Today At Meetingbrook

Friday, October 20, 2006

Being alone is sacred gift -- if received as such.

Every day priests minutely examine the Dharma
And endlessly chant complicated sutras.
Before doing that, though, they should learn
How to read the love letters
Sent by the wind and rain,
The snow and moon.

- Ikkyu (1394-1491)

I listen to the words spoken.

‘To you my friends I say: Do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no mere. (Luke 12:5)

Unless word is alive, no sense the creation.

Word alive, life complete.

Human being is where the one we call God shows up as completing consciousness.

Pray the more and less unfolding.
Every day priests minutely examine the Dharma
And endlessly chant complicated sutras.
Before doing that, though, they should learn
How to read the love letters
Sent by the wind and rain,
The snow and moon.

- Ikkyu (1394-1491)

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Seven years ago tonight my sister exhaled. Then, she departed.

Empty yet aware, the original light shines spontaneously; tranquil yet responsive, the great function manifests. A wooden horse neighing in the wind does not walk the steps of the present moment; a clay ox emerging from the sea plows the springtime of the eon of emptiness. Understand? Where a jade man beckons, even greater marvel is on the way back.
- Hung-chih

No, I don't understand. Speak plainly.

Let's put it this way: Suppose a woman sees a straw man in a field. Should she bale? Or does she pick out a jacket for him? See! You think yourself so smart.

A shadow crosses everything in our sight.

Lord, what is man, that you should take notice of him?
The son of man, that you should give him respect?
For man is as nothing,
his day is like a shadow that passes.

(from Psalm 144)

Every truth will be unearthed.

That's the last straw.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Without breath the lamb and wolf die.

Don't seek fame or fortune,
Glory or prosperity.
Just pass this life as is,
According to circumstances.
When the breath is gone,
Who is in charge?
After the death of the body,
There is only an empty name.
When your clothes are worn,
Repair them over and over;
When you have no food,
Work to provide.
How long can a phantomlike body last?
Would you increase your ignorance
For the sake of its idle concerns?

- Tung-shan

The letters and sounds fall from my name.

Start off now, but remember, I am sending you out like lambs among wolves.
--Luke 10:3

Luke had his way with words.

Inhale.

Exhale.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Try not to think.

My hut isn't quite six feet across
Surrounded by pine, bamboos, and mountains,
An old monk hardly has room for himself
Much less for a visiting cloud.

- Shih-wu (1272-1352)

Instead, just look.

Jesus had just finished speaking when a Pharisee
invited him to dine at his house. He went in and sat down at the table. The Pharisee saw this and was surprised that he had not first washed before the meal. But the Lord said to him, "Oh, you Pharisees! You clean the outside of cup and plate, while inside yourselves you are filled with extortion and wickedness. Fools! Did not he who made the outside make the inside too? Instead, give alms from what you have and then indeed everything will be clean for you."

--Luke 11:37 - 41

No inside, no outside.

100% correct relationship with each itself.

Pass the dish detergent, please!

Monday, October 16, 2006

Cesco hikes Ragged. Old dog has heart. Even with many wrong turns over 2 1/2 hours.

The day is quiet.

In the still night by the vacant window,
Wrapped in monk's robe I sit in meditation,
Navel and nostrils lined up straight,
Ears paired to the slope of shoulders.
Window whitens; the moon comes up;
Rain's stopped, but drops go on dripping.
Wonderful,the mood of this moment-
Distant, vast!

- Ryokan (1758-1831)

Mud puddles and trail markers on winding mountainside. Pilgrim's prayer adopted: Lord Jesus Christ, be merciful with us.
"With" -- equivocal invitation.

When Christ freed us, he meant us to remain free. Stand firm, therefore, and do not submit again to the yoke of slavery.
-Galatians 5:1

Unless we come to appreciate the word "with" we are yet enslaved.

Are you with me?

Sunday, October 15, 2006

We are being written.

So often, not feeling fully the scripting line rolling out ourselves in curving cursive, we consider ourselves lost.

I is not the author of life.

I Am authors.

You and I are, at best, lines unfolding from point of contact to emerging placement on page. Sometimes, rising from the page, we are editors and characters in the play.

Our skill is in the willingness to see the manuscript as a whole and not as our possession. Our practice is humility. Our gratitude is in being humbled by the shift from I to Am. Our joy is in the correspondence surrendering and surrounding I Am.

My writing and judgment are not that bad
but an unfit body receives no post
examiners expose me with a jerk
they wash away the dirt and search for my sores.

--Han-shan, 9th cent

A man in prison (call him Joe) considered an event in his life. One night he saved another man from a burning car and possible death. At the time, though, after initial instinct to check to see if man was ok was scorned, he thought his objective was to roll the man, easy pickings, as the man was passed out late at night in a car. Engine raced and smoke poured out from under hood. Circumstances, curiously, dictated another script. The car burst into consuming flame and Joe's immediate response was to surrender to saving behavior. He does. Man is saved. A woman cries calling him hero. When police and firemen arrive there is the requisite indignity of dismissal as local authorities command scene. He is recognized from other pages, but not recognized in this daily script being written. Ambivalence through years when he tells the story -- leaving out (what seemed to be) his intent at the time to rob the man.

What man intends wrong but does good? What man intends good but does wrong?

Prophet Nathan said to King David, "That man is you!"

We are not the author. We are the late realization that we are being written. Yet we are uncertain about what is really going on in the confusing matrix intersecting external reality, internal thought, soulful intent, and physical act. We are the suffering Job and suffering Jesus and suffering every-person dwelling in this existence in-the-world.

Author writes this being through this Being.

I prayed, and understanding was given me;
I entreated, and the spirit of Wisdom came to me.
I esteemed her more than sceptres and thrones;
compared with her, I held riches as nothing.
I reckoned no priceless stone to be her peer,
for compared with her, all gold is a pinch of sand,
and beside her silver ranks as mud.
I loved her more than health or beauty,
preferred her to the light,
since her radiance never sleeps.
In her company all good things came to me,
at her hands riches not to be numbered.

-- Wisdom 7:7 - 11

Joe catches up with something in his past here in his present.

He will be Defender of the Faith.

Faith -- that profound trust rooted at center that what is taking place is grounded in loving acceptance of What-Is, Placing-Itself.

Faith, for Now, is trusting openly What-Is Placing-Itself.

Where are we now? This is our question.

Faith needs no defense.

Write this.

(Ready?)

The author is no-other.