Dark Cloud

Dark cloud: (adj) dim, indistinct

It is a perennial favorite to feed a never-ending argument about the value—the realism—of dark entertainment.

One of my grandchildren says she doesn’t want to be known as a “goody two-shoes,” which has set her in motion to watch, read or peruse anything that clouds the mind with darkness.

I fuss with my children over this issue.

I’m just always curious about what I refer to as “the final day.”

I’m not speaking of eternity, or a “Great White Throne Judgment.”

I am referencing the sensations, the regrets, the wonder, the curiosity and the reflections that enter our minds and souls when and if we know we have twenty-four hours to live.

It is often the case that this cushion of preparation is not provided, and we go from breathing to breathless.

But assuming that we had a guaranteed twenty-four-hour period to consider our choices, would there be anyone who wished that he or she had spent more time in the dark clouds?

It may seem noble, or worse, intellectual, to commiserate with the insane or the hopelessly lost.

But what is it they teach us?

Are they a warning for the stupidity of foolish behavior?

Or do they encourage us to loosen up just a bit more, keeping an eye on not going too far?

Yet the human race always goes too far.

I do not need to be surrounded by butterflies.

But I need to at least observe caterpillars, knowing where they are headed.

Crazy

funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Crazy: (adj) mentally deranged; demented, insane.

Demented? Insane?

Well, I suppose so.

But I would venture to say that if we think “crazy” is about being diagnosed with a mental illness, we are going to miss many situations which need to be corrected long before someone is running down the street naked, singing the “Hallelujah Chorus.”

I’ll give you a different definition for crazy:

Crazy is anyone who continues to be amped up and overly excited by the latest craze.

Crazy is when you run your life by following what’s most popular in the moment.

Crazy is when you read polls and statistics to determine what’s right and wrong.

Crazy is listening to the opinions of pundits about what candidate is offering the best political jambalaya.

Crazy is thinking that because something is fashionable, it “certainly should look good on you.”

Crazy is listening to people who are barely out of puberty who have written a book on child-rearing, when deep in your heart you know everything they’re saying needs to be hauled away on the poo-poo pickup.

Crazy is when you think your husband or wife is suddenly going to don a whole new persona to reactivate your sexual interest.

Crazy is when you think belief in God needs to be stimulated by bigotry, prejudice, lies and exaggerated faith.

Crazy is when people line up and take sides over gender, sexual preference, political parties, church denominations, colas or flavors of chicken wings.

Crazy is when you become crazed because you’re pursuing what is the craze.

God wants us to be faithful to our own selves above all else.

If you don’t believe there’s a God, being faithful to yourself above all else should be the god you follow.

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Concentration

Concentration: (n) the action or power of focusing

Pain is insane.

Especially when it is self-induced.

It is an automatic thought that springs into our head: if things aren’t difficult, they’re not real accomplishments.

This is certainly one of the greatest pieces of human foolishness.

I’ve never heard anyone say, “I need to concentrate” without frowning. They are communicating that they are so damn mature that they must go into contortions funny wisdom on words that begin with a C
to acquire achievement.

What the hell?

If life was intended to be difficult, yet we are all universally intended to live it out, how cruel is our Creator? For we are not all suited to the same regimen.

Of course, a certain amount of concentration is necessary to alert the brain to turn off all phones, ignore other messages, and place focus on the project at hand. Undoubtedly.

Yet if that experience is not rewarding–and dare I say, joyous–we will run away from concentration in favor of erratic behavior.

So I taught all of my children, and those who ever came within my earshot, a very simple principle, which both initiates concentration and provides fulfillment through it:

Wherever you are, be there.

Don’t split your attention. Don’t be considering lilies and weeds at the same time.

Allow yourself the glorious blessing and luxury of inhaling the atmosphere which has drifted your way.

 

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Clairvoyant

Clairvoyant: (adj) having or exhibiting an ability to perceive events in the future or beyond normal sensory contact.

If I were to go to the barn and stand around the pig pen and postulate over what the hog behind the fence might do next, it certainly could be considered clairvoyant.

“The animal will oink, followed by wallowing in the mud and then grunting, begging for food,” I might say.

You might stand back in great wonder when the pig fulfilled my prophesy.

Sometimes we have to learn the difference between clairvoyant and discernment. You can feel free to debate whether certain individuals have a deeper insight into reality which could not possibly have been achieved by natural means–or you can come to the conclusion that the more each of us learns to discern how things work, how people function and the common sense of Mother Nature, the more we may appear to be divinely inspired.

For instance, noticing that one of your fellow-workers enters the building without speaking a word and the next thing you hear is a loud noise from his office as he throws his things on the desk…

Well, being able, at that point, to grab a cup of coffee, take it back to him and implore, “Is there anything I can do for you? Are you having a tough day?”

This is not clairvoyant. It’s observant.

It is contingent on each member of the human tribe to keep eyes, ears and even nostrils available, to sense the feeling in a room, alluding to the signs of coming trouble. Otherwise we will start complaining that God did not send us a prophet or prophetess to warn us of these horrible future events.

What God and Mother Nature send our way are inklings, tinglings and visuals of trouble that is beginning to unfold.

He that hath a brain

Let him notice what’s insane.

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Chap

Chap: (n) A true gentleman

Writers are insane from spending too much time in their own brain–drunk on the intoxicant of finding new words to make great phrases.

Often in writing a story line, when you’ve used “he, man, guy and fellow” so many times that you know the reader must be gagging, you go to the Thesaurus and look for other terms for the same idea.

You often land on a word like “chap.”

No one actually refers to another person as “a chap.” Even in England, you probably would not find many people pointing at others and saying, “Now, there’s a fine chap.”

But in a pinch, a writer who wants to extend his story by one more paragraph and needs a variable to describe a male figure will insert the word “chap,” hoping that the person reading his or her novel will overlook it and move along to the next verb.

It is in that moment when you know the writer has run out of words before running out of ideas.

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Certifiable

Certifiable: (adj) able or needing to be certified.

“You certainly are a good dad. I can tell by your sons.”

Or maybe they just decided to become nice people to spite me. Perhaps they saw what an ass I was and chose a different path.

We are guilty of taking credit for what is not our effort–and if it is our effort, we know deep in our hearts that we truly never pulled it off.

Another lady asked me if I was a good writer. You see, she wants me to be certifiable. She wants some reputable organization, publisher or book club to ratify my claim to authorship.

It seems you can do almost anything in this country as long as you can get two other people to vouch for you.

Yet I seem to recall a childhood memory of a statement: “The proof is in the pudding.”

I don’t know what pudding has to do with it, but the true proof of whether something is worthy of honor is not in the number of certificates or awards it receives.

Because of that, none of us will ever hear the best singer, read the best writer or have the privilege of being governed by the best President.

The process of becoming certifiable is just too insane.

 

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Bane

Bane: (n) a cause of great distress or annoyance.Dictionary B

I am human.

I have a heart which is basically a series of scattered emotions, which do not necessarily steer me in the right direction.

I believe I have a soul, even though I am certainly not truly spiritual.

I have a mind, which too often is cluttered with memories and training rather than expansive and elastic for new ideas.

And I have a strength–a body–which in my case is burdened with poundage.

Knowing the bane of my existence in all four of these areas allows me to maintain both humility and a passion for intelligent self-improvement.

So the bane of my efforts in my heart is thinking that because I feel it, it must be real. Actually, if I feel it, it’s important to find out why I feel it and why it is possibly not real.

The bane of my soul is that I am asked to believe spiritual things which are irrelevant to my actual journey, while discovering how powerful I truly can be.

The bane of my brain is that it’s insane. It is trapped in repetition and must be taken out of that cycle in order to make progress straightly.

And the next thing I eat needs to have the good taste of flavor and the good sense of nutrition or the bane of my strength will be weakness.

If we do not recognize the bane, we begin to deceive ourselves that the way we are will satisfy our needs.

Without being challenged, our arms become too short and our legs lay limp.

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