Shorts – Tuesday 24 April 2012


While I was checking messages this morning, the following came via a post to one of my Google+ threads:

I searched google+ for #Gratitude to see what I would find, your Blog (among other things) came up. Some good thoughts to start my day. Thanks.

His kind words were a good start for my day. I am grateful…

MDA Clinic Day

Perspective: The view of Baltimore
from Neurology (Johns Hopkins)
Yesterday was a cool, cloudy Monday yesterday. Given that it was MDA Clinic Day, we probably didn’t notice. For several years we’ve been living in the MDA’s Baltimore district–working with their staff, attending camp with them, and so forth–but making our twice-a-year clinic visits at Children’s Hospital in Washington, DC. Our pediatrician told us several years ago that we’d be well-served at either location, but he had a particular place in his heart for “Doctor Bob,” the clinic’s head neurologist at Children’s. Doctor Bob has since retired, as has his amazing administrative assistant who shepherded us through the processes. Suddenly, the place felt as foreign as anywhere else–so we tried something new.
There’s a lot to compare and contrast between Johns Hopkins and Children’s clinics, but that’s neither here nor there. In the end, with a little more experience under our belts, a little more sense of what we have as a philosophy and want as a regimen for care, we have a good feeling about the switch. When we were ready to put aside the personal frustrations of where we were and accept that we could change, the MDA crew made it happen effortlessly for us.
I think there’s an Applied Zen lesson in there somewhere…


There’s something some might consider “dark” in studying Zen, particularly if you are prone to finding insights about how concepts such as “ethics” shape our lives. Suddenly, you may find people using others’ understanding of ethics in quite an unethical way. That is, someone wants to accomplish something, and “ethics” is in his toolkit as either a weapon or a shield; or perhaps ethics is something he must dissolve when it is pointed at him. It’s up to you to see the situation as it is, looking past the smoke and mirrors, seeing the true intention.
Welcome to the field of dharma combat
For some, it’s a matter of control and a single-minded pursuit of what they want with anything and everything as fair game. For other’s it’s simply a study of those in the first category, sometimes from the perspective of their victims. If you are flexible within these extremes–pursuing a “middle way”–perhaps you can do well to navigate your circumstances without having others trip you up too often.
Did you forget that we opened with “ethics”?
Sometimes it is better to live holding some ideas as sacred. These ideas shape how you see everything around you, how you experience your life. The Golden Rule, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” has far more reach than you can imagine…
Enough for this morning. I’m grateful for your reading and your comments!

By Joe

Puzzle Wrestler & Mountain Herder. Math & Computer Nerd since the 80s. Longtime linux (current debian, ubuntu, raspian, centos, gentoo), currently fighting feebsd. Over-complicates networks for fun, occasionally secures them for profit. Develops own tools & services (cli, web services, and lately some android). Degrees in Math, Belts in Aikido. Zen, Motorcycle, Ham Radio, Homebrew (Ale, not Radio), Coffee & Tea, some Mandolin & Fiddle, MDA Advocacy (son with Duchenne), …

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *