“Let there be spaces in your togetherness, And let the winds of the heavens dance between you. Love one another but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls. Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup. Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf. Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone, Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music. Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping. For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts. And stand together, yet not too near together: For the pillars of the temple stand apart, And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.”
― Kahlil Gibran,
did you awaken as i did to this moment re-membering the universe with every breath is making an irresistible offer? thousandfold thanks, Desiree, and everyone for conspiring to gift me with so many moments of savoring these thirty-nine days of awakening initiation into wedding and weaving the cosmic I AM presence into the lush field of the divine matrix… a day, truly, of love after love…
Love After Love
The time will come
when, with elation
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,
and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you
all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,
the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.
may we all belong to the caravan of re-joy-sing…
on this darkest night of the moon, Hindus are celebrating the festival of light, Diwali and the triumph of light over darkness… light a candle and gaze into the fire, we are always living in the midst of fire, something’s always burning, being purified, transformed…
on this new moon of cosmic balance and the creative fires of imagination, what is going up in smoke? how is fire teaching you who you truly are and inspiring being more fully SELF?
thank you, thank you, thank you for the creative fires sparking radiant living, for compassion being ignited in the presence of scorched earth and light filling our one heart…
as above, so below… as within, so without….
drawing down the energy of this new moon of cosmic balance, of creative imagination, of divine union of the opposites… weaving a path of equilibrium trusting the wisdom of the heart…
stand in the center, being balance dancing the rhythm of harmony, being equanimity unshakably anchored in true peace stability…
as we be and become our true nature – water – we are the eternal radiance – we are woven together as one field, one sky out beyond…
in this moment of cosmic order, bathe in chords of celestial harmony singing in the buoyant sea…
as above, so below… as within, so without…
we are one soul facing a collective dark night filled with challenges calling us to deepen into the communion of our one heart, the community, the common unity of dwelling with each other surrendered to love…
we are so close to a tipping point, to a moving from a consciousness of fear and separation to one of love and unity…
can you feel this new world breathing? breathing you into deeper ensouled presence? can you let go so deeply courageously leaping into the creative fires that you are transformed and purified into the heart of mystery?
yes, our true nature as imaginal cell is dancing us home together…
The dark night of the soul comes just before revelation. When everything is lost, and all seems darkness, there comes the new life and all that is needed,
~ Joseph Campbell ~
as the global dark night of the soul continues across the wasteland, the shadowlands, let’s call in Porcupine Goddess to share an ancient wisdom story…
long ago, in the coldest winter ever, many of our relations were dying… we of the porcupine council met and decided we’d nestle together to keep warm and stay alive… alas, we were warm but the quills of our neighbors were wounding us, so we decided to separate from each other to relieve the hurts of living in close quarters… although now we were protected from being wounded, we began to die one by one, alone and frozen cold… faced with our extinction or living as wounded porcupines, we chose wisely – deciding to return to being together… we learned to live with wounds caused by being in close relationship to receive the greater benefit of the warmth that comes from others. this way, we were able to not only survive but also to thrive.
may we be as wise as our porcupine relations in realizing interdependence, the way of the heart, is the way…
this week’s image to show you the astonishing light of your being is a gentle reminder of whom you are… a miracle, an imaginal cell of connective tissue powered by love… a miracle walking, not on water, but, on green earth dwelling in the present moment and feeling truly alive…
we all come from earth mother and to her we shall return
like a drop of rain flowing to the ocean
when we are sad and forlorn, we come to her to be reborn
like a drop of rain flowing to the ocean
grounding in deep earth, sacred space of rebirth
drops of rain flowing home to ocean
One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
their bad advice–
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do–
determined to save
the only life you could save.
happy trails, miraculous being!
just as this beautiful creature began as an independent single imaginal cell and ran to meet and connect with other imaginal cells to form a cluster resonating at the same frequency and becoming an interdependent multiple imaginal cell, may we join together as beloved communion of imagination to transform and meet these challenging times…
“If you are mindful enough you can see the Buddha in anything, especially in the sangha. The twentieth century was the century of individualism, but we don’t want that anymore. Now we try to live as a community. We want to flow like a river, not a drop of water. The river will surely arrive at the ocean, but a drop of water may evaporate halfway. That’s why it is possible for us to recognize that the presence of the Buddha is the here and now. I think that every step, every breath, every word that is spoken or done in mindfulness—that is the manifestation of the Buddha. Don’t look for the Buddha elsewhere. It is in the art of living mindfully every moment of your life.”
Thich Nhat Hanh
dancing wholeheartedly with more and more loving presence, more and more trust and more and more surrender into the river of divine flow and towards all that strengthens our wild wings…
today’s contemplation is dedicated to all earth protector relatives in this moment of great planetary crisis…
“There comes a time when all life on Earth is in danger. Barbarian powers have arisen. Although they waste their wealth in preparations to annihilate each other, they have much in common: weapons of unfathomable devastation and technologies that lay waste the world. It is now, when the future of all beings hangs by the frailest of threads, that the kingdom of Shambhala emerges.
Now you can’t go there because it is not a place. It exists in the hearts and minds of the Shambhala Warriors. And you can’t tell a Shambhala Warrior by looking at her and him. The time is coming said Rinpoche when great courage is required of the Shambhala warriors, moral courage and physical courage and that’s because they are going to go right into the heart of the barbarian powers to dismantle their weapons.”
Joanna Macy recounts the twelve centuries old Tibetan Buddhist prophecy as told to her by her teacher
as Changing Woman dons her seasonal robes shifting the colors of the landscape, do you feel the shifting consciousness moving us from celebrating a domination consciousness to an embodied, relational, holistic, sacred way of being in harmony with the web of life?
where we… respect natural laws, live in reciprocity with our earth mother, live within capacity, respect the sacredness of all our relations, of nature as a sanctuary that fills our every need, listen to the voice of the first peoples whose ear to the past and eye to the future grounds them in the present moment as a fractal of every moment…
this ecological tipping moment where their call to action to stand for our water and air and trees is ever so timely and so critical… no more polluting water, cutting down trees, digging out oil for oil is earth mother’s blood and if we dig it, creation will die…
may we all stand in solidarity with the wisdom and ways of an embodied, wholistic consciousness simultaneously referencing past and future informing our actions in the here and the now to live well with deep reverence and close to the ground in sacred relationship with our mothership…
thousand fold thanks to the protectors of the earth…
today’s open heart devotional is delivered by a master of this walk, the Dalai Lama….
CULTIVATE AN OPEN HEART
I believe that every human being has an innate desire for happiness and does not want to suffer. I believe that each of us has the same potential to develop inner peace and thereby achieve happiness and joy. If one has a positive mental attitude then, even when surrounded by hostility, one will not lack inner peace. On the other hand, if one’s mental attitude is more negative, influenced by fear, suspicion, helplessness, or self-loathing, then, even when surrounded by one’s best friends, in a nice atmosphere and comfortable surroundings, one will not be happy.
In my own case, at the age of 16, I lost my freedom, and at 24, I lost my country. I have been a refugee for the last forty years, with heavy responsibilities. As I look back, my life has not been easy. However, throughout all these years I learned about compassion, about caring for others. This mental attitude has brought me inner strength. One of my favorite prayers, translated roughly, is:
So long as space remains,
So long as sentient beings remain,
I will remain,
In order to help, in order to serve,
In order to make my own contribution.
That sort of thinking has brought purpose to my life. No matter how difficult or complicated things may be, if we have this type of mental attitude we can have inner peace.
Spiritual growth need not be based on religious faith. I believe that the methods by which we increase our altruism, our sense of caring for others, and by which we develop the attitude that our own individual concerns are less important than those of others, are common to all major religious traditions. Though we may find differences in philosophical views and rites, all religions advocate love, compassion, and forgiveness. And even persons who do not believe in religion can appreciate the virtues of basic human values.
Since our very existence and well-being are a result of the cooperation and contributions of countless others, we must have a proper attitude and way of relating to them. In the past, countries, regions, and even villages were economically independent of one another. Under those circumstances the destruction of one’s enemy might have been a victory for oneself. Today we are so interdependent that the concept of war has become outdated. When we face problems or disagreements today, we have to arrive at solutions through dialogue. We cannot destroy our neighbors! We cannot ignore their interests! Doing so would ultimately cause us to suffer.
Non-violence does not mean that we remain indifferent to a problem. On the contrary, it is important to be fully engaged. However, we must do so in a way that does not benefit us alone. We must not harm the interests of others. Non-violence, therefore, is not merely the absence of violence. It involves a sense of compassion and caring. I strongly believe that we must promote non-violence at the level of the family as well as at the national and international levels.
We must try to develop greater perspective, looking at situations from all angles. Usually, when we face problems ,we look at them from our own point of view. We even sometimes deliberately ignore other aspects of a situation. This often leads to negative consequences.
Sometimes, due to a very small matter, a fight starts between a husband and wife, or a parent and child. If you focus merely on the immediate problem, then yes, it really is worth fighting and quarreling. It is even worth divorcing! However, looking at the situation with more perspective, we see that though there is a problem, there is also a common interest. You can come to feel, “This is a small problem which I must solve by dialogue, not by drastic measures.” We can thereby develop a non-violent atmosphere within our own family, as well as within our community.
Another important practice in training our minds involves learning to distinguish between the negative qualities of conceit or arrogance and those of positive pride or self-confidence. In my own practice, when I have an arrogant feeling, “Oh, I’m somehow special,” I say to myself, “I’m a human being and a Buddhist monk. I thereby have a great opportunity to practice the spiritual path leading to Buddhahood.” I then compare myself to a small insect in front of me and think, “This little insect is very weak, with no capacity to think about philosophical matters. It has no ability to develop altruism. In spite of the opportunity I have, I behave in this stupid way.” If I judge myself from this point of view, the insect is definitely more honest and sincere than I am.
Human emotions are very powerful and sometimes overwhelm us. This can lead to disasters. I think that anger and hatred actually cause more harm to us than to the person responsible for our problem. Imagine that your neighbor hates you and is always creating problems for you. If you lose your temper and develop hatred toward him, your digestion will be bad, your sound sleep will go, and you will have to start to use tranquilizers and sleeping pills. You will have to increase the doses of these, which will harm your body. Your mood will be affected, and as a result your old friends will hesitate to visit you. You will gradually have more white hair and wrinkles, and you may eventually develop more serious health problems. Then your neighbor will be really happy. Without having inflicted any physical harm he will have fulfilled his wish!
If, in spite of his injustices, you remain calm, happy, and peaceful, your health will remain strong, you will continue to be joyful, and more friends will come to visit you. Your life will become more successful. This will really bring about worry in your neighbor’s mind. I think that this is the wise way to inflict harm upon your neighbor. You must not consider tolerance and patience to be signs of weakness. I consider them signs of strength.
When we are faced with a person or group of people wishing us harm, we can view this as an opportunity to develop patience and tolerance. We need these qualities; they are useful to us. And the only occasion we have to develop them is when we are challenged by an enemy. So, from this point of view, our enemy is our Guru, our teacher. Irrespective of their motivation, from our point of view they are very beneficial, a blessing.
There is a Buddhist practice where one imagines giving the source of all joy to another person, thereby removing all their suffering. Though of course we cannot change their situation, I do feel that in some cases, through a genuine sense of caring and compassion, through our sharing in their plight, our attitude can help alleviate that person’s suffering, if only mentally. However, the main point of this practice is to increase our inner strength and courage.
I have chosen a few lines that I feel would be acceptable to people of all faiths, and even to those with no spiritual belief. When reading these lines, if you are a religious practitioner, you can reflect upon the divine form that you worship. A Christian can think of Jesus or God; a Muslim can reflect upon Allah. Then, while reciting these verses, make the commitment to enhance your spiritual values. If you are not religious, you can reflect upon the fact that, fundamentally, all beings are equal to you in their wish for happiness and their desire to overcome suffering. Recognizing this, you make a pledge to develop a good heart. It is most important that we have a warm heart. As long as we are part of human society, it is very important to be a kind, warm-hearted person.
May the poor find wealth,
Those weak with sorrow find joy.
May the forlorn find new hope,
Constant happiness and prosperity.
May the frightened cease to be afraid,
And those bound be free.
May the weak find power,
And may their hearts join in friendship
His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama Tenzin Gyatso is the head of the Tibetan Government in Exile and the spiritual leader of the Tibetan people.
may we all awaken
intention painted in the sand and dissolved into the ocean of being during sacred awakening re-treat
in honor of today’s being International Day of the Girl and Thay’s 91st Day of Continuation, I offer deep bows to a very special girl and as wise a teacher as Thay…
to Nia, whose name means Radiance, my grandpuppy , awakened being of the wide open heart, leaping levitating dynamo of irrepressible spirit, boundless ecstatic love in motion awakening everyone she meets to our true nature of radiance…
Invocation of Nia/Radiance
May I Be a Guard
May I be a guard for those who need protection
A guide for those on the path
A boat, a raft, a bridge for those who wish to cross the flood
May I be a lamp in the darkness
A resting place for the weary
A healing medicine for all who are sick
A vase of plenty, a tree of miracles
And for the boundless multitudes of living beings
May I bring sustenance and awakening
Enduring like the earth and the sky
Until all beings are free from sorrow
And all are awakened.
Prayed every morning by His Holiness Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet
thousandfold thanks, dear being for being a guard, raft, bridge, lamp in darkness…