Tag Archives: Maps

Symbolic Travels


“Symbols are to the mind what tools are to the hand–an extended application of its powers.”
–Dion Fortune


Speak to me in the language of dreams
Show me your internal language
where an orange means sunshine
a dark woman, death
and where fools and horses collide
Lend me a guide, a hermit or priest
perhaps a naked woman on lion’s back
to show me the way to where the god’s live.
Snakes and spiders and apple groves
sacred shrines where few are welcome
in each being I meet within you
I come to know you more
I’ll show you mine as well
skulls will dance for us
and we’ll climb rainbows
and I’ll show you worlds / not worlds and not-words
you’ll come to see and we’ll both know
and in the knowing we join
and understand the secret places
that lie between us
— G A Rosenberg


Blessings, G


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Another Realm's MoonAnother Realm’s Moon by G A Rosenberg


Into the BlueInto the Blue by G A Rosenberg


Here There be Designations….

“I asked the Zebra,
are you black with white stripes?
Or white with black stripes?
And the zebra asked me,
Are you good with bad habits?
Or are you bad with good habits?
Are you noisy with quiet times?
Or are you quiet with noisy times?
Are you happy with some sad days?
Or are you sad with some happy days?
Are you neat with some sloppy ways?
Or are you sloppy with some neat ways?
And on and on and on and on and on and on he went.
I’ll never ask a zebra about stripes…again.”
― Shel Silverstein


One thing that most map makers will tell you is that they dislike having blank areas on their maps. Areas where its not quite mountain or prairie, dessert or ocean but some undefined combination of one or more. It was easy a millennium or so back. If there was an undefined place on the map and intrepid explorers not yet found to explore it, the mapmakers would simply put “Here be Dragons” and that was enough for most people. There seemed very few people willing to prove them wrong. If not dragons than just about anything can be put down. It helps if its something that’s slightly intimidating.
We see that a bit now with psychiatrists and therapists mapping their patients’ heads. They too seem to share a dislike of undefined and paradoxical areas. Dragons don’t seem to hold the terror that they did so long ago so now these cranial mapmakers have a new set of mythological creatures, equally guaranteed to cause terror and reluctance to explore further. They call these designations. They use mysterious acronyms like ADHD or PTSD or anyone of several others to define them and then treat them with drugs that make the designations meaningless as those taking them tend to become a lot less interesting to map as their behaviours become if not more animated, more socially acceptable. Whenever these drugs seem to stop working or cause unexpected behaviours, new drugs are tried. No new mapping is done, after all the area in question has been mapped off already, we ‘know’ there are dragons there. It just becomes a matter of treating them. It becomes a matter of finding the right drugs to shut off the behaviours rather than mapping what’s causing them in the first place.
Yesterday we talked about paradox. Today about areas that are less than defined. Both cases where there is not a simple one to one correspondence between map and territory. Both solved with quick fixes. Ultimately both seem to have a lot in common with that story of the Emperor’s New Clothes.
Blessings, G

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Entering the Bone CityEntering the Bone City by G A Rosenberg


Spider's JewelSpider’s Jewel by G A Rosenberg

Having words


All my life I’ve looked at words as though I were seeing them for the first time.”
― Ernest Hemingway


It seems I’ve been writing quite a bit lately on the subject of map making. What is a map after all but a symbolic representation that tells us where we are.  What then are words? Don’t we use words as a symbolic representation to describe where we are as well?
We abuse words even more than we abuse other mapping tools. One of the largest ways in which we abuse words is by assuming that everybody who we speak to uses the same meaning for each word that we do even when the evidence starts racking up that this is simply not the case. I have seen so many arguments that derived from people using the same word or words yet they both seemed to come from separate dictionaries. At least a few times when I’ve pointed this out to people rather than focus on establishing a common meaning for the term so that debate or discourse was even possible, the people involved focused on who was using the word ‘more correctly’ Being right had become more important than communication.
Still despite this problem, many people do communicate. Sometimes it is just with a hand offered or a smile exchanged but nothing is more beautiful than the sound of two people conversing in harmony.
Blessings, G


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Guarded IdyllGuarded Idyll by G A Rosenberg


SpikedSpiked by G A Rosenberg

The Big Moments are Gonna Come

“Bottom line is, even if you see ’em coming, you’re not ready for the big moments. No one asks for their life to change, not really. But it does. So what are we, helpless? Puppets? No. The big moments are gonna come. You can’t help that. It’s what you do afterwards that counts. That’s when you find out who you are.”
― Joss Whedon


We’ve all had them. Maybe we didn’t recognize them at the time but all of a sudden we look up and everything has changed. I call them cusp moments, tho they can also be called crossroad moments or twilight moments or any other metaphor that catches your mind. It could be a parent’s death or a graduation ceremony. It almost always is when you lose your virginity. It could involve a bad breakup or an accident. It could even be a peak experience. However it happens in one fell swoop every map of reality that you have gets systematically erased. You look around you at places and people that were once familiar and you see strangers and strange places.
When this happens you can freak out and scramble towards anything that reminds you of your past and try as best as you can to recreate your own map or you can look at everything with the wonder of a child. You can be free to draw a new map with each new thing in front of you that you see with your new eyes. It can be the best thing ever.
I have spoken before about how every moment can be a new starting point and it can. You may not be able to force either a traumatic or a peak experience but you can consciously and willfully toss out your existing maps and look at your life and your environment with new eyes as if you’ve never seen it before. Redefine your relationships with everything and anything in front of you. Feel free to explore and learn and grow. Grab a hold of the potential new beginning that every moment brings
Blessings, G


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Brain StormBrainstorm by G A Rosenberg


RibbonsRibbons by G A Rosenberg

Quote of the Day – February 26 2013

“Not until we are lost do we begin to understand ourselves.”
– Henry David Thoreau


When I was younger I would often go into a state that I called ‘the dark’. During those periods, nothing seemed to make a whole lot of sense and I felt alone and friendless and nothing seemed quite worthwhile. More than anything else I felt lost. This state came about more often than not at the end of one of my ‘adventures’ where I tried to twist my life and my experience into a new shape or religion or belief structure only to find out that it wasn’t the answer. I would despair of ever finding the answer.
Eventually I learned that there was not an external answer in the way that I had thought. The reason why no one else’s path worked for me was that I am on my own path. This does not mean that truth does not exist nor that I always walk alone. Merely that my way consisted of learning as much as I could about as many paths and lifestyles and beliefs as possible and that it all led to formulating my understanding. This has been an ongoing process and one that I feel fairly sure will be unending. After all, the elephant has a lot of parts. More and more this realization has led to larger and larger periods of self-discovery. I am mapping myself as I go.
Blessings, G


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Indigo Bubble
Indigo Bubble by G A Rosenberg


TunnelAt the End of the Tunnel by G A Rosenberg

Quote of the Day – August 6 2011

“Let us repeat the two crucial negative premises as established firmly by all human experience: (1) Words are not the things we are speaking about; and (2) There is no such thing as an object in absolute isolation.”
–Alfred Korzybski


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Luminous Being by G A Rosenberg

Manifestation by G A Rosenberg