The resolution of a koan requires a certain trust of mystery, a faith that there is an answer which will come in time.
~ Rachel Naomi Remen
Circles are among the oldest of geometric symbols, and commonly represent unity, wholeness, and infinity. Pythagoras called the circle “monad,” the most perfect of creative forms, without beginning or end, without sides or corners. He associated the circle with the number 1 and the practice of monotheism.
In the Zen Buddhist philosophy, a circle stands for enlightenment and perfection in unity with the primal principles. Circles are sometimes symbols of the Judeo-Christian God and sanctity, appearing as haloes. In Chinese symbology, the circle represents the heavens.
Circles are also often seen as protective symbols. In occult practices, standing within a circle shields people from supernatural dangers or outside influences. Circles can also represent containing, keeping what is inside from been released.
The circle is also used nearly universally to represent the sun and/or the moon, or things associated with those bodies. The astrological symbol of the sun is a circle with a dot in the middle. The same symbol is used to represent gold, which is strongly associated with the sun.
The element of spirit, seen as an element equal to or superior to the physical elements of fire, air, water, and earth, is commonly represented by a circle.
~ Catherine Beyer, Learn Religions
And because it was left out of the above description of circle symbolism, the circle is also said to represent the goddess.
Well, here we are. Another weekend although I have to confess that it matters little to me whether it’s a weekday, the weekend, or (as is the case now) a holiday weekend. The days all tend to seem the same lately.
It is Memorial Day weekend here in the U.S. According to History.com, the practice of honoring those who died in battle goes back thousands of years. Here in the States, it was once known as Decoration Day, a time when soldiers would decorate the graves of their fallen comrades in arms. In 1967 it became Memorial Day and in 1968 it was moved from a set day (May 30) to the last Monday in May. Some veterans groups have tried to have it changed back to May 30 because some Americans, as they are wont to do, have lost track of what the day means and instead celebrate it as the long weekend that is the unofficial start to summer with barbecues and pool openings rather than an honoring of the fallen soldiers who fought in the wars.
That’s not to say there are not ceremonies to honor the dead. There are, all across the nation. Or were. I’m not sure how this will play out this year. I have not been paying much attention other than to a news story in which the mayor of Baltimore (Maryland) has asked the current occupant of the White House not to come there for Memorial Day (“I wish that the President, as our nation’s leader, would set a positive example and not travel during this holiday weekend,” said Mayor Young) because Baltimore is still under a stay-at-home order and the city cannot afford his visit. Naturally that guy in the White House wouldn’t think of setting a good or positive example, or doing anything at all that might alleviate their pain, financial or otherwise. That’s not his way. In fact, it’s not his way to pay his bills, either, as other cities who have put up with him can attest to (as of April 2020, his campaign owed $1.8 million to 14 cities).
Our weather is finally becoming more seasonable. To be honest, I’m not thrilled with the heat or the humidity. I was perfectly happy residing in the coolness of a mild spring. Alas, I don’t control the weather and I’m sure that’s probably for the best. Mother Nature is the most qualified for the job, and she seems to know what she’s doing (even if we don’t always agree with her). I have to remind myself that a lot of the food we eat, particularly as vegetarians, would not be available to us if it were not for summer weather.
As you might have guessed, I’ve been drawing again. My drawing skills are pretty crappy, but I enjoy drawing and coloring mandalas. The drawing is almost as important to me as the coloring (which is why I’m not just using coloring books). It’s been a while since I’ve drawn anything so my hand is not very steady. Forever ago (really, four years ago), I was drawing a mandala almost every day and became not-too-bad at it. There is something almost medicinal about drawing mandalas. Or at least it seems that way to me.
That’s about it from me today. I should go and do something semi-productive. Or maybe I’ll draw more circles. Thank you so much for stopping by today. Let’s meet out at the dock to watch the sunset. It’s scheduled for 8:14 PM. I’d recommend shorts and short sleeves but the biting bugs are back in force. Ticks, flies, and mosquitoes, oh my. Not to worry. We have plenty of insect repellent if you’re not averse to using it. You could also bring a “smoke stick” (incense). Smoke does a good job of keeping the worst of them away.
Please be safe, be well, and be kind. ♥♥♥
A few of the 10,000 reasons to be happy: 1,426) Zoom gatherings with family, friends, and the yoga darsana class cohort. 1,427) Green herons, great blue herons, and egrets visiting the pond. 1,428) Our newest young buck. 1,429) “Discovering” new authors and activists. I recently “found” Joanna Macy through her “spiral” (this image will give you some idea of what it is). I’ve been using this as a practice lately, starting my day by grounding or rooting into gratitude. It’s helpful during these strange times. 1,430) Learning all kinds of new things lately.