Saturday, June 17, 2017

sitting, psalms, tea and saltines

Funny how two traditions correspond.

At Saturday Morning Practice, Christian Contemplative words, and Zen Buddhist words:
"Prove yourselves innocent and straightforward, children of God beyond reproach in the midst of a twisted and depraved generation — among whom you shine like the stars in the sky while holding fast to the word of life." (—Philippians 2:15-16)

Only Don't Know, Go Straight!
Only Go Straight, Don't Know!

    (--Seung Sahn Sumin, Zen Master)
After sitting, psalms, tea and saltines, conversing about innocence (don't know), and straightforward (go straight).

And what a generation (of politics and world tensions) we are living through!

this and that

The wood sign carved by Susan hangs on kitchen rafter and reads,
"Be Still and Know that I am God."
Curious. "That" I am, God.

And is "this" I am, me?

Not two "I am's" -- but two expressions of this and that.

yes, no

What's the difference between YHWH and YANA?

The first is the four letters of the unsayable reality of unpronounceable presence, "I shall be there, as who I am, shall I be there."

The second is the yes/no paradoxical mystery of "You are not alone."

We are not alone. 

The unsayable name of presence itself is the only reality. 

Which is alone.

We do not know, not yet, what this alone means or is.

But we are not it, not the alone. Nor are we other than it.

Presence alone is the alone.

So the question, for us, is not, "Where is God?"

The question for us is, "Where am I?

Only this.

Alone with the alone.

No I? 

No God? 

No other?

No, no no!

Yes, yes, yes!

Friday, June 16, 2017

stanzas decrease

Sheilah with an "h" -- one of our poetry group, has ended her poem, putting down her book.

I sat in her normal place today.

Our stanzas decrease.

Anne sends "Unwelcome" by Mary Elizabeth Coleridge.

Skip reads her own "Happiness."

The two of us consider "don't know" mind.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

they plan trouble and practice deception


The desire for justice has both sides of the ideological divide bending toward middle ground as arrogant scandal and scorching rifle fire echo the environs of Washington DC.

The prayer for justice these days evokes as much fear of being heard and responded to as the apprehension that it will be ignored. 

Prayer is a dangerous resort, even as last.

14 See how wicked people think up evil;
    they plan trouble and practice deception.
15 But in the traps they set for others,
    they themselves get caught.
16 So they are punished by their own evil
    and are hurt by their own violence.

17 I thank the Lord for his justice;
    I sing praises to the Lord, the Most High.

(--from Psalm 7, Good News Translation)

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

this is not going to change soon


They kill us.

They kill those killing us.

This is not going to change soon.

We have to think about and hold in prayer those who shoot and those who have been shot.

We must witness.

itself without other and within no-other

 I recall Keiji Nishitani saying that fire doesn’t burn fire, water doesn't wash water.

When not-other than something, then just-as that thing.
There is absolutely nothing for the just man to fear; the whole of creation serves him. Listen to another promise that God makes him through the prophet: If you pass through fire, the flame shall not burn you, for I am the Lord your God. The just man is everywhere welcome, and everything renders him due service. 
 (--from Office of Readings, Wednesday 14june2017, Second reading, From a homily on Joshua by Origen, priest, The crossing of the Jordan)
Some will point out that fire does indeed burn anything not it.

There's the point -- become it and there is no burning. 

In the same way, just as what is not itself is consumed and devoured by the other, so too what is itself becomes itself in the presence of no-other.

What falls away is always the idea and fear of separation.

What remains is nothing that is not itself in the moment.

Is this, finally, the mystery of God? The mystery that God is that which is itself without other and within no-other?

Is this why we fear God?

That we lose something to dwell in everything?

That we become what always is and never will be other?

I must learn how to pray!

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

a numbered universe yields

Another number added to someone’s age. 



Art and flowers.

Living in a numbered universe yields these things.

Monday, June 12, 2017

items to consider

New York cheese cake

Bouncing bug at screen window

Monarch in White House. Courtiers bow.

United States slides into Southern Hemisphere.

Break up golden state warriors! 


       (--for mendicant/monastic on her birthday)

So many appear

helping in time of shared life --

for this,      each is,      born

       (--with gratefulness for present/presence, dance)

washi no tomodach

          (--for Jo-Ann, わしの友達, washi no tomodach, my friend)

child's hand reaches out

yellow daffodil offered

always,      almost,      held

          (Jo-Ann Veillette, 9sept1941-2nov2016)

Sunday, June 11, 2017


Arriving is Reality of God.
Home is Creator (father/mother)
Here is Christ (son/daughter)
Now is Holy Spirit (participatory relational interbeing)
So, Thây's chant is perfect: we are arriving, we are home, in the here, in the now.

In fact, these days, there is nothing that is not correlative.

trinity; transcending transforming tenderly


is the resolution

of two (duality)

and one (monism)

by giving




an escape



. . .
Chapter 2.  The Great Unsaying (p. 25-26) 
The unspeakability of the Hebrew name for God (YHWH) has long been recognized, but we now know it goes even deeper: formally the word was not spoken at all, but breathed!  Many are convinced that its correct pronunciation is an attempt to replicate and imitate the very sound of inhalation and exhalation. – p. 25 
The one thing we do every moment is therefore to speak the name of God.  This makes it our first and our last word as we enter and leave the world. – p. 26 
There is no Islamic, Christian, or Jewish way of breathing.  There is no rich or poor way of breathing.  This divine wind “blows where it will” (John 3:8), which appears to be everywhere.  No one and no religion can control this spirit. God is as available and accessible as the very thing we all do constantly – breathe. – p. 26 
Isn’t it wonderful that breath, wind, spirit, and air are precisely nothing – and yet everything? – p. 26 
Just keep breathing consciously in this way and you will know that you are connected to humanity from cavemen to cosmonauts, to the entire animal world, and even to the trees and plants.  And we are now told that the atoms we breathe are physically the same as the stardust from the day of creation.  Oneness is no longer merely a vague mystical notion, but a scientific fact. – p. 26

(--from, The Naked Now: Learning to See as the Mystics See, by Richard Rohr, 2009