May 7th Living in the Becoming
I am with two people. One is an older lady the other is a shorter man who reminds me of Lance in the Detectorists. I am listening to Lance. He is leaning back against a doorway, with his hand behind his back discussing spirituality with the older woman. Their question seemed to be, "How does one make a start"
I hesitated, but sat at the table across from the woman. There were bits and bobs on the table. I said, "One way is to live in the Becoming." They asked what that meant.
I replied by taking a small ceramic holder of bits & bobs, saying, "Take this and start a relationship with it. Every day live in it's becoming. Have a conversation with it. Over time, this object might tell you where your father left you a legacy." as I put the object down back on the table.
We we discussing this idea when I was looking at more objects on a bookshelf and suddenly I "SAW" my father's face. I told my sister... and came back into my body this fine morning, greeting the day with a hearty "Hello God!"
This dream theme points to an inner conversation I have been having with myself about starting one of Rudolf Steiner's How to Know Higher Worlds exercises. But he admonishes us about the golden rule for mystery tradition students, "For every single step that you make in seeking knowledge of hidden truths, you must take three steps in perfecting your character toward the Good."
Now that shouldn't be skipped over lightly. One of the reasons I quit teaching "shamanism" was because it was like giving matches to little children. Most of my shamanic students didn't want to do any character development, have any moral platform, or change themselves toward the good in any way. They wanted "magic" tools that would Give them a Better Happier Life.
I believe in character development, so taught the long WomanSpirit Programs where we all cooked in the alchemical cauldron together while we sifted through our Prima Materia. To go into abstinence for one bad habit, is extremely difficult, ask any addict. Steiner suggests that in order to be strong enough to meet the Spiritual Worlds as a beginning student of the Mystery Traditions that we need to undergo a metanoia of three steps. What steps might yours be?
When we can overcome a bad habit, it gives us back inner strength of soul to meet life more steadily. The more we can overcome ourselves, the stronger we will be. Sitting in circle together working on ourselves without judgement from the other, creates a reverence for each other's lives. We see the highest soul of the other, and this supports our transformation. As the great scientist, artist and poet Goethe says, "The man who masters himself is delivered from the force that binds all creatures."
Carl Jung had a client who asked his help in her overcoming her addiction to sugar. He told her to come back in a month. She came back a month later to begin therapy. When asked why he waited a month, Jung replied, "In order to give up sugar." The implication is that how can someone help another when they have not done it -the sacrifice required- themselves? So Jung gave up sugar, so he had the moral certainty and wholeness to really help her. His words then, would not be empty words, but words filled with knowledge and the power to truly help her.
This same idea shows up in many sagas and hero/heroine legends. In Parcival, Trevercent is the hermit in woods, and we find out that he is the brother to the Fisherking, the wounded Grail King. He has led a life as hermit to help support his suffering kin.
“I have come to the frightening conclusion that I am the decisive element. It is my personal approach that creates the climate. It is my daily mood that makes the weather. I possess tremendous power to make life miserable or joyous. I can be a tool of torture or an instrument of inspiration, I can humiliate or humor, hurt or heal. In all situations, it is my response that decides whether a crisis is escalated or de-escalated, and a person is humanized or de-humanized. If we treat people as they are, we make them worse. If we treat people as they ought to be, we help them become what they are capable of becoming.”
―Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Goethe was a man ahead of his time, he realized through his deep inner work what new physics is just now beginning to discover.
In Steiner's book How to Know Higher Worlds he gives us the famous PIN exercise.
• Control of thinking even for 2-5 minutes a day develops “control of thought” and this meditative life develops “crystal body” where inappropriate thoughts, negative thoughts bounce of us. !
• You can test whether your thought control has been successful. … And for those who follow the path of knowledge that is one’s dream life. For most people dream life is wild, mixed-up confusion. But that ceases completely after we have devoted ourselves to a meditative life for a period of time. Then our dreams acquire a deep, symbolic significance. A barometer for our degree of thought control can be found in the regularity, in the beauty of our dreams.
The first condition is the cultivation of an absolutely clear thinking. For this purpose one must rid oneself of the will-o’-the-wisps of thought, even if only for a very short time during the day — about five minutes (the longer, the better). One must become master in one’s world of thought. One is not master if outer circumstances, occupation, some tradition or other, social relationships, even membership in a particular race, or if the daily round of life, certain activities, and so forth, determine a thought and how one enlarges upon it.
Therefore during this brief time, one must, entirely out of free will, empty the soul of the ordinary, everyday course of thoughts, and by one’s own initiative place a thought at the center of the soul. One need not believe that this must be a particularly striking or interesting thought. Indeed it will be all the better for what has to be attained in an occult respect if one strives at first to choose the most uninteresting and insignificant thought.
Thinking is then impelled to act out of its own energy, which is the essential thing here, whereas an interesting thought carries the thinking along with it. It is better if this exercise in thought control is undertaken with a pin rather than with Napoleon.
The pupil says to himself: Now I start from this thought, and through my own inner initiative I associate with it everything that is pertinent to it. At the end of the period the thought should stand before the soul just as colorfully and vividly as at the beginning. This exercise is repeated day by day for at least a month; a new thought may be taken every day, but the same thought may also be adhered to for several days. At the end of such an exercise one endeavors to become fully conscious of that inner feeling of firmness and security which will soon be noticed by paying subtler attention to one’s own soul; then one concludes the exercise by focusing the thinking upon the head and the middle of the spine (brain and spinal cord), as if one were pouring that feeling of security into this part of the body."
Rudolf Steiner How to Know Higher Worlds
............ so I am going to pick an object a PIN and do a month of online discourse of the Pin exercise and see what happens.
Mary 7th evening: I had two pins. That caused me some consternation. But they both seemed to want to be there. So compare & contrast. One pin was the regular small needle sharp pin with the t rounded head, all silver. The second was a larger fabric pin with a large bobble head pin in yellow. The larger one could weave in and out of the fabric of my t-shirt, and hold sturdier fabrics. The smaller one would be better for finer fabrics and small intricate work. I realized I didn't know: how they make pins, what pins are made of, where do they come from, how do they make the yellow bobble head and get it to stay on the pin. How can each pin be so smooth that it can pierce fabrics or fingers! so easily without snagging. I thought about how in the "old" days a pin cushion was necessary as a pin box, so each precious pin would not be lost. Things mattered in the old days. It was not a throw-away society. To some, having pins meant they had work, seamstresses for example. I wondered if anyone has been stabbed with needles? ugh. I plunged both pins into my pincushion house made by Nancy Albro and saw how they disappeared with just the heads keeping them from being swallowed by the pin cushion. Tomorrow I will introduce myself to both of them.
Evening May 8th: One pin silver metail. Question; does every country use pins? Do they look the same in every country? Are there different uses I have not discovered? Are there any entire costumes made of pins? Are there pins smaller than this? Larger than this? ( I thougth of Alice in Wonderland Eat Me Drink Me) Metamorpheses: smaller pin larger head would be a Thumb Tack, a wider or thicker pin would be a Nail, larger again growing would be knitting needles, they are just big pins. Who thought of knitting? The idea of a tube with an end is a magnificient concept! We have tools, a fork, knife & spoon are metamorphed pins. I could see the solder mark on the top of the pin. How are they made?
Mary 9th Needles & Pins utube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wZJPpuL2sqQ
Well the video is fascinating. Wow! Pins and Needles all made by machines. No humans in sight. The washing of the needles in that big vat machine, how do they not bend? Also the needles around the big ring are shaved seven rotations to get the pin sharp.
May 10th tired tonight. I pulled out both pins and compared the width of the long shafts to see if the longer pin is larger around the width. nope. Same size. I took a long musing look at the points again, seeing those machines in my minds eye. All that work to go to families who will sew, or use pins in crafts projects, step on them, they will get lost outside or in cracks in the floor or roll under furniture.
question: do Pins long for humans? does that fulfill their destiny?
May 11 I looked at the Pin with the square dollop of steel making the "T" in the thin steel pin. I thought through the sequences of how it's made. I tried to imagine (2-3) families out of the billions that have used pins in so many different ways. That a "box" of pins made an entire families clothes, year after year. Chemise, drawers, long-johns, petticoats. Think about how many pins it takes to pin a petticoat!
so Pins are staunch soldiers in the army of the Feminine.
May 12 Lost Pins after going through the sequences of how a Pin is made. The rest of the meditation was on loosing pins. How many times have I moved? How many times have you moved? How many times have you lost your pins? Everyone has.... so where do they disappear? Thinking of The Detectorists, millions of pins should by rights be lost in the earth.
May 13 Just looked at the pin. The head with the "t" and the sharp point. How when the pin is looped in and out of fabric the "t" head stops the forward movement. Each end is so important. The Stopper "t" head and the finely shaved sharp pointed end to pierce fabrics. The smaller and sharper the Pin, the finer the fabrics. (think of sewing up human flesh with a Needle, a Pin with an Eye) So I came to the conclusion that a PIN is perfect in function and form.
Getting to the Point
The point of your pin should slide easily and cleanly into your fabric. If it causes holes or snags you should switch to another type of pin. There are three types of points to look for:
- Sharp: These are good for most medium- to heavy-weight woven fabrics.
- Extra-sharp: The points are longer, more tapered and good for delicate fabrics.
Ball point: Ball points are used for knits. The point is actually rounded rather than sharp, so it glides between the yarns of the fabric without piercing or pulling.
May 15 Pentecost: pin went through protocals. I have to admit, I feel friendly toward this particular pin. I feel like Tom Hanks( in Cast Away) how he feels about, Wilson, the ball. I'm not picking up anyfriendliness coming back at me. How might that feel from a pin?
May 16 fell asleep.
May 17 using the Pin to get two small slivers out of my hand. Very painful and extremely sharp point. It not only pierces fabrics but skin as well. The fabric does not cry out when it is pierced, but boy I did.
May 18th I am struck again and again how reviewing the silver pin in my hand, and thinking through how it's made, what its made of and the different kinds of work that it does, how a pin can be so forthcoming in it's biography.