if a great millstone were hung around your neck and you were thrown into the sea. If your hand causes you to stumble, cut it off; it is better for you to enter life maimed than to have two hands and to go to hell, to the unquenchable fire. And if your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off; it is better for you to enter life lame than to have two feet and to be thrown into hell. And if your eye causes you to stumble, tear it out; it is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and to be thrown into hell, where their worm never dies, and the fire is never quenched. “For everyone will be salted with fire. Salt is good; but if salt has lost its saltiness, how can you season it? Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with one another.”)

** Reify:

  1. make (something abstract) more concrete or real.
    “these instincts are, in humans, reified as verbal constructs”

A Way To Think About Your Project.

I think in Mind Maps. Bubbles that link, interact, dance, and play…

A complete ecosystem of connection…

A symphony, a song, a lyric and a melody. A project, an idea, a way of puttering in this project world.

03 What is it that you are trying to do Steps to Start (Getting it out of

It is really easy to get completely inside this kind of thinking. Or… experince a major headache if you don’t see things this way.

02 From one setting to another setting- a way to think about your project(1)

These kinds of maps are not brainstorming or forms to fill out. They are a way of questioning a project and evaluating the capacities of the system which is proposing the project. It is relational thinking. The fun of it, for me, is to be given some information or data – in context… then, to play with the project players… play and find the connections, the disconnections and the opportunities in the emotional/capacity/compentency arena to make sense of the elements of a project.

The idea is that …

05 2022 Project - Business PlanningPermitting Questions and Flow

It used to be that I thought about these connected systems in disparate form and formation. No longer! The idea of projects which come to fruition is a dance of iteration, commitiment, mutual reguard, and hard work with partners. It is managing disagreement and conflict in ways that are generative. It is a whole symphony in a single product launch or process engagement.

It is soul-feeding. Just as music or poetry or a fine vista… soul-feeding.

04 Discernment Framework

This set of Mind Maps are the newest iteration of this work. There is progression and delight in the dance of a project. Just as planting a field yields, with good cultural practice and care, a crop; this set of assesment tools, alignment processes, and practices – questions, can yield success in deployment, engagement, enrollment and collaboration.

If you want to see the whole set… in flow, look here

To all who have walked this set of processes… in all of the various iterations, thank you. It is only with feedback that a system grows, changes, and iterates. To the play of living – with thanksgiving.

A Prayer with the Divine…

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Oh Divinity, Master of the Universe,

All creation sings together.

Across all time, across all dancing;

We come into being and grow through arc – our song of livingness,

From many heavens – comes Light, Air, Water, and Creation’s Manna

To bear us up in our Loving, our Labor, and our Living.

In this, creation’s song, please forgive our missing the mark;

7A685188-3C64-4E9E-9751-440D6B1B4840As, we forgive – those who miss the mark – with and against us.

In times of trial, walk with us;

Deliver us through evils that invite and mock.

For all creation, all power, and all glory are from the Divine;

Now and forever. Amen.

Of Mary Oliver and Parker Palmer… the gift of giving to…

D1FE4C6F-135F-4CEA-A3E0-51B6030DAAA6The high C
The song sung at an internment
The song sung at a sacred moment
The song sung at a passing

In each place and time,
given of myself fully…
And, this moment,
as candles burn

feeling lost and without
anchor to a place
anchor or moorage
in bay or at quay

so sensing a rising
resentment to this state.
Sun breaks upon
rising mountains

tears of falling
raining from upwelling
eyes blurred in
light of day.

80F964F6-CB34-444B-939F-D8C60FDA0172To Palmer’s questions:
What do I need
to let go of?
What do I

want to give myself to?
These gentle query
basking in fall sun
guide the boat.

A dear friend,
declared a shooting star
a swift passing
across the sky.

That same friend,
called out surround;
armor all around
with butcher’s bill

from tilting ground
with broken
with battered
head to hands

again to questions…
What do I need to let go?
What do I want to give
myself to?

47747915-BCDF-469E-9C34-F6D1D29D8AE0And again…
What do I need to let go?
What do I desire to give
myself to?

In the rising
the walking at
the altar in the world
a gentle echo.

A gentle kiss
the all of creation
the surround of
that giving in moment.

Two, Three, Four, and more… align

The ocean turns over. Part that was deep comes to the surface. That which is surfaced… is evaporated. Now the vapor moves over land and comes back down as rain… rolling down the mountains. Bringing the flotsam and jetsam of the stream… back to the deep.

The ocean turns over… welling up from the depths. Welling and welling…

In air, the jet stream courses across the tides… bumps into and streams over mountains.

Where the mountains rise up… the great plates of the rolling earth’s crust… push up and over… shove deeply into core… there is also another set of speeds.

Then, then we come to the great speeds of shift in the human condition. A life… short and long… rushing at hyper speed… yet, only in miles of kilometers per hour… as the day rises, eases, and sets.

A life, rising, easing and setting…

In each dimension… these speeds – as normal motion. There are moments when all align. A moment of … and, if it is a the plates rushing over and under… it may seem an eternity to other scales. An eternity… which is but a pico in another’s relative time.

So, once seen… this cacophony of tempi… all moving at pace… along… and thinking, ah, there is another who moves at my time… my meter… my alignment… Another partner. The sudden easing away, as another, in fact is moving at alternative tempo… which for a beat, was in aligned wonder…

And, in another set of bars, will align again… out there in the great symphony.

Sections, all playing to a great pulse… yet, within the department, division, sector… an independent sub-tempo holds sway. Until the tide shakes the very core and … all are in the great hall for a movement.

Then, back to routines of harmonic fervor. To rouse in great hall again… further on along… as the ocean turns over, the great plates rise and fall… the spinning of the galaxies… dance through heavens… all in moment, all in chorus, all in … all in… all in…

A moment and all. In that moment. Just for a moment.

Clear. The moment. Before dawning in this moment. Humbled to see and swim in this cascade of clarity. The falls of … a spring shower… a gift of laughter in the humbling tide. A wave that carries high up on the beach. As it recedes… the tumbled sand shows patterns not seen before or since. A new seeding in. A new rising up. A new aligned presence. A moment. A gift. Unbidden, a gift. With thanksgiving

Some random thinking … Playing with Time

Can we ‘make’ the sun rise more quickly? Can we delay the moon’s rising? In the speeding up of the deep carbon cycle… are there consequences for this ‘adjustment’? Each is a far fetched moment… yet, there is active demand to have daylight be more… and night less… so that there is greater productivity… what other cycles are being ‘adjusted’ in the name of – a specific system need-as opposed to a harmonic balance-in the dynamic of the ‘whole’ of a linked – supporting – emerging set of variables? Just musing the sun rise… a dynamic balance.

A Way To Think About Your Project

Each a view of the same set of elements. Each element speaks from a different set of foundational facts… The conversation, if it is adversarial, stacks the various foundational facts, Triangleselements, views, and position in different perspectives, contexts and places… being invited to rationalize this pile, this stack, this conversation… takes time, thought, collaborative perspective, respect for the various agency… all in a sense of calm… it doesn’t come cheap… if the whole motivation is to get a quick determination… to get to where ‘I’ want it to be… well, that is an argument that will return again and again… Seeing the patterns spin… play that tune again, and again, and again… or not… and if not, taking the time to make rational, connected, linked, and aligned agency.

The Sun is Rising…

The sun rolled quickly into the sky.

 

It is simple… just to stop and be with the sun rise. Seeing it in so many different places… kissing each surface.

 

A gift.

Of a morning… 12-25-2020

B9053F48-AC89-4732-8219-A0DB53EA4B1FOf a Christmas Morning. The wind is down… Still dancing and playing. Enough to blow the porch around… And so, battened, hunkered, sheltered… with family and friends scattered in places near and far… comforted by the stories of the desert fathers and mothers… grumpy and also filled with care, empathy, humor, … a bit dusty from days of wind, piles of sand, blown over and then away… care-worn and yet, and also, and even… filled with humble care, humble love, humble wonder… at the rising sun of this day.
Of a morning. Blessings to each and all beloved. Holding in mind’s eye, the whole of the journey’s host. Some gone on before… the beacons to harbor, to camp, to home. Some off on far away journey. Seeking and finding on a path which, for the moment, has looped away. Some, from a moment of great connection… now on a river, stream, bay or ocean… long shifted in the tide. The parting, perhaps not of the same texture of the shared moment. And, in this dawn, lifting up that moment shared. For, it is the soul moment.
The rest is but cover of other condition.6DCD975E-1FEF-4A06-B728-86E0B6248E6B
Of a morning. Chipping clay from leaden feet. My own – of course. For every moment of amazing place… a pat of clay to humble in oh so human. The wounding from, these feet have trod… Yet still, the dawning of this day, as each dawning, to fall again in love … at this altar of the world.
A blessing of the dancing wind. A blessing of the warming sun. A blessing even of the dust filled air… even that set of mote – a blessing.
In dreams, last night, again in a barn. The rain and storm… battering against the walls… the machines drawing milk from warm and steaming cows. The stench of manure and urine … of sweet milk and my own sweat. The sacred moment of, sudden care. Just there, sweet hay also is in the stench. A song begins to lift in my heart. For, this is dreaming and waking dream… all wrapped in a moment.
Now, far distant… through years… a moment back in that barn… a sudden remembering and also crystalline vision… on a boat, in a storm, on a flight, in halls in far off lands, at the foot of castles, in ancient stadium, with baton in hand… at letter A, in the 3 with 2, at a birth, at a death… the whole of the host… in the arms of love, in the arms of lyric, of song, of all of creation… of a dawning morning. The fire is burning bright. The wind dances. Children are waking. In this same dawn, a breathing is stilled… the leaf falls from the tree… a train leaves on time… a ship sails, a song… the last note… there, just beyond hearing… fades away… and it is all of this, in each breathing moment.
A gift. A humbling gift of the living moment.2D3FA2AA-9C15-4F3D-AC10-CF280E6AF4C9
In thanksgiving… in lifting up… in the bidden or not… presence.
And into the dawning of this, this new day.

In a mansion with many wings…

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“Waking to a sudden realization. Too many front doors. The regulatory layers… each screaming in importance. The ardent voice of each layer… me first, me first… And indeed. For each layer, created to keep something from every happening again. Protecting against death, the potential of death, or the fear of not getting paid. Ardent in protection. Ardent in the authority to serve and protect.144F1311-BFD9-42B0-87FB-16D8E639B4B4
Each layer… a certain capacity. A certain range. A loud voice. A big stick to enforce. Each with a single front door. Created in the clarity of moment… and put in the house of many rooms. For, each layer may be included in a separate wing… and, have its very own front door. Here on the sixth floor… a front door to the greater world… and the stick of enforcement… able to move up and down … even to the ground floor. Where each and every passer by… is enforced… for not seeing the sixth floor front door…
Searching valiantly for a rationalized front door… and, in this moment of morning… understanding the solving is backward. For, the solving creates another ardent layer… A macro vision to a micro community. The micro… so many front doors… behind the macro of door makers, room makers, ardent leadership… keeping safe… this large solving in a sea of micro … and micro in macro… the clarity of … and now the build in a different way. To see the friction between the micro and macro… the opportunity in both and… a gift of a foggy morning.” – Bill Bartels –