Monday, October 20, 2008

Beyond Reason

Beyond Reason & Safety

You are all that you do.
It is not the moment but the space between the moments that cures my counterfit wounds. Wounds in the shapes of smiles. Smiles that seek substance.

when did the sunsets grow dim under the calamity of mindless thought?
Beauty is more beautiful to the wounded.
How was there peace between the sheets of beds, or sheets of paper, or the sheets of glass that blanket a untamed heart?
Passion and the lies, and the price of pleasure.

Pleasure in every sense.
The pleasure of nights and of mornings.
The Sweetness of ocean, the saltiness of lips; the thorns hidden among roses tear at my heart until it aches.
The darkest lies, are the ones i tell myself - in confidence.

Do you find the pause between words more beautiful than the tears of poets?
Do you find the branches of trees attainable?
Climb higher than you are afraid of falling.
Do you find subtlty calming - the absence of sharpness.
Finish these veins - let me slip below surface and below light, and below all that I might deserve.
I have bathed in these rivers, and they are deeper than I. I have fallen from life, and hope has cradled me in its soft arms.

Here I lay, the moon and the stars and all that is stunning - it still smiles back at me and my blackness. Does truth never forsake the hungry?

I am not yet lost. Hope remains.
I am still free after all, after all this - still.
Freedom and strength grow.
This breathe beyond reason and safety.

(Andrew Tipton)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Before there were answers.

I have the urge sometimes to leave the campfire.
It is warm, comfortable, safe.. but at times I get the urge to take off my clothes, and run naked through the woods.

Joshua and Trent were right. This life is a tangle of constant motion. I have known it for too long. Some days there need to be wounds, some days there needs to be thought. Some days there should be love. Some days there should be tears. Some days warmth... other days cold. Some days I will be naked, others I will wear the finest clothes . In every day there is motion.

It isn't about ego, proving anything to anyone, self anguish, bravery. Forget what you know about everything. Forget you know me, forget you ever knew the sun, or the moon, or trees, or the softness of a kiss, forget that you know what it is to breathe - touch life again for the first time. Stop, open your eyes, challenge the learned experience of existence - challenge what you think about dolphins, what you think you know about grass, challenge what you think water tastes like, or what the sound of waves sounds like from beneath the surface. You must take off everything you know, and sell your cleverness for bewilderment.

Experience the woods at night. Take your shirt off, take your pants off, take your shoes off, stand naked, wrap yourself in the moment, and then run... forget reason, forget pain, forget darkness, forget yourself.
I am tired of the lies that keep us quiet.
I am tired of the fear that keeps us cautious.
I am tired of the thoughts that keep us thinking.
I want to be like a child again... amazed.
Before there were answers.

(Andrew Tipton)

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Cage of the Name

My dinner, dress, associates, looks, business, compliments, dues,
The real or fancied indifference of some man or woman I love,
The sickness of one of my folks- or of myself... or ill-doing...
Or loss or lack of money... or depressions or exhaltations.
They come to me days and nights and go from me again.
But they are not the Me myself.
- Walt Whitman

This is an interesting age.
25. A moment in life when we begin to pursue a particular lifestyle, set on a course, establish our self in a job, or begin to settle down.
It is a confusing age - a time when much is sacrificed.

At 25, we begin to call ourselves names... doctors, parents, scientists, cowboys, philosophers, bodybuilders, leaders, painters, musicians. We feel we have a grasp on things, a grasp on our self, on our very tiny world. It all starts when we see a person we want to mimic or replicate; and so we pursue the life that they have. We, consciously or subconsciously, adapt ourselves to a particular model - and our lifestyle begins to narrow. We begin to lose balance. Its a slow process, but eventually, we replace curiosity with monotony. An entire world of bright, incredible pursuits, becomes shadowed by our own blanket of daily routine. One day we stop climbing trees.

Life is broad.
There is so much to do. There is so much to become, and experience, and touch, and do! I watch it calmly.. I hate that I watch it calmly.

When I give myself a name, I put limitations on what I am willing to do in life. I am saying, "I won't go there", or "I can't do that", not because I truly can't, but because it is out of character. My security no longer rests in truth - but comes from the safety of knowing what I can and can't do. I Do I dare be original? Sometimes it is pitiful how very little will suffice.
I see people day to day, and we seem so morbidly similar. We have the same appearance, the same job, the same lifestyle, we do the same things in the same places - absolute predictability.
Do I not know that life is at my fingertips? Am I afraid of freedom? It is easy to define myself when I fit a model that 1000000 people have already filled.. safe and easy. Damn.

There is something more, something better and infinitely more beautiful.
There is balance - and the pursuit of many pursuits.
Do all you can do, and do it well.
Today I will paint.

(Andrew Tipton)

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Movement Entirely

There were clouds over the island today; blue and gray and silver clouds covering the entire sky.

There are revelations hiding in lonely places. I have found that solitude unlocks the deepest of thoughts. You can't run from them, you can hide behind your smile or your conversation, or preoccupy yourself with the usual - you are forced to dive into yourself, into the soul of your imagination.

There are these dreams in my head today and they won't leave my mind alone.
On this island, where I have a hammock, a tent, and a few small trees, there is the continual concentration on motion... motion motion. It is ironic to be consumed by the thought of movement so much, when I am on a place so small and so limited.
I tried to forget the thought, but it was persistent, I cannot think of anything else but moving, moving, moving..

There are always reasons to the madness..
Where you are, what you have, your limitations, your abilities, your surroundings - they are all relevant in some way to what you are thinking - all working together to provide a subtle glimpse into the depths of existence.

As I lay in my hammock, aching to move. I began to consider the many paths of motion - the subtle, the explosive, the silent, the wild.
There is more to movement than just moving muscles. It is the inclusion of every element of motion that brings balance to life. Climbing, swimming, or painting, or sleeping.. they are all connected and all intimately related to one another. Each is important.
There was no place to run on the island, but I could read. There was no place to hike, but I could think, there were no people to talk to, but I could stretch, no music to dance to, but I could write.
Hidden, here on my tiny island, I found an incredible abundance of motion. Every moment I was here, could be consumed by movement - and each movement, absolutely as crucial as the next. Balance.

The realization;
Motion exists everywhere, in everything seen, touched, everything quiet, mysterious, obvious, all things beautiful, all things small, grand, still, and unseen. It is the constant, the beat of perfect balance, constantly ringing in our ears.
To achieve all that motion has to offer us, we must explore it entirely
. We must dive into the the motion of our minds, in the words of other people, in the sway of palm branches, in the wind, through our feet running across a desert, our hands grasping rocks on the side of a mountain, in the pages of a book, the drops in a waterfall, in the touch of bodies, into the motion of absolute silence. There is no limitation - no boundary - no time when we cannot fully and absolutely be in balance with the flow of motion. To be balanced, to be complete as humans, we need to experience the full range of our potential movement. Movement Entirely.

As I lay here, surrounded by very little, I am persuaded to rethink myself, my addictions and my frustrations. I am persuaded to be at peace, and to breathe slowly, there is everything here.
There is balance.
I don't have to find it -
I can simply live it.

(Andrew Tipton)

Friday, October 3, 2008

Substance Abuse

And here we are in this brave world.
I crave substance. I won't lie, I crave it like nothing else I can fathom. It is in my mind, wrapped around my tongue so that it comes out when I speak. I look for other users - I want to know it, see it, and get it into my veins - I want to bleed substance. More than just a fix, I need to find the source - the place where it is born and dies all in the same moment.
We were tigers when we were born. Courage was in our hearts - that day we didn't know the emptiness of fake smiles or fake laughs or fake thoughts. I am so tired of fake smiles.
When I do stand and feel solid? When do I no longer hide in the shadows of delicate things?

Counterfeit are the truths of men - illusions of substance, with specs of real worth mixed in. Let them go, let them go, let them go.
Solid true substance - We are all searching for it. We are just following the wrong roads. We find a base that feels strong.. but it doesn't sustain.
my car, my clothes, my prestige, my wealth, my knowledge, my strength, my lovers, my friends, my body, my very life itself... they all fall short. Substance is outside of me and my conditions. It will not die with me, and it was here before I arrived. How can I put my hope in anything else? How can I believe that fading, delicate baggage will make me better? It is beautiful to be free.
I am dying.. (unavoidably) - what then, can possibly make me better? :) haha I would rather pursue something larger, grander and more long lived that my own fleeting moment.
What I desire is outside of time, and outside of persuasion. The motion of existence itself, give that to me. Strip me naked and paint it on my body, so that when people see me and hear me and touch me.. they know that what I say is real, that what I am is not a lie.
Lies are the end of power.
Truth is the beginning.

(Andrew Tipton)

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Walking in Zion and the Pursuit of Elusive Truths

There are days when thoughts run deeper and faster than rivers.
Days when you lose yourself in the simplicity of breathe.
Days when you wake up, look at your reflection on the surface of a calm lake, and realize that you look different than you remember.
These days make me think.

I went hiking in Zion, UT a few months ago. Zion is a national park, featuring some of the most elaborate, complex, and incredibly breathtaking hikes in the US. It is an entire valley, sculpted from red sandstone - enormous rock towers, jutting up, thousands of feet into the air. A revelation to witness in person.
It is hard to describe the initial, breathtaking beauty of Zion - you simply lose track of your own petite existence.
There is a certain hike in Zion, called "The Narrows". It is a 16 mile trek that winds its way through a deep slot-canyon - you hike into a river, and use its flow as your trail.
There are many tourists at the beginning of the trail. Fat tourists, families, young children, elderly explorers - they are all eager to walk to get their feet wet. As you start to hike the river however, you immediately realize that the hike is not going to be easy - and so does everyone else. Slippery rocks, strong current, and deep cold waters deter many would-be adventure seekers. Unwilling to risk discomfort or suffer injury, most turn back quickly.
However, despite the difficulties, a few hikers press onward, moving upstream along the slot-canyon at a snail's pace. As you continue the hike, the amount of fellow hikers continues to decline - eventually, you find yourself close to alone.

The canyon of "The Narrows" in Zion, has one ironic catch - the further you go, the more difficult the hike, and the more absolutely astounding your surroundings become. Sheer thousand-foot cliffs rise above you on both sides - the colors of red and crimson are unspeakably vibrant. The walls tighten, and you find yourself moving forward in a surreal labyrinth of: RIVER, ROCK and MOTION. It is an experience is incredible; worth every bit of effort, pain, and fatigue. You find yourself miles into the canyon, with the sound of a rambling river echoing through your ears. It is sublime.

There were two types of people that experienced the hike in Zion.
There were the tourists, who wanted a photo at the entrance of "The Narrows. To them, the hike was easy, shallow and safe - although incredible, they did not see it for what it really was.
Second, there were the adventurers - people who wanted to get into the canyon, to see it and touch it, and explore it entirely. They risked everything, and in doing so, they experienced the true majesty of the hike.
Both sets of people will go home, and say that they know Zion, that they know The Narrows. But, you only know of life what you live - in the same measure that you pursue it, will you uncover its power and beauty.

Touch life gently, and you will not find it very amazing.
Jump into it, grab onto it, wrestle it to the ground and have it throw you against a rock wall - you will ache, you will be cut and bruised, but you will see it as never before; it will be so intense and so beautiful that you won't be able to think straight. God, I want to get me some of that.

(Andrew Tipton)