Monday, February 2, 2009

Dust Cloud

Dust Cloud

My life feels like a dust cloud – the image coming to mind is of America’s dust bowl in the thirties, when the sun would be obscured by storms of dried earth that smothered and suffocated everything.

But my dust storm is not merely dried earth; it contains a lot of other scary stuff. No one would want to be in this, least of all me.

Isn’t this so negative, to think of one’s life that way? Shouldn’t I be speculating on the divine light within and promoting that? Well, there must be some kind of light inside somewhere, but that isn’t what is revealed right now.

This is the graveyard, where bones are buried, stinky things that have the scent of eternal death on them. This is what is underneath the veneer of “me.”

I totally believe it is important to see and experience this wasteland, to have illusions devastated about the wonderful person that ought to have been there but isn’t. Frankly, there isn’t anything more heartbreaking.

My life, by which I mean the story of my life, that fictional monstrosity that opens its pages every morning and says, “Let’s continue where we left off,” is thus presented not in terms of an intriguing and romantic plot structure, but rather as the base concoction of a thoroughly undisciplined and dissipated author. And so there develops an increasingly strong desire for this story to end.

When that happens, a rather perplexing passage in the Bible begins to make more sense:

“If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple” (Luke 14:26).

The stories about who we are and who the other people in our lives are – they aren’t real or true. And telling them over and over prevents us from perceiving Christ as the light within.

That dust cloud - I long to let it go. I hate it.


  1. I met the most beautiful woman at a Superbowl party last night. She was wearing an eye patch and I thought that had something to do with the Steelers (duh). I was so attracted to her. We ended up shoulder to shoulder on the couch eating cherry cake and talking about life. She explained that in September, she was cleaning her 9 millimeter (yes we all have guns in the south, me included), and didn't realize she left one round in the chamber. The gun was pointed up and fired, destroying her jaw, shattering well over half her teeth and leaving her without an eye.

    I listened as she told me how lucky she felt to be alive, how she didn't shed tears of the loss of her eye, and how she was excited to receive her hand painted prosthetic "just like the woman on Nip/Tuck."

    She also commented that she isn't afraid of her gun, because, after all, gun accidents do happen.

    As I sat riveted, I half listened in on another conversation in which a woman was complaining that her teenaged boys were at church watching the game, and did they really need to see the "Godaddy" ads with all the big boobies, and didn't we understand why the Muslims were killing us as infidels because we are going to Hell in a handbasket.

    I felt like telling her to shut up and get a real effing problem.

    I'm not sure why I am sharing this other than that the shot woman was amazing in her acceptance of not only the loss of half her face, but what some would say was her remarkable beauty as well. I suspect it may have been easier to forgive someone else in that case, let alone herself.

    She's not her story, but talk about a lotus blooming in the mud.

    Through her story she demonstrated the light of Christ to me and didn't appear to be on any path toward "realization or enlightment" whatsoever. She was just hoping if she wore her eye patch, it would be easier for other people to look at her rather than seeing her empty socket.

    Holy crap!

  2. The dust bowl was a passing thing. It was real then. People lived with the dust, ate it, slept with it, watched it strip away possessions and the hope of possessions. Still love remained in those troubled fields and out of that love came new growth.

    If we are willing to look real close at the dust, and also the guy or girl in the storm... we come to see the truth of who we are... still... the awareness. Thank you for sharing and for looking close.

    It seems the letting go is happening whether you long for it or not and I think it's ok to hate the dust.

    "Should" you be "promoting the divine light"? Not necessarily. Whether you promote it or not it is still visible to me.

    your friend, Abby