Tuesday, June 27, 2017

i want to say








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Of all the pitfalls in our paths and the tremendous delays and wanderings off the track I want to say that they are not what they seem to be. I want to say that all that seems like fantastic mistakes are not mistakes, all that seems like error is not error; and it all has to be done. That which seems like a false step is the next step.

–Agnes Martin
Writings









Imagine better than the best you know. —Neville Goddard






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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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Saturday, June 24, 2017

conditions






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By itself nothing has existence.
Everything needs its own absence.

To be is to be distinguishable, to be here and not there,
to be now and not then, to be thus and not otherwise.

Like water is shaped by the container, so is everything
determined by conditions (gunas).


–Nisargadatta Maharaj



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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

The problem is not to find the answer, it’s to face the answer. —Terence McKenna













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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Friday, June 16, 2017

trickster





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How to get rid of ego as dictator and turn it into messenger and servant and scout, to be in your service, is the trick.


–Joseph Campbell


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Sunday, June 4, 2017

listen





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3:30, sigh ...
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foraging for food on the mountain





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The wild up here is not creatures, wooded,
tangled wild. It is absence wild.
Barren, empty, stone wild. Worn-away wild.
Only the smell of weeds and hot air.
But a place where differences are clear.
Between the mind’s severity and its harshness.
Between honesty and the failure of belief.
A man said no person is educated who knows
only one language, for he cannot distinguish
between his thought and the English version.
Up here he is translated to a place where it is
possible to discriminate between age and sorrow.



–Jack Gilbert


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Saturday, June 3, 2017

the ball





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As long as nothing can be known for sure
(no signals have been picked up yet),

as long as Earth is still unlike
the nearer and more distant planets,

as long as there’s neither hide nor hair
of other grasses graced by other winds,
of other treetops bearing other crowns,
other animals as well-grounded as our own,

as long as only the local echo
has been known to speak in syllables,

as long as we still haven’t heard the word
of better or worse mozarts,
platos, edisons, elsewhere,

as long as our inhuman crimes
are still committed only between humans,

as long as our kindness
is still incomparable,
peerless even in its imperfection,

as long as our heads packed with illusions
still pass for the only heads so packed,

as long as the roofs of our mouths alone
still raise voices to high heavens –

let’s act like very special guests of honour
at the district firemen’s ball,
dance to the beat of the local oompah band
and pretend that it’s the ball
to end all balls.
I can’t speak for other –
for me this is misery and happiness enough:

just this sleepy backwater
where even the stars have time to burn
while winking at us
unintentionally.


–Wislawa Szymborska




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Friday, June 2, 2017

needful things






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Ten thousand flowers in spring, the moon in autumn,
a cool breeze in summer, snow in winter.
If your mind isn’t clouded by unnecessary things,
this is the best season of your life.


Wu Men
Stephen Mitchell translation


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dharma






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The way the dog trots out the front door
every morning
without a hat or an umbrella,
without any money
or the keys to her doghouse
never fails to fill the saucer of my heart
with milky admiration.

Who provides a finer example
of a life without encumbrance—
Thoreau in his curtainless hut
with a single plate, a single spoon?
Gandhi with his staff and his holy diapers?

Off she goes into the material world
with nothing but her brown coat
and her modest blue collar,
following only her wet nose,
the twin portals of her steady breathing,
followed only by the plume of her tail.

If only she did not shove the cat aside
every morning
and eat all his food
what a model of self-containment she
would be,
what a paragon of earthly detachment.

If only she were not so eager
for a rub behind the ears,
so acrobatic in her welcomes,
if only I were not her god.


Billy Collins



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