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Diverging

Above is photo I took in Cincinnati in March of 2011. I took this picture a few days before my dad died in Cincinnati.

I made a post about the picture at the time, and noted that my father would soon be leaving the main track or be taking a diverging course.

I think about this picture often.

There are things I’d like to do differently in life, and ways I wish things were different in our society.

I now often envision these changes or transitions that I’d like to see as a switch from the main track to another route.

It seems like a gentle enough switch in this image. Just a slight altering of your course.

Yet in the end you’ll end up far away from where you started.

April 19, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Flexibility Is Life And Progress—Different Sets Of Tracks Can Lead In The Same Direction

Last week I watched President Obama’s State of the Union speech.

On my Facebook that evening, I saw a number of reactions to the speech from both moderate and liberal Democrats, from Green Party supporters, from Occupy Wall Street backers and from socialists.

The Democrats all liked the speech, while some of my friends further along on the left had reactions ranging from partial approval to scorn.

This is all fine with me. While I am not President Obama’s most ardent supporter, I am on the side of all good people who want to  help move our great nation to the left.

There is no point in a rigidity that excludes people on our side of the aisle.

Here is the entirety of  chapter 76 of the Stephen Mitchell translation of the Tao Te Ching

Men are born soft and supple;

dead, they are stiff and hard.

Plants are born tender and pliant;

dead, they are brittle and dry.

This whoever is stiff and inflexible

is a disciple of death.

Whoever is soft and yielding

is a disciple of life.

The hard and stiff will be broken.

The soft and supple will prevail.

Yet–of course–we must move in a hopeful direction and this does require at the least a measure of coordination.

The good news is that different sets of tracks can lead in the same direction. We see this in picture below of railroad tracks that I took in Houston last year.

There are multiple tracks, but they merge.

See who your friends and allies are and see the good in them. Focus on where you agree and move forward.

We can be both flexible and focused on a common goal.

January 31, 2012 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

I Took A Walk Along Some Railroad Tracks—The Solid And The Abstract Give Substance To One Another

A few days ago, I took a walk along some railroad tracks here in Houston. Not wanting to be on the wrong side of the tracks, I walked in-between the tracks.

Here are facts about railroad tracks are built from howstuffworks.com

I wager though that if you live this close to the tracks, any side of the tracks is the wrong side.

The variations of sound you hear from a moving train are often used to illustrate the Doppler Effect.

On my walk, I encountered this rat skeleton.

The trains must run right over the skeleton.

Here are facts about rats from the Illinois Department of Public Health. Apparently they often live in the vicinity of railroad tracks.

Turning around to head back home–and staying noncommittal in-between the tracks– I could see at a distance the skyline of Houston.

Here are some details about the Houston Skyline.

Just about everyplace can be an interesting place.

Everything we need to see and think about the world around us is accessible with effort and imagination.

This is the case of the physical world of railroad tracks and rat skeletons, and the metaphorical world of being on the right or wrong side of the tracks.

The solid and the abstract give substance to one another.

(All photos copyright 2011 Neil Aquino.)

December 5, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Diverging

I spent a number of hours today with the terminally ill person in my life.

He’ll soon be taking a diverging track.

Picture of railroad tracks taken today in Cincinnati, Ohio.

( Photo copyright 2011 Neil Aquino)

March 6, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Many Tracks But Only One Bridge Out ,Or, Only One Bridge On But Many Tracks

Above is a photo I took a few days ago of railroad tracks on Galveston Island, Texas.

There are many railroad tracks on Galveston Island, but there is only one railroad bridge off the island.

Or–Should it be that there is only one rail bridge to get on Galveston Island, but then there are many tracks once on the island?

I’ve been internally debating this question for the past few days.

Somehow it makes a difference how I view this question.

January 5, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 4 Comments