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Re: Agatha and me

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  • jogyata
    Call me a greenie or a bleeding heart if you want to but when I came upon a 1000 year old kauri tree on my Sunday jaunt through the nearby Waitakere Ranges, I
    Message 1 of 4 , Mar 1, 2006
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      Call me a greenie or a bleeding heart if you want to but when I came
      upon a 1000 year old kauri tree on my Sunday jaunt through the nearby
      Waitakere Ranges, I found it irresistably huggable. In comparative
      human time it's barely past adolescence and could be here for another
      1000 years barring lightning strike, landslide, continental drift,
      nuclear war or boredom (2000 years is a long time rooted in one
      place). The kauri is known by the rather graceless and unfortunate
      botanical term 'agathis australis', so I call my new friend Agatha,
      not a favourite name of mine but we don't want to cause an arboreal
      identity crisis by giving Agatha her spiritual name just yet. Trees
      have consciousness too and these wonderful revelations of God move us
      in ways beyond our minds comprehension – we all come from the
      Universal Consciousness and are connected in the great stream of life.
      My new friend is also a distant relative and conjoined with me in
      spirit and sitting quietly on the forest floor, my back against the
      rough bark and the dawn sun colouring the hillsides and valleys with a
      changing golden light, I can sink back – mmmmm – into a nourishing
      and soothing silence.

      Agatha's first 900 years were spent peacefully growing up in one of
      the greatest botanical cathedrals of planet earth – 200 foot high
      forest giants of breathtaking splendour and girth, filled with
      gorgeous birds and daylong birdsong. My colonial predecessors smashed
      the magestic virgin kauri forests that mantled these western mountains
      the way a thoughtless child smashes a toy – part of the insane
      ecological holocaust ongoing even today - and Agatha lived through all
      that, a lonely survivor among the tragic wreckage of an ancient
      dynasty of trees.

      The mystic and animistic traditions of our ancestors seem remote from
      us now, insulated as we are by roads and concrete walls and carefully
      devised urban landscapes that protect us from our worst fears, and now
      we only `visit' nature, tourists of our last womb-wildernesses, armed
      with our maps and cellphones to ward off the unthinkable. But the
      ancient impulses are still there, and seated beneath Agatha's towering
      arms I can feel these faculties becoming sharpened inside me along
      with a sense of release from the burden of myself and my anxious life.

      I like these hours wandering in a garden of ridges and deep valleys
      and effortless beauty, hearing the water in the streambed far below
      and the language of the forest all around. In the sunlight the air is
      filled with teeming embryonic life, millions of tiny spores drizzling
      from the green fronds of the mamaku and the waist high thickets of
      ferns – I breathe them in joyfully.

      We need whatever it is these sanctuaries provide. Untamed nature can
      be a harsh learning place but also a great schoolroom of
      self-knowledge - and here where the wilderness of nature and the wild
      places of the mind intersect, we are often undone.
      I remember once camped on an alpine ridge just below the snowline in
      Westland National Park, miles from the civilized world. Shortly after
      midnight a storm blew up and high winds toppled huge black beech trees
      to – all around me the crash of giant trees tearing down through the
      canopy to the ground.
      Eyes wide with fear, and nowhere to go or hide in the inky blackness,
      I lay there praying with a trembling fervour to God. At dawn a scene
      of utter devastation all around me – but miraculously I had been
      granted life.

      Such moments that our modern world so carefully shields us from are
      treasures that never leave our memory, moulding us without gentleness
      or pity. Our 'self' is pared away and we are opened up to the
      capricousness of life and death, only a moment of chance apart, and to
      the primal fears and trapdoors that open in the wild places of our
      minds.

      Nature is a repository of many potential experiences that ground us
      and make us better, more complete - and here, as in meditation, all
      our sensibilities converge toward new insight and discernment. Cut off
      from all this, we become less human, less civilised.

      A part of us grieves for our vanishing wild places and much of my own
      love of wilderness has an underlying melancholy. Our token parks and
      reserves, the pocket handkerchief remnants fenced off from encroaching
      farms into lonely islands, proclaimed to assuage our guilt, do not
      lessen our sadness at what we have done. Nor do these sustain the life
      they once bore – disconnected from the far-off mountains, diminutive
      in size, often trampled and plundered, they are silent museum pieces
      waiting for their own demise.

      At least Agatha is safe while I live and breathe - she is a symbol of
      something precious for me that I am happy to bleed and sacrifice for.
      She is the song of eternity, the beauty of God, the glory of nature,
      the sanctity of the sacred, a glimpse through a lovely, disappearing
      window into an irretrievable past, an inviolable last remnant that
      must be gifted to the future. And in some barely understood way she is
      myself – I find my own spirit when seated at her feet.

      Footnote:
      In a Jewish tale a young boy is asked by his teacher why he ran away
      from the community and into the forest time after time despite being
      frequently found out and punished. His rabbi asked him: "Why do you
      waste your time in the forest? Why do you go there?" "I am looking for
      God", said the boy. "Isn't God everywhere" asked the rabbi, "and isn't
      He everywhere the same?" "Yes," said the boy, "but I am not." (From
      'Moment and Memory')

      – Jogyata.
    • snehashila2
      Dear Jogyata, Thank you for the telling of Agatha. So amazing! I now want to come and hug her, too. You had said:
      Message 2 of 4 , Mar 3, 2006
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        Dear Jogyata,

        Thank you for the telling of Agatha. So amazing! I now want to come and hug her, too.

        You had said:
        <<Eyes wide with fear, and nowhere to go or hide in the inky blackness,I lay there praying
        with a trembling fervour to God. At dawn a scene of utter devastation all around me – but
        miraculously I had been granted life.>>

        Our dearest teacher had saved you.

        Snehashila



        --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, jogyata <no_reply@...> wrote:
        >
        > Call me a greenie or a bleeding heart if you want to but when I came
        > upon a 1000 year old kauri tree on my Sunday jaunt through the nearby
        > Waitakere Ranges, I found it irresistably huggable. In comparative
        > human time it's barely past adolescence and could be here for another
        > 1000 years barring lightning strike, landslide, continental drift,
        > nuclear war or boredom (2000 years is a long time rooted in one
        > place). The kauri is known by the rather graceless and unfortunate
        > botanical term 'agathis australis', so I call my new friend Agatha,
        > not a favourite name of mine but we don't want to cause an arboreal
        > identity crisis by giving Agatha her spiritual name just yet. Trees
        > have consciousness too and these wonderful revelations of God move us
        > in ways beyond our minds comprehension – we all come from the
        > Universal Consciousness and are connected in the great stream of life.
        > My new friend is also a distant relative and conjoined with me in
        > spirit and sitting quietly on the forest floor, my back against the
        > rough bark and the dawn sun colouring the hillsides and valleys with a
        > changing golden light, I can sink back – mmmmm – into a nourishing
        > and soothing silence.
        >
        > Agatha's first 900 years were spent peacefully growing up in one of
        > the greatest botanical cathedrals of planet earth – 200 foot high
        > forest giants of breathtaking splendour and girth, filled with
        > gorgeous birds and daylong birdsong. My colonial predecessors smashed
        > the magestic virgin kauri forests that mantled these western mountains
        > the way a thoughtless child smashes a toy – part of the insane
        > ecological holocaust ongoing even today - and Agatha lived through all
        > that, a lonely survivor among the tragic wreckage of an ancient
        > dynasty of trees.
        >
        > The mystic and animistic traditions of our ancestors seem remote from
        > us now, insulated as we are by roads and concrete walls and carefully
        > devised urban landscapes that protect us from our worst fears, and now
        > we only `visit' nature, tourists of our last womb-wildernesses, armed
        > with our maps and cellphones to ward off the unthinkable. But the
        > ancient impulses are still there, and seated beneath Agatha's towering
        > arms I can feel these faculties becoming sharpened inside me along
        > with a sense of release from the burden of myself and my anxious life.
        >
        > I like these hours wandering in a garden of ridges and deep valleys
        > and effortless beauty, hearing the water in the streambed far below
        > and the language of the forest all around. In the sunlight the air is
        > filled with teeming embryonic life, millions of tiny spores drizzling
        > from the green fronds of the mamaku and the waist high thickets of
        > ferns – I breathe them in joyfully.
        >
        > We need whatever it is these sanctuaries provide. Untamed nature can
        > be a harsh learning place but also a great schoolroom of
        > self-knowledge - and here where the wilderness of nature and the wild
        > places of the mind intersect, we are often undone.
        > I remember once camped on an alpine ridge just below the snowline in
        > Westland National Park, miles from the civilized world. Shortly after
        > midnight a storm blew up and high winds toppled huge black beech trees
        > to – all around me the crash of giant trees tearing down through the
        > canopy to the ground.
        > Eyes wide with fear, and nowhere to go or hide in the inky blackness,
        > I lay there praying with a trembling fervour to God. At dawn a scene
        > of utter devastation all around me – but miraculously I had been
        > granted life.
        >
        > Such moments that our modern world so carefully shields us from are
        > treasures that never leave our memory, moulding us without gentleness
        > or pity. Our 'self' is pared away and we are opened up to the
        > capricousness of life and death, only a moment of chance apart, and to
        > the primal fears and trapdoors that open in the wild places of our
        > minds.
        >
        > Nature is a repository of many potential experiences that ground us
        > and make us better, more complete - and here, as in meditation, all
        > our sensibilities converge toward new insight and discernment. Cut off
        > from all this, we become less human, less civilised.
        >
        > A part of us grieves for our vanishing wild places and much of my own
        > love of wilderness has an underlying melancholy. Our token parks and
        > reserves, the pocket handkerchief remnants fenced off from encroaching
        > farms into lonely islands, proclaimed to assuage our guilt, do not
        > lessen our sadness at what we have done. Nor do these sustain the life
        > they once bore – disconnected from the far-off mountains, diminutive
        > in size, often trampled and plundered, they are silent museum pieces
        > waiting for their own demise.
        >
        > At least Agatha is safe while I live and breathe - she is a symbol of
        > something precious for me that I am happy to bleed and sacrifice for.
        > She is the song of eternity, the beauty of God, the glory of nature,
        > the sanctity of the sacred, a glimpse through a lovely, disappearing
        > window into an irretrievable past, an inviolable last remnant that
        > must be gifted to the future. And in some barely understood way she is
        > myself – I find my own spirit when seated at her feet.
        >
        > Footnote:
        > In a Jewish tale a young boy is asked by his teacher why he ran away
        > from the community and into the forest time after time despite being
        > frequently found out and punished. His rabbi asked him: "Why do you
        > waste your time in the forest? Why do you go there?" "I am looking for
        > God", said the boy. "Isn't God everywhere" asked the rabbi, "and isn't
        > He everywhere the same?" "Yes," said the boy, "but I am not." (From
        > 'Moment and Memory')
        >
        > – Jogyata.
        >
      • one_prachar
        Dear Jogyata Thank you again for showing us what this Inspiration Group can be. You share many faces of truth: through and around and above your words rings
        Message 3 of 4 , Mar 5, 2006
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          Dear Jogyata

          Thank you again for showing us what this Inspiration Group can be.
          You share many faces of truth: through and around and above your words
          rings the resonance of a deep and spanless soul. Your present
          literary purple patch has revealed some of the finest, richest and
          most sumptuous offerings in this forum.

          From Prachar

          --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, jogyata <no_reply@...>
          wrote:
          >
          > Call me a greenie or a bleeding heart if you want to but when I came
          > upon a 1000 year old kauri tree on my Sunday jaunt through the nearby
          > Waitakere Ranges, I found it irresistably huggable. In comparative
          > human time it's barely past adolescence and could be here for another
          > 1000 years barring lightning strike, landslide, continental drift,
          > nuclear war or boredom (2000 years is a long time rooted in one
          > place). The kauri is known by the rather graceless and unfortunate
          > botanical term 'agathis australis', so I call my new friend Agatha,
          > not a favourite name of mine but we don't want to cause an arboreal
          > identity crisis by giving Agatha her spiritual name just yet. Trees
          > have consciousness too and these wonderful revelations of God move us
          > in ways beyond our minds comprehension – we all come from the
          > Universal Consciousness and are connected in the great stream of life.
          > My new friend is also a distant relative and conjoined with me in
          > spirit and sitting quietly on the forest floor, my back against the
          > rough bark and the dawn sun colouring the hillsides and valleys with a
          > changing golden light, I can sink back – mmmmm – into a nourishing
          > and soothing silence.
          >
          > Agatha's first 900 years were spent peacefully growing up in one of
          > the greatest botanical cathedrals of planet earth – 200 foot high
          > forest giants of breathtaking splendour and girth, filled with
          > gorgeous birds and daylong birdsong. My colonial predecessors smashed
          > the magestic virgin kauri forests that mantled these western mountains
          > the way a thoughtless child smashes a toy – part of the insane
          > ecological holocaust ongoing even today - and Agatha lived through all
          > that, a lonely survivor among the tragic wreckage of an ancient
          > dynasty of trees.
          >
          > The mystic and animistic traditions of our ancestors seem remote from
          > us now, insulated as we are by roads and concrete walls and carefully
          > devised urban landscapes that protect us from our worst fears, and now
          > we only `visit' nature, tourists of our last womb-wildernesses, armed
          > with our maps and cellphones to ward off the unthinkable. But the
          > ancient impulses are still there, and seated beneath Agatha's towering
          > arms I can feel these faculties becoming sharpened inside me along
          > with a sense of release from the burden of myself and my anxious life.
          >
          > I like these hours wandering in a garden of ridges and deep valleys
          > and effortless beauty, hearing the water in the streambed far below
          > and the language of the forest all around. In the sunlight the air is
          > filled with teeming embryonic life, millions of tiny spores drizzling
          > from the green fronds of the mamaku and the waist high thickets of
          > ferns – I breathe them in joyfully.
          >
          > We need whatever it is these sanctuaries provide. Untamed nature can
          > be a harsh learning place but also a great schoolroom of
          > self-knowledge - and here where the wilderness of nature and the wild
          > places of the mind intersect, we are often undone.
          > I remember once camped on an alpine ridge just below the snowline in
          > Westland National Park, miles from the civilized world. Shortly after
          > midnight a storm blew up and high winds toppled huge black beech trees
          > to – all around me the crash of giant trees tearing down through the
          > canopy to the ground.
          > Eyes wide with fear, and nowhere to go or hide in the inky blackness,
          > I lay there praying with a trembling fervour to God. At dawn a scene
          > of utter devastation all around me – but miraculously I had been
          > granted life.
          >
          > Such moments that our modern world so carefully shields us from are
          > treasures that never leave our memory, moulding us without gentleness
          > or pity. Our 'self' is pared away and we are opened up to the
          > capricousness of life and death, only a moment of chance apart, and to
          > the primal fears and trapdoors that open in the wild places of our
          > minds.
          >
          > Nature is a repository of many potential experiences that ground us
          > and make us better, more complete - and here, as in meditation, all
          > our sensibilities converge toward new insight and discernment. Cut off
          > from all this, we become less human, less civilised.
          >
          > A part of us grieves for our vanishing wild places and much of my own
          > love of wilderness has an underlying melancholy. Our token parks and
          > reserves, the pocket handkerchief remnants fenced off from encroaching
          > farms into lonely islands, proclaimed to assuage our guilt, do not
          > lessen our sadness at what we have done. Nor do these sustain the life
          > they once bore – disconnected from the far-off mountains, diminutive
          > in size, often trampled and plundered, they are silent museum pieces
          > waiting for their own demise.
          >
          > At least Agatha is safe while I live and breathe - she is a symbol of
          > something precious for me that I am happy to bleed and sacrifice for.
          > She is the song of eternity, the beauty of God, the glory of nature,
          > the sanctity of the sacred, a glimpse through a lovely, disappearing
          > window into an irretrievable past, an inviolable last remnant that
          > must be gifted to the future. And in some barely understood way she is
          > myself – I find my own spirit when seated at her feet.
          >
          > Footnote:
          > In a Jewish tale a young boy is asked by his teacher why he ran away
          > from the community and into the forest time after time despite being
          > frequently found out and punished. His rabbi asked him: "Why do you
          > waste your time in the forest? Why do you go there?" "I am looking for
          > God", said the boy. "Isn't God everywhere" asked the rabbi, "and isn't
          > He everywhere the same?" "Yes," said the boy, "but I am not." (From
          > 'Moment and Memory')
          >
          > – Jogyata.
          >
        • mv_latin
          All the birds have flown up and gone; A lonely cloud floats leisurely by. We never tire of looking at each other - Only the mountain and I. Li Po ... words ...
          Message 4 of 4 , Mar 7, 2006
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            All the birds have flown up and gone;
            A lonely cloud floats leisurely by.
            We never tire of looking at each other -
            Only the mountain and I.
            Li Po


            --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, one_prachar
            <no_reply@...> wrote:
            >
            > Dear Jogyata
            >
            > Thank you again for showing us what this Inspiration Group can be.
            > You share many faces of truth: through and around and above your
            words
            > rings the resonance of a deep and spanless soul. Your present
            > literary purple patch has revealed some of the finest, richest and
            > most sumptuous offerings in this forum.
            >
            > From Prachar
            >
            > --- In Sri_Chinmoy_Inspiration@yahoogroups.com, jogyata <no_reply@>
            > wrote:
            > >
            > > Call me a greenie or a bleeding heart if you want to but when I
            came
            > > upon a 1000 year old kauri tree on my Sunday jaunt through the
            nearby
            > > Waitakere Ranges, I found it irresistably huggable. In
            comparative
            > > human time it's barely past adolescence and could be here for
            another
            > > 1000 years barring lightning strike, landslide, continental
            drift,
            > > nuclear war or boredom (2000 years is a long time rooted in one
            > > place). The kauri is known by the rather graceless and
            unfortunate
            > > botanical term 'agathis australis', so I call my new friend
            Agatha,
            > > not a favourite name of mine but we don't want to cause an
            arboreal
            > > identity crisis by giving Agatha her spiritual name just yet.
            Trees
            > > have consciousness too and these wonderful revelations of God
            move us
            > > in ways beyond our minds comprehension – we all come from the
            > > Universal Consciousness and are connected in the great stream of
            life.
            > > My new friend is also a distant relative and conjoined with me in
            > > spirit and sitting quietly on the forest floor, my back against
            the
            > > rough bark and the dawn sun colouring the hillsides and valleys
            with a
            > > changing golden light, I can sink back – mmmmm – into a
            nourishing
            > > and soothing silence.
            > >
            > > Agatha's first 900 years were spent peacefully growing up in one
            of
            > > the greatest botanical cathedrals of planet earth – 200 foot high
            > > forest giants of breathtaking splendour and girth, filled with
            > > gorgeous birds and daylong birdsong. My colonial predecessors
            smashed
            > > the magestic virgin kauri forests that mantled these western
            mountains
            > > the way a thoughtless child smashes a toy – part of the insane
            > > ecological holocaust ongoing even today - and Agatha lived
            through all
            > > that, a lonely survivor among the tragic wreckage of an ancient
            > > dynasty of trees.
            > >
            > > The mystic and animistic traditions of our ancestors seem remote
            from
            > > us now, insulated as we are by roads and concrete walls and
            carefully
            > > devised urban landscapes that protect us from our worst fears,
            and now
            > > we only `visit' nature, tourists of our last womb-wildernesses,
            armed
            > > with our maps and cellphones to ward off the unthinkable. But the
            > > ancient impulses are still there, and seated beneath Agatha's
            towering
            > > arms I can feel these faculties becoming sharpened inside me
            along
            > > with a sense of release from the burden of myself and my anxious
            life.
            > >
            > > I like these hours wandering in a garden of ridges and deep
            valleys
            > > and effortless beauty, hearing the water in the streambed far
            below
            > > and the language of the forest all around. In the sunlight the
            air is
            > > filled with teeming embryonic life, millions of tiny spores
            drizzling
            > > from the green fronds of the mamaku and the waist high thickets
            of
            > > ferns – I breathe them in joyfully.
            > >
            > > We need whatever it is these sanctuaries provide. Untamed nature
            can
            > > be a harsh learning place but also a great schoolroom of
            > > self-knowledge - and here where the wilderness of nature and the
            wild
            > > places of the mind intersect, we are often undone.
            > > I remember once camped on an alpine ridge just below the
            snowline in
            > > Westland National Park, miles from the civilized world. Shortly
            after
            > > midnight a storm blew up and high winds toppled huge black beech
            trees
            > > to – all around me the crash of giant trees tearing down through
            the
            > > canopy to the ground.
            > > Eyes wide with fear, and nowhere to go or hide in the inky
            blackness,
            > > I lay there praying with a trembling fervour to God. At dawn a
            scene
            > > of utter devastation all around me – but miraculously I had been
            > > granted life.
            > >
            > > Such moments that our modern world so carefully shields us from
            are
            > > treasures that never leave our memory, moulding us without
            gentleness
            > > or pity. Our 'self' is pared away and we are opened up to the
            > > capricousness of life and death, only a moment of chance apart,
            and to
            > > the primal fears and trapdoors that open in the wild places of
            our
            > > minds.
            > >
            > > Nature is a repository of many potential experiences that ground
            us
            > > and make us better, more complete - and here, as in meditation,
            all
            > > our sensibilities converge toward new insight and discernment.
            Cut off
            > > from all this, we become less human, less civilised.
            > >
            > > A part of us grieves for our vanishing wild places and much of
            my own
            > > love of wilderness has an underlying melancholy. Our token parks
            and
            > > reserves, the pocket handkerchief remnants fenced off from
            encroaching
            > > farms into lonely islands, proclaimed to assuage our guilt, do
            not
            > > lessen our sadness at what we have done. Nor do these sustain
            the life
            > > they once bore – disconnected from the far-off mountains,
            diminutive
            > > in size, often trampled and plundered, they are silent museum
            pieces
            > > waiting for their own demise.
            > >
            > > At least Agatha is safe while I live and breathe - she is a
            symbol of
            > > something precious for me that I am happy to bleed and sacrifice
            for.
            > > She is the song of eternity, the beauty of God, the glory of
            nature,
            > > the sanctity of the sacred, a glimpse through a lovely,
            disappearing
            > > window into an irretrievable past, an inviolable last remnant
            that
            > > must be gifted to the future. And in some barely understood way
            she is
            > > myself – I find my own spirit when seated at her feet.
            > >
            > > Footnote:
            > > In a Jewish tale a young boy is asked by his teacher why he ran
            away
            > > from the community and into the forest time after time despite
            being
            > > frequently found out and punished. His rabbi asked him: "Why do
            you
            > > waste your time in the forest? Why do you go there?" "I am
            looking for
            > > God", said the boy. "Isn't God everywhere" asked the rabbi, "and
            isn't
            > > He everywhere the same?" "Yes," said the boy, "but I am not."
            (From
            > > 'Moment and Memory')
            > >
            > > – Jogyata.
            > >
            >
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