There are those who pride themselves on being ‘activists,’ some believing that their actions are more significant than what other people do. But who judges the value of an act?

The old Bulgarian cobbler – some say he is one of only seven Tzaddiks left on earth – stitches a new sole to a grizzled boot. He is so present, and so deep in merry silence, he doesn’t realize how he sews heaven to earth, allowing us to survive another day.

The pole star seems to rest in stillness all night. Yet it streaks at inconceivable speed through the heavens.

A tiny emerald moth alights on the lupine in a mountain meadow, folding its wings in repose. This faint pulse sends out a thread of causation that will finally bring a tempest to the other side of the planet.

The child falls and scrapes her knee. The mother who treats her wound, not only with ointment but with immeasurable tenderness, lightens the burden of all who suffer, though we never know quite why we sigh, and feel such nameless elevation.

If you take – no, receive – a breath with infinite gratitude – for we are not capable of doing infinite works, but we are capable of being infinitely grateful – this breath may feel like the faintest caress on your breastbone. But can you be sure it isn’t a mighty wind from the Creator, sweeping the world, renewing mountains, forests, and rivers, restoring the Spirit to every heart that beats?

In the words of Thich Nhat Hanh, “Drink your tea slowly, as if it is the axis on which the earth revolves.”

~ Fred LaMotte

moving day

March 26, 2018

Those who see worldly life as an obstacle to dharma see no dharma in everyday actions. They have not yet discovered that there are no everyday actions outside of dharma.

– Dogen Zenji

vanaprastha

March 17, 2018

If a man carries too many worldly burdens, his body will soon wear out. If he worries about too many worldly problems, his mind will soon collapse. To be so occupied with material things is a dangerous way to live, a foolish waste of energy. A man ought to simplify his needs and use his strength to attain spiritual goals. Nobody ever ruined his mind or body by exercising self-restraint.

– Han Shan, Journey to Dreamland

If only you could hear

The sound of snow

Falling late at night

From the trees

Of the old temple.

~ Hakuin Ekaku, 1685-1768

the great way

February 25, 2018

Sit altogether in meditation. Become peacefully calm and quiet, without motion, without stillness, without birth, without destruction, with no judgements of right or wrong, neither staying nor going. This, then, is the Great way.

~ Hui-neng

ears to hear

February 11, 2018

It is one’s own readiness that makes an experience exoteric or esoteric.

The secret isn’t that you’re not being told.

The secret is that you’re not able to hear.

~ Richard Alpert (Ram Dass)

we are one

January 8, 2018

We become compassionate not from altruism which denies the self for the sake of the other, but from the insight that sees and feels one IS the other.

~ Huston Smith