And on the other hand...

Click here for The Yin Side where the other half of me holds forth!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Tranquility Touch Stone

After enduring all the new-agey nonsense surrounding the perfectly routine solstice (despite its very nice numerological rhythm, 12/21/12), I am vowing to hold tranquility in my hands, my heart, and mind in 2013.
Tranquil as a stone.
I picked up this nice little water-polished stone at Cannon Beach, Or., in November.  It felt so good in my hand, has a nice heft, fills the palm like a ball of qi, and has a little depression even where my thumb can rest. I thought it might make a nice paperweight, but I think it is better as a meditational object.  I put the characters for tranquility on it but they will probably wear off over the coming year.  (It's a nice way to make a treasure out of a chunk of non-descript mineral.)
Rock-polishing beach
Being of a numerological bent, I also note that 12/21/12 is my 44th wedding anniversary.  "44" seemed equally non-descript as a number, but apparently it is not.  In  some circles it's considered a "master number," like 11, 22, 33) and has some positive significance. According to this new-agey  site, "The Master Number 44 is the most powerful vibration of materialization. It’s known as the master of creating “Heaven on Earth”. The “44″ grounds and motivates people to awaken and manifest their hearts desire and to be influential in their lives and the world."  (I should probably inscribe "44" on the stone as well.)

That sounds like  a good thing, because I was more concerned about the negative association of "4" in Chinese (si, sounds like death).  But if you add 4+4 you get 8, and that sounds like ba, (fortune or wealth), and since there's two of us, we could make it 88, which is the double happiness symbol, which has more to do with the 88 visually resembling "shuang xi" (囍) than the sound of ba ba.  I didn't really know that before.  So, I have willfully turned what might have been a negative meaning into a positive one.   Not new-agey nonsense, just old-timey superstition!

In any case, since 44 is not one of the traditional anniversary gift years (next year it's sapphires!) I have given myself just a little stone reminder of 44 years of tranquility and many more, I hope to come.

Son, DIL, Wizard, at Cannon Beach. Rock group album cover? The Tranquil Stones?
My Wizard of 44 years!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Winding down, again

This morning I woke up, having slept late, which as one ages is not as late as it used to be.  I swam up through my dream state, peeked out from under the little black cloth I use to cover my eyes and pineal gland, and ventured to guess what time it was.

I estimated 8:42 a.m.  I rolled over to squint at the digital clock, which read 8:41. Close, and by the time I actually put feet to floor, it was 8:42.  Why even have a clock?  I never use it as an alarm; my body clock seems to work just fine.

What I was thinking about, before I rose, was that this year has been a deja vu.  Details different, but same travel, same project deadlines, same routines as the previous 12 months. Even the news has a repetitive quality... another election, another school shooting, another mid-east military conflict.  Some people like that routine and focus on world events, despite their relentless sameness.  It makes me itchy.  (Need to start planning next China pilgrimage, which I missed in 2012.  Wanderlust calls.)  Much as I worship cycles, I like a little variety.

Nothing special happened (except that I became officially eligible for Medicare) at my birthday, which was touted as some magical planetary alignment over the pyramids of Giza. Thinking of the pyramids made me feel not that old.  Then nothing special happened on 12/12/12.  (Except perhaps for the children born at that moment who may if they live long enough and assuming nothing happens on 12/21/12, unlike the rest of us, see that date sequence repeat.  (Imagine a 100th birthday on 12/12/2112).

The binary sequences of 12/12/12 made me think of hexagrams, and I decided to interpret the date as #63, water over fire, not a bad one, and perhaps suggesting preparation for the next big date, 12/21/12, at which I expect nothing special to happen (except that it is my wedding anniversary.)  If seen as a hexagram, this is #17, the joyous lake over the arousing thunder.  Also an interesting hexagram, which suggests rest after exertion, a  perfect symbol of the winter solstice, and a lot more encouraging than Mayan calendar hysteria.

This is all completely bogus I-ching-ing, but maybe not.  Why not?  I haven't seen anyone else make these observations.  They kind of work for me.  (I-ching as My-ching.)  Anyway, all these numbers on clocks and calendars mean nothing really, they are just tosses of the coins or yarrow stalks, just putting us at places in the flow of our own time, and reminding us of the cycles, winding up, winding down, with no end in sight.