Saturday, September 02, 2006

So yeah, some of my most fond memories of post-highschool camradarie and general barely postadolescent fun are of just simply taking several roadtrips with my friend Ken (remember that time we were listening to Pink Floyd on our way to Jonesboro, and the fog came in and it just got WAY TOO WIERD? And listening to entirely too much REM?). I met Ken at Arkansas Governor's School, way way back in 1990. A long fucking time ago. Anyway, the man now has a wife, a kid, a farm of some sort, and a blog. The blog you can read. The others not so much.

Also, apparently my link to a Terra Naomi song really touched my friend Kristen, so here's another one, Smile. If there's any song that's prettier but more sad, I don't know what it is. Sometimes, for me at least, there's the comfort of a sad song. Call it wallowing in a little self-pity if you want to, but when you're sad, someone else singing about sadness can be quite a balm on the spirit.

I've been thinking a lot about my dad, as my son's birth approaches, and thinking about what I really remember about him. And what I want to remember about him. We had our issues. Sometimes, as I got older, he couldn't really see me standing in front of him, instead he would see some reflection of himself as he was at my age. When he was a teenager, before he ever became an Episcopal priest, for some time (I'm not sure how long) he was an atheist (or so he told me, and this seemed to cause quite a rift between himself and his father). Needless to say, he didn't remain one. Anyway, he found my skepticism of what you might call Christological issues bewildering, I think. At least he interpreted this by thinking that I was an atheist, which was the furthest thing from the truth. I found, and in some ways still do, find it hard to discuss my deepest thoughts about the divine with other people (And not especially helpful, I have found. The Buddha was remarkably silent on the subject of divine or spiritual beings, and seems to have thought that the subject was beside the point.) I have always FELT a very strong sense of a divine nature in life, a sense of deep connection, and, at the time, when I was a Christian, I interpreted this as a mystical connection with Christ (which makes his thinking I was an atheist kind of funny). But I don't think that this sense of mystical oneness or a feeling of a divine immanent presence necessarily means anything that most religions think that it means. We had our differences, my dad and me. We'll put it at that. But I always knew that he loved me.

So, anyway, memories. I remember, when I was a kid, going fishing with my dad. It wasn't always that fun, the act itself. But it was fun to go fishing with my dad. Because I was hanging out with my dad. And I knew I was special, because my dad wanted to spend time with me. So I think I need to start fishing again.

Kid's gonna need a fishing pole too. Eventually.

7 Comments:

Blogger kristenhadley said...

so what is it that most religions think this imanent presence is? and what about you? what do you think? i have a great respect for buddist teachings...but i gotta go with jesus...although saying this i'd also have to say that i'm fed up with the american "church." and westernized spirituality rationalize my own behavior...)

1:16 PM  
Blogger ken.klw said...

You just can't discuss God with religious people. So I don't. Their way is theirs. Evangelism is evil, anyway.

Friend of ours says what matters most to kids is the consistant, average, pattern of behavior they get from parents, not the occasional screw up or really great day. In other words if your child sees daily that he is loved and safe it won't matter if you screw up occationally- or try to make up for a lousy pattern of inattention with one occasional great day. Something to think about.

Get a Zebco 33 or 404 reel. It'll take you back.

9:50 PM  
Blogger Peter said...

Kristen-
Well, most religions think that this sense of the divine or immanent presence is a god, gods, or spirits. How you interpret the psychological phenomena depends upon your worldview.

Me? I think it's probably just a natural perception of the true underlying nature of the Universe. Buddhists (some at least) say that phenomena are 'dependently arising', that is, there are no truly independent phenomena. Everything is part of a net of interdependent chains of cause and effect. No man is an island, so to speak. Everything is a part of everything else.

As for the divine nature of Jesus, or any possible special status that he may hold as a class of being, I've got two books I want you to read, as soon as I get them back from Kim.

Ken-
Yeah, consistancy has to be important.

Advice on fishing poles is also welcome.

11:02 PM  
Blogger Melissa said...

Too much REM?!! NEVER!

I don't discuss religious issues either. Nope nope nope.

Kids are resilient and the bond is pretty strong. I've seen kids in Abuse and neglect court be all "I LOVE MY MAMA and Daddy" and these parents have done gosh darn crazy stuff like burn cigarettes out on arms and legs and whatnot. You'll be great.

11:13 PM  
Blogger Peter said...

Well, between my dad's study with all his books from Seminary basically being my bedroom when I was a kid, and my continued fascination with the subject, I can't help but discuss religion, at least with thoughtful, intelligent people. It's possible. Just sayin'.

Yeah, not really worried about being a good dad. Not really. But I do want to have mindfulness as I go about being a dad.

11:25 PM  
Blogger Melissa said...

cuz mindfullness is the Buddhist way. I jive with Buddhism. I do eat meat so I'm a bad bad Buddhist but the beliefs jibe the most with my own.

5:25 PM  
Blogger Peter said...

Yeah, I'm a bad Buddhist too. Animals taste too good for their own good. ;)

11:22 PM  

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