Welcome to a poetic and philosophic blog about the struggles of life and relationship.

“The ambiguity of life exists in every creative process. In every creative process of life, a destructive trend is implied; in every integrating process of life, a disintegrating trend; in every process toward the sublime, a profanizing trend.”(Paul Tillich, Ph.D., from The Meaning of Health, 1981)

Life cannot exist without the essential possibility and existential reality of death. Life is impossible without the daily, chaotic struggle against death... against the unremitting threat of entropy and nothingness. As Tillich again informs us, “Life must risk itself daily in order to win itself, but in the risking it may lose itself. A life which does not risk death--even in the highest forms of the life of the spirit--is a life poorly lived." This willingness to risk ourselves for greater life is the key that opens the door to the wellspring of creativity deep inside of us... that wellspring of transformative vitality that propels us through the struggle of death into the richness and renewal of new life.

"Creativity is 'the elixir of life' that heals and transforms life. Through the creative process we enter that 'sacred place,' that zone of evolution where the world lights up to itself as we light up to the world. It is here, in that 'holiest of holy' places that we are reunited with the waters of the wellspring of creativity, The Source of the 'River of Life' from which all creative energy and vitality issue forth to be manifested as new life. Through every creative act, life fulfills itself. Through every creative act, we transcend the mortality of our separate ego-self of I and enter into the realm of immortality to become one with our contextual self as Thou, as a self-realized collaborator in creation. Through creativity, we are delivered from the chaos of illness into the dynamic order of new life."
(P. Donovan & Herb Joiner Bey from The Face of Consciousness, 2006)

Please join me on this courageous venture of life and "enter into the realm of immortality," the realm of dialogue and relationship by poetically sharing with this community, your struggles to live... to "nullify the unremitting recurrences of death" through the continuous recurrence of birth. Through dialogue and relationship, the Face of consciousness is seen, recognized and witnessed. It is your Face, my Face, the Face of all life, the Face of our God. Thank you, Patrick.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Through the great dance of relationship the “I” of self-awareness is born and nurtured into the “Thou” of unity and self-transcendence. The underlying motivation for this dance is twofold: self-realization through the reflection of one’s being in the eyes of “the other” and self-transcendence through the ultimate experience of love whereupon one realizes, as Joseph Campbell writes, “… beneath the illusion of two-ness dwells identity: 'each is both'.”
Through the reflection of your being in the eyes of your beloved, you behold the essential nature of your own existence. In so doing, you inform the world of that existence because you are “seen” and your life is witnessed through the eyes of love by your beloved. This is only a micro-personalized experience of the grander experience of “God beholding God.” For you and your beloved are one and the same. As you are witnessed, so do you witness. As you inform the world of your existence, so do you inform the world of the existence of your beloved. As the great Jewish mystic, Martin Buber, tells us, only through relationship can we know God and only through relationship can we know ourselves. I would add further, only through relationship can God know God and only through relationship can the lover know The Beloved.
© p. donovan

The nature of the creator of this universe is sexual. Everywhere in nature the erotic choreography of the courtship dance and the refrain of its melodic conversation can be witnessed, from the strutting of the peacock to the flowers of the field, from the croaking of the frog to the chirping of the crickets. Life is engaged in an ongoing conversation with itself; a sensual soliloquy of many tongues. The topic is self-discovery and self-transcendence through relationship. The language is sexual and sensual while the word spoken is seed and the seed given is word. The outcome is life’s continuous creation and the guidebook followed is love. But to love, you must become a lover and passionately engage the world in intimate and erotic conversation as though it were your beloved.
© p. donovan

“Dance me to your beauty
with a burning violin.
Dance me through the panic
till I’m gathered safely in.
Touch me with your naked hand,
touch me with your glove.
Dance me to the end of love.”

(From “Dance Me to the End of Love”
by Leonard Cohen © Stanger Music)
As I “check in” with my own experience of love and the many poets, mystics and lovers who have tasted of the sweetness of love’s sublime ecstasy and have been deeply wounded by the flame of love’s transformational fire, I can only conclude the following. To be a lover:
One must realize one’s worthiness to be loved and to love;
One must be willing to risk being wounded;
One must be willing to risk
one’s self to be a part of something greater than one’s self;
One must be willing to be naked to The Beloved and witnessed by The Beloved in that nakedness and vulnerability at the risk of being judged;
One must have a vision of the heavenly perfection of profound relatedness;
One must have a burning, passionate desire to be totally immersed in the ecstasy of profound relatedness;
Because every being is the portal through which The Beloved is accessed, one must be able to recognize and erotically engage The Beloved living deep within the heart and essence of every being and enter into profound relatedness with that being and The Beloved within them;
Then one must dance!

© p. donovan
“The person who emerges from the act of pure relation that so involves his/her being has now in their being something more that has grown in themselves, of which they did not know before and whose origin he/she is not rightly able to indicate.” (Martin Buber, I And Thou)

Being in the sacred place of profound relatedness with another is a powerful experience, one that is either mortally devastatin
g or spiritually transformative. When it is transformative, it leaves you with “something more that has grown in you” as Buber tells us.

However, to be a lover you must be willing to live in love’s world and be sacrificed on its alter of creativity for your beloved; “crucified”, “pruned” and “shaken” to your very roots if that is what it takes to be one with your beloved. You must be deeply centered within your own being and have a strong sense of who you are at your very core, however, to risk such wounding and survive. You must first know yourself or else all will be lost. The blade of profound relatedness cuts deep into the heart of your existence as it dissects away all denial, apathy, and resistance. If you are not prepared, it may cut too deeply leaving you mortally devastated, struggling to survive, struggling to be free from your pain.
© p. donovan