WANDERING MONKS AND ORPHAN PILGRIMS
Poetry for the Inner Journey, Book I
Joshua FireDancer Bond
Inner Journey Books (2016, 2018)
ISBN: 978-l-9l0534-21- 2 paperback
ISBN-10: 978-l-9l0534-22-9 e-book
Never before has the preface of a book engaged such a deep excitement within me to read it. I love historical fiction above all other literary genres, so this was an absolute delight to read prefacing my next literary choice: Poetry. While many prefaces are “blah blah about me blah” this was a delightfully unexpected detour into a history that may be more nonfiction than we are aware. I do know the Universe births ideas from truth – so who is to say this is not one: “Once upon a time the earth was filled with wandering monks and orphan pilgrims.” [. . .] “Some of them have made it all the way into the 21st century, and a selection of the early arrivals are contained in this book.”[. . .].
It whets the appetite for any true traveler and literary ( particularly poetry ) lover just enough to be excited enough to fully engage the entree.
You will not be disappointed in the course. WANDERING MONKS AND ORPHAN PILGRIMS
is divided into Five Parts denoting a common earthly beginning evolving into a cosmic connection. The opening poem accentuates the spiritual aspect of the book in a simple, 11 line poem composed mostly of couplets, ending with a question: “how will they ever be awakened’?
I found this both a very effective bridge between the preface and a perfect lead-in to Part I: Something in Common
. The poem transported the reader from the historical aspect to inclusion which begs them the question. I hoped by entering Part I I would begin to discover the answer; I was not mistaken nor disappointed.
Here in Part I we will personally discover Something in Common through at least one of the 11 offered poems. Beyond the Human Face was a remarkable write: [. . . ]
“and where is One but simple silence, higher note to sound
the unity of all this is, the circle that’s profound
for all exemplars of the The Way will lead from far behind
and gather up the last and lost to homeward in the mind”
[. . .]
I found the above stanza from the aforementioned poem such a profound one filled with astute wisdom: the reference to silence leading to One(ness of self and others); sound denoting frequency and vibration; the circle which is a symbol of infinite cycle; exemplars of ‘The Way’ leading from behind, gathering up the least of these wayward in their thoughts. It was a remarkable stanza containing the essence of seeking and hope. Dreamland Dawnings
was also another of my favorites from Part I: [. . .]
“the world of dreams continued on
as deeper truth was masked
and Spirit said “I’ll always wait
until the seeker asks.”
This was very profound to me personally because I associate “Spirit” ( God or Source Energy, etc.) with Love. And I believe Love never forces, but waits for us to return home. Not to say it won’t occasionally nudge with an open door or cross our paths with opportunity and/or a teacher; it does. However, the choice still remains with us as to how we proceed building our future by one single choice at a time. Garden Dream
(a theology in 7 stanzas), nailed it with its final stanza: [. . .]
“but everyone must call its bluff completely
for universal laws are absolute
we will all get there together on our journeys …
it really doesn’t matter which the route.”
How these particular stanzas I’m highlighting align with my own personal philosophy was such an exciting connection for me to discover. Despite our choices, Universal laws are absolute in their equality of balanced scales, and will mete a return which equals no more or less that which was given. In other words, you cannot sow discord and expect peace as a return. Yet, despite what we sow over the course of this, or perhaps other lives, we will eventually arrive at the place from which our soul departed: home; be that route a religious one or atheistic view doesn’t matter. We learn from contrast what we want by experiencing that which we don’t want. Remembering, perhaps throughout this experience of existence from life to life, what we eschewed in a previous one. Thus, knowing innately what not to choose as building blocks for the future. Key of Life
is a brilliant conclusion to Part I: “The Key of Life we threw away
but God did catch it anyway
and gave it to our brother -
suggested next “you want it back …?
then treat him like no other”.
In college my thesis was the search for a common denominator between religions, which, in essence, meant I had to read every holy book in existence I could get my hands on ( at least 13 if I remember correctly ). In some cases, I innately held beliefs I didn’t realize were contained in various doctrines. It was a real eye-opener for me in regards to my own intuition, and was undoubtedly a major catalysts which initiated alignment with the Universe. I will always believe this choice of study led me to where I am today; it definitely altered my perception of religious boundaries, and opened the doors to a liberating spirituality. Considering Dr. Bond has a PhD. in Philosophy and Technology, I would imagine he has studied along some of the same lines and reached the same conclusions, or close to those which I myself have drawn. After all, William Blake once said, “All religions are one,”
and Huston Smith, the well-known philosopher of religions, said, “It is possible to climb life’s mountain from any side, but when the top is reached the trails converge.”
What Key of Life
, such a simple five-line almost limerick-like poem encapsulates is the underlying commonality of almost every religion ( there might be some I am unaware of ) on earth: The Golden Rule - “Do unto others as you would have done unto you.”
We truly are our brother’s keepers at heart, for I believe humanity at its core is good. Thus, Dr. Bond has perfectly summed up Part I, Something in Common
by bringing it literally ( pun intended ) full circle in the common denominator of brotherhood.
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