Śramaṇa Rising

Foto by Jason Weaver, 2017

Foto by Jason Weaver, 2017

 

(To hear the Blacksmith Tree Frog please press play)


— The day prior to a New Moon compels total abandonment and complete surrender,
a release from all fears; by becoming an empty vessel, we can be reborn in purity —

The Shaman, dressed in his intricate fine-thread garb, has lit the
sacred flames ensconced within the ornamental shrine, festooned
in floral garlands and feathery plumes, around which they all gather,
chanting mantras and prayers, echoing his verse; later he reads
to them from the ancient texts, his sacramental words.

It is a ceremony of separation — one of death and birth,
of creation and destruction, of mothers and sons, of water and stone.

— And out of the primeval murk he was born, the strands
that once connected them shorn, as man arises from earth —

In attendance is the Seeker, who sways hypnotic to the reverberate
thumps and rings, enchanted at the ritualistic flourishes of his Master’s
lashes of sacred waters, at the intoxicating scents of mystic incense.
He knows that this ceremony is as much for himself as it is for them all,
for tonight, he has shed his doubt, arriving prepared to emerge.

Abruptly, he feels a split, the is a severance, and one by one, like strings
being snipped, the Shaman’s words begin to lose all meaning and sense.

— Bearing down in a grassy field near a passing creek, a mother
delivers
her newborn son, cutting the umbilical cord with her teeth —

Opening his eyes he finds that they have all gone. He is alone in a forest clearing,
a passage, surrounded by bog, the sounds he is hearing now like so many drums
are the tympanic mating calls of male blacksmith tree frogs resonating across
the water. Where once was a fire-lit altar, he sees a patch of grassy stalks
jutting from the murk, the scents are of night-blooms, of algae, of damp.

It is done, the cycle is complete. Cleansed and unbound from his corporal and
temporal ties, he must forge a new path of unification. But for now, he must rest.

 

By Jason Weaver, 2017

Although I took artistic liberty to re-create this account, an actual ceremony was performed by my good friend and mentor Afonso Domingues on the evening of February 25th, 2017, on New Moon’s Eve. Some details in the poem are truth, while others are embellished or simply created. In this story I call him the Shamen to instill an atemporal feel to reflect that which we all surely felt. The photo was taken earlier in the evening before the ceremony. Later, I returned to this spot just as it began to get dark, and the chorus of tree frogs (Hypsibaos Faber) left me without words. It was within this context that I wanted to share with you what happened to me that evening, and how I prepared myself for the next phase of my journey. The Title Śramaṇa Rising refers to a seeker in various Indian religious movements, and among other things, fits in with the concepts of birth and death cycles, and ultimately, finding liberation from those cycles through ascetisism.
Credits:
Audio of Blacksmith Tree Frog (Hypisboas Faber) by Rodrigo Dela Rosa, accessed from amphibiaweb.org
Lunar cycle legend retrieved from http://www.lunarplanner.com/characteristics/1-New.html
Information on Śramana I retrieved from 2 sources:
http://www.wisdomlib.org/definition/%C5%9Brama%E1%B9%87a
https://www.boundless.com/world-history/textbooks/boundless-world-history-i-ancient-civilizations-enlightenment-textbook/early-civilizations-in-the-indian-subcontinent-4/religion-in-the-indian-subcontinent-25/the-sramana-movement-108-13209/

This is not a Forest

Foto by Jason Weaver, 2017

Foto by Jason Weaver, 2017

This is not a forest,
and those are not trees.

It is also not not a forest
and those are not not trees,
and I who write this all down
am decidedly not not me.

These are not my words,
and this is not a poem.
Everything is simply
nothing-not-nothing at all.

By Not-Jason Weaver, 2017

In a Fog

Original painting by Jason Weaver, 2016

Original painting by Jason Weaver, 2016

A fog of cool, white
winter-wet clouds curled across
the landscape in long, low wisps
and settled in at a wooded edge.

Here within I was
(pleasantly surprised) to find
a sudden, simple clarity of mind,
cocooned in a butter-balm of calm
a world-away from the
intrusive
incessant
cacophany of clutter,
far from the voice
of white-noise news and views.

Unbound of ego and need,
unchained to doubt and fear,
I frolicked free amid the trees,
climbing, swinging,
dancing ’round arm-in-arm,
playing hide-and-go-seek and
sparring like sword-wielding warriors
with rampant abandon,
falling to the ground
hand-in-hand
in heaps of laughter and shouts!
Never shall I forget!

——–

A fog of cool, white
winter-wet clouds curled across
the landscape in long, low wisps
and settled in to free me.

by Jason Weaver, 2016

Original painting, Trees and Fog (2016) by Jason Weaver, (acrylic on canvas, 70×100 cm).  Dedicated to my dear friend Magaly Haasper. You showed me how to believe in myself, never shall I forget!

The Light of Night

A Luz de Noite - Jason Weaver

Original painting by Jason Weaver, 2016

To gaze upon the starry sky
is to contemplate the
very sense of what
it means to be,
from the minute
to the immense.

But by the light of night,
you will find no solid
evidence, only
so many little points
to ponder, scattered
and dense.

But leave no doubt
that the truth of what is
(the meaning of life, some say)
is infinitely more
more grand and fine than
anything your mind could
ever possibly imagine.

And that I find
fully and truly
sublime.

By Jason Weaver, 2016

Original painting A Luz de Noite (2016) by Jason Weaver, 70x100cm, arcylic on canvas

 

Reality Creation: Meditation, Painting and Life

Original Painting by Jason Weaver 2016

Thoughts
entwine in my mind as though
it was not my mind at all, but rather
the open air, an
ethereal canvas where
they
dart and zip like bees
in……and out
or swing and dip like
leaves blown in on a summer wind,
they
crawl and burrow deep within
the dampened earth and birth
memories
crusted in sap and mud,
love and blood – thoughts
on strings that stitch and sew
every stick and stone herein,
they
lace me to this place
raw burnt bronzed
we are
a confluences of ceaseless streams,
endeavors that begin
and end ever again
turbidity placidity chaos
calm, I must
breathe
in……and out
I must
wake adapt become
the thread that seams
this dream within a dream, I must
BALANCE between
the known and the unknownable,
the fluid and the indestructible,
the part and the whole,
weaving
a tapestry
of reality

by Jason Weaver, 2016

Original Painting, Riacho na Serra (Parnaso, RJ, Brasil) (2015-2016) Acrylic on Canvas (70×100 cm)

In Black and White

LoveMoreStudio11-22-2015

There is no solid ground
beneath my feet;
the plates shift
beneath me
and so I step to the next
nary a moment to rest.

Exhausted I am –or
am I?

Perhaps this feeling
is merely a relic of the old skin,
skin that I must slough off;
old consciousness, ego
pulling at me, weighing on me
like lead.

All of the old ways
of seeing this world
are so dichotymous,
so ‘this’ or ‘that’ so bold in
‘black’ or ‘white’ so that
I cannot help but see
how polarized, how
disparate our thinking
has been, how we’ve
chosen our sides and
made our opinions of
who and what was
wrong or right.

But all of these old ways
of being in this world —
they are no longer
beneficial, no longer
useful, no longer
relevant to us at all, and so
they must be
no longer.

I know nothing;
but the earth, it shifts
beneath my feet
and it is plain to see
that so too must I.

by Jason Weaver, 2015