Friday, December 9, 2016

listen





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The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.

—W. B. Yeats


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lesson





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I learned this, at least, by my experiment: that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.

–Henry David Thoreau

Walden: Or, Life in the Woods


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Need, then, is the net for all things. –Rumi

 



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No experience has been too unimportant,
and the smallest event unfolds like a fate, 
and fate itself is like a wonderful, wide fabric in which
every thread is guided by an infinitely tender hand 
and is laid alongside another thread
and is held and supported by a hundred others.



–Rainer Maria Rilke


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Live with skillful nonchalance and ceaseless concern. –Prajnaparamita Sutra





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If you seek reality you must set yourself free of all backgrounds, of all cultures, of all patterns of thinking and feeling.
Even the idea of being a man or woman, or even human, should be discarded. The ocean of life contains all, not only humans.
So, first abandon all self-identification, stop thinking of yourself as such-and-such, so-and-so, this or that.
Abandon all self-concern, worry not about your welfare, material or spiritual, abandon every desire, gross or subtle, stop thinking of achievement of any kind.
You are complete here and now, you need absolutely nothing.


–Nisargadatta Maharaj



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shanti, shanti, shanti





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Hell is in the here and now. So is heaven.

Do not worry about hell or dream about heaven, as they are both present inside this very moment.

Every time we fall in love, we ascend to heaven.

Every time we hate, envy, or fight someone, we tumble straight into the fires of hell.


—Rumi


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you are that





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Your cure is in you, but you are unaware,
And your illness is from you, but you do not see.

And you consider yourself to be a small mass
While within you lies the greatest world.

And you are the clear book
Whose letters make manifest the hidden.


—Amīr al-Mu’mineen


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many mansions

 



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You are something that the whole universe is doing,
in the same way that a wave is something that the whole ocean is doing.



—Alan Watts

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Existence leans its mouth toward me, because my love cares for it. –Meister Eckhart





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To kiss a forehead is to erase worry.
I kiss your forehead.

To kiss the eyes is to lift sleeplessness.
I kiss your eyes.

To kiss the lips is to drink water.
I kiss your lips.

To kiss a forehead is to erase memory.
I kiss your forehead.


–Marina Tsvetaeva



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not to worry






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Fall in love.
There is no salvation for the soul
But to fall in Love.
It has to creep and crawl
Among the Lovers first.

Only Lovers can escape
From these two worlds.
This was written in creation.
Only from the Heart
Can you reach the sky.

The rose of Glory
Can only be raised in the Heart.


–Rumi


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Thursday, December 8, 2016

should 1





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We should face up to something that’s rarely if ever voiced in modern cosmology: the possibility that the true nature of the universe as a whole has nothing to do with the way its parts work, that it indeed lies outside the very characteristics of its components.

–Robert Lanza
Beyond Biocentrism: Rethinking Time, Space, Consciousness and the Illusion of Death


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should 2




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We should not for a moment consider even our best-established knowledge of existence as true.

It is awareness only of the colors that our own vision paints on the film of one bubble in one strand of foam on the ocean of being.


–Olaf Stapledon (1886 - 1950)








white strange world






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The moon is a white strange world, a great, white, soft-seeming globe in the night sky, and what she actually communicates to me across space I shall never fully know. But the moon that pulls the tides, and the moon that controls the menstrual periods of women, and the moon that touches the lunatics, she is not the mere dead lump of the astronomist.

When we describe the moon as dead, we are describing the deadness in ourselves. When we find space so hideously void, we are describing our own unbearable emptiness.

We and the cosmos are one. The cosmos is a vast body, of which we are still parts. The sun is a great heart whose tremors run through our smallest veins. The moon is a great gleaming nerve-centre from which we quiver forever.

Who knows the power that Saturn has over us or Venus? But it is a vital power, rippling exquisitely through us all the time… Now all this is literally true, as men knew in the great past and as they will know again.


—D. H. Lawrence



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truly





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Truth cannot be out there—cannot exist independently of the human
mind—because sentences cannot so exist, or be out there

The world is out there, but descriptions of the world are not.
Only descriptions of the world can be true or false. 

The world on its own—unaided by the describing activities of humans—
cannot. 


–Richard Rorty
Contingency, Irony, and Solidarity


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wherever you are







Wherever you are, you are one with the clouds and one with the sun and the stars you see.
You are one with everything.
That is more true than I can say, and more true than you can hear.


–Shunryu Suzuki


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breadcrumbs

 



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Scattered through the ordinary world there are books and artifacts and perhaps people who are like doorways into impossible realms, of impossible and contradictory truth.

–Jorge Luis Borges


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Oh soul






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Oh soul,
you worry too much. 
You have seen your own strength.
You have seen your own beauty.
You have seen your golden wings.

Of anything less,
why do you worry?


You are in truth
the soul, of the soul,
of the soul.


–Rumi


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Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Blood Meridian, excerpt





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The universe is no narrow thing and the order within it is not constrained by any latitude in its conception to repeat what exists in one part in any other part. Even in this world more things exist without our knowledge than with it and the order in creation which you see is that which you have put there, like a string in a maze, so that you shall not lose your way. For existence has its own order and that no man’s mind can compass, that mind itself being but a fact among others.


—Cormac McCarthy


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rebirth, excerpt





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In our souls everything
moves guided by a mysterious hand.

We know nothing of our own souls
that are ununderstandable and say nothing.


The deepest words
of the wise man teach us

the same as the whistle of the wind when it blows


or the sound of the water when it is flowing.


–Antonio Machado


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image Riitta Ikonen
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palm


 



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Interior of the hand.
Sole that has come to walk
only on feelings. That faces upward
and in its mirror
receives heavenly roads, which travel
along themselves.

That has learned to walk upon water
when it scoops,
that walks upon wells,
transfiguring every path.

That steps into other hands,
changes those that are like it
into a landscape:
wanders and arrives within them,
fills them with arrival.


–Rainer Maria Rilke



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the highest teaching





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From joy all beings have come.
In joy all beings are sustained.
To joy all beings return. 

This is the highest teaching.
This is the highest teaching.


—The Upanishads


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failure to see





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Rather the flying bird, leaving no trace
Than the going beast
Marking the earth with his track.

The bird flies by and forgets
(As is only right). The beast
Where he no longer is
(And is therefore no use)
Marks that he was there before
(Which is also no use).

For to remember is to betray
Nature, since the nature of yesterday
Is not nature.
What has been, is nothing.
Remembering
Is failure to see.

Move on, bird, move on, teach me
To move on.



–Fernando Pessoa
Thomas Merton translation



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doctrine





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Believe nothing merely because you have been told it.
Do not believe what your teacher tells you merely out of respect for the teacher. 
But whatsoever, after due examination and analysis, you find to be kind, and conducive to the good, the benefit, the welfare of all beings – that doctrine believe and cling to, and take as your guide.


–Buddhist teaching


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three things





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In the end only three things matter:

how fully you have lived,
how deeply you have loved and
how well you have learned to let go

–Buddhist teaching



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oh well ...





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Every spiritual wisdom tradition from time immemorial has pointed out in its own creative way that grasping onto the idea of intrinsic, independent existence─both in the seemingly objective outer world and within the subjective domain of our own selves─is the fundamental mental affliction, the root cause of our self-created delusion with all of its concomitant suffering.

Clinging onto the idea that we exist in a way that we simply do not is a deeply entrenched unconscious disposition, a habitual pattern that at a certain point gains enough momentum to develop a seeming autonomy such that it re-generates itself, as we invest our life force into an illusory identity and unconsciously recreate it moment by moment.

These same spiritual wisdom traditions point out that the realization of what in Buddhism is called “emptiness”─the lack of intrinsic, independent objective existence of both the outer world as well as ourselves─is the fundamental cure for our psychic dis-ease.
In discovering that there is no objective world out there and no objective subject in here, quantum physics is discovering the medicine─the fundamental cure─for the psycho-spiritual illness that ails our species.

–Paul Levy








not to worry





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Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love.

It will not lead you astray.


—Rumi

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Tuesday, December 6, 2016

aimless love








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This morning as I walked along the lakeshore,
I fell in love with a wren
and later in the day with a mouse
the cat had dropped under the dining room table. 

In the shadows of an autumn evening,
I fell for a seamstress
still at her machine in the tailor’s window,
and later for a bowl of broth,
steam rising like smoke from a naval battle. 

This is the best kind of love, I thought,
without recompense, without gifts,
or unkind words, without suspicion,
or silence on the telephone. 

The love of the chestnut,
the jazz cap and one hand on the wheel. 

No lust, no slam of the door –
the love of the miniature orange tree,
the clean white shirt, the hot evening shower,
the highway that cuts across Florida. 

No waiting, no huffiness, or rancor –
just a twinge every now and then 
for the wren who had built her nest
on a low branch overhanging the water
and for the dead mouse,
still dressed in its light brown suit. 

But my heart is always propped up
in a field on its tripod,
ready for the next arrow. 

After I carried the mouse by the tail
to a pile of leaves in the woods,
I found myself standing at the bathroom sink
gazing down affectionately at the soap, 
so patient and soluble,
so at home in its pale green soap dish.

I could feel myself falling again
as I felt its turning in my wet hands
and caught the scent of lavender and stone.


–Billy Collins




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The Waking





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I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I feel my fate in what I cannot fear.
I learn by going where I have to go.

We think by feeling. What is there to know?
I hear my being dance from ear to ear.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.

Of those so close beside me, which are you?
God bless the Ground! I shall walk softly there,
And learn by going where I have to go.
Light takes the Tree; but who can tell us how?
The lowly worm climbs up a winding stair;
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.

Great Nature has another thing to do
To you and me, so take the lively air,
And, lovely, learn by going where to go.

This shaking keeps me steady. I should know.
What falls away is always. And is near.
I wake to sleep, and take my waking slow.
I learn by going where I have to go.


–Theodore Roethke


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Friday I tasted life






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Friday I tasted life.
It was a vast morsel. 
A Circus passed the house —-
still I feel the red in my mind though the drums are out. 
The Lawn is full of south and the odors tangle,
and I hear to-day for the first time
the river in the tree.



–Emily Dickinson



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to thy self





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Know yourself as Nothing.

Feel yourself as Everything.


—Alan Watts


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De Rerum Virtute, II, excerpt





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I believe the first living cell
Had echoes of the future in it, and felt
Direction and the great animals, the deep green forest
And whale’s-track sea; I believe this globed earth
Not all by chance and fortune brings forth her broods,
But feels and chooses. And the Galaxy, the firewheel
On which we are pinned, the whirlwind of stars in which our sun is one dust-grain, one electron, this giant atom of the universe
Is not blind force, but fulfils its life and intends its courses. “All things are full of God.
Winter and summer, day and night, war and peace are God.”


–Robinson Jeffers


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