National What-Writing Month?

I learned recently that National Novel Writing Month is upon us. Every November, thousands sign up publicly for the challenge of writing a short novel, (or at least 50,000 words of a longer one) at The challenge is inspiring, and I was tempted to go for it myself, especially since I actually do have a unfinished draft lying around on the ol’ hard drive.

But last night, as I was just about to click Yes to the challenge, a dose of reality hit me… finish this novel is actually very low on my list of priorites… What I really want to do this month is to further my skills with C#, XML, and OOP on the techie side (which I’m finally starting to make some progess in), as well as studying Esperanto,  and of course,  continue my exploration of the "Wild Things of God". I also want to blog more and process some of the things I’ve experienced recently, and to translate my "spirituality" pages into Esperanto.

But the spirit of the NaNoWriMo challenge might still be able to help me though. I’m committing to writing a blog post every day in November.  It’s possible that not all of them will be on this site… if you’re interested in my techie side or in Esperanto, also check and the Esperanto Club of Hampton Roads. At any rate, expect a bit more activity on this site in November.

Tien, and a few other notes

I’m reading my first novel in Esperanto, now, a book called Tien, by Claude Piron, under the pseudonym "Johano Valano." It’s ostensibly a science-fiction story, but really it’s about spiritual transformation… really surprising how some of the (co)incidences are lining up between things in my world and it right now… kind of like the movie "23."

The "subtle lesson" is continuing. I’ll write more about that soon, after I do enough processing to figure about how to put it into words.

And a question… are phone books now a complete waste of paper? Two different stacks of phone books have been delivered to my apartment building. I think one person (out of the six of us) has picked up theirs. I haven’t—I’m not even sure I ever used a phone book last year… what about you?

A subtle lesson

Sometimes the difficulty of blogging is that what seems blog-worthy is so subtle, it’s very difficult to express. That’s what’s been going on with me, recently. Nothing big, dramatic, or exciting. Subtle things.

For instance, I had an experience recently with getting off on a bad start one morning having to listen to a political discussion that deeply offended me. Now, I can discuss religion with Fundamentalists, atheists and Wiccans, but politics, I can’t discuss, period, except for close friends, and even that can be very challenging for me. So, I was greeted to a political discussion at the beginning of the day dominated by a couple of loudmouth opinionbags whose presence I find intolerable when they’re in "rant" mode. I don’t join in such discussions, even when there’s a certain level of mutual respect and freedom to express one’s opinions–and honestly, there was then.

Except that I was the one that lacked mutual respect. The others might not have respected my opinion, but they do respect me. But when  certain politics comes up, I lose respect for the holders of those points-of-view themselves. And so, the day started progressing, with me despising some people I didn’t want to despise.

Soon a realization came to mind. It was something that Thich Nhat Hahn had once written, but I experienced it internally, as something I knew, not as something to consider: If I had had the same experiences, I would have the same views. I mean all the same experiences, (and only those): genetics, environment, reading, travels, past-life experiences and karma, etc. There is nothing in me that was different than which was in them.  Well. no room for despising after that.

I want so much to believe that I am "special:" The ego  frames us with a smoke screen that looks strong enough to hang a picture on: Because I believe my opinions, my politics, and POV is right, I’m bolstered into feeling "I" am right. And if I am, you definitely ain’t.

Every now and then, grace blows the smoke away.