Today At Meetingbrook

Saturday, May 03, 2008

What is looking and what is looked at co-construct what is being created as it is.

No kidding.
The entire day I searched for spring,
But spring I could not find,
In my straw sandals I tramped among the
Mountain peak clouds.
Home again, smiling, I finger a sprig of
Fragrant plum blossom;
Spring was right here on these branches
In all of its glory!

- Plum Blossom Nun (DailyZen.com)
One thing after another.

Nothing follows.

This.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Zen is seeing what-is.
Both the gaze that sees and the object that is seen construct themselves simultaneously in the one act of vision.
(--p.18, in Beauty, by John O'Donohue)
And, what-is takes place between us.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

He'd not ascended to the Father. He told Mary not to cling to him, not to hold on to who and what he was. He preferred to be who and what he is. And that, whenever he became that which he is where he is as he is.

So, let him.
I saw the Son of Man, and he said to me, ‘Have no fear! I am the First and the Last. I was dead and now I am to live for ever and ever, and I hold the keys of death and of the underworld.
(Apocalypse 1:17-18)
There being no time but now, Jesus is ascending as this is written, as this is read, as this is.

As are you and am I.

That's the kind of Thursday today is.

Nothing to cling to, so everything appears.

As it is.

With God.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

A new template could help. A new religious life based on two rules: simplicity and kindness.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Some worry that America is heading for a big fall.
I let mind and body go
And gained a life of freedom
My old age is taking place
Among ten thousand peaks
I don’t let white clouds
Leave the valley lightly
I escort the moon as far
As my closed gate.

- Han-shan Te-ch’ing (1546-1623) Dailyzen.com
Rain has stopped.

Stars are out.

Cold wind blows.

After the fall, we'll try to get up.

Monday, April 28, 2008

When we bow we bow. Passing front room meditation space we bow. My eyes might look at crucifix. Or small seated Buddha. Or prayer flags hanging in window. Or icon of mother/child. Or the open emptiness of room itself. I have no object for the bow. Just bowing. With gratitude.
Do not sweep the fallen leaves,
For they are pleasant to hear on clear nights
In the wind, they rustle, as if sighing;
In the moonlight, their shadows flutter.
They knock on the window to wake a traveler;
Covering stairs, they hide moss.
Sad, the sight of them getting wet in the rain;
Let them wither away deep in the mountains.
- Kim Shi Sup (1435-1493)
Dog is bathed. White replaces gray. Mud drains into ground again.
You have been given more than human beauty,
and grace is poured out upon your lips,
(--from Psalm 44)
I'm glad the minister from Illinois spoke to the National Press Club. It's good to hear unapologetic wit, controversy, and spirit.

The mumbling incoherence of political swiping and sniping employed by contenders and commentators in this years horse race to the white house has become offensive and embarrassing. I'd like to hear something other than jejune backhand slaps.
I, Too, Sing America

I, too, sing America.

I am the darker brother.
They send me to eat in the kitchen
When company comes,
But I laugh,
And eat well,
And grow strong.

Tomorrow,

I'll be at the table
When company comes.
Nobody'll dare
Say to me,
"Eat in the kitchen,"
Then.

Besides,
They'll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed--

I, too, am America.

(--From The Collected Poems of Langston Hughes, Knopf and Vintage Books. Copyright 1994)
In prison last Friday, the realization that words are alive, as are things alive, so too animals, humans, and all of nature, supernature, and that which we call divinity -- all life is alive, all being is, in itself -- holy.


Because we are mis-educated, Rev Jeremiah Wright says, we do not want to hear truth.

That's the truth.

Holy life!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Consider the words: "because he is with you, he is in you".

Except for dripping faucet into scraped yogurt plastic, silence.
Gospel
Jesus said:
‘If you love me you will keep my commandments.
I shall ask the Father,
and he will give you another Advocate
to be with you for ever,
that Spirit of truth
whom the world can never receive
since it neither sees nor knows him;
but you know him,
because he is with you, he is in you.
I will not leave you orphans;
I will come back to you.
In a short time the world will no longer see me;
but you will see me,
because I live and you will live.
On that day you will understand that I am in my Father
and you in me and I in you.
Anybody who receives my commandments and keeps them
will be one who loves me;
and anybody who loves me will be loved by my Father,
and I shall love him and show myself to him.’

(--John 14:15 - 21)
Look no further than to Raisin Bran box, Cuisinart machine, and Nupro container on washing machine under cabinets beside window where gray morning sits with unmoving branches in dooryard. Daybreak walk with Border Collie beyond brook to winding trail, back to cabin -- zafu, candle, incense, sitting. In kitchen, dripping faucet, water from high mountain melt finds way through ground to well, pumped up to metronomic beat.
Prayer Chain

My mother called to tell me
about an old classmate of mine who

was dying on the parish prayer chain—
or was very sick—or destitute—

or it had not worked out—the marriage—
or the kids were all on drugs—and

all the old mothers were praying intensely
for all the pain of their children

and for life—they were praying for life—
in their quiet rooms—sipping decaf coffee—

I bet they've been praying for me at times—
so I'll find my way—so I won't rob a bank—

I'll take them—the mystical prayers of old mothers—
it matters—all this patient and purposeful love.

(Poem: "Prayer Chain" by Tim Nolan. The Writer's Almanac)
I mention my mother's name, her mother's name, their daughter and granddaughter, the men surrounding them, and the rippling remembrance of many names -- all gone beyond, (some say dead), as I crossed bridge over brook on morning prayerful steps and walking meditation.

Within us. We are within the within. No outside, no inside. Only God in God. Just us in us. We in God. God within all. The solitude of stillness, a silence of mind, an unknowing so profound there seems no need ever to speak or hear words again.

The mind says: "Show yourself!"

Earth responds with itself.

Itself knowing no other.

King falls; game over.

With or without words...

Love itself, nothing else.