Sonnet 73 by William Shakespeare

Sonnet 73 by William Shakespeare sets the tone for that time of year when the leaves turn colour and fall away. Indeed it is one of his most significant poems, a harbinger for what is to follow man in time, and a reminder to keep first things first. There is nothing under the stars quite so delightful than to experience the budding of his ideas in a will-less and receptive soul. Each word placed exactly where it ought to be, as though the Poet himself is mirroring eternity. That we might keep such a fire lit in the heart of humanity, here is my part & rendition with song & originality.

Love & light,

JY

 

 

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Oh Noble Sound – An Appeal to Euterpe

This weeks poem is dedicated to Euterpe, the Muse of music and lyric poetry, who is known to grant musicians/poets their deepest desire. It has been imbued with the oh so delicate & graceful sound of a harp, by none other than the amazingly wonderful & extraordinary Bonnie Hodge, in whom you would do well to come under her musical spell, for in her the spirit doth lodge.

It would be outright defiant to say that the Muses have not enriched my life immensely. Even though we commonly refer to them as a metaphor of sorts, they are much more than mere words, and deserve to be cherished and honoured in whatever age we find ourselves in. By circumstance much of my personality has been coloured through the waves of popular opinion and the currents of cultural change, yet a part of me seems to remain anchored in truth, goodness and beauty. So my appeal to Euterpe is this:

How do we live with integrity while tossed and blown about in a sea of conflicting multiplicity, in what way can my bodily vessel be used to channel your splendour and to whom your gentle word shall we render…

Click here to access or on the image above, to hear the poet transform his words into love.

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Oh Noble Sound, I bend low upon my knee
In awe of your great majesty
That you might lift me from this travesty
With musical notes that dignify.

How good of you to approach my throne said she
To maintain honour in a world of noisy absurdity
Please sit here and tell me what your eyes doth see
Without the mirrored reflection of vast diversity.

From here my eyes behold your sweet beauty
That emanates out upon the wings of duty
A subtle gravity that preserves one in everything
The chord by which all souls rejoice and sing.

My good & faithful servant has answered well
Now for my secret which you must never tell
For I am the drumstick that beats the division bell
Temporal vibrations holding you under my spell.

Therefore music sublime appeases the heart
Enabling the mind to let go and conceive
Allowing the cloud of confusion to part
Opening the blinds we may fully perceive.

A poem by Jason Youngman
September 2018

 

 

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Only the Wind Remained

This particular piece pulls on the imagination, keeping it nimble & energized. Indeed I’ve attempted to format this week’s poem –presented in the video above– within the parameters of modern poetry, thus it has been stripped of measure & rhyme, which ain’t all that bad really. In a way it prods one to write with gusto; a dancer who suspends their technique is compelled to be all that more spontaneous while dancing. Before you watch the video do consider this for a moment: What is the energy that goes into being spontaneous? Really think hard about it if you will. You may notice how it flows ever so dynamically. As electricity can manifest at any given moment in space, so does this spontaneous nature exist in our minds. Surely we are all geniuses just waiting to happen. What my muse is trying to convey in the video above is that our neural networks need not be limited to our biosphere. We are free to make mental connections with that which goes beyond locality and this very moment in time. What a beautiful image to behold but to contemplate the very force & principle that animates and sustains this cosmic entity in which we find ourselves as codependent & transient agents. How this primal energy embodies the most rigid elements of matter, allowing for appearance & will, while simultaneously possessing the potential to implode into its own universe in the twinkling of an eye. Such is the beauty that is snuffed out if we keep to the impulse to give measure to everything; i.e. if we reduce phenomena into neat little categories that keep us playing ‘I spy with my little eye’. Therefore my muse encourages us to imagine a bomb fire of transcendent light, so large that the wind itself cannot help but give it sustenance. That is the vision which awaits you in my video production if you but sever the chains that bind and interrupt the neural networks that cement you into complacency.

Love & light,

JY

 

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What say you is Love?

What is love? Seriously though, what do you think love really is? Perhaps it is a means to nurture the well-being of another soul or a force that permeates the universe in order to maintain harmony or maybe it is some kind of a warm fuzzy word that induces emotional security.

Whatever it might be there is no end to the various expressions of love. We may speak of it in generalities or draw upon its particulars, either way it remains pulsating throughout history and time, in every culture and epoch. Though we may experience it subjectively, I believe we owe it to ourselves to rise to the occasion by which we can be transformed by its power.

So the question may come down to this: What can I do to expand myself so as to channel the greatest intensity of love? Our conscience may encourage us to be still and wait for an answer to come of its own accord. As the various desires rise up into consciousness, it may be best to avoid the impulse to act upon them, but sit with them as you would a relative who is slowly waking up from a coma. At first her words may be incoherent and random, sporadic and nonsensical. Let patience be your genius and guide.

In the video above you will witness my own reflection of love through the medium of poetry. Remove your sandals before you enter under the roof of a noble thought, unless you trail in your own bias and fail to see the purity of the vision that is placed before you. In other words please center yourself before pressing play or at least take a few deep breaths before you intuit what my muse has to say.

Love & light,

JY

 

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As wine is to drink, so is poetry to words.

Think back to a time when you were gathered together with a group of people with whom you had little in common. Perhaps your partner, friend or a relative invited you along. Either way you were bored out of your senses and spent your time thinking of how you might escape the situation. Then all of sudden someone breaks the monotony by bringing up something most fascinating. Your ears stretch out to grasp every word & nuance, as you sit there spell bound and enthralled. If you can remember an event like that then you now know what poetry ought to feel like when you hear it. As wine is to drink, so is poetry to words. For those of you who have yet to be raptured in heart & soul, worry not, for somewhere out there, under the great blue, there is a poem that is meant for you. Click on the image above to view my recitation of some of the greatest poems ever written.

Love & light,

JY

 

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The Faith or Faith Itself

“Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” – Yeshua

Preposterous you might add! How can we move a mountain from one place to another? Here is one alternative approach: Let us say that the mountain is abundantly filled with precious jewels from top to bottom. Now then, how easy would it be for man to remove every single stone in order to attain the treasure in full? In this day and age quite efficiently, so from this perspective, once we believe that something is highly valuable, the impossible becomes possible.

No new ventures would take place without someone initially believing in its vision. Once we come to work in unity with others who possess the same purpose, the sky is the limit, as the saying goes. Where two or three are gathered in the name of love, it becomes much easier to remove mountainous obstacles.

The world is filled with extraordinary events and people who have broken the boundaries in all areas of life. Often we resist the principles that enable such breakthroughs and sometimes will even use severe steps to oppose its theory & application, but in time, as these ideas become actualized and ingrained into society, many come to take for granted the things that once existed solely as faith and thus become desensitized to the wonder of miracles.

There is a potential destructive side to faith. A sort of faith that can be rendered as dogmatic, authoritative & dictatorial; a system of beliefs that must be adhered too or else the adherent may lose their group standing and suffer additional consequences. This supposed facet of faith can be rather troublesome for all, especially if the subscribers should resort to extreme measures to subjugate the hearts and minds of others.

In the associated video above, the writer presents a very rich imagery to convey a bastardization of faith; a somewhat dualistic version that even renders love itself as something worn out by time and no longer relevant to the mainstream goals of humankind. However there is truth to be ascertained in its absurdity and a beauty that draws our imagination pass the facade of cult-ural duplicity. May those with ears to hear discern the meaning of this poem – The Faith by Leonard Cohen – in its most rarified & simplest form…

Love & light,

JY

 

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Set Forth into the Deep

This poem largely draws upon platonic thought so as to express how we have come to experience reality as separated beings. It encapsulates a world view no longer acceptable by the masses but for the poet it remains the fabric of heaven by which to colour and give contour to the ineffable. If it is true that our individuated souls repeatedly come in and out of existence, then surely we are free in part to say something good about this cyclic process. And should our rigid minds lack the intellectual valour for deductive reasoning, then at the very least we can ponder what it might be like to be wholly one and then to set forth into the deep in order to become our own radiant sun. Click on the image above to dance with me along the edge of time, let us light this great expanse with melodious measure & rhyme.

Love & light,

JY

 

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Seek First to Understand – Empathic Listening

Below are 10 suggestions to becoming an empathic listener. Please share your thoughts on the validity of these statements and/or tell us why cultivating the habit of seeking first to understand requires so much effort to master.

1. Practice saying “take your time, I’m listening” and really mean it.
2. Set aside your own agenda.
3. Be available and receptive emotionally as well as through body language.
4. Try to appreciate the other person’s point of view.
5. Listen without being in a hurry to take over.
6. Try to imagine yourself in the other’s place: feel what the speaker feels.
7. Help draw out thought and feeling by asking questions.
8. Have the speaker elaborate for further understanding.
9. Say “Let me make sure I understand” and then restate the issue.
10. Be sensitive to the speaker’s feelings.

Seek first to understand, then to be understood, is a social principle which can be applied in various situations while in dialogue with others. As we mature in this practice our ability to communicate is enhanced and our relationships are deepened. We attain more clarity and understanding of the content, as well as the other person or persons.

We all know what it is like when someone is genuinely interested in hearing what we have to say in a spirit of cooperation and fellowship. We feel that our point of view is validated and that our opinions actually matter. This in turn enables a degree of trust, a quality of comfort by which we can freely speak our minds and demonstrate our personal truth without the fear of condemnation.

Often we emphasize on the delivery of communication, yet listening is just as crucial and requires much work. Dialogue needs to flow both ways in order for it to be effective and meaningful. But not just any kind of listening will suffice. Attentive listening and selective listening certainly have their place in acquiring information. Whereas deep authentic dialogue, that which is conducive to vibrant relationships, requires empathic listening.

Empathic listening allows one to enter more fully into another’s frame of reference. It requires a degree of courage & sacrifice to entertain an idea from someone else’s point of view, especially if it goes against our own beliefs, and in so doing we take the risk of having to rethink our own thoughts on the matter. By seeing things from alternative perspectives, we may come to recognize our own short-sightedness and by consequence have to change our stance. Regardless of the vulnerable position we put ourselves in through empathic listening, the very act can alter and transform the relationship itself, enabling both parties to better relate with one another and to genuinely seek solutions that are mutually beneficial.

Love & light,

JY

 

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Creating Pathways of Peace

If put into action, the following biblical suggestions may help to reduce the psychological plaque to well-being. Such counsel is by no means a panacea fix for all individuals. Nevertheless it possesses a spirit or a certain kind of poise by which to navigate our way through rough waters and be open to pathways of peace. My compilation of scripture was taken from various translations of the new testament bible. The photo of the flower above puts me in mind of a star forming nebula. Orange represents creativity & action. In this context it is a sign for taking initiative to cultivate a path filled with beauty, harmony and splendour.

Reduce Criticism:

“Therefore, let’s no longer criticize each other. Instead, make up your mind not to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother.” – Romans 14:13

“Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?” – Matthew 7:3

“Don’t speak evil against each other, dear brothers and sisters. If you criticize and judge each other, then you are criticizing and judging God’s law.” – James 4:11

Reduce Complaining:

“Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may be blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and perverse generation, in which you shine as lights in the world”. – Philippians 2:14,15

“But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that.” – 1 Timothy 6:6-8

“Do not grumble against one another, brothers, so that you may not be judged; behold, the Judge is standing at the door.” – James 5:9

Reduce Condemning:

“Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.” – Luke 6:37

“You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things.” – Roman 2:1

“For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.” – Matthew 12:36

Reduce Conflict:

“Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful.” – 2 Timothy 2:23,24

“But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.” – Colossians 3:8

“What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God.” – James 4:1,2

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Click on my photo above to download it in high resolution and feel free to use my images to bring joy to others.

Love & light,

JY

 

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Between the Heart & Mind

A life void of pleasure may be dull and boring, or something far worse. You might ask what would be the sense of working hard at something if there is no reward in the end or at least some enjoyment along the way. Even in the doing there must be some kind of satisfaction to motivate ongoing action. Surely we need to feel somewhat good about the toil itself if we are to sustain effort; otherwise, the activity may become meaningless or even disdainful. The significance of this line of thought is that we cannot strictly remove feelings from our judgement; as in making calculated decisions resulting in reasonable outcomes. The heart and the head must be aligned if we wish to maintain equanimity. Now that which pulls us in a particular direction may be irrational in the beginning or during other intervals along the way. How we go about reconciling such opposing forces requires an understanding of both mental processes and that which stirs the heart. As for the later, I believe Dante provides a wonderful canto to express the way the mind and heart must go together to truly know integrity. Click here or on the image above to experience the profundity of such poetic wisdom.

Love & light,

JY

 

 

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