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Verse Seventy Four


From: jimclatfelter
Posted: Mon May 04, 2009

Verse Seventy Four
Herrymon Maurer, 1985

When people don't mind death,
Why threaten them with death?
If, afraid of death, they were still unruly,
Who would dare seize and kill them?
The great executioner kills those who kill.
To take his place is like
Handling the hatchet for a master carpenter.
Whoever handles the hatchet for a master carpenter
Usually gets his hands cut.

Verse Seventy Four
Witter Bynner, 1944

Death is no threat to people
Who are not afraid to die;
But even if these offenders feared death all day,
Who should be rash enough
To act as executioner?
Nature is executioner.
When man usurps the place,
A carpenter's apprentice takes the place of the master:
And 'an apprentice hacking with the master's axe
May slice his own hand.'

Verse Seventy Four
Daodejingle

You truly are what isn't born
You needn't fear to die
Live your life while knowing you
Will never lose the inner eye

You can't control what is to be
In using tools you don't command
Unlike the master carpenter
You're bound to cut your hand

Jim Clatfelter


Steve Palmer
Posted: Tue May 05, 2009

Daodejingle

You truly are what isn't born
You needn't fear to die
Live your life while knowing you
Will never lose the inner eye

You can't control what is to be
In using tools you don't command
Unlike the master carpenter
You're bound to cut your hand

Maybe it's the rhythm, the simplicity, the humour, the headlessness or a mixture of all these elements
but this is the version i " get "

Here's a re-mix of 2 line .

You truly are what isn't born
and needn't fear to die
Fear or courage, arise 'n' pass
On inner stainless eye.


From: jimclatfelter
Posted: Wed May 06, 2009

Hi Steve,

I like your changes. I'm glad the Daodejingle comes through for you. This is one of the verses where I understood the social and political meaning of the verse but wanted to make it more first-personal. I know I changed the meaning a little. I figured that talking about death was a handy place to mention the unborn.

Death is an odd topic. All the panic about the flu this last week or so seems so overblown. Two people have died in the US -- one was a child who had visited Mexico. The other was a woman who had other health problems. Yet 36,000 people die in a normal flu season, and you hear almost nothing about it beyond reminders to get your flu shots. We hear about American deaths in Iraq but almost nothing about Iraqi deaths and disruptions. We do hear about all the bombings, but we don't hear about the hundreds of thousands of Iraqi deaths.

When people don't mind death,
Why threaten them with death?

We sure do mind death today. So why are they threatening us with death? I wonder about our deathless "inner stainless eye." Does it help when it comes to our attitude about death? I don't know. Just getting older helps.
I think life prepares us somewhat. I don't know if I will mind dying. I do know that I don't mind getting older. It has it's advantages.

Jim


From: Steve Palmer
Posted: Fri May 08, 2009

Hi Jim

Yes i almost forgot the original verse 74 and went for a headless verse !

Quote:
I wonder about our deathless "inner stainless eye." Does it help when it comes to our attitude about death? I don't know. Just getting older helps.
I think life prepares us somewhat. I don't know if I will mind dying. I do know that I don't mind getting older. It has it's advantages. "

Yes I feel there is more acceptance as you get older.
Even though things and people are dying all around us death is still the unknown.
Like you I don't know if I will mind.
It all depends on the time etc.
Only once in my life did I think i might die
and the thing that came to mind was my daughter, who was very young at the time , I wanted to be around as part of the family.

Along with headlessness, Pantheism has helped.
We come from or are born of the things of this Earth and like the leaves go back to the Earth.
This is home.

So open and trust to the source as you can,
is my thought right now.
and maybe be grateful for having happened.

Steve


From: jimclatfelter
Posted: Sat May 09, 2009

Hi Steve,

"Along with headlessness, Pantheism has helped."

I'm glad you brought up pantheism. I haven't thought about it in years.

"Pantheists believe in Divine Immanence. To the Pantheist, divinity does not transcend reality; it surrounds, and is within. All share divinity. This leads the pantheist to personal ethics of tolerance and understanding."

I got that from a Pantheism website. It surrounds, and is within. That sounds like headlessness and Tao to me. The current rage over Atheism is important, in my opinion, in that it rejects all the transcendent gods. I can't believe in the gods. But I am blown away by the fact that This exists. It's so improbable and wonderful. I don't need a final theory about it, but I do love exploring it. Douglas's headless experiments have shown me the design of living beings, of aware presence. They direct my attention two ways, to my what surrounds me and to what is within me. The Tao Te Ching does the same thing.

I wonder whether Atheism and Pantheism are not pretty closely related. What does divinity mean? Both are saying that it doesn't mean an exclusively transcendent god. Both respect Nature. Neither denies evolution. Neither makes artificial rules for all to follow. What do you think?

Jim

I found this too:

"Not only is pantheism not antithetical to religion, but certain religions are better understood as pantheistic rather than theistic when their doctrines are examined. Philosophical Taoism is the most pantheistic, but Advaita Vedanta, certain forms of Buddhism and some mystical strands in monotheistic traditions are also pantheistic. But even apart from any religious tradition many people profess pantheistic beliefs € though somewhat obscurely."

Headlessness fits right in here, doesn't it?


From: Steve Palmer
Posted: Sun May 10, 2009

Quote:
I wonder whether Atheism and Pantheism are not pretty closely related. What does divinity mean? Both are saying that it doesn't mean an exclusively transcendent god. Both respect Nature. Neither denies evolution. Neither makes artificial rules for all to follow. What do you think?

Hi Jim

Richard Dawkins called Pantheism sexed-up Atheism.
Because of the beauty of Pantheism, it seems more like Poetic Atheism wth a sense of wonder and awe for life, the universe and everything, to quote Douglas Adams i think.
Pantheism celebrates the seasons, observing birth, growth,decay and death in Nature and says you are part of this.
This is home. Right here, right now.

Pantheism seems like positive version of Atheism.Though I'm sure this definition is not true for all Atheists.

Pantheists also seem to have a much more positive view of the body than most religions.
Headlessness seems to fits very well with Pantheism and brings another dimension to it.

I have copied a section on Taoism and Scientific Pantheism by Paul Harrison, author of Elements of Pantheism, I thought you might enjoy it.

ARE YOU A TAOIST, OR A PANTHEIST, OR BOTH?

Philosophical Taoism overlaps in many respects with Scientific Pantheism. Both are non-dualist, and deny that spirit and matter are separate substances. Both are non-theist, and deny the existence of any personal creator God or supernatural realm. Yet both have a deeply religious reverence for nature and the universe. Both stress the importance of living in harmony with nature. If you are attracted to the Taoism of Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu, then you will find scientific pantheism totally congenial.
There are of course some differences. Unlike Chuang Tzu, Scientific Pantheism does not advocate social inaction, and does not assume that there is an ultimate reality beyond the material universe (though it does not deny the possibility of this).( Note: tell Paul Harrison about Headlessness !!) Scientific Pantheism is completely free of the later accretions of religious Taoism: the alchemical pursuit of physical immortality, the multiplicity of deities and so on.
Scientific Pantheism recognizes the right of all pantheists to celebrate their beliefs in any ritual or symbolic form they prefer: so it is entirely possible to be a scientific pantheist and a Taoist at the same time, and many of our members are.


From: jimclatfelter
Posted: Sun May 10, 2009

Hi Steve,

Thanks for the quotes and the book references. You've given me a lot to explore. I like the idea of headlessness hooking up with Pantheism. It would be great if Pantheism became as popular in the bookstores as Atheism. I think a lot of Atheists are close to being Pantheists. They do have a reverence for the natural world. As you say, this is home.

Jim


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