Saturday, May 27, 2006

Beginners mind doesn't know what force is;

Beginners mind doesn't know what needs to be chosen;
Beginners mind doesn't know what beauty is;
Beginners mind doesn't know what it is to understand;
Beginners mind doesn't know what certainty is;
Beginners mind doesn't know about making a judgement;
Beginners mind doesn't know about violence;
Beginners mind doesn't know there are opinions;
Beginners mind doesn't know you are there;
Beginners mind doesn't know about suffering;
Beginners mind doesn't know about pride;
Beginners mind doesn't know what illusions are;
Beginners mind doesn't know what's important;
Beginners mind doesn't know what knowing is;

by Gary Merrill

If you wouldn't impale a dog in the mouth, why do it to a fish?

Friday, May 26, 2006


If it were not for our conception of weights and measures,
we would stand
in awe of the firefly as we do before the sun.

~Kahlil Gibran.


Like the wind searching,
lifting feathers round
the sparrow's neck,
lifting leaves in a wave
across the bean field,
I find no place
where I can say,
here my being ends.

By Colin Oliver
(1946 - )

Liberation . . .

is only being rid of the idea that there is anyone who needs liberation.

~Ramesh Balsekar

Experiencing U nion

I said Oh no! Help me! And that Oh no! became
a rope let down in my well. I've climbed out to
stand here in the sun. One moment I was at the
bottom of a dank, fearful narrowness, and the
next, I am not contained by the universe. If every
tip of every hair on me could speak, I still couldn't
say my gratitude. In the middle of these streets
and gardens, I stand and say and say again, and
it's all I say, I wish everyone could know what
I know.

'The Essential Rumi'
Coleman Barks/John Moyne

Thursday, May 25, 2006

What the Living Do

Johnny, the kitchen sink has been clogged for days,
some utensil probably fell down there.
And the Drano won't work but smells dangerous,
and the crusty dishes have piled up
waiting for the plumber I still haven't called.
This is the everyday we spoke of.
It's winter again: the sky's a deep headstrong blue,
and the sunlight pours through
the open living room windows because the heat's on too high in here,
and I can't turn it off.
For weeks now, driving,
or dropping a bag of groceries in the street the bag breaking,
I've been thinking: This is what the living do.
And yesterday, hurrying along those
wobbly bricks in the Cambridge sidewalk,
spilling my coffee down my wrist and sleeve,
I thought it again, and again later, when buying a hairbrush:
This is it.
Parking. Slamming the car door shut in the cold.
What you called that yearning.
What you finally gave up. We want the spring to come and the winter to pass.
We wantwhoever to call or not call,
a letter, a kiss -- we want more and more and then more of it.
But there are moments, walking,
when I catch a glimpse of myself in the window glass,
say, the window of the corner video store,
and I'm gripped by a cherishing so deep
for my own blowing hair, chapped face,
and unbuttoned coat that I'm speechless:

I am living, I remember you.
~ Marie Howe ~

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

"Tibetan Buddhism From the Ground Up"

Imagine yourself as a child lying on your back, gazing up
into a cloudless sky, and blowing soap bubbles through a
plastic ring. As a bubble drifts up into the sky, you watch
it rise, and this brings your attention to the sky. While
you are looking at the bubble, it pops, and you keep
your attention right where the bubble had been. Your
awareness now lies in empty space.

-B. Alan Wallace,

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Nature As A Minded Entity

"There is a great insight which our culture is deliberately
designed to
suppress, distort, and ignore: that Nature is
a minded entity; that Nature
is not simply the random
flight of atoms through electromagnetic fields;
that Nature
is not the empty, despiritualized lumpen matter that we

inherit from modern physics. But it is instead a kind of
intelligence, a kind
of mind."
—Terence McKenna,

I have learned to love you late,

Beauty at once so ancient and so new!
I have learned to love you late!
You were within me,
and I was in the world outside myself.

Everything and Nothing in One Breath

Consciousness is not an object, so you cannot say it is something. And yet it is not nothing. Nothing is void; it has no attributes, no qualities. Consciousness is empty of any thing, and yet there is something endlessly compelling in that emptiness. When you contemplate consciousness, you discover a mysterious sense of knowing that is both knowing nothing and knowing everything at once. Whatever you are becoming cognizant of, its nature seems to be everything—fullness, completeness. The emptiness is full. That's why the emptiness is compelling, because it is full of the knowing of some mysterious everything that is not a thing. It's everything; it's nothing—you can go on forever: everything, nothing, nothing, everything, always meaning the same thing. If you could say everything and nothing in one breath, perhaps you could capture the paradoxical nature of consciousness.

Andrew Cohen


When you have calmed the furies of the mind
Forgotten greed and all ambitions snare:
When you have banished all intruding thought
And scotched the Ego lurking in its lair;
When you have come to nothing and seek nought
But less than nothing - in your earthly quest,
You will be ALL at last - and more than nothing,
For nothing will be more than all the rest.

~Robert Goslin

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Hokusai says Look carefully.

He says pay attention, notice
He says keep looking, stay curious.
He says there is no end to seeing.

He says Look Forward to getting old.
He says keep changing,
you just get more who you really are.

He says get stuck, accept it, repeat yourself
as long as it's interesting.

He says keep doing what you love.

He says keep praying.

He says every one of us is a child,
every one of us is ancient,
every one of us has a body.

He says every one of us is frightened.
He says every one of us has to find a way
to live with fear.

He says everything is alive -
shells, buildings, people, fish,
mountains, trees. Wood is alive.
Water is alive.

Everything has its own life.

Everything lives inside us.

He says live with the world inside you.

He says it doesn't matter if you draw,
or write books. It doesn't matter
if you saw wood, or catch fish.

It doesn't matter if you sit at home
and stare at the ants on your verandah
or the shadows of the trees
and grasses in your garden.
It matters that you care.

It matters that you feel.

It matters that you notice.

It matters that life lives through you.

Contentment is life living through you.
Joy is life living through you.
Satisfaction and strength
are life living through you.
Peace is life living through you.

He says don't be afraid.
Don't be afraid.

Look, feel, let life take you by the hand.

Let life live through you.

Hokusai Says
by Roger Keyes

A Gradual Awakening

There is little you can do about what arises in the mind.

What arises is karmically conditioned by what has gone
before. There is nothing that need be done about any
object as it arises. There is only something we can do
about how we respond to that object. How we respond
creates the next moment, and conditions how that same
object will be related to in the future.

The sooner we notice the arising of moods and thoughts
and realize they are Just karmic fruits of the past, the
easier they can be let go. There's no need to reinforce
these states by reaction, to become as Trungpa Rinpoche
says, "negative in the negative." When negative, unwhole-
some states arise, don't hit at them with a hammer. Don't
get angry at yourself for being angry which only creates
more karma. We can learn to respond in a skillful manner
that allows compassionate recognition of our conditioning
to pull us out again and again. Then we can begin to under-
stand why we will find ourselves angry, jealous, selfish,
greedy so many more times. And how many more times we
are going to find ourselves without such unwholesome
tendencies, and think "Ah, I'm done with them at last."
And how that greed for being "done with them at last"
will create the next state of mind. How letting go of it
all is really the only way.
~Steven Levine

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Birthday Wish

Those who desire to understand,
who are looking to find that which is
without beginning and end,
will walk together with greater intensity
will be a danger to everything which is
to unrealities, to shadows.
They will concentrate,
they will become the flame,
because they understand.

~Jiddhu Krishnamurti

The Three Greats For A Birth Anniversary

By being constantly and effortlessly aware of life without
thinking about it, this awareness soon continues to function
even when there are thoughts floating through the mind
just as clouds floating through the sky leave no change in
the space.

No action or process, the basis of which is duration, could
possibly bring about a suspension in its own temporal
functioning. Awakening is an instantaneous break in the
succession of duration which can only come about through
an intuitive apprehension of immediate timelessness.

~Ramesh S. Balsekar

Secret of secrets

If you could get rid
of yourself just once,
The secret of secrets
Would open to you.
The face of the unknown,
Hidden beyond the universe
Would appear on the
Mirror of your perception.

I Am This

"Were I very rich, what difference would it make? I am what I am.
What else can I be? I am neither rich nor poor,
I am myself."
~Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Those who desire to understand,

who are looking to find that which is eternal,
without beginning and end,
will walk together with greater intensity
will be a danger to everything which is unessential,
to unrealities, to shadows.
They will concentrate,
they will become the flame,
because they understand.

~Jiddhu Krishnamurti

Thursday, May 11, 2006

"Mind is interested in what happens, while awareness
is interested in
the mind itself. The child is after the
toy, but the mother watches
the child, not the toy."
Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Adi Atman #9 you you

Adi Atman,

I am a fool

I place a picture

before me

and say

-- you you

hosanna hari hari bol!

daybreak and I whisper

to the sun
-- you

full moon night

and I cry out

-- you

summer downpour

the thunder crash

shouts for me

-- YOU


drunk from too much


I sputter

-- you you you

shambo shankara!

I am a grasping fool

I say -- you --

and you are gone

when I remember to shut up

then you are here

and I am gone

~Ivan M. Granger

How Would You Live Then?

What if a hundred rose-breasted grosbeaks
blew in circles around your head? What if
the mockingbird came into the house with you and
became your advisor? What if
the bees filled your walls with honey and all
you needed to do was ask them and they would fill
the bowl? What if the brook slid downhill just
past your bedroom window so you could listen
to its slow prayers as you fell asleep? What if
the stars began to shout their names, or to run
this way and that way above the clouds? What if
you painted a picture of a tree, and the leaves
began to rustle, and a bird cheerful sang
from its painted branches? What if you suddenly saw
that the silver of water was brighter than the silver
of money? What if you finally saw
that the sunflowers, turning toward the sun all day
and every day -- who knows how, but they do it -- were
more precious, more meaningful than gold?
~ Mary Oliver ~

Monday, May 08, 2006

A Cosmic Orientation

When enlightenment is seen in an evolutionary context, the challenge for the individual is tremendous. You recognize that your own liberation is no longer the goal of the spiritual path, but merely the starting point from which you must boldly endeavor to take responsibility for the evolution of consciousness itself.

It is truly an awe-inspiring task, but I believe it is possible for anyone who is deadly serious to do this. The willingness is all it takes, but it must be nothing less than a heroic willingness—a willingness that is unconditional. You have to realize the dramatic scale at which this process is operating. When you awaken to the fact that the spiritual impulse is moving at a species level, you will begin to see your own choices, including your relationship to your own mind and emotions, to time, and ultimately to life itself, on a literally cosmic scale. You will see your own presence here on earth in relationship to the evolution of the cosmos itself, at the level of consciousness.

If your orientation is not that big, you are always going to fall short. Our habitual ways of thinking are just too small-minded, petty, and painfully personal, and that is why we keep slipping back into an unenlightened perspective and wondering why we aren't making any progress. It's simply because of where our attention is. So in order for authentic, profound, and meaningful transformation to occur, we have to make the effort to see all of our choices in light of this literally cosmic context. And that is evolution. That's what our next step is: awakening to a cosmic orientation in relationship to being a human being, here on earth, right now.

Andrew Cohen

Allow Life to Live

"False imagination teaches that such things as light and shade, long and short, black and white are different and are to be discriminated; but they are not independent of each other; they are only different aspects of the same thing, they are terms of relation, not of reality. Conditions of existence are not of a mutually exclusive character; in essence things are not two but one. Even Nirvana and Samsara's world of life and death are aspects of the same thing, for there is no Nirvana except where is Samsara, and no Samsara except where is Nirvana. All duality is falsely imagined." (from: Lankavatara Sutra ~ trans D.T. Suzuki) In terms of practical psychology this means that there is no actual distinction between our ordinary, everyday experience and the experience of Nirvana or spiritual freedom. But for some people this experience is binding and for others liberating, and the problem is to achieve what the Lankavatara calls that "turning about in the deepest seat of consciousness" which effects the transformation. For what is our ordinary, everyday experience? It is not just our awareness of external circumstances or even such ordinary activities as walking, eating, sleeping, breathing, and speaking; it includes also our thinking and feeling: our ideas, moods, desires, passions, and fears. In its most concrete form ordinary, everyday experience is just how you feel at this moment. In a certain sense Buddhism is very much a philosophy and a psychology of the moment, for if we are asked what life is, and if our answer is to be a practical demonstration and not a theory, we can do no better than point to the moment Now! It is in the moment that we find reality and freedom, for acceptance of life is acceptance of the present moment now and at all times. Acceptance of the moment is allowing the moment to live, which, indeed, is another way of saying that it is to allow life to live, to be what it is now (yathabhutam). Thus to allow this moment of experience and all that it contains freedom to be as it is, to come in its own time and to go in its own time, this is to allow the moment, which is what we are now, to set us free; it is to realize that life, as expressed in the moment, has always been setting us free from the very beginning, whereas we have chosen to ignore it and tried to achieve that freedom by ourselves. ~ from: The Meaning of Happiness ~ Alan W. Watts


"The point of practice is to
stop being the person who
has problems, and instead
to abide fully in the nature
of mind (Rigpa or Awareness)
where there are neither
problems nor a separate
individual to struggle
with them."

Bonpo Dzogchen Master Tenzin Wangyal
"Healing With Form, Energy and Light."
Edited by Mark Dahlby. Ithaca: Snow
Lion Publications, 2002.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

"Be empty of all mental content,

of all imagination and effort, and
the very absence of obstacles will
cause reality to rush in."

Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj


"How does one seek union with God?" "The harder you seek, the more distance you create between Him and you." "So what does one do about the distance?" "Understand that it isn't there." "Does that mean that God and I are one?" "Not one. Not two." "How is that possible?" "The sun and its light, the ocean and the wave, the singer and his song ... not one. Not two." ~ Anthony de Mello, SJ

"Q: Is there a simple way to undo the ego? "

"A: Yes. By commitment to inner honesty, it will
become apparent
that the underpinning of the ego's
responses is the pleasure that is
derived from them.
There is an inner satisfaction that is the payoff

of self-pity, anger, rage, hate, pride, guilt, fear, etc.
This inner
pleasure, as morbid as it may sound,
energizes and propagates all
these emotions. To
undo their influence, it is merely necessary to
willing to forego and surrender these questionable,
inner secret
pleasures to God and look only to God
for joy, pleasure, and

"Although the mind will at first deny that it gets
secret pleasure
from suffering, it will reveal upon
rigorous self-examination that
the reason it clings
to its content is for the 'juice' it gets out
of its
positionalities. With even a little self-honesty, this
is a
rather easy fact to discover.

"Everyone gets a secret pleasure from resentments,
from being the
martyr or the victim, and from feeling
misunderstood, unappreciated,
etc. Society and the
law even reinforce these benefits with legal
monetary rewards so that one can be compensated
for 'having
their feelings hurt', for being 'slighted'
on the job, for
enduring 'stress', for 'feeling
uncomfortable', etc.

"When the payoff is no longer valued, these feelings
disappear. They
persist only so long as they serve a
purpose. When this 'ego juice'
is abandoned, it is
replaced with inner peace.

"One will also notice that there is a secret vanity
associated with
this ego game. It is as if the ego
is reinforced by proclaiming how
much it suffers and
how it is such a pitiful victim of injustice and
Actually, the ego secretly celebrates travail through

this secret self-dramatization and its personal and
social payoffs.
The ego feeds itself and becomes
self-propagating to its inner

"To undo the ego, one must be willing to abandon
this payoff game,
with its grandstanding of emotions
and repetitive rehashing of data
and stories to justify
its positions. One will note that the ego
milks every
wrong and that it has no greater pleasure than to

indulge in 'righteous indignation.' It just 'loves' that
positionality which has such a great payoff.

"A secondary gain to the ego from taking the position
of the injured
party is that it now has justification for
any actions, no matter
how extreme. The ego is sly.
It thrives on pain and suffering and
all negative emotions.
However, one consequence it pays for all this
nonintegrous secret gain is an overall sense of guilt, shame,

and low self-esteem.

"Note the tenacity with which people routinely refuse
to take
positive action. They 'stubbornly' resist all
efforts to help them,
even though such help is free
of charge and widely available. The
most common
defense is lame excuses. When the problem is severe,

that resistance focuses the family or society to intervene
with 'tough love' confrontations.

"The ego's addiction and survival are based on the secret
of negativity, which cannot be abandoned until
it is first
recognized, identified, and owned without shame
or guilt. One has to
see that that is just how the ego--which
everyone inherits--
operates, and recognize that it is not
really personal at all.

"Q: Why would such motivations become so tenacious?

"A: It is because it is a distorted substitute for real love
and a
substitute for God. When viewed for what it really
is, this self-
reward system is actually a narcissistic,
circular self-lovingness;
however, it is nonintegrous
because it precludes taking the
responsibility of admitting
the authorship. Even though the ego is
not 'me', it
nevertheless belongs to one.

"This ego game, as played out in society, depends
on an arbitrary,
movable dividing line that separates
all relationships into
perpetrator and victim. Actually,
this game originates on the
playground of childhood
but becomes current by popularization and
amplification, along with the desire for financial gain.

"Q: The examples make the point clear.

"A: They are purposely detailed simply to reveal the
mechanism that
is self-defeating in the end. Although
the ego gets a temporary
inflation, it loses integrity
and therefore power. It is playing the
game from
weakness. The confrontational 'look what you did to me'

game is supposed to reestablish self-esteem but fails
to do so for
it is subverted by the 'get even' motive.
From a higher perspective,
the whole game is merely
a 'So what?'

"Q: Why are these self-defeating behaviors so persistent?

"A: The ego responds with anger if its secret sources of
feeding are exposed. It can even react with rage
or homicidal fury
toward any threat to its dominion.
It has thrived on a secret
substitute for God and survived
by short-circuiting love. The ego is
therefore unwilling to
give up its surreptitious feeding on itself,
as forlorn as
that may sound. Although the ego outwardly protests

suffering, inwardly, it gladly welcomes it.

"Q: This is the sacrifice that one must make in order to
realize the

"A: To the ego, abandoning the self-reward dynamism
is looked upon
as a loss. The ego does not trust God
and thereby thinks it has only
itself to turn to for
sustenance, survival and pleasure. The ego has
in its own mechanisms and not in God. It should not
be faulted
for this error because it has no experiential
basis for comparison.
Its only way out is by faith that
there is a better way. It hears a
spiritual truth and
begins to search for it when the mind becomes

disillusioned with its own fallacies and failure to achieve
happiness. It finally realizes that the grim satisfaction
squeezes out of pain is a poor substitute for joy.

"Q: Then occurs what is called the ripeness for spiritual

"A: In the due course of life's events, this becomes the
point. Even though it may take many lifetimes,
this represents both
the 'hitting bottom' of despair and
defeat, and the inner light that
leads one out of
hopelessness. Once that point is reached, the ego's
are numbered.

"Q: What sacrifice is required?

"A: The major step is the realization that there is a
source of joy
and happiness which is outside and beyond
the ego. Then arise
curiosity and an interest in how to
reach spiritual goals. Belief
arises which is then bolstered
by faith and eventually by
experience. Next follows the
acquisition of instruction,
information, and the practice
of what has been learned. By
invitation, the spiritual
energy increases, followed by dedication
and the
willingness to surrender all obstacles. Even the decision
turn one's life over to God brings joy and gives life a
whole new
meaning. It becomes uplifting, and the greater
context gives life
more significance and reward. One
eventually becomes unwilling to
support negativity,
within or without. This is not because it is
wrong but
merely futile.

"Although the journey to God begins with failure and
doubt, it
progresses into certainty.

"The way is really quite simple."

This text was quoted from . . .

"I: Reality and Subjectivity"
by Dr. David Hawkins
(p. 310)
cited on

Saturday, May 06, 2006

From "The Smiling Forehead"

People pursue spirituality with their brain: that is where they are mistaken. Spirituality is attained through the heart. What do I mean by the heart? Is it the nervous center in the midst of the breast, the small piece of flesh that doctors call the heart? No, the definition of the heart is that it is the depth of the mind, the mind being the surface of the heart. That in us which feels is the heart, that which thinks is the mind. It is the same thing which thinks and feels, but the direction is different: feeling comes from the depth, thought from the surface. When thought is not linked with feeling it is just like a plant rising up from the earth, the root of which has not gone deep. A thought without feeling is a powerless thought; it is just like a plant without a deep root. A tree the root of which has gone deep into the earth is stronger, more reliable, and so the thought deeply rooted in the heart has greater power.

Bowl of Saki, by Hazrat Inayat Khan
Commentary by Pir-o-Murshid Inayat Khan

More Here . . .

The Purposeless Life

That this entire phenomenal show of the universe has no purpose indicates the obvious futility of seeking a goal in life. No sooner is a goal conceived than spontaneity is at once destroyed and the self conscious ego takes over in destructive competition against everything that comes, thus missing all that is worthwhile in life. It is, indeed, the "purposeful" life which entirely misses out on the purpose of life! The true purposeless vision misses nothing and enjoys everything without inhibition.
Ramesh S. Balsekar

Thursday, May 04, 2006


Have you eaten?
Then wash your bowl.


From ....... A monk approached Joshu and said, "I have just entered the monastery. Please teach me." Joshu asked, "Have you eaten your rice porridge? The monk replied, "I have eaten." "Then you had better wash your bowl," Joshu said. At that moment the monk was enlightened. -The Gateless Barrier)

These roses under my window

make no reference to former roses or to
better ones; they are for what they are;
they exist with God to-day. There is no
time to them. There is simply the rose;
it is perfect in every moment of its existence.
Before a leaf-bud has burst, its whole
life acts; in the full-blown flower there
is no more; in the leafless root there is no
less. Its nature is satisfied, and it satisfies
nature, in all moments alike. But man
postpones or remembers; he does not live
in the present, but with reverted eye laments
the past, or, heedless of the riches that
surround him, stands on tiptoe to foresee
the future. He cannot be happy and strong
until he too lives with nature in the present,
above time.


Autobiography in Five Chapters

Chapter I

I walk down the street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I fall in.

I am lost...
I am helpless.

It isn't my fault.

It takes forever to find a way out.

Chapter II

I walk down the same street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I pretend I don't see it.

I fall in again.

I can't believe I'm in the same place, but it isn't my fault.

It still takes a long time to get out.

Chapter III

I walk down the same street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I see it is there.

I still fall's a habit.

My eyes are open.
I know where I am.

It is my fault.

I get out immediately.

Chapter IV

I walk down the same street.

There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.

I walk around it.

Chapter V

I walk down another street.

By Portia Nelson

The god of dirt

came up to me many times and said
so many wise and delectable things, I lay
on the grass listening
to his dog voice,
crow voice,
frog voice; now,
he said, and now,
and never once mentioned forever
~ Mary Oliver ~

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

When effort is needed,

effort will appear.
When effortlessness becomes
essential,it will assert itself.
You need not push life about.
Just flow with it and give
yourself completely to the task
of the present moment, which
is the dying now to the now.
For living is dying.
Without death life cannot be.

~ Nisargadatta Maharaj