Thursday, April 18, 2024

Tai Chi Chuan at the Beach


I travel to a State Park each month on the Oregon or Washington Pacific Coast.  I camp in a Yurt for four days each month. 

I practice Taijiquan, Qigong, Balance Exercises, and Walking at the State Park and beaches.

You are welcome to join me to discuss Taijiquan, Qigong, Taoism, Yoga, Buddhism, poetry, philosophy, and natural history.  It would be enjoyable to sit around a morning or evening fireplace, chat, sip refreshments, and ponder the good life.  

We could practice and share some internal arts movements and practices.

Here is my current Yurt Camping Schedule:

Dosewallips State Park, Hood Canal, Brinnon, Washington
May 6, 7, 8, 9 2024

Grayland Beach State Park, Grayland, Westport, Washington
June 3, 4, 5 ,6  2024

Harris Beach State Park, Brookings, Oregon
ober 7, 8, 9, 10  2024

Here is a guide to my practices, outlook, research, and experience.

Send me an email if you are interested in joining me.  

For those not interested in camping, there are some motels and restaurants near the Parks.

There will be no charges, fees, or workshop costs.

Hang Out, Meetup, Share, Socialize, Beachcombing, Practice

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Dao De Jing, Laozi, Chapter 59

Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu
Chapter 59

"To govern men and to serve heaven nothing is better than to have a reserve.
The Master indeed has a reserve; it is called brilliant foresight.
Brilliant foresight is called the increasing abundance of Teh.
If you have an ever-increasing abundance of Teh , then your Inner Life is unconquerable.
If you Inner Life in unconquerable, then its limits cannot be known.
If you cannot gauge the limits of your Inner Life, then you shall surely possess the kingdom.
If you possess the Mother of the kingdom,
You shall endure forever.
This is to be deep rooted and to have a firm foundation.
The possessor of Tao shall have enduring life and infinite vision."
-  Translated by Isabella Mears, 1916, Chapter 59  

"To rule men and serve heaven, there is nothing like thrift.
Only through thrift can one be prepared;
Being prepared means having a heavy store of integrity;
With a heavy store of integrity, he can overcome everything.
Able to overcome everything, no one knows his limits;
If no one knows his limits, he can have the kingdom;
Having the mother of the kingdom, he can long endure.
This is called "sinking roots firm and deep, the Way of long life and lasting vision.""
-  Translated by Victor Mair, Chapter 59  

"To lead men and serve heaven, weigh the worth
Of the one source:
Use the single force
Which doubles the strength of the strong
By enabling man to go right, disabling him to go wrong,
Be so charged with the nature of life that you give your people birth,
That you mother your land, are the fit
And ever-iving root of it:
The seeing root, whose eye is infinite."
-  Translated by Witter Bynner, 1944, Chapter 59

治人事天, 莫若嗇. 
夫唯嗇, 是謂早服.
重積德, 則無不克.
無不克, 則莫知其極.
莫知其極, 可以有國.
有國之母, 可以長久.
是謂深根固柢, 長生久視之道. 
-  Chinese characters, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 59   

zhi ren shi tian, mo ruo se.
fu wei se, shi wei zao fu.
zao fu wei zhi zhong ji de. 
zhong ji de, ze wu bu ke. 
wu bu ke, ze mo zhi qi ji.
mo zhi qi ji, ke yi you guo.
you guo zhi mu, ke yi chang jiu.
shi wei shen gen gu di, chang sheng jiu shi zhi dao.
-  Hanyu Pinyin Romanization, Daodejing, Chapter 59  


 "There is nothing better than moderation
 for teaching people or serving Heaven.
 Those who use moderation
 are already on the path to the Tao.
  Those who follow the Tao early
 will have an abundance of virtue.
 When there is an abundance of virtue,
 there is nothing that can not be done.
 Where there is limitless ability,
 then the kingdom is withing your grasp.
 When you know the Mother of the kingdom,
 then you will be long enduring.
  This is spoken of as the deep root and the firm trunk,
 the Way to a long life and great spiritual vision."
 -  Translated by J. H. McDonald, 1996, Chapter 59 

"Para gobernar al pueblo en armonía con el Universo,
lo mejor es la moderación.
La moderación implica renunciar a intereses personales.
Quien consigue pronto la moderación,
acumula mucha virtud.
Con la virtud acumulada,
vencerá en todo.
Venciendo en todo,
llegará a límites insospechados.
Al no guiarse por límites se puede ser un gran guía.
Un gran guía puede poseer la Madre del reino, y
puede ser perdurable en ello.
El Tao implica adquirir raíces profundas y bases firmes.
Esto conlleva a una larga vida con la visión de la Mutación Perpetua."
-  Translation from Wikisource, 2013, Tao Te Ching, Capítulo 59

"In governing the country and serving Heaven
There is nothing like frugality.
Only by being frugal can you recover quickly.
When you recover quickly you accumulate virtue.
Having accumulated virtue,
There is nothing you can't overcome.
When there is nothing you can't overcome
Who knows the limits of your capabilities?
These limits being unfathomable
You can possess the country.
The Mother who possesses the country can be long-living.
This is called "planting the roots deeply and firmly.""
-  Translated by Charles Muller, Chapter 59 


Chapter and Thematic Index (Concordance) to the Tao Te Ching

Taoism: A Selected Reading List 

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Yurt Camping in the Coastal Pacific Northwest

 Yurt Campsites on the Pacific Northwest Coast

Pacific Beach State Park, Pacific Beach, Washington
Bay View State Park, Padilla Bay, Mt. Vernon, Washington
Dosewallips State Park, Hood Canal, Brinnon, Washington
Twin Harbors State Park, Westport, Washington
Grayland Beach State Park, Grayland, Washington
Bay Center KOA, Bay Center, Washington
Cape Disappointment State Park, Ilwaco, Washington

Fort Stevens State Park, Astoria, Oregon
Nehalem Bay State Park, Manzanita, Oregon
Cape Lookout State Park, Netarts Bay, Tillamook, Oregon
Beverly Beach State Park, Depot Bay, Oregon
South Beach State Park, Newport, Oregon
William M. Tugman State Park, Eel Lake, Florence, Oregon
Sunset Bay State Park, Charleston/Coos Bay, Oregon
Bullards Beach State Park, Bandon, Oregon
Harris Beach State Park, Brookings, Oregon

Parks in Oregon with Yurts or Cabins

Each month, I reserve a Yurt Campsite on the Pacific Coast six months in advance.
I choose between one of the Yurt locations listed above.  I reserve the Yurt for three nights (Monday to Wednesday.  This gives me four days at the beach.

Here is a collection of webpages that provide detailed information on my Yurt Camping travels from 2022:

Four Days in Grayland  Travel directions, city information, camping tips, yurt camping considerations, destinations, activities, crafts, seasonal info, natural history, good reads, bibliography, observations, poetry, Native Americans ...

Yurt Camping on the Pacific Northwest Coast

Monday, April 15, 2024

Resuming Blog Publishing

 I have been dealing with numerous health issues the last few months: COVID, Atrial Fib and Flutter, high blood sugar, fatigue, and mild depression.  These conditions have slowed my progress on writing since January 1st.

My Health Regime after April 13th Includes:
- A Low Carbohydrate Diet (under 90 carbs each day)
- Walking Over 4,000 Steps a Day
- No Smoking or Drinking 
- Cardio Conversion 4/12
- Changed Medication
- Use Insulin if Blood Sugar over 200
- Taijiquan Daily for 40 Minutes
- Plenty of Drinking Water Each Day

Working Now on Various Projects:

At the Edges of the West: Highway 101

Yurt Camping (Pacific Northwest Coast) Preparations

Sunday, March 17, 2024

Happy 76th Birthday for Blanche Karen Eubanks Garofalo

Happy 76th Birthday, Karen!!  

We have been married for 57 years and have celebrated your birthday on St. Patrick's Day many times for much fun and celebration.  Today, we will do the same.  

Best wishes for continued good health and happiness.

I love you, and so do many others.  

Wednesday, March 13, 2024

Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu, Chapter 58

Daodejing, Laozi
Chapter 58

"When the ruler looks repressed the people will be happy and satisfied;
When the rule looks lively and self-assured the people will be carping and discontented.
“It is upon bad fortune that good fortune leans, upon good fortune that bad fortune rests.”
But though few know it, there is a bourn where there is neither right nor wrong;
In a realm where every straight is doubled by a crooked,
And every good by an ill, surely mankind has gone long enough astray?
Therefore the Sage
Squares without cutting,
Shapes the corners without lopping,
Straightens without stretching,
Gives forth light without shining."  
-  Translated by Arthur Waley, 1934, Chapter 58   

"When the government is unobtrusive, the people will be simple and honest.
When the government is dictatorial, the people will be seized with panic.
Fortune depends on misfortune.
Misfortune is hidden in fortune.
He who knows how to stay within the limits will not have misfortune.
Correctness will lead to deceit.
Good will lead to evil.
Nothing can remain always the same.
People have been confused by this since ancient times.
That is why the sage
behaves correctly without hurting others,
behaves honestly without damaging others,
behaves straightforwardly without vilifying others,
behaves brightly without dazzling others."
-  Translated by Chao-Hsiu Chen, Chapter 58   

"When the government (cheng) is dull,
Its people are wholesome;
When the government is efficient (ch'a),
Its people are deficient (ch'üeh).
Calamities (huo) are what blessings depend on,
In blessings are latent calamities (huo).
Who knows where is the turning point (chi)?
Because there is no longer the normal (cheng),
The normal reverts and appears as the strange (ch'i),
The good reverts and appears as the uncanny.
Rulers (jen) have lost their way,
For a long stretch of days.
Therefore the sage is square but not cutting (ko),
Sharp but not injurious,
Straight but not overreaching,
Bright (kuang) but not dazzling."
-  Translated by Ellen M. Chen, Chapter 58  

其政悶悶, 其民淳淳.
其政察察, 其民缺缺. 
-  Chinese characters, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 58   

ch'i chêng mên mên, ch'i min shun shun.
ch'i chêng ch'a ch'a, ch'i min ch'üeh ch'üeh.
huo hsi fu chih so yi.
fu hsi huo chih so fu.
shu chih ch'i chi.
ch'i wu chêng. 
chêng fu wei ch'i
shan fu wei yao.
jên chih mi ch'i jih ku chiu.
shih yi shêng jên fang erh pu ko.
lien erh pu k'uei.
chih erh pu ssu.
kuang erh pu yao.
-  Wade-Giles Romanization, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 58

"When the government is blunt and inactive the people will be happy and prosperous;
When the government is discriminative, the people will be dissatisfied and restless.
It is upon misery that happiness rests;
It is under happiness that misery lies.
Who then can know the supremacy (good government)?
Only when the government does no rectifying.
Otherwise the rectitude will again become stratagem,
And good become evil.
Men have been ignorant of this, since long ago.
Therefore the Sage is square but does not cut others;
He is angled but does not chip others;
He is straight but does not stretch others;
His is bright but does not dazzle others."
-  Translated by Ch'u Ta-Kao, 1904, Chapter 58 

"If a government is unobtrusive,
the people become whole.
If a government is repressive,
the people become treacherous.

Good fortune has its roots in disaster,
and disaster lurks with good fortune.
Who knows why these things happen,
or when this cycle will end?
Good things seem to change into bad,
and bad things often turn out for good.
These things have always been hard to comprehend.

Thus the Master makes things change
without interfering.
She is probing yet causes no harm.
Straightforward, yet does not impose her will.
Radiant, and easy on the eye."
-  Translated by J. H. McDonald, 1996, Chapter 58 

"Cuando el gobierno es discreto,
el pueblo es diligente.
Cuando el gobierno es vigilante,
el pueblo es indolente.
La desdicha tiene su origen en la dicha.
La dicha acecha a la desdicha.
Lo supremo es no dar órdenes
¿Pero quien se da cuenta de ello?
Lo correcto se convierte en incorrecto
y el bien se convierte en calamidad.
Pero el hombre no lo entiende,
porque desde hace tiempo es engañado.
Por eso el sabio es recto pero no tajante,
es anguloso pero no hiriente,
es firme pero no insolente,
es iluminado pero no encandila."
-  Translation from Wikisource, 2013, Tao Te Ching, Capítulo 58

"A free and generous government gives the people a chance to develop.
When a government is rigid and exacting the people are cramped and miserable.
Misery is but the shadow of happiness.
Happiness is but the cloak of misery.
When will there be an end to them?
If we dispense with rectitude, distortion will assert itself; and what was good in its way will give place to what is evil.
Verily the people have been under a cloud for a long time.
Therefore the wise man is full of rectitude, but he does not chirp and carve at others.
He is just, but he does not admonish others.
He is upright, but he does not straighten others.
He is enlightened, but he does not offend with his brightness."
-  Translated by Walter Gorn Old, 1904, Chapter 58  

Chapter and Thematic Index (Concordance) to the Tao Te Ching

Taoism: A Selected Reading List

Friday, February 23, 2024

Shoveling Up Some Dharma


The Fireplace Records, Chapter 47

Shoveling Up some Dharma

Caught on the Edges of the West: Highway 101

The Fireplace Records

Four Days in Grayland

Shoveling Up Some Dharma

Mixing up with water a 60 pound bag of Redi-Mix cement, by hand, using a flat metal mixing bin, water hose, a flat-nosed shovel, and shoveling work efforts by me.  We used the mixed concrete slush, "Mud", shovel by shovel full of "Mud" over and and over. The hand shoveled batch of concrete slush, carefully wetted for various building constrution projects, created over and over.

Repeated practice can improve one's skills, reduce workoad, and give to us the real life body-mind experences of working, 
ways of being-in-the-world, when making things, producing things, doing things.

This sort of workday construction shoveling efforts for eight hours of work a day, 
five days a week;
just think about it,
sink your analytical and feeling sharp teeth
into the feeling memories of when mixing concrete.
I never worked that hard.

[The back of my mind
was bounced around and hurt.]

My father bough two acres of a hillside property, with a clear wide view of the San Gabriel Valley, California, in 1957, in Hacienda Heights,  He lived and worked there at "the ranch" for forty years from 1957-1997. In 1997 my dad died at age 82, of complications from congestive heart failure, old age, diabetes, and strokes.  

In the 1960's I would do 8 to 12 hours of construction work at the ranch each week, attend Catholic High School, play high school team sports, and later attend college and work at the City of Commerce Public Library.

The land was in the Hacienda Heights, Puente Hills,
Turnbull Canyon, North Whittier Heights;
and Colima Road - Highway 30 Regions;
From Rolling Springs on High at the junction with the Angeles Crest Highway
south to Huntington Beach low tide,
85 miles, up to down, Snow to Surf, a scenic ride.

I'd take a bus from Hacienda Heights on Colima Road 30,
through the many southern cities,
Orange County Newer,
and ending at the Seashore at Huntington Beach CA.
I had cousins living in the Stanton suburban rectangles.
We lived within 25 miles of the Pacific Ocean at Huntington Beach.

I would walk a lot,
having all-weather awakenings.

Joining our summertime emblems:
kites and flapping canvas tens,
keeping wind and sand at bay;
Less clothing, showing more human flesh
and shape, feeling open in the sun;
Wet with Sea surf, boogie boarding or body surfing,
a cool satisfied wet body-mind,
seventeen and strong
[eighty now and fading on.]

Sitting huddled around a San Clemente State Beach campfire,
on a dark winter night, exploring youtful enjoyments.

Standing on wet piers, looking at the waves rocking below,
up and down, back and forth, steadily to the shore,

On some lost late autumn morning
long ago in the San Clemente Pier  in a parking lot,
people sorting pier fishing gear, bait, food, drink, raingear, chairs ...
The Pacific, always calling, draws the fishermen nearer.

The jetties drew me, the Bays and harbors drew me,
the hard relentless winter strorm seas smashing
into the Bandon Oregon Sea Stacks and rocky cliffs
all drew me, inticiced me, startled me, the rivers drew me;
seeing the tide lines that mark at the shore, 
living with these fluctuations, dying with these fluctuations,
doomed yet divine;
drawn to the Pacific, clinging to the Pacific
a lifeline, a sturdy vine, a factual mind
a poem, just hanging on, on a fisherman's line, sometimes rhymed.
1,000 Collaged Images of the Golden Gate Bridge in my brain.
Rolling in and out, past roadway signs
[Highway 101 at Port Angeles, Aberdeen, Astoria, Newport, Brookings,
Eureka, Redwoods, Santa Paula, San Francisco, San Jose,
Salinas, Santa Barbara, Ventura, San Pedro, San Diego .]

Sitting now on a rocky cliff at Bandon. Below us are massive sea stacks 
splattered with surf spray as huge waves come smashing into rock.
Powerful sights and sounds never forgotten.

Thursday, February 22, 2024

Powers of Scents

"Of all the ingredients we employ in the creation of a garden, scent is probably the most potent and the least understood.  Its effects can be either direct and immediate, drowning our senses in a surge of sugary vapor, or they can be subtle and delayed, slowly wafting into our consciousness, stirring our emotions and coloring our thoughts."
-  Stephen Lacey, Scent in Your Garden, 1991

"Scents bring memories, and many memories bring nostalgic pleasure.  We would be wise to plan for this when we plant a garden."
-  Thalassa Cruso, To Everything There is a Season, 1973  

"The act of smelling something, anything, is remarkably like the act of thinking. Immediately at the moment of perception, you can feel the mind going to work, sending the odor around from place to place, setting off complex repertories through the brain, polling one center after another for signs of recognition, for old memories and old connection. "
-  Lewis Thomas 

The Five Senses

Thursday, February 15, 2024

Dao De Jing, Laozi, Chapter 57

Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu
Chapter 57

"Rule a nation with justice.
Wage war with deception.
Become ruler of the world with peace.
How do I know that this is so?
Because of these.
The more laws and restrictions,
the poorer people become.
The sharper men's weapons,
the more trouble in the land.
The more ingenious and clever men,
the more strange things happen.
The more rules and regulations,
the more thieves and robbers.
Therefore, the sage says: I Wu-Wei,
people will rule themselves.
I enjoy peace and people become honest.
I do nothing special such as tax and war and people become rich.
I have no unjust desires for concubines or conquering. 
People return to the good and simple life."
-  Translated by Tienzen Gong, Chapter 57  

"Govern a state by (i) the normal (cheng);
Conduct warfare as (i) the abnormal (ch'i);
Take the empire when (i) there is no business.
How do I know such should be the case?
By the following:
In an empire with many prohibitions,
People are often poor;
When people have many sharp weapons,
The state is in great darkness (tzu hun);
When persons abound in ingenuity (ch'iao),
Abnormal (ch'i) objects multiply (tzu ch'i);
When laws are abundantly promulgated (tzu chang),
There are many thieves and brigands.
Therefore the sage says:
I do not act (wei),
Hence the people transform by themselves (tzu-hua);
I love tranquillity (ching),
Hence the people are normal by themselves (tzu-cheng);
I have no business,
Hence the people grow rich by themselves;
I have no desire,
Hence the people are like the uncarved wood by themselves (tzu-p'u)."
-  Translated by Ellen M. Chen, Chapter 57  

"Albeit one governs the country by rectitude,
And carries on wars by strategems,
Yet one must rule the empire by meddling with no business.
The empire can always be ruled by meddling with no business.
Otherwise, it can never be done.
How do I know this is so?
By this:
The more restrictions and avoidances are in the empire,
The poorer become the people;
The more sharp implements the people keep,
The more confusions are in the country;
The more arts and crafts men have,
The more are fantastic things produced;
The more laws and regulations are given,
The more robbers and thieves there are.
Therefore the Sage says;
Inasmuch as I betake myself to non-action, the people of themselves become developed.
Inasmuch as I love quietude, the people of themselves become righteous.
Inasmuch as I make no fuss, the people of themselves become wealthy.
Inasmuch as I am free from desire, the people of themselves remain simple."
-  Translated by Ch'u Ta-Kao, 1904, Chapter 57 

以此天下多忌諱, 而民彌貧.
民多利器, 國家滋昏.
人多伎巧, 奇物滋起.
法令滋彰, 盜賊多有. 
-  Chinese characters, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 57  

yi chêng chih kuo.
yi ch'i yung ping.
yi wu shih ch'ü t'ien hsia.
wu ho yi chih ch'i jan tsai.
yi tz'u t'ien hsia to chi hui, erh min mi p'in.
min to li ch'i, kuo chia tzu hun. 
jên to chi ch'iao, ch'i wu tzu ch'i. 
fa ling tzu chang, tao tsê to yu.
ku shêng jên yun.
wo wu wei erh min tzu hua.
wo hao ching erh min tzu chêng. 
wo wu shih erh min tzu fu.
wo wu yü erh min tzu p'u.
-  Wade-Giles Romanization, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 57 

"In government, objectives are clarified.
In warfare, objectives are concealed.
In following the Tao, objectives are discarded.

How do I know that this is so?
By feeling it from within.

With every commandment thrust upon the people,
They become more impoverished and alienated.
As the weapons of the state grow ever more destructive,
The more contagious is the fear that desolates the nation.
The further science spreads its hegemony of the intellect,
The more demonic are the products that roll off the assembly line.
As the precedents of litigation grow, and the statutory codes accumulate,
The politicians and criminals will proliferate and flourish.

The counsel of the Sage is different:
Let your action lack force,
And there will be spontaneous transformation.
Let meditation guide you,
And the natural order will arise.
Abandon power-
Lead only by example and consensus,
And there will be abundance in the land.
Defeat desire, let innocence be your law,
And your nation will return
To its deepest, simple nature."
-  Translated by Brian Donohue, 2005, Chapter 57  

"Let the upright rule the state,
And the crafty the army lead,
But the realm can only be made one' s own
When from active scheming freed.

How do I know this is so?
By facts that are open to all,
As you multiply prohibitive laws
The people into poverty fall.
You increase disorder as well,
When you increase the weapons of war,
And the more and more artful and cunning men grow,
The more and more crafty contrivance they show,
And the more laws and more thieves there are.
Said the sage, I do nothing, and men
Of themselves transformed will be,
I love to keep still, they have uprightness,
I do no scheming, and wealth they possess,
I have no ambition, and plain-mindedness
Will come spontaneously."
-  Translated by Isaac Winter Heysinger, 1903, Chapter 57  

"Se gobierna al Estado con leyes ordinarias.
Se lucha en la guerra con tácticas extraordinarias.
Pero solo con la no-interferencia se ganará el mundo.
¿Cómo lo sé?
Porque he visto esto:
Cuantas más restricciones se imponen y más artificiales
son los tabúes que hay en el mundo,
más se empobrece la gente.
Cuantas más armas y soldados existen,
mas desorden y conflicto hay en el reino.
Cuanto más oportunistas son los hombres,
mas cosas nefastas ocurren.
Cuanta más prominencia se dá a las leyes y regulaciones,
más ladrones y bandidos aparecen.
Por eso el sabio dice:
Yo no causo interferencia,
y así el pueblo por sí mismo progresa.
Yo fomento la quietud,
y así el pueblo por sí mismo prospera.
Yo no emprendo ningún negocio,
y así el pueblo por sí mismo se enriquece.
Yo nada deseo,
y así el pueblo por sí mismo retorna a la sencillez."
-  Translation from Wikisource, 2013, Tao Te Ching, Capítulo 57

"The righteous man may rule the nation.
The strategic man may rule the army.
But the man who refrains from active measures should be the king.
How do I know this?
When the actions of the people are controlled by prohibited laws, the country becomes more and more impoverished.
When the people are allowed the free use of arms, the Government is in danger.
The more crafty and dexterous the people become, the more do artificial things come into use.
And when those cunning arts are publicly esteemed, then do rogues prosper.
Therefore the wise man says:-
I will design nothing: and the people will shape themselves.
I will keep quiet; and the people will find their rest.
I will not assert myself; and the people will come forth.
I will discountenance ambition; and the people will revert to their natural simplicity."
-  Translated by Walter Gorn Old, 1904, Chapter 57  

Chapter and Thematic Index (Concordance) to the Tao Te Ching

Taoism: A Selected Reading List 

Monday, February 12, 2024

Pacific Beach State Park, Washington

 Pacific Beach State Park, Washington

State Park Information



Pacific Beach Beach Towny

Seabrook Beach Town

Ocean Shores Beach Town

Aberdeen, Grays Harbor

Four Days in Grayland

Grays Harbor Bay

Yurt Camping, Pacific Beach, WA, February 12-15, 2024, Mike Garofalo solo camper.  Cancelled due to poor health of Mike Garofalo.  

Mike Garofalo at Wallapa Bay

Yurt at Pacific Beach

Pacific Beach State Park

Pacific Beach State Park

Seabrook Village, WA
South of Pacific Beach

Friday, February 09, 2024

Keeping Your Balance and Avoiding Falls for Older Persons

Keeping Your Balance and Avoiding Falls 
Safety Tips for Around Your House
For Older Persons, Seniors, Elderly:

Avoid clutter. Don't leave things on the floor. Pick up after yourself.
Make sure you have good lighting for both night and day.
Keep furniture and tables to a minimum. Leave room for walking.
Keep areas beside the bed and into a toilet clear and uncluttered.
Use hand bars beside toilet and shower.
Have a strong small ladder for reaching up to higher shelves.
Wear good shoes indoors.
Make sure rugs and runners are secure on the floor.
Watch out if you have steps into your garage or rooms.
Be careful, slow down, be alert!
Use your cane or walker as needed.
Be aware if medicines you take make you feel lightheaded or dizzy.
If sitting for a long time, stand up slowly and carefully.
Move carefully on arthritic or injured limbs.
Use tips and techniques for standing up carefully and safely.
Exercise each day to improve strength, flexibility, and balance.
Make sure all chairs, seats, and tables are in good working order.
Use it, or slowly but surely loose it.
Keep all cabinet drawers or doors pushed and closed properly.
Let others help you or pay for services.
Know you own strengths, limitations, or weaknesses.
If you are obese, it will impair your balance skills. Loose weight!
Do exercises to improve the strength of your legs and hips.
See a physician for serious dizziness.
Practice Tai Chi Chuan to improve your balance skills.
- Michael P. Garofalo, Balance

Aging Well  Information, Bibliography, Quotes, Notes, Links

Wednesday, February 07, 2024

Flowers for February

 "The flowers of late winter and early spring occupy places in our hearts well out of proportion to their size." - Gertrude S. Wister

Right now, in our yard in Vancouver WA, we have two flowering plants: heather and helebores. The Rosemary has few blooms this year.

Tuesday, February 06, 2024

Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu, Chapter 56

Dao De Jing, Laozi
Chapter 56

"Those who know, do not speak.
Those who speak, do not know.
So shut your mouth
Guard your senses
Blunt your sharpness
Untangle your affairs
Soften your glare
Be one with All dust.
This is the mystery of union.
You cannot approach it Yet you cannot escape it.
You cannot benefit it
Yet you cannot harm it.
You cannot bestow any honor on it
Yet you cannot rob it of its dignity.
That is why the whole Universe reveres it."
-  Translated by John Mabry, Chapter 56

"One who understands won't be willing to use words;
One who uses words won't be willing to understand.
Shut off your dissipation.
Seal up your door.
Harmonize with your brightness.
Adapt to the dust in your life.
Blunt your sharpness.
Untangle your disorder.
This is correctly described as the mystery of putting the pieces together.
Therefore, what can't be obtained and held closely also can't be obtained and cast off.
What can't be obtained and used for profit also can't be obtained and used for harm.
What can't be obtained and valued also can't be obtained and cheapened.
Therefore, every action in the world is precious."
-  Translated by Nina Correa, Chapter 56

"One who knows does not speak,
One who speaks does not know.
Stop the apertures,
Close the door;
Blunt the sharp,
Untie the entangled;
Harmonize the bright,
Make identical the dust.
This is called the mystical identity (hsüan t'ung).
Therefore with this person you cannot get intimate (ch'in),
Cannot get distant,
Cannot benefit,
Cannot harm,
Cannot exalt,
Cannot humiliate.
Therefore such person is the exalted of the world."
-  Translated by Ellen M. Chen, Chapter 56 

-  Chinese characters, Tao Te Ching, Chapter 56 

zhi zhe bu yan.
yan zhe bu zhi.
se qi dui.
bi qi men.
cuo qi rui.
jie qi fen.
he qi guang.
tong qi chen.
shi wei xuan tong.
gu bu ke de er qin.
bu ke de er shu.
bu ke de er li.
bu ke de er hai.
bu ke de er gui.
bu ke de er jian.
gu wei tian xia gui.
-  Pinyin Romanization, Daodejing, Chapter 56  

"Blunt all that is sharp;
Cut all that is divisible;
Blur all that which is brilliant;
Mix with all that is humble as dust;
This is called absolute equality.
Therefore it cannot be made intimate;
Nor can it be alienated.
It cannot be benefited;
Nor can it be harmed.
It cannot be exalted;
Nor can it be debased.
Therefore it is the most valuable thing in the world."
-  Translated by Ch'u Ta-Kao, 1904, Chapter 56  

"He who knows, speaks not;
He who speaks, knows not.
He closes the mouth,
He shuts the doors of the senses.
He rounds off angles;
He unravels all difficulties.
he harmonizes Light.
He brings men into Unity.
This is called wonderful Unity.
Favour and disgrace do not touch him,
profit and loss do not affect him,
Honour and shame are alike to him,
Therefore he is held in high esteem by all men."
-  Translated by Isabella Mears, 1916, Chapter 56

"El que sabe no habla.
El que habla no sabe.
Habla solo lo necesario,
Controla tus emociones,
Simplifica los problemas,
Deshazte de la confusión,
Atenúa tu resplandor,
Identifícate con el polvo,
Esta es la Misteriosa Totalidad.
Quien ha alcanzado este estado,
No se preocupa por el amor o el odio,
ni por el auge o el fracaso.
A la Misteriosa Totalidad,
No se le puede atraer;
no se le puede rechazar;
no se le puede beneficiar;
no se le puede perjudicar;
no se le puede honrar;
Por eso, es lo máximo que un hombre podrá alcanzar."
-  Translation from Wikisource, 2013, Tao Te Ching, Capítulo 56

"Those who know do not talk.
 Those who talk do not know.

 Stop talking,
 meditate in silence,
 blunt your sharpness,
 release your worries,
 harmonize your inner light,
 and become one with the dust.
 Doing this is the called the dark and mysterious identity.

 Those who have achieved the mysterious identity can not be approached,
      and they can not be alienated.
 They can not be benefited nor harmed.
 They can not be made noble nor to suffer disgrace.
 This makes them the most noble of all under the heavens."
 -  Translated by John H. McDonald, 1996, Chapter 56  

Chapter and Thematic Index (Concordance) to the Tao Te Ching

Taoism: A Selected Reading List

Monday, February 05, 2024

Waves of Reflections at the Bandon Jetty

The Fireplace Records, Chapter 46

Waves of Reflections at the Bandon Jetty

Caught on the Edges of the West: Highway 101

The Fireplace Records

Four Days in Grayland

By Michael P. Garofalo

When young I climbed mountains;
Now old I walk beaches.
My heart has new limits;
My mind explores inside limits.

I saunter effortlessly;
I struggle to understand The Root.
Reading the Vegetable Root Verses;   (1)
I fell asleep and dreamt I was awake.

I thought three times;
then moved one way.
I took three steps;
then clearly envisioned the next 333 steps.

From confusion emerged distinctions;
Naming points to a way out of chaos.
By words we find new ways to see;
New ways to discover truths or falsity.
Confucius said, Buddha said, Epictetus said,
the Bible said, the Sufi's said, the Yogi's said:;
Maybe they did or did not - it is said;
Kwan Yin did not say, but helped in some way. (2)

The roaring surf, a splashing chorus;
Reflects my inner concerto of words.

Moving with intention and concentration is fire;
Escaping to an excess of quietude is ashes.
Knowing when enough is enough
and too little is too little;
we light a candle in honor of wisdom. 

I could not walk down and up the steep steps to the shore;
my legs too weak and wobbly anymore.
I watched the winter surf crashing on sea stacks;
So I just sat and stared, with my mind quite slack.

Booms of thunder, pouring rain, windy, and cold;
Breakfast at a Bandon cafe, warm, out of the showers.
Reading Lama Sura Das on awakening a Buddha mind;
Thinking of New Year, Jade Rabbits, Spring Festival rhymes;
Thankful for the eggs and hash browns - enjoying this time.

Bullards Beach is not Grayland Beach;   (3)
They are both the same - out of my reach.
When I move the roaring surf calls;
When still the silent marsh recalls.

At the south jetty's edge, a damp delightful altar on a rocky perch:

little statutes, plastic flowers,
a plastic heart,
rocks, shells, angels, cross, kelp,
official warning poster,
all on a washed up log.
The lingering intentions that count;
the smell of wet sand incense
all around and about.  
A light beacon on the jetty rocks.  Hints at the edgy DOT of sacred space/time.  Proceed: Aware and Becoming.  

The two jetties remind me of the
Anjali Mudra, Gassho.

The north jetting is my right hand, the south jetty my left,
The Coquille River is the Qi energy between my Prayer Hands:
flowing Cloud Hands, Namaste Hands, Energized Hands, Promising Hands.

Playing with analogies and Gassho hands; I bow where I stand.
Touching the spiritual memories between my hands; I bow where I stand.
Honored by the good intentions between our hands; I bow where I stand.  

Low tide, high tide - the yin/yang way;
Heart tenses, relaxes - the yang/yin way.
My heart's a flutter, I'm out of breath;
I'm content with life, 
and accept my death.

The sand blows up the dunes and down;
The seasons follow the sun, round and round.
Between Heaven and Earth the seagull stands;
While I play Taijiquan, slogging over dry sand.   (4) 
We both come and go, then are no more; 
Full then Empty are close to Life's Core.

The immense Oceans are undrinkable, and
in some ways unthinkable.  
No fresh water begets death, and 
Water is Life.

Words from the Heart Scripture went unsaid, and
the Bodhi Tree flourished in Life's Garden.   (5)  

Something evolves from Something Else, and
nothing evolves from nothing.

Beings emerge from Beings, and
emptiness disappears into emptiness.

"Nothing" is not a noun-thing, and
"Somethings" are dependent relationships.

Forms are Full, and
Fullness begets Forms.

Somethings created my body-mind, and
my body-mind created somethings.  

The Dao marries Yin-Yang, and
some of their step-children are Black Holes. 

Chaos is not emptiness, and
the Void provides Space for Somethings.

Somethings are transitory, ephemeral, and
They are Not empty illusions or unreal. 

Time is the crux of the matter, and
Somethings come and go, appear and disappear.  

"Nothing" is the absence of Something
we desire, and
not the presence of something.  

Somethings are Appearances, and
Appearances are Somethings.

Is or is not, true or false, real or unreal,
something or nothing, be Careful, and
sometimes choose the Middle Way of Maybe So.

Pointing to Nothing, and 
slogging through a muddy muddle of Mu.

Come Closer, Come Closer, and
Open the Door to Wonderous Beings.

Come Closer, Come Closer, and
Embrace Body-Mind-Spirit.
Cast off emptiness and the void.  

Gate Gate Parasamgate Bodhi Svaha, and
some Lotus plants died in a drought.  Oh No!

Words from the Heart went unsaid, and
the Bodhi Tree flourished in Life's Garden.  (5) 


(1)  Master of the Three Ways.  By Hung Ying-ming.  Translated by William Scott Wilson. 2012.

(2) The Kwan Yin Transmission Book: Healing Guidance from Our Universal Mother. By Alana Fairchild.  Llewellyn, 2019.  

(3) Bullards Beach State Park is close to Bandon, Oregon.  Grayland Beach State Park is near Westport, Washington.  Bandon has many sea stacks, and a small rocky shoreline near the 200 foot high cliffs overlooking the sea.  Westport to Tokeland consists of flat sandy beaches, sand dunes, and shore pines, shrubs, and grasses.  There are no steep rocky cliffs at Grayland Beach.  Totally different coastal terrain types in Grayland and Bandon; except for rolling sand dunes covered in grasses.  

Bullard's Beach State Park is north across the bridge over the Coquille River from Bandon, Oregon.  A large State Park with many sand dunes and ocean beaches with lots of driftwood and items of interest to beachcombers.

Any person can easily drive, bicycle, or walk to the south and north jetties at the conjunction of the Pacific Ocean and the Coquille River. There is an old lighthouse at the north jetty side.  There are many miles, on either side of the river, of rock dykes and dirt packed dykes to control the flooding Coquille River. There are many dramatic sea stacks that are south of the two jetties. 

Further east from the coast at Bandon, on road 42S, east to Coquille city 42 and Myrtle Point city, was extensive flooding in January of 2023.  The entire valley floor farm fields were covered in water for miles on end.  Low lying fog made driving the winding country road a bit dicey.  

(4) Yang Style Tai Chi Chuan by Michael Garofalo, Vancouver, Washington.

(5) The Heart Sutra and The Threefold Lotus Sutra.  Experiences of "emptiness" are often a case of not finding something we desire in the complex world of Somethings.  Something desired seems or is missing.  We want a drink of water and the glass is empty.  Mu,

Poetry by Michael P. Garofalo

Cloud Hands Blog  

Above the Fog 

Four Days in Grayland 

Pulling Onions

Poetry - Bibliography, Links, Resources, Guides  

Cuttings: Haiku and Short Poems 

Text Art, Visual/Pattern Poetry

Uncle Mike's Cellphone Poetry Series

Concrete Poetry  

Meetings with Taoist Master Chang San-Feng   

Shifu Miao Zhang Points the Way  

Full Moon in the Morning Sky   

Northwest Pacific Coast Poems 

Exhibits at the Onion Garden

One Short of a Baker's Dozen

Teaching Haiku Poetry

The Spirit of Gardening

New Poems

Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu

Reviews and Kudos