Today (yesterday —the time slippage in these posts is always a confusing thing for me) was a regeneration day. I nursed my continuing gastrointestinal distress—I’m seeing the doctor again on Wednesday (today), thank you—and read, mostly Opening to Inner Light. Also, a new book came in the mail, Cleansing the Doors of Perception: the religious significance of entheogenic plants and chemicals, a collection of essays by Huston Smith, author of the classics The World’s Religions and Forgotten Truth: the common vision of the world’s religions.
Inner Light (Metzner) is a pretty powerful little book. As I posted previously, the first chapter’s metaphor, that of waking from a dream, was instrumental in helping me see my way out of a significant funk that I had gotten myself into. Already, then, the author’s purpose, providing a summation of the world’s metaphors and symbols as structures for psychological transformation, has borne fruit.
The second chapter’s metaphor is that of lifting the veil. “Now we see darkly,” “I was blind, but now I see,” that kind of thing. Is there any interest in the readership for a running commentary on each of the metaphors? It might make for some interesting discussion, either here or in real life.
I also began to work assiduously on my backlog of Middlemarch readings. This is my daily email from dailylit.com, and I fell off my morning readings back at the beginning of July. I don’t remember why, but I just didn’t feel like reading about those people one morning. And then the next morning. And then before I knew it, I had four or five days of reading to catch up on. And then nearly a month.
So yesterday, I dove back in and found that Eliot still delighted me, and that I was just as involved in the working out of her issues and themes as before. I’ve set myself a daily reminder to read three of these emails every day until I’m caught up.
Other than that, just basking and meditating. Tomorrow I return to GHP to catch a couple of performances and to retrieve some personal belongings, and then we are hosting some Chinese youth who are in town with the Hangzhou Welan High School Folk Chinese Youth Orchestra. This is the group who was to come last summer but made the fatal error of agreeing to try to play Blake Leads a Walk on the Milky Way. It was very kind of them, especially considering the effort was futile, given that they are a traditional instrument group and in no way could approach the Western chromaticism of that particular piece, and it unfortunately dragged them into the curse on my music: the tour was canceled due to an H1N1 outbreak in their province.
What I’m saying is that though I’m in good spirits and have no excuse not to get down and work on something, I may not have the time until Monday or later. And then we head up to Abingdon, VA, for the Festival. And then I go back to work. There is not enough time, not enough time.