Saturday, November 01, 2008

Can you see?


Let the wise one watch over the mind,
So hard to perceive, so artful,
Alighting where it wishes;
A watchfully protected mind
Will bring happiness.

- Dhammapada
The holy has nothing to say.

It is what it does.

Friday, October 31, 2008

All Hallows turns into All Saints.

What is holy invites what is longing for what is holy.
Hermits hide from mankind
Most go to the mountains to sleep
Where green vines wind through woods
And jade gorges echo unbroken
Higher and higher enraptured
On and on simply free
Free of what stains the world
Minds pure like the white lotus

- Han shan
God is. We are. There is nowhere God is not.
Psalm 8
(The greatness of God, the dignity of man)
How wonderful is your name over all the earth, O Lord, our Lord!
How exalted is your glory above the sky!

Out of the mouths of children and infants you have brought praise, to confound your enemies, to destroy your vengeful foes.

When I see the heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and stars, which you set in their place –
what is man, that you should take thought for him? what is the son of man, that you should look after him?

You have made him but one step lower than the angels; you have crowned him with glory and honour; you have set him over the works of your hands.

You have put everything beneath his feet, cattle and sheep and the beasts of the field,
the birds in the air and the fish in the sea, whatever passes along the paths of the waters.

How wonderful is your name above all the earth, O Lord, our Lord!
God's invitation is unlike our invitation. God's invitation is open, refusable, yet always offered.

We are invited by what is.



Between us.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Is born, comes Christ. (That's the phrase that arrived during Thursday Evening Conversation.)
Lesson 303

The holy Christ is born in me today.

Watch with me, angels, watch with me today.
Angels, we've said, are the connective intuitive creative between what God is and where I am.

My treasure is the cloud on the peak
The moon over the valley
Traveling east or west
Light and free on the one road
I don’t know whether I’m on the way
Or at home.

- Muso Soseki (1275-1351)
Of course we ask angels to watch with us. They are the seeing of itself.
Section 9. What is the Second Coming?

Christ's Second Coming, which is sure as God, is merely the correction of mistakes, and the return of sanity. It is a part of the condition that restores the never lost, and re-establishes what is forever and forever true. It is the invitation to God's Word to take illusion's place; the willingness to let forgiveness rest upon all things without exception and without reserve.

It is the all-inclusive nature of Christ's Second Coming that permits it to embrace the world and hold you safe within its gentle advent, which encompasses all living things with you. There is no end to the release the Second Coming brings, as God's creation must be limitless. Forgiveness lights the Second Coming's way, because it shines on everything as one. And thus is oneness recognized at last.

(--from Lesson 301, The Course in Miracles)
The invitation.




Tuesday, October 28, 2008

It is not our doing, not anything, when we are given into the absolute. No gaining; no losing.
The Clod and the Pebble

'Love seeketh not itself to please,
Nor for itself hath any care,
But for another gives its ease,
And builds a heaven in hell's despair.'

So sung a little clod of clay,
Trodden with the cattle's feet;
But a pebble of the brook
Warbled out these meters meet:

'Love seeketh only Self to please,
To bind another to its delight,
Joys in another's loss of ease,
And builds a hell in heaven's despite.'

(Poem by William Blake)

In from Chicago, the couple sat in back through Tuesday Evening Conversation. Reading Eknath Eswaran on Arjuna and Sri Krishna.

Finally coming to proper knowledge.

Arjuna knew himself as warrior.

A knowing transparency.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Alaska is chillier today.

It becomes obvious there are two ways of doing things: the powerful connected way and the weak detached way. I've no way.
The spiritual light shines alone,
far transcending the senses
and their fields;
the essential substance is
exposed, real and eternal.
It is not contained in written words.
The nature of mind has no defilement;
it is basically perfect and complete in itself.
Just get rid of delusive attachments,
and merge with realization of thusness.

- Pai-chang (720 – 814)
Only a week left. Assassination plots are announced, last minute dirt is shaped into mud balls ready for slinging, and the world series prepares to end in a whimper.

Things seem ridiculous. Me too.
Change and Pain

[W]hen we realize that we are forced to change positions because of pain, we should question further to find out if there are other reasons. If the answer is that we change because we want to be comfortable, this is incorrect. It is incorrect because it is a distortion of happiness. The correct answer is that we change in order to "cure" the pain. We do not change to acquire happiness. The wrong answer comes from misunderstanding, and if we do not have the right comprehension when we change positions, defilements can and will spring up. Changing positions to "cure" pain indicates that we have to remedy the situation at all times. We should not misjudge and think that the reason is to attain happiness, since the curing of pain all the time is the same as having to take medicines constantly. It is like nursing a continuous sickness. Thus, we should not look upon nursing sickness and curing pain as being happiness at all.

(--Achaan Naeb, in Jack Kornfield's Living Dharma)
Camus said to be happy is to stop.

I'll do it.

A happy cure.



Sunday, October 26, 2008

Chanting Heart Sutra in zendo was lovely at practice tonight. Reading Thomas Merton at table reminds that darkness of spirit does not point away from God's presence -- that renewal in one's own heart and mind helps reach for light string.
At Waterfall Temple

These peaks gather like snowy swords,
the waterfall a curtain of ice on the cliff.
Gibbons in the tree tops toy with clouds.
among blood-red azaleas.
The cuckoo sings till it bleeds;
from deep in caves, wind gods scream.
Compared to the hearts of people,
these mountain wilds are tame.

- Chang K’o chiu (1265-1345)
Foghorn four miles away tells of diminished view. Small animal in wall is restless. Hot soak surrounds body.

Why be a contemplative? Where does renewal lead?

Fingers feel for small metal whatsit at end of string. A gentle tug? Then?

No telling.

We'll have to wait.

We'll have to see.