Come, live in my heart, and pay no rent.
Enlightenment is like the moon reflected on the water.
The moon does not get wet, nor is the water broken.
Although its light is wide and great, the moon is reflected even in a puddle an inch wide. The whole moon and the entire sky are reflected in dewdrops on the grass, or even in one drop of water.Enlightenment does not divide you, just as the moon does not break the water. You cannot hinder enlightenment, just as a drop of water does not hinder the moon in the sky.The depth of the drop is the height of the moon.
Each reflection, however long or short its duration, manifests the vastness of the dewdrop, and realizes the limitlessness of the moonlight in the sky.
–Dogen Zenji, 1200 - 1253
That which speech does not illumine, but which illumines speech:
know that alone to be the Brahman, not this which people worship here.
That which cannot be thought by mind, but by which, they say, mind is able to think: know that alone to be the Brahman, not this which people worship here.
That which is not seen by the eye, but by which the eye is able to see: know that alone to be the Brahman, not this which people worship here.
That which cannot be heard by the ear, but by which the ear is able to hear: know that alone to be Brahman, not this which people worship here.
That which none breathes with the breath, but by which breath is in–breathed: know that alone to be the Brahman, not this which people worship here.
–The Kena Upanishad
into every cup,
quenching darkness.The proudly piousstuff their cups with parchmentand critique the taste of inkwhile God pours lightand the trees lift their limbswithout worry of redemption,every blossom a chalice.Hafiz, seduce those withered soulswith words that wet their parched lipsas lightpours like raininto every empty cupset adrift on the Infinite Ocean.
If you don't know the kind of person I am
and I don't know the kind of person you are
a pattern that others made may prevail in the world
and following the wrong god home we may miss our star.
For there is many a small betrayal in the mind,
a shrug that lets the fragile sequence break
sending with shouts the horrible errors of childhood
storming out to play through the broken dyke.
And as elephants parade holding each elephant's tail,
but if one wanders the circus won't find the park,
I call it cruel and maybe the root of all cruelty
to know what occurs but not recognize the fact.
And so I appeal to a voice, to something shadowy,
a remote important region in all who talk:
though we could fool each other, we should consider--
lest the parade of our mutual life get lost in the dark.
.For it is important that awake people be awake,
or a breaking line may discourage them back to sleep;
the signals we give--yes, no, or maybe-- should be clear:
the darkness around us is deep.
Forget roadside crossings.Go nowhere with guns.Go elsewhere your own way,
lonely and wanting. Or
stay and be early:
next to deep woods
inhabit old orchards.
All clearings promise.
Sunrise is good,
and fog before sun.
Expect nothing always;
find your luck slowly.
Wait out the windfall.
Take your good time
to learn to read ferns;make like a turtle:
downhill toward slow water.
Instructed by heron,drink the pure silence.
Be compassed by wind.
If you quiver like aspentrust your quick nature:
let your ear teach you
which way to listen.
You've come to assume
protective color; now
colors reform tonew shapes in your eye.
You've learned by now
to wait without waiting;as if it were dusk
look into light falling;
in deep relief
things even out. Be
careless of nothing. See
what you see.
The cosmos that you and I are experiencing right now, with trees, plants, peoples, houses, cars, stars and galaxies, is just consciousness expressing itself at one particular frequency.
My father leaned in closer and spoke louder. “We have a question we’ve always wanted to ask you,” he said, over-enunciating every word.
“If observers create reality, where do the observers come from?”
[Physicist John] Wheeler smiled. “From physics. From the universe. I like to say”— he paused, trying to find the words — “that the universe is a self-excited circuit.”
Trespassing on Einstein’s Lawn
A Poetic Version:
I know that nothing has ever been real
without my beholding it.
All becoming has needed me.
My looking ripens things
and they come toward me, to meet and be met.
–Rainer Maria Rilke
Book of Hours, I-1
For the birds there is not a time that they tell,
but the point vierge between darkness and light, between being and nonbeing.
You can tell yourself the time by their waking,
if you are experienced.But that is your folly, not theirs.
Confessions of a Guilty Bystander
Time is what keeps the light from reaching us.
There is no greater obstacle to God than time: and not only time but temporalities, not only temporal things but temporal affections, not only temporal affections but the very taint and smell of time.
Be with no one but me.
When you are with everyone but me, you’re with no one.
When you are with no one but me, you’re with everyone.Instead of being so bound up with everyone, be everyone.
When you become that many, you’re nothing.
I am a fountain, You are my water.I flow from You to You.I am an eye, You are my light,I look from You to You.You are neither my right nor my left.You are my foot and my arm as well.I am a traveler, You are my road.I go from You to You.
–Zeynep Hatun, 15th Century,
Murat Yagan translation
Ah, not to be cut off,
not through the slightest partition
shut out from the law of the stars.
The inner -- what is it?
if not the intensified sky,
hurled through with birds and deep
with the winds of homecoming.
–Rainer Maria Rilke
Stephen Mitchell version.
There’s a thread you follow. It goes among
things that change. But it doesn’t change.
People wonder about what you are pursuing.
You have to explain about the thread.
But it is hard for others to see.
While you hold it you can’t get lost.
Tragedies happen; people get hurt
or die; and you suffer and get old.
Nothing you do can stop time’s unfolding.
You don’t ever let go of the thread.
so careless with your lapful of red flowers,
eyes searching the moonless woods
for his eyes looking back.
Not there tonight. No sound but the bees
rummaging through the twilight, whispering.
You startle like a deer, Radha.
Where will she quench herself,
this flower-burdened girl?
I have no unguent for her burning.
No hands but his can cure her,
no hands but his can catch
her chain of flowers and hold her still.
She grabs my hand, not knowing
it’s mine, night bird about to cry out
to the whole forest, since she can’t see him
or feel the after-tremor of his touch
subsiding in her body.
Look, the wind’s undressing you,
scattered moonbeam, hold still—
it’s not his longing that loosens the cloth.
Talk to me, tear-spangled one,
quit looking down the empty path.
It’s late, it’s dark. Not even his shadow lies there.
Be quiet now. I’ll sing to you.
Realize that whereas you exist in a seemingly continuous state of arousal in your waking state, the arousal of the quantum self is quite discontinuous from this ordinary state of your consciousness.
Realize that whereas you in your ordinary ego are local, quite identified with your local personality and history, your quantum self is nonlocal; its identity is the whole cosmos.
–Dr. Amit Goswami
And the world cannot be discovered by a journey of miles, no matter how long, but only by a spiritual journey of one inch, very arduous and humbling and joyful, by which we arrive at the ground at our own feet, and learn to be at home.It is a journey we can make only by the acceptance of mystery and of mystification – by yielding to the condition that what we have expected is not there.
I said I will find what is lowly
and put the roots of my identity
down there: each day I'll wake up
and find the lowly nearby,
a handy focus and reminder,
a ready measure of my significance,
the voice by which I would be heard,
the wills, the kinds of selfishness
freely adopt as my own:
but though I have looked everywhere,I can find nothingto give myself to:everything is
magnificent with existence, is insurfeit of glory:nothing is diminished,nothing has been diminished for me:
I said what is more lowly than the grass:ah, underneath,a ground-crust of dry-burnt moss:I looked at it closelyand said this can be my habitat: butnestling in I foundbelow the brown exteriorgreen mechanisms beyond the intellectawaiting resurrection in rain: so I got up
and ran saying there is nothing lowly in the universe:I found a beggar:he had stumps for legs: nobody was payinghim any attention: everybody went on by:I nestled in and found his life:there, love shook his body like a devastation:I saidthough I have looked everywhereI can find nothing lowlyin the universe:
I whirled though transfigurations up and down,transfigurations of size and shape and place:
at one sudden point came still,stood in wonder:moss, beggar, weed, tick, pine, self, magnificentwith being!
–A. R. Ammons
A story is like water
that you heat for your bath.
It takes messages between the fire
and your skin. It lets them meet,
and it cleans you!
Very few can sit down
in the middle of the fire itself
like a salamander or Abraham.
We need intermediaries.
A feeling of fullness comes,
but it usually takes some bread
to bring it.
Beauty surrounds us,
but usually we need to be walking
in a garden to know it.
The body itself is a screen
to shield and partially reveal
the light that’s blazing
inside your presence.
Water, stories, the body,all the things we do, are mediumsthat hide and show what’s hidden.Study them,and enjoy being washedwith a secret we sometimes know,and then not.
–RumiColeman Barks version
Stay light-footed, and keep moving.
Do you hear what the violin
says about longing?
The same as the stick, "I was once
a green branch in the wind."
We are all far from home.
Language is our caravan bell.
Don't stop anywhere.
The moment you're attracted to a place,
you grow bored with it.
Think of the big moves you've already made,
from a single cell to a human being!
Stay light-footed, and keep moving.
Turkish, Arabic, Greek, any tongue
is a wind that was formerly water.
As a breeze carries the ocean inside it,
so underneath every sentence is,
"Come back to the source."
Coleman Barks version, from a
John Moyne translation
It was when I said,
“There is no such thing as the truth,”
That the grapes seemed fatter.
The fox ran out of his hole.
“There are many truths,
But they are not parts of a truth.”
Then the tree, at night, began to change,
Smoking through green and smoking blue.
We were two figures in a wood.
We said we stood alone.
It was when I said,
“Words are not forms of a single word.
In the sum of the parts, there are only the parts.
The world must be measured by eye.”
It was when you said,
“The idols have seen lots of poverty,
Snakes and gold and lice,
But not the truth;”
It was at that time, that the silence was largest,
And longest, the night was roundest.
The fragrance of the autumn warmest,
Closest, and strongest.