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Posts Tagged ‘stillness’


I have had my dream – like others –
and it has come to nothing, so that
I remain now carelessly
with feet planted on the ground
and look up at the sky –
feeling my clothes about me,
the weight of my body in my shoes,
the rim of my hat, air passing in and out
at my nose – and decide to dream no more.


William Carlos Williams

” The most exquisite paradox: As soon as you give it all up you can have it all. ”  Bab Ram Dass


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Concentration. Contemplation. Meditation.

The great rishis tell us God is in everyone, everything. Imagine a rishi, in the forest, full of Light, seeing God in all. A student comes along, then another, they all can see he is someone special and they ask him questions. He tells them to see God everywhere. They can’t. They just can’t. Finally, the rishi may have said, “Ok, sit here in front of this stone and at least learn to see God in one simple thing, this rock. Then we’ll progress from there.”

Maybe that was the first Sivalingam.

TAKA
July 9, 2003

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When the heart is hard and parched up,
    come upon me with a shower of mercy.

When grace is lost from life,
    come with a burst of song.

When tumultuous work raises its din on all sides
    shutting me out from beyond,
    come to me, my lord of silence, with thy peace and rest.

When my beggarly heart sits crouched, shut up in a corner,
    break open the door, my king,
    and come with the ceremony of a king.

When desire blinds the mind with delusion and dust,
    O thou holy one, thou wakeful,
    come with light and thunder.

Rabindranath Tagore
Gitanjali

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By Ross Bolleter Roshi

.

” When Michal, my composer friend from Slovakia, was driving me out from Bratislava to show me the eastern regions of this country, especially his birthplace Lengow, in the foothills of the High Tatras, he asked me a lot of questions about Zen and how to live it. I found his questions challenging – such questions always are – but their radical simplicity was far more confronting because I spoke no Slovak and he spoke just enough English for us to deal with practical matters and in a vague way to feel out the contours of each other’s lives.

Once he asked me, ‘What is Zen?’ and I replied that ‘the countryside looked splendid now that the sun had come up.’ As always after my responses to his questions he would remain thoughtfully silent, however, as we neared his home village he said, ‘I like the jokes in your religion, but I don’t think I would do the meditation.’ Sensing my disappointment, he went on, ‘But I would do Great Aunt Meditation’. ‘Well, what would that be?’ I asked doubtfully. ‘Great Aunt Meditation is chicken meditation. My great Aunt spends all afternoon in front of her fire. For hour after hour there she is in her chair, looking like she is asleep. But she knows where very chicken is and which way the wind is blowing and what loaf of rye bread the pantry mouse is munching.’ When we meditate we let the world be as it is; we let our heart just be. Then what is there can be, as W.A. Mathieu describes sounds as nourishment, holy food, and best friend. The plane roars through opening up your heart; you hum that old love song as you move from paying bills, to shopping to writing a difficult letter and the humming confirms it.

There is an old Taoist saying, ‘The hen can hatch her eggs because her heart is always listening.’ When we listen to hear another’s pain in their critical words, when we listen to our own pain when we are criticized, the depth of and warmth of our attending opens up the way for life to appear.

Later, in Lengow, I met Michal’s Great Aunt. She was frail, almost totally blind. Michal talked family with her in Slovak. She responded in rivers of Ruthenian. I listened in English. She plied me with Polish vodka. If you can’t understand at least you can drink! Michal asked me to explain Zen to her. I said, ‘Ask her if the birds are singing in her heart!’ Maybe he did, but she just poured me another vodka. As she laboured to get another log on the fire, Michal told me that it took her an-hour-and- a- half to get to church. ‘How far is the church?’ I asked for the village was tiny. ‘Oh about a hundred metres’, he said. ‘Is that because she is blind, because she can barely walk?’ ‘Yes. But mostly because she keeps stopping to enjoy what she can make out of the shadow and light. She picks up rocks and pebbles so she can feel them, talks to the dogs and cats, and to anyone she meet. It’s a long journey.


Ross Bolleter


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Stand still. The trees ahead and the bushes beside you
Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here.
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger.
The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you.
If you leave it, you may come back again,
saying Here.
No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a bush is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows
Where you are. You must let it find you.
David Walcott

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complete stillness

The Great Way has no gate.
.
Clear water has no taste.
.
The tongue has no bone
.
In complete stillness, a stone girl is dancing.
.
Seung Sahn

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You are the Unchangeable Awareness in which All activity takes place.
Always Rest in Peace.
You are Eternal Being, Unbounded and Undivided.
Just Keep Quite.
All is well.
Keep Quiet Here and Now.
You are Happiness.
You are Peace.
You are Freedom.
Do not entertain any notions that you are in trouble.
Be Kind to Yourself.
Open to your Heart and Simply Be.

.
Papaji

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