Monday, 12 October 2009


Hand in hand in the deep blue sea
Where the waters are warm and kind
Two mermaids swim in company
Sworn to each other, tails entwined.

Their friends meanwhile glide wild and free
Bodies flowing and spirits lined
With passionate curiosity
Discovering fun in all they find.

It is a mermaid mystery
Of why this pair do not unwind
Nor with a merman become three
But take by choice of will this bind.

Love we know must be the key,
Love told in tales of humankind
Of lovers wrapped in one body
Who parting for each other pined.

And witnessing how love can be,
We mermaids are alike in kind,
For we know well of ecstasy
That fills the heart and clears the mind,

So love like focused passion's glow
Must wake one deep within to know.


There are three more poems in the discussion below, which may be viewed at


  1. this makes me go ... "hmmmmm"

    in a really nice way


  2. Really??? I had an earlier version which I posted a couple of days ago, then thought was rubbish and deleted soon after. I think this is better, but still a bit contrived with its strict rhyming and lacking the flow of natural inspiration.

    Are the mermaids right I wonder in comparing love to passion, or are the two completely different?

  3. "true" Love is manifest through "passion"

    How else could energy be represent in matter ?

  4. See your other blog...maybe you are on the same question in these

  5. Thanks Tamara!! I thought they felt different, but I'm not sure. Is Love focused or an all-encompassing state or somehow both?

    I'll think more on this, but thanks lots for the encouragement.

  6. I came across the following quote by Fromm which might have been part of the inspiration for the third verse. But I'm not sure if I'm convinced of it. I wonder what you think?

    "To love somebody
    is not just a strong feeling;
    it is a decision, it is a judgment, it is a promise.
    If love were only a feeling,
    there would be no basis
    for the promise to love each other forever."

    If true, I think this is something difficult for the other mermaids to grasp.

  7. My problem with that blog was understanding the poem.

    In this one, it's more of a philosophical question of differences.

  8. Fromm is speaking of romantic love... not unconditional love....

    Your mermaids have both. but they shut out the rest.

    There is danger in this.

  9. I think you are grappling with essentially the same question... think about it a little and see if you agree...

  10. Yes! The distinction between romantic love, unconditional love, passion and the relationship between them.

    The mermaid pair have more romantic love, the other mermaids more unconditional love, manifesting as Tamara said in passion. But at heart is romantic love the same love, but more directed... focused on the beloved.

  11. A collection of thoughts from Fromm about productiveness which seems similar to Osho's creativeness, the spirit of doing things rather than the things themselves.

    By far the most important object of productiveness is man himself. (Fromm)

    Good is not only a state of mind, but a productive activity, a specific function that makes a person and man in general what he is. (Aristotle)

    Virtue is identical with power. Vice is the failure of man to use his power. Freedom and blessedness consist in understanding oneself and becoming nearer and nearer to the model of human nature that we potentially are. (Spinoza)

    Faust is a symbol of a man's search for the meaning of life. Neither science, pleasure, might nor even beauty answer his question. The answer to man's quest is productive activity, which is identical with the good. (Goethe)

    Broken Straws
    We are deeds
    You have left undone
    Strangled by doubt
    Spoiled ere begun
    At the Judgement Day
    We shall be there
    To tell our tale;
    How will you fare?

    Now, applying this concept to love... productive love of whatever form involves four qualities

    care, responsibility, respect and knowledge

    So, for example, part of knowledge means being objective, so focused but maintaining a sense of interrelatedness in the great scheme... not isolated, which reflects Cyn's comment about the pair in the poem seeming to shut out the rest which would be dangerous.

  12. Romantic is characterized by some as filling a need....

    In young persons this is often the case. But it can also be a dance of mutuality...

    This brings to mind Plato's Soul mates... you know that whole myth, right?

    Love is love really in the end...

    Everything has its place.. including passion...

    Passion can manifest in a multitude of ways.... and I think it is beneficial if one does not become obsessed. But young lovers often do

  13. In my mind, passion is the driving force of life.

    Passion is the engine that makes transforming the energy of unconditional Love into the various forms of existence we experience ... possible.

    Like a magnifying glass.

    I think I understand what Okei means by "focused". Energy when focused produces increased / concentrated effect...usually.

    Emotionally, we attribute this to all manner of things.

    In the end it simply ... just is.

  14. Lovely, as always. But what did you mean by contrived? Nothing sounded forced, and it flowed pretty good to me. But then maybe I've always appreciated patterns, even in the form of words. I do like a little order in a design, but not rigidly so. Creation, without a semblance of order could sometimes turn out chaotic. But then that's how I've always approached my design.

    Okay, rambling now!

    Interesting concept, mermaids. Allow me to become a little pseudo-scientific and imagine how the fusion of warm blood and cold blood in the mermaid's body could coexist to become such a delightful, mythical hybrid!

    I enjoyed reading the poem and the ensuing discussion. A nice break, after another hectic day at the office. Thanks, everyone.

  15. "I think you are grappling with essentially the same question... think about it a little and see if you agree..." (Cyn)

    Hey! It just hit me yesterday what you meant!! :^)

    The other poem was about childhood love becoming adult love, and the mysterious symbol of authority, determination and knowledge in the old man, a symbol of power.

    Childhood love, or even passionate love, is like the passion and curiosity of the mermaids. But both types of love take on a new dimension if imbued with power (Fromm's care, responsibility, respect & knowledge) and become more like a commitment as for the pair of mermaids by choice of will entwined. For children, this would be like answering "yes" to "am I my brother's keeper?", for passionate love, it would be the ideals of romantic love instead of purely Eros. Another good example of the contrast is the love of a child for her mother as opposed to that of the mother for her child.

    So, when you talked about the tarot card of "the lovers" as representing someone choosing between two types of love, perhaps the choice was between love with and without this power/responsibility?

    And this is what the mermaids in this poem are trying to understand... the idea of love being passion and curiosity directed in a powerful way.

    Tamara, I like your image of the magnifying glass, and maybe I meant more "directed" than focused... directing the magnifying glass on our chosen purpose or chosen one.

    This can involve restrictions, as the poem by Blake which Cyn quoted on the other page showed if the "authority" is external. But in true love and true knowledge, the authority is not externally imposed... it grows from within. The beliefs, ideals, values that we hold to and keep are internal... all chosen and found within.

    I went to the Garden of Love,
    And saw what I never had seen;
    A Chapel was built in the midst,
    Where I used to play on the green.

    And the gates of this Chapel were shut
    And "Thou shalt not," writ over the door;
    So I turned to the Garden of Love
    That so many sweet flowers bore.

    And I saw it was filled with graves,
    And tombstones where flowers should be;
    And priests in black gowns were walking their rounds,
    And binding with briars my joys and desires.


    Which brings us nicely onto Shahrizat's point about structure!! The rhyming scheme is very rigid because I used the same rhyme in the first five verses. It just happened for a couple of verses, so I felt I had to continue, and it was difficult to come up with ideas and fit them to the structure which meant it took ages to write. Ideally structure should be gradually imposed and evolve naturally or the creativity and naturalness can be stifled. Curiously, the saviour of the poem came in another form of structure, namely in contrasting the uniformity of the rhyming with the differences of viewpoint in each verse as we gradually discover the poem is written by the mermaids themselves.

    Interesting concept indeed, mermaids. I wonder if they were invented by lonely sailors like mirages in the desert. They appear to be women, but really they are not. Or maybe there are other explanations?

    And thanks are to you Cyn, Tamara and Shahrizat for creating such a wonderful discussion.

  16. This raises another question, one I've asked before, lol.

    How does one grow this internal power, structure, ideals, beliefs, certainty? The answer is along the lines of intuition, loving and trusting oneself, but this isn't an easy answer to implement in practice. Really, where does it come from? From within. Where within? It's up to you to ask yourself that, lol. I am asking myself, so where? Just be! ... mindful. LOL!

  17. I think some of this comes from experience....

    Not so much in the growing but the recognizing and accepting.

    One must feel secure in themselves to love others.

  18. Absolutely! Insecurity often breeds distrust, in oneself as well as in others. Without trust, how is one to love?

  19. That was beautiful and love-filled! Hey! my dude's fully awakened --- in one's heart... hah-hah-hahh!

  20. It is the key...

    One must take the time to discover if one can trust another...

    But even then, a person can be betrayed.

    Most often it is that people build someone else up to impossible standards and become hurt that the other does not live up to it...

    on and on this goes...expecting another human to fill up the empty spaces inside of them...

  21. Thanks so much everyone. I've been offline for a bit. In summary...

    "Security in oneself is the foundation of inner power, recognizing accepting and knowing Self through experience. Insecurity breeds distrust."

    Trust indeed is very special and important in love, as in everything. Being let down and losing trust comes from expecting something and being disappointed, so the trust must really come from within, something continuous, a state of trusting that comes from knowing and loving oneself... including trusting one's judgements in the moments when we choose not to trust. Often I'm sure I don't trust myself, so this is a good reminder.

    Not trusting is always holding on to a negative thought or experience and carrying it into the present. For example being short-sighted and being useless at recognizing people, yet if I play table tennis or walk about I don't worry about it, just recognizing and accepting as Cyn said, and I would add developing strategies to do the best we can.

    Thanks also to Jach for dropping by, dropping by... :^)

  22. I have come to find that a suspension of judgment.... neither trusting nor not trusting, but waiting gives us time to assess if we should trust....

  23. "Waiting" reminds me of your "doing something else" idea on my Seeking Guidance blog, letting the mind bubble up with the solution by keeping the busy mind occupied elsewhere. Let go and return at a later time refreshed. But not to wait so long, that you forget what it was that you were thinking about. I'm thinking more like problem-solving here, so not sure how this relates to the deeper questions, like *love*. But hey!, I don't need to, lol. I suspend judgement. Which in itself is a kind of trust...

  24. It takes time to trust....but people get impatient cause they want sex i think

  25. Perhaps love and trust both exist on many levels.
    Thinking more about trust... it is opening oneself to another, like layers of an onion. This means telling the truth and keeping secrets, at a deeper level opening one’s mind telling all that we know, deeper still confiding what we think and feel. It is also opening one’s heart, allowing oneself to love and be loved. So, extending the analogy, sex too is a deep form of trust, opening a sacred space within for another.

    So, in all forms, trust is openness, creating a space, removing boundaries between self and other whilst respecting and cherishing differences.

    "Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away." (Antoine de Saint-Exupery)

    This idea extends to interests we focus on & love as well as people. Clearing a space within is like clearing the mirror of the heart so that we can see beneath the surface of things and hear the still small voice within. They say it takes time and effort, but as in love as in knowledge, perhaps the moments of recognition are instantaneous.

    So, as you say Cyn, and as Lilith said in a comment on an earlier blog, people naturally want to skip the time and the effort of clearing the mirror of the heart and learning to trust oneself.

    "like waves… people rise and fall, have apparent successes and failures, but all the time may be moving towards their true destination without even knowing it. It is only the one who does not move who does not arrive." (Samuel Lewis)

    If you give birth to what is within you
    The voices you redeem will redeem you.
    If you fail to find and give birth to them
    They become part of what is destroying you.
    (Jesus, Gospel of Thomas)

    “thy kingdom come, thy will be done” (Lord’s Prayer)

    “When you begin the journey,
    Take Love along for food.
    Love makes easy what Reason makes hard.
    (Ahmad Hatif)

    “The sun is the wine, the moon is the cup.
    Pour the sun into the moon if you want to be filled
    Drinking such wine could be good or bad—
    Why not drink anyway?”

    If love is the wine, then trust is the cup. As for spaces within which one ceaselessly expects another to fill, this is a good description of insecurity. We must work on self to make sure the cup doesn’t leak.

  26. I'm going to post now a blog within this blog (or arguably a fourth blog within this blog given the length of some of the comments below).

    Here are two poems. The first (by me) is about a state of almost baby love, of peaceful bliss, loving kindness, inner peace and joy, yet without power and passion. The second (my version of a translation of a poem by Goethe) is about pure yearning, of desire burnt up in the fire of passion, yet without loving kindness, inner peace and joy.

    Buddhist philosophy, as I understand it, would say that desire is destructive and that expectation leads to disappointment, but might it not be that destruction and disappointment are necessary to make space for their opposites in creativity and happiness, in order for love to be productive and powerful? Do we not need desire and ego as fuel for the fire of passion? Or is peaceful love and bliss a better love and if so, how to harness its hidden power?

    Blessed Bliss

    I sit beside a smile
    And soon I’m smiling too,
    The smile becomes a laugh
    And then I’m laughing too
    Down to the naked breast
    Where I lay my head
    And nestle in its shade.
    In this state of bliss,
    Desiring nothing more,
    I softly fall asleep.


    Blessed Longing

    Tell it to none except the wise
    For the common crowd will sneer.
    I wish to praise the dancing eyes
    That sparkle for death’s final tear.

    When the calm unfolds the love-night
    That created you, where you create,
    An unknown yearning comes alight,
    A candle that will be your fate.

    Darkness now no longer snares you,
    Shadows lose their ancient force
    As this deep desire tears through you
    To soar to higher intercourse.

    Now no distance checks your flight.
    You come on wings enchanted, rash
    To meld yourself into the light
    And like a moth you’re burnt to ash.

    So long as you’ve not met this test
    Of living death and then rebirth,
    You shall remain a gloomy guest
    On this dark earth.

    --Goethe (1814)

  27. I that is not how I see your poem...

    I see it as simple joy....

    Passion? What is that except a building up of thwarted desire?

    It is short lived.

  28. Sorry, Cyn!! It's a "brain workout", lol.

  29. I just realized that I'd accidentally left the last verse off the Goethe poem. So this is corrected now. (Also, the third and fourth lines were supposed to mean literally the one who fully alive flames towards death so I rendered that pretty loosely and I hope my version of the "dancing eyes that sparkle for death's final tear" convey the spirit of what he meant.)

    Actually, the Goethe poem reminds me of some of the Lalla verses I posted about desires and ego being burnt up in the furnace of Love. But once desire is burnt up, what is left to fuel one's passion? Or is it a continuous process of burning? (And by passion, that would include the love of a mother for her child, it is a motivating powerful love that awakens her to do great things in its name.)

    In the last watch of the moonlit night,
    remonstrating with my wayward mind,
    I soothed my pain with the love of God.
    Gently, gently, accosting myself,
    "O Lalla, Lalla, Lalla",
    I woke my Love, my Lord and Master,
    Absorbed in it, my mind was cleansed.

    I, Lalla, suffered the fire of love.
    Before death I died without a trace.
    Reborn without colour or creed, and without them,
    I left me. What else could I do?

  30. Thanks Cyn!! I posted this "mini-blog" on the Buddhist travellers group site and got a similar response of preference of the first of the two poems. I hadn't expected that, lol. Thanks again for the encouragement.

  31. In the end, it does not matter...

    In long term relationships often passion fades.. but it does not have to. It depends on what the expectations are...

    bliss is about as good as it gets...

  32. I have a fifth blog to hide away within this one, another poem by me and another type of love, which I could have called "Blessed Friendship" to fit in with "Blessed Bliss" and "Blessed Longing" below, but I chose a different title instead. Cyn, you will recognize this as the story Leanne told about her squirrel friend on one of your blogs. But my only experience of squirrels is them running away from me, pausing and then running even further away, so I wonder how exactly they behave when they approach you? And whether my descriptions are accurate... so please do point out any factual errors or ideas I should have ideally tried to include.

    Squirrel Won The Lottery

    Up the branch he makes a dart,
    Flicks his tail and looks around,
    Down at the girl who made him start
    Dropping chestnuts on the ground.

    Cautiously he does descend,
    Grabs a nut, then jumps away,
    But soon the girl becomes his friend
    And how she wishes he could stay!

    But he must go and gather nuts
    And hide away from winter’s frost.
    Her fingertips still bear the cuts,
    Love bites that were friendship’s cost.

    So for her friend one early morn,
    She fills her bag with nuts she's found
    And empties them onto the lawn
    And hopes in spring he’ll be around.


  33. I think it is perfect! you must get Leanne to see this!!!!

  34. Woohoo! Glad you liked it... might change "had cuts" to "has cuts". Will show it to Leanne. :^) But I do wonder about how a squirrel behaves as it turns round and approaches you... it's something I've never experienced myself, that magical moment of trust.

  35. the squirrels where I go are very tame....

    But I stay in one place... I open some peanuts... and drop a few around me and then I act like I am not interested in them...

    They sneak up to me and get the peanuts... I do not move.

    I place the peanuts closer and closer to me... some run up to me when they see me coming... I am starting to see distinguishing characteristics in them... there is one whose nose is bigger and darker that makes a beeline for me when I show up at the same place.

    All you have to do is act like you will not try to touch them when you feed them and they learn to trust you...

    This took months though...

  36. Thanks a lot for describing it!! I was imagining the squirrel as running away, pausing and instead of running away again.... turning round... but it doesn't quite happen like that..... trust is such a difficult thing, eh! Thanks again for the lovely explanation. :^)

    Edit: and I posted the poem to Leanne's guestbook. :^)

  37. maybe it does happen that way... just not for me...

    You know, I was a little afraid of them too at first.. it was a mutual trust building

  38. Is leanne one of your contacts? She would love your posts

  39. My site is "open" to all. :^) But no, I'm not her contact yet. I think I get some of her posts in my inbox though.

    I took on your suggestion and changed "placing chestnuts on the ground" to "dropping chestnuts on the ground" and a few other little things. I could have even had "dropping peanuts on the ground", lol, but then squirrels love chestnuts too, don't they?

  40. Yes... they love both...

    And placing and throwing work equally well. ;-)))

  41. Ahh but that is where people get confused--they don't understand
    There is only one kind of love, but there are a thousand imitations. They fool themselves even. What many don't understand and never will is Your heart is different than emotions. It's not just what you feel that makes someone love someone in their heart. How many say-"you are in my heart? or I really love you" Just about everyone. They have not separated the two --emotions from heart. They don't understand the difference. Emotions can fool you--and delude many. But the heart never does. Not if you know it well. But that is the biggest and hardest journey for many.

    "The greatest explorer on this earth never takes voyages as long as those of the man who descends to the depth of his heart"" Few make that journey""

    I enjoyed your poem very much. (very much) Seems the mermaids had an unabandoned kind of sharing and caring. And I bet they knew their responsibility too

    Very visual poem--good job

  42. I don't believe Desire is wrong --if it is for good and kept pure (I don't mean untouched). But that seems to be the hard point for many.

    Those who believe in a God--know he has desires which are always for good. It's in the book.

    And didn't Buddha desire more to be enlighten? Perhaps he meant wrongful desires and those that use their desires for selfishness, Because if you look at his other teachings he has much to say on bad desires, bad friends and living. Sometimes I think people don't want to look at all the teachings but like to pick and choose want supports them (which is selfish) All the Prophets spoke of twisting of their word.

    Does great passion come with desire and ego? Sometimes, but it comes other-ways too. Sometimes just great love or goodness or joy (etc) fuels the fires. And it can be a flame that can't be put out easy

  43. Had said----
    Your heart is different than emotions. Emotions can fool you--and delude many. But the heart never does. Not if you know it well. But that is the biggest and hardest journey for many.

    "The greatest explorer on this earth never takes voyages as long as those of the man who descends to the depth of his heart"" Few make that journey""

    Seems the mermaids had an unabandoned kind of sharing and caring. And I bet they knew their responsibility too

    Very visual poem--good job

    I remember reading your quote about the heart a while back on your welcome page. It's a difficult journey because there's no map and it's so easy to get lost. And then I don't know for sure if you ever reach your destination or just get closer, but yes, that's a very inspiring thought and I hold onto it.

    As you say, the mermaid pair are demonstrating some of that true love of the heart. And I'm especially happy that I conveyed the "visual" because it was a very visual idea that inspired it.

  44. I think you're right about Buddha being misunderstood re: desires. My understanding is that he believed that attachments or clinging to those desires is the cause of suffering. He desired to be enlightened as you say. But as for good/bad, it's confusing but I think to label things good or bad is a habit of the mind and like your journey to the heart, you go beyond these concepts, but I'm not sure exactly.

    Oh, and I loved what you said above... it's a question I've been struggling with... if you go beyond human passion/will, what replaces it? Love & Goodness is a good answer I think. And happiness perhaps as a by-product.

  45. You write good poems, sir. And you hold great discussions, too. Thanks for letting me read your stuff here.

  46. Well, we have to do our best to come to our own understanding. What you say is to guard against self-deception, which is the same as the journey to the heart - difficult.

    Again re: good & evil, there are three rules:
    "1. Do not commit evil;
    2. Do good devotedly;
    3. Purify your mind." <--- purify mind/heart means connect to your deeper self, or your journey to the heart.

    I find the idea of "being good" or using good as an adjective difficult to grasp, because in both cases it is relative. There's a joke, "a saint is someone whose life hasn't been researched enough". For sure, it's only a joke, but I think you have to go beyond judging people, desires etc. in this way. The idea of doing good is much simpler and more rich.

    I read a comment recently about using the terms skillful and unskillful as an alternative to good and bad. Personally I like this idea because it emphasizes the shades of gray and the purpose of the good and bad.

    And finally, I was saying that ultimately one might go beyond the duality of good and bad. But this is only for the "enlightened" ones. The above rules then no longer make sense, but then one who is enlightened has no longer any need for these rules.

    So, yes, ultimately we do need to hold on to our concepts of good and bad in the meantime. (Though not get too addicted to labelling things with them. That's just my opinion, and I think we might disagree there, but that's fine. :^))

  47. Thank you Emma! You actually read this whole long thread? Impressed! Feel free to browse around, join in the discussion, or wander back some other time. But most of all, be happy! :^)

  48. Re: doing & being, I'm reminded of the film "Subway" which I saw and loved several years ago and highly recommend. The opening credits ran the following quotes...

    To do is to be. --Socrates
    To be is to do. --Sartre
    Do-be-do-be-do. --Sinatra

    This was immediately followed by a car chase...

    Tremendous start to a film before we descend to a slower pace in the "beauty" of the subway.

  49. I'll be back... cant watch these right now

  50. I loved the music is the first vid