Friday, September 8, 2017

Rumi - Know the power




 Love whispers in my ear,
“Better to be prey than a hunter.
Make yourself My fool.
Stop trying to be the sun and become a speck!
Dwell at My door and be homeless.
Don’t pretend to be a candle, be a moth,
so you may taste the savor of Life
and know the power hidden in serving.”



 

Bryant McGill - To return to what’s real



To return to what’s real, begin to question things. Don’t believe any of it; the ugliness and negativity. Don’t accept any of the falsity, but also don’t become angrily rebellious — joyfully reject it all. Throw off the lies and illusions with a smile and call-out to the essential truth of what it means to be a human being — life will answer you back. Finding essential truth involves uncovering who you really are. Your sadness may just be calling you back to the real. Go real hunting; look for what is real. In this world, much of what is real is hidden below the surface. Real is resilient. You can see real in the grass breaking through the concrete sidewalk. Real is unstoppable. Real is wild and unpredictable. Real dispels all spells. There is something real in you trying to break through the cracks. Something in you is seeking the light of life. The concrete and steel of your self-delusions will not stop your essence from escaping. You can’t hide from yourself forever. Your truth will shatter you if it must, but it is so much better if you set it free. Set your truth free. Set yourself free! We must reject the artificial and embrace what is real and true: truth in food, community, relationships and self.



For more clarity you can read in context here:
http://bryantmcgill.com/20150423180636.html

(This passage is from the “Simple Reminders” book, but I post all my writings freely as a gift for those who cannot afford them. If these writings have benefited you, please kindly leave a review at bryantmcgill.com/sr-amazon)

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Rumi - Kissing the unreal





                It’s rigged — everything, in your favor.
                So there is nothing to worry about.

                Is there some position you want,
                some office, some acclaim, some
                award, some con, some lover,
                maybe two, maybe three, maybe four
                — all at once,

                maybe a relationship
                with
                God?

                I know there is a gold mine in you, and when you find it
                the wonderment of the earth’s gifts
                you will lay aside
                as naturally as does
                a child with a
                doll.

                But, dear, how sweet you look to me kissing the unreal:
                comfort, fulfill yourself,
                in any way possible — do that until
                you ache, until you ache,

                then come to me
                again.




 

Mirabai - Mira the Lotus



My Lord, the love that binds us cannot be broken.
It is hard as the diamond that shatters
the hammer that strikes it.
As polish goes into the gold, my heart
has gone into you.
As a lotus lives in its water, I am rooted in you.
Like the bird that gazes all night at the passing moon,
I have blinded myself in giving my eyes to your beauty.
She who offers herself completely asks only this:
That her Lord love Mira as fully as he is loved.

 Version by Robert Bly & Jane Hirshfield

 

Monday, September 4, 2017

Willa Miller - Meditation Only Goes So Far




One hot summer evening several years ago, I found myself listening to a teaching in a meditation hall in upstate New York, an activity that had become far too rare at that point in my life. A hush came over the crowd as the diminutive teacher entered the room and took his seat. “Do you want to know the secret to meditation?” he asked.

Vigorous nods answered his question. Who doesn’t like to be in on a secret?

“Okay,” he said, “but first we need to prepare to meditate. Get comfortable on your cushion. Straighten your back. Lower your gaze. Relax your shoulders. Take a few slow, deep breaths…” He demonstrated.

There was a shuffle around the room as people shifted, pushed cushions into place, straightened up, sighed deeply. After a minute or so, the fidgeting settled.

“Okay, now—” The teacher paused for effect. “Listen closely. I am going to share a secret with you.” A palpable sense of anticipation settled over the room.

“Are you sure you’re ready?” He was teasing us a little. Glancing up, I could see that he was smiling, enjoying our expectation.

“All right. The secret to meditation is—”

He paused again to heighten our anticipation.

“Don’t meditate.”

He drew out the word “don’t” slowly.

After pausing again to let the instruction sink in, he added, “Instead, just be present, as you are, right here, right now. No grasping. Nothing more needs to be done.”

I’m not sure what others in the room experienced, but for me there was a sudden shift. I felt myself falling into a space of being acutely, vividly, and simply aware.

Dropping the Meditation Project

The instruction to not meditate may sound a bit scandalous in the Buddhist context we inhabit, but it is in fact nothing new. The hermeneutic of nonmeditation has roots as far back as the tenth century and the Indian master Tilopa, the founder of the Kagyu tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. He sings about non-meditation in his dohas (spiritual songs) and other instruction manuals. “Meditate alone in the forest and mountain retreats. Remain in the state of non-meditation,” he teaches in the Mahamudra instruction to Naropa.

How can one meditate and not meditate at the same time? While it sounds like a paradox, it begins to make sense when you consider that non-meditation is a kind of meditation—but in this practice we leave behind complicated notions of what we are doing on the cushion. In non-meditation practice, there is no call to become extraordinary, no urge to change what is. Instead there is permission to accept your experience of the moment and drop the project of meditation.

Mahamudra, or “the great seal”—along with Dzogchen, “the great perfection”—is one of the simplest forms of meditation in the Tibetan tradition. In its most essential form, it is the art of just being. It is also one of the most difficult practices to successfully cultivate precisely because it is so simple.

We are naturally complex creatures, prone to taking a simple moment of experience—a sensory experience, a thought, or a feeling—and spinning a web of concepts around it. It is a real challenge, for example, to simply observe a thought without getting involved in its orbit. We tend to follow, resist, or judge our thoughts. Pretty soon, what started as a simple thought becomes a complex network of concepts and ideas accompanied by a swirling eddy of emotion and reactivity.

The same goes for our relationship to meditation. It is challenging for us to take a simple instruction such as “meditate on the breath every day” and just do it. Instead, we get involved in a vortex of thinking about the practice, framing the practice, resisting the practice, and comparing and judging our practice against a perceived ideal. Sometimes we even create a new identity around meditation practice. Whereas before we called ourselves a nurse, a teacher, a barista, or a jogger, now we are—in addition—a meditator, with all the self-concepts that accompany that label. 


continue reading HERE


 

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Yosy Flug - Turning




In my heart's golden age
There is only one language;
And all hearts know it.
It's sung through the eyes
And the ears can see it.

In the golden eye of my heart
There is only one family:
Oh how lovely you are,
My dark skinned sister
From across the globe!

And love is the only worshipped
Through love for love's own sake.
Heretics melt before they reach
True love's devouring fire.

And you, my friend, are present
Whichever way we turn;
Without, within, beyond until –
There is no I nor thou.