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  • Writer's pictureJaime Howell


Entering the temple, you leave the path.

By Jaime Howell

From fecund rectangles of wild possibility (Orinoco, Motueka NZ) to jungled beaches where slaves were traded… a hop skip and jet plane jump and we are arriving to begin this bold venture to explore this immeasurable education into love and clear seeing. The joys of jet lag mean I get to type keys at the godly hour of 12.58 am. Unfortunately I am wide awake.

Juliana scooped me up and now this body/mind is acclimatising. I don’t mind the avocados but I do mind a man telling us an area of Brazilian Amazon rainforest the size of Sao Paulo was destroyed in the month of July. Ahhh acclimatising to this land of contrasts.

“All that forest was wasted on air and owls until we got here. Those Iroquois [Indians] were savages who didn’t know what to do with the land. Any mile of earth is wasted unless it’s ours, unless it’s lit by the steady lamp of our knowledge. Haul the universe into that light, all the whales and crickets and mountains. We will sell the water and make money out of the tress.”  Jay Leeming.

I cannot think too much of the school with its potent bodhi seeds of aspiration to dive deep and long into clarity born of an apprenticeship to calm. Compassionate education for the times we are living.

I am searching for that compassion now as i reflect around grief alive in my bones and the bushes this day? Rifkin ringing in my ears and the returning from a desolate beach walk, alas absent of plastic, stunned with beauty and storied with echoes of a brutal slave trade. Call me by my true name and I will offer foreign fumbled silent ritual for healing.

Last night we watched this movie by Jeremy Rifkin

I do not have the reservoir of data to discern the accuracy of what he says. I know a few folk (self included) who prefer poetry over stats, for now he has my attention. A clear voice, perhaps an elder of numbers with a message for all,the shift to sharing is the only way we may tame the cataclysmic forces that are in motion as a result of misplaced economic theory and industry. 

I will stick my neck out and invite everyone to watch this buoyed with a daring open mind to engage in compassionate intergenerational dialogue. Maybe I will make it the theme for the next Open Floor Dylan dance, “Times there are still changing…’

I sit now as if in two places

The ways of the village 

And the ways of the forest

Traditions of awakening

and the no tradition of knowing nothing much at all

The shining mountain and the fecund moss of the mysterious valley

Initiation invites two seemingly opposing qualities: sobriety and intoxication. There is the weight of grief, awareness of death, and growing responsibility of adulthood, but also the exuberance of relationship to wild nature and the strength of myth to guide you on your return. Martin Shaw ~ A Branch from the Lightening Tree.

And so I ask again and I will keep asking,

Going to the temple, you take the path. Entering the temple, you leave the path.

Who is the teacher?

What's the curriculum?

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