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There is a young girl who walks along a dirt path. Her hair is barely shoulder lengh, black, and done up in a bun on her head. She smiles and strides down the path with ease although the path is hard and she has no shoes. The girl has walked many paths, and imagined many more in her mind, she knows there are more difficult paths. Indeed, even if this is the most difficult path to walk, she still knows that there is an end. Whether in death or in life the girl trusts that she will find an end to this painful reality. She whistles and carries on her way.

Now look at the girl. She is talking to her boyfriend. How he yells at her. She listens to him and inquires about his problems. The young man accuses her and she accepts blame for all she has done. Nothing is harder than this, it twists her heart up in knots. But she still smiles and talks to her boyfriend who promptly smacks her and walks away. Tears rise into her eyes but she knows the truth. Unity in the universe consoles her and she can breath a sigh of relief because she sees the picture. How wise this young girl is to accept all this anger and pain with nothing more than a tear and a smile.

Look again at this young woman. She is laying in bed and fear rattles her bones. She is looking out over the cliff and breathing in thick air. She watches the Buddist monk and smiles when he lifts the rocks over his head. She watches young Indian men transform the bones of animals to gold and silver. She touches the neck of the dragon and he purrs down at her. She is protected by his ancient spirit. Why does her heart shimmer with such radience? Because she believes in what we have forgotten. With hand, head, and heart she loves the questions that no one answers. Certainly each day is a struggle for her, but she cherishes that struggle and looks forward to the return that she will experience.

Ask this wise young woman, "what is reality?"
She will say, "everything divided and then rejoined."

Ask her, "how do I know?"
She will tell you, "you feel it and your mind agrees."

Ask her, "what is just?"
She will say, "just is a word. Look for the action."

But she will look you in the eye and tell you not to follow her path. Use it as a blue print and build your own. Find reality, hold it in your hand. The only key is love and an accepting mind. Then she will kiss your check and wave goodbye. Wonderful sage!

"God grant me distraction."

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The following comments are for "The Confrontation"
by Darkshine Raven

Hi Darkshine, I was trying to sympathize with this piece, so I wrote something along the same lines.

Wild thoughts.


( Posted by: kimberly bird [Member] On: December 8, 2003 )

really stunning
Hi darkshine. Wow. Good stuff. Magic. Only teensiest tiniest little thing is what's all this about kissing the check? Hmmm. cars and money. Is that all you girls think about? or are you double jointed and twirling a twisty into the tail of the tale.
Realy enjoyed it when you went from the descriptive to the imaginative and blended it well.
See you round like a domino

( Posted by: smithy [Member] On: December 13, 2003 )

Kim, Smithy, and Penelope this is a representation of some of my personal beliefs presented in story form. It's...a strange mode of philosophical writing I'm trying out. I want the girl to appear powerful and flexible simultaniously. Difficult. Anyways, I loosely foloow the principles of Taoism and that's what I'm getting at here.

This girl is not a victim, she chooses to be...flexible and understanding. And she kisses us all on the cheek to share her love with us's like, the kiss a mother gives her child on their first day of school. She's proud for our understanding. We should be too. =D

( Posted by: Darkshine Raven [Member] On: December 13, 2003 )

Dead Letter Office
Amanda, I know what Pen's getting at, and it comes back to your theme throughout the piece.

When I was a young man I tried my best to please my young lady of the moment, no matter how unreasonable and selfish she might be acting, but as I got older, like Pen, I learned better: any relationship to which I am a party has to please ME, too, and if it doesn't, I'm gone.

I know you think your character's acceptance of unfair abuse proves her forbearing, giving nature; after all, you say so:

"How wise this young girl is to accept all this anger and pain with nothing more than a tear and a smile."

But this isn't wisdom. It doesn't make it better. And it certainly isn't Taoism. Taoism says to keep from getting run over, don't play in traffic. It's precisely this image of yourself as long-suffering, forgiving, forbearing and wise, that screws you with a fool. Read the Tao Te Ching. I've been reading it for 39 years, and when it decribes certain ways as foolish, don't forget, it applies to boyfriends too. And there is no glory in being trampled by a fool.

( Posted by: johnlibertus [Member] On: December 14, 2003 )

This is a work in progress and cetainly not anything I would considered finished. It's a form of thought that I am working on and I would rather not be condesended to because you didn't clearly understand what I was getting at. I have read the Tao Te Ching many, many times and trust me I live the lessons. I did say that it was "loosely based" on Taoism, not wholly.

You are correct to say that Taosim encourages people to keep out of trouble but I think that you should understand that it also encourages people to take chances and explore. It doesn't tell you not to feel, it tells you to accept the feelings you have. The feelings all around you. As I said before this is loosely based and underdeveloped on my own ideas and lots of influences from other philosophies. And it has nothing to do with me validating any of my boyfriend's actions...I may be a teenager but I'm hardly that simple. I don't appreciate the insinuation that I am.

Sorry for the brutal response...I guess you just came across as preaching. That and I don't think you really understood me or what I was saying. Anyways...I'm done with my rant.

( Posted by: Darkshine Raven [Member] On: December 14, 2003 )

ah, the spectrum.

"this is a work of fiction, and the beliefs and viewpoints of 'the girl' expressed in this piece of writing are those of 'the girl' and are not necessarily those of darkshine raven herself. any similarities to darkshine raven herself or any other person, alive or dead, is purely coincidental."

hey: from someone who's also rather fresh from the womb... i think we find our own way (what else could we do, really?), often through taking abuse, then later rejecting it... gobbling spirituality, then spitting it out. the pieces get shifted around; new ones appear; the contextual frame looks different every three weeks, sometimes. in my experience, this is the learning curve of early life, and no amount of sagely advice can, or should, push that process.

darkshine, i didn't particularly like this piece, but i'll certainly stand up for your right to design a character who acts and thinks in a way that's bothersome to people. in fact, i encourage you to do more of it. :)

might be interesting to see what came of a longer piece (man, is this my feedback to *everyone* these days?) where you really delved into the subjective experience of the girl. some of the richest writing i've read is the kind of subtle character development that plays around with flaw, and whether flaw is recognized by the character herself. maybe she's really convinced this is the best way to live. this is only one perspective. i think your piece would be enriched if you found a way to open up the narrator's voice, to encompass not just the girl's omnipotent perspective.

i hope this is making sense. let me know if you're lost and i'll explain further in a personal response.

i just read margaret atwood's newest novel, oryx and crake, and she's a genius at this sort of character development. deeply subtle and smart. i recommend checking it out.

( Posted by: ark [Member] On: December 14, 2003 )

darrrrkshine agaaaain

hey, did you ever read my above-comment on this piece/thread of conversation?

just checking.

( Posted by: ark [Member] On: February 27, 2004 )

arrrkkk agaaaain ;)
Hey ark, I did indeed get your comment but there were things going on and I chose not to respond. You should drop me an email and we can go into it in more depth. I was really interested in your idea about writing something longer and would love to hear any other ideas you have. should just email me cause it'd be cool to talk to you! =D

Anyways, thank you for the words, I thought you did a good, diplomatic job. And I was glad to see someone not assuming that I take abuse just because my character does.

As always, take care. =D

( Posted by: Darkshine Raven [Member] On: February 27, 2004 )

just glad you got it, DS

i don't know what more i'd say about the matter, really... especially since i'm seeing you produce much stronger work these days. god... two months ago feels like a lifetime ago.

we'll talk. my time is shit, but we'll talk.

be well, and happy red-penning,


( Posted by: ark [Member] On: February 27, 2004 )

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