JourneyWoman

This is a site that attempts to encourage the understanding of the unity of all being and its implications for humanity on their journey of return to the One. Reflections are often presented in the form of creative writing and poetry

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Location: United Kingdom

To read is good, to practice is better

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The Sufi Book and Music Blog


You are invited to visit The Sufi Book and Music Blog

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Friday, August 17, 2007

A New Blog

Dear Friends and Readers I have started a new blog on WordPress. It is called 'Wild Dervish Writes' and is similar to JourneyWoman but with some new features. Please go over and take a look. I look forward to seeing you there. This one will be staying here for anyone who wants to read past posts and at some time in the future I might continue writing the 'Diary of an Andalucian Village' here.

At 'Wild Dervish Writes' you will also find a link to my new astore The Sufi Book Store

Thank you to all my readers here and I hope you continue to enjoy reading over at 'Wild Dervish Writes'

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Thursday, July 05, 2007

Diary of an Andalusian Village (4)


The Sounds of Summer

The heat of summer is fully upon this little village, day and night, and with it come the special sounds of the season. Because the village is high in the Alpujarra Mountains we often have a pleasant breeze. The open air swimming pool has now opened for July and August and the sound of children having fun carries on the breeze.

It is during these two months that the village comes alive. Families who have moved down to the coast to live and work return to their ancestral home to relax and enjoy the countryside. The daytime is usually quiet apart from the singing of birds or the chatting of people on their way to the bakers for the day’s supply of bread.

It is after dark that the village begins to buzz with sound. After a hot day it is refreshing to sit out on patios and roof terraces to eat and chat. Groups of children can be heard playing outside until late. They are completely safe. The village is like a large family and everyone takes care of each other. The roads are little more than cemented tracks and in the middle of August you can be in the Plaza chatting about life with whoever is around.

Then there are the fiestas which are inevitably very noisy affairs with tables set up around the Plaza and free food for everyone and music until the early hours of the morning.

My favourite time of day is early morning before the sun rises. The only sounds come from the birds awakening and the bus arriving at 6am. This is a good time of day to go for a stroll. There is always a breeze as the sun rises and the mountains are bathed in a rosy glow. At times like this prayer comes naturally in unity with the entire natural world.

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Monday, July 02, 2007

Language, Light, and Intention

This is a fictional discussion on the nature of language. It is an excerpt from the next novel I plan to write.


‘Let’s look at language as an example.’ Dan stood up, swivelled his chair around and sat astride with his elbow resting on the chair back. His excitement was obvious and Bridget could not resist a smile despite her hesitation about the risks they were about to embark on.

‘Taking what we know about light, we can look at language in time and ask a few questions about the nature of knowledge acquisition. For example, who knows what is going to happen even within the next second?’ He rose again and walked purposefully to the coffee machine talking as he went. ‘Do we really understand how we traverse this moment into the next? The spoken, or written word, for example, is it made of particles, an accumulation of moments added together that result in meaning, or is it like a wave, a continuous flow that contains an inherent teleology?’ Dan poured himself a coffee and added three spoonfuls of sugar. Gavin refilled the machine, switched it on, turned around and leant against the sink without once breaking his concentration on Dan’s words. Bridget noticed that Philip was fidgeting and frowning hard. Then he spoke up, ‘I think you mean the thought, dear boy. It’s the thought that makes the spoken, or written, sentence.’

‘Ah, now that’s another matter. We are not talking origins at the moment. I want to keep this simple, Philip. Quantum physicists will tell you that what you find when you look at light depends on the observer. If you look for particles you find them, a world made of bits. If you look for a wave you find it, a world of continuity and unity. I prefer the latter. But what is happening if I speak or write, without pause, word-by-word? In one respect that seems like little more than particles randomly following one after the other. But there is teleology here, even though unthought. I can think it now as I speak without pause and it is called intention. That teleology is the desire to tap my creativity, to make room for that which otherwise might not emerge, a moment of inspiration that is uncensored and unformatted, simply allowed to transpire. What a great word, transpire, to breathe across. It reminds me of Blake, ‘He who kisses the joy as it flies…’

‘You do realise that you are coming very close to metaphysics, don’t you Dan?’ Nanon had been so quiet during the past half hour, standing by the window, a little apart from the rest of the gathering, that her voice startled them all, coming calm and authoritative after the tense excitement of Dan’s narrative. While everyone participated in the breathless sense of wonder of Dan’s account, Nanon’s remarks moved them all to a level of grave attention that subtly altered the mood of the room to one that appeared to align itself with the changing weather. The room had darkened as storm clouds stretched above the peninsula. Through the window they could see the slate grey light that anticipated a storm. A little rain began to splatter against the pane and thunder could be heard in the distance. Nanon moved away from the window and came closer to the table. Gavin offered her a coffee, which she gratefully took.

‘In the medieval universities of Baghdad and Cordoba there was no separation between physics and metaphysics. Philosophy was all about understanding the world in relation to humanity. The big questions, then, as now, were about our origins, our destiny, and the meaning of our lives, the ‘why’, ‘where’, and ‘how’. The difference between science then and science today is that up until the enlightenment that which is invisible, unknowable, and supratemporal, was not considered to be non-existent. The other significant difference is that some enlightened souls had some pretty stunning ideas on the matter of knowledge acquisition.’

‘How do you mean?’ queried Ben, looking as if he well knew the answer but that some of the others might be grateful for an explanation.

Nanon remained silent for a moment, staring attentively at Ben.

‘I’m hungry Ben. I’m sure we all are. I could also do with a change of scenery. Shall we go down to the Mermaid Inn and get a bite to eat?’

‘Good idea.’ Bridget slid off the table, ‘they’ve got a private room there. We can continue the conversation over supper, although to me it sounds more like a briefing. Am I right? Nanon? Daniel?’

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The Threshing Circle (excerpt from a novel in progress)


Threshing Circle

A threshing circle is about sixty feet in diameter. It is built of cobbled stones spiralling from the centre outwards. There are many of them in the Alpujarra mountain range. There is no longer any need to separate the grain from the chafe as wheat is not grown in this part of Spain any more. Threshing circles are now protected sites. Wild flowers and grasses push up between the cracks. The wind remains. A threshing circle is always placed in a position most open to the wind with valleys or ravines all round. They afford the best views and Yolanda had discovered one just outside her chosen village within a week of her arrival. Every morning at dawn she would leave her rented house and walk to the threshing circle. As she left the village she smiled in anticipation. The noises of an awakening community, endearing as they were, now receded behind her. She heard only the song of birds. Upon stepping on to her circular sanctuary she inhaled deeply and once again, as every morning, she expressed thanks for the wide open space, for the strong breeze, for the paradoxical sense of tranquillity and shelter in such an exposed spot.

A small grove of cypresses stood close to the circle, and a stone wall that was the only remains of an ancient dwelling. A dog rose grew across what would once have been a corner of the house but which now spilt its old stones down the steep incline of the mountain side. An old shoe and a broken water flask lay abandoned amongst the rubble and fallen foliage.

Copyright Y K Randall, Granada, 2007

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