Saturday, July 4, 2009

Salmon swim up stream to the place from which they came. At some point this return journey becomes the purpose for their lives. They are going to get back or die trying. And when they get back, they die anyway from lack of anything else necessary to do. They have a single mission. Get back, lay the eggs, and die. Of course, they don’t all get back. Some end up in bear jaws. Some get lost. Some get caught and cooked up for supper. Some just aren’t strong enough to make it up that last waterfall. Salmon can’t help each other because they don‘t have opposable thumbs. You make it on your own or you don’t make it. Some times the place they have to get back to doesn’t exist any more.

I think I am trying to get back to something too. Maybe it is something like a spiritual sponging place. I think there may be some aspect of my being that has a clear and simple purpose. It must be subconscious. Or para conscious, or maybe non-conscious. Because my conscious self is clueless. What am I really doing here? I am not one to go around with strong notions of what I am doing. I don’t have much inclination to goals and objectives. I seem to live unintentionally - reacting to situations as they arise. Doing what I can to make a living, a family, a life of some sort. As far as the details of my daily life go, it’s pretty much happenstance. It’s a descent happenstance, but it wasn’t a plan or a road map. There is, however, a part of me that is always searching - always restless to get farther up stream. I like to think it knows what it is after. And I think my intuition, at times, is being led by this direction. But it’s very mucky water to swim in. Nothing is clear to my conscious mind. No matter how many ways the “spiritual journey” Or “spiritual purpose” is spelled out to me, it never seems as clear to me as it seem to be to others. I remember listening to an old guy talk about his religion once and he pulled out a literal map from his pocket. He had this little step by step process of what his life was for and what happened to him after death, and where he ended up in the end. I could see it was a great comfort to him to have it all spelled out. I think of the Jack Nicolson line in a movie called As Good as it Gets “if that did it for me I’d be the luckiest man alive”.

My awareness of such things is far more nebulous. I hope there is something going on. I like to speculate about what might be going on behind the scenes, as it were. But for me to grab hold of some dictation or another about what that is exactly, seems pretensions. What does seem relevant are the obstacles. Getting stuck or lost or distracted in ways that may be obstructing the real journey at hand seems to cross over into my daily existence. Running into some new dam that was made since I was born. Or running out of strength to make those spiritual leaps up waterfalls. Or getting caught up in some fishers net and pulled toward some boat that goes to a canning plant. There are those times - frequently actually- when I just feel stuck and hopeless. There are also those times when I feel free and powerful. These days I am feeling more stuck than powerful and spiritually “on my way” and that restless, unsatisfied, feeling does not seem to be something I can just ignore. I have to deal with it. I have to keep trying something. This kind of restlessness leads to a lot of learning and attempting to reorient myself, and I think it is a good thing. But there are times when I whish it was as simple as swim back to ground zero, lay the egg, and die. Maybe it is.


John J. Franks IV said...


OK, lets see if I can parse this into intelligible ideas.

If it is purpose you seek in your life, it would seem to me you have found and or established it very clearly.

Family, Friends, And Love.

The Grand Essentials to Happiness in this Life are:
Something To Do,
Something To Love,
& Something To Hope For

- Joseph Addison

c/o - Doug Johnson

You my Long Time and Dear Friend have all of the above! This in my book makes you "The Luckiest Man In the World"

If in fact you are unhappy with the answers you have sought out that does not mean they are the incorrect answers....

It may mean that a new direction, or a slight deviation of the course you are presently on is in order.

What you determine as Spirituality or Spiritual, does not have to be a Religious issue. The are many types and ways of being Spiritual.

Did it occur to you sir that you already posses the tools and skills to answer your own queries?

In many ways you already have , just take a gander beyond the words your type. I think you will understand my meaning.

You have always been one of the most intelligent people I have ever known. We have not always seen eye to eye, but that garners respect not opposition.

Take what I say here as you will. With a grain of salt, or a modicum of reality. They claim those of of based in the insane plane may well me the sane ones after all....

Your Friend,

John Hayes said...

I think it's better to concentrate on the journey than the destination. A very thoughtful post!

Linda Pendleton said...


I like your introspection. Thanks for sharing. I suppose most of us go through that from time to time. Life is a mystery. I recall when I was years younger thinking “Is this all there is?” even though my life was fine, a loving family, a secure life, but at times it seemed something was missing within me. As time has gone on, the spiritual aspects of my “knowing,” my spiritual growth, has filled in the emptiness for the most part.

In reading your blog I am reminded of the words of Joseph Campbell, “Follow your bliss,” yes, but also these words, “We must be willing to get rid of the life we planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.”

I do enjoy reading your blogs although I don’t always comment.

Randy Watson said...

Hey John, John, and Linda...
Thanks for the thouhtful comments!