"I dream of a hard and brutal mysticism in which the naked self merges with the nonhuman world and somehow survives...Paradox and bedrock."-Edward Abbey

05 June 2011

The Balanced

It was during my last year of university, whilst taking a world religion class, that I came up with my personal mantra, which was paraphrased from the book of John; I and the beast are one. It fit. At the time, I my meditations focused on making sure the demon and ghost worked in concert, not conflict. It's all about balance.

Shortly after my thirtieth birthday, Lee tattooed my mantra across my back in black India ink, using Nepali script-the closest I could get to Sanskrit. The pain was exquisite. I felt it necessary, though. Besides, it balanced out the demon and man brands under my collar bones. Those marks symbolizing the twin aspects of being. Yin and yang. Light and shadow. Instinct and intellect. Chocolate and peanut butter.

Supposedly, I'm one of the balanced ones. At least some of my friends think so. I find this amusing, since I catch my moments of queer anxiety and know I'm not always good at the mundane things. Yet, strangely enough, some of the cats I've know over the years and lifetimes have come to me when they need to be reminded to breathe.

I've had my own friends I go to see to remind me to breathe. My gurus, dysfunctional though they might be. Funny how it's played out that there are those who see me in that role. I don't believe I'm a guru or a guide.

It's strange, because I've never rightly tried to be a saint, superhero, or even bodhisattva. I just do what I do. It's taken me a lot of years to accept I might wield some mojo as a storyteller. Whilst I do feel good when one of my friends tells me my words or presence helped, I still catch my wondering if it isn't some kind of secret joke. Proof in the pudding of the maniacal humor inherent in the universe, much like a giraffe or a platypus.


  1. Isn't it funny how we are so different through somebody else's eyes? My friends that I've reconnected with through Facebook have told me that they always wanted to be like me because I was the "brave" one, or I was the "confident" one, or that I inspired them to have inner strength, and I think, "Are you sure you have the right girl?"

    But I think you are a great storyteller, and I am inspired by your words. Your friends definitely have the right guy.

  2. "Are you sure you have the right...[place gender/name here]...?"

    I go through that a lot...

    Thank you, even though I doubt my friends. They all drink, don't you know...

  3. As someone who has been inspired by and/or comforted by your words on occasion, I will certainly tell you that you inspire as a storyteller.

    An old friend told me that we find in others those missing aspects of ourselves, whether they be temporary or permanent. That's why some friendships endure and others fail. It's an interesting thought.

  4. Your friend's observation sounds valid, actually. Thank you for your kind words.