Friday, July 21, 2017

sight






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Once
a single cell
found that it was full of light
and for the first time there was seeing

when
I was a bird
I could see where the stars had turned
and I set out on my journey

high
in the head of a mountain goat
I could see across a valley
under the shining trees something moving

deep
in the green sea
I saw the two sides of the water
and swam between them

I
look at you
in the first light of the morning
for as long as I can


–W. S. Merwin



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For small creatures such as we, the vastness is bearable only through love. –Carl Sagan





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Be helpless, dumbfounded
Unable to say yes or no.

Then a stretcher will come from grace to gather us up.
We are too dull-eyed to see that beauty.
If we say we can, we’re lying. 
If we say No, we don’t see it, that No will behead us 
And shut tight our window onto spirit.

So let us rather not be sure of anything, 
Beside ourselves, and only that, so 
Miraculous beings come running to help. 
Crazed, lying in a zero circle, mute, 
We shall be saying finally, 
With tremendous eloquence, 
Lead us.

When we have totally surrendered to that beauty, 
We shall be a mighty kindness.


–Rumi



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aimless love









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This morning as I walked along the lakeshore,
I fell in love with a wren
and later in the day with a mouse
the cat had dropped under the dining room table. 

In the shadows of an autumn evening,
I fell for a seamstress
still at her machine in the tailor’s window,
and later for a bowl of broth,
steam rising like smoke from a naval battle. 

This is the best kind of love, I thought,
without recompense, without gifts,
or unkind words, without suspicion,
or silence on the telephone. 

The love of the chestnut,
the jazz cap and one hand on the wheel. 

No lust, no slam of the door –
the love of the miniature orange tree,
the clean white shirt, the hot evening shower,
the highway that cuts across Florida. 

No waiting, no huffiness, or rancor –
just a twinge every now and then 
for the wren who had built her nest
on a low branch overhanging the water
and for the dead mouse,
still dressed in its light brown suit. 

But my heart is always propped up
in a field on its tripod,
ready for the next arrow. 

After I carried the mouse by the tail
to a pile of leaves in the woods,
I found myself standing at the bathroom sink
gazing down affectionately at the soap, 
so patient and soluble,
so at home in its pale green soap dish.

I could feel myself falling again
as I felt its turning in my wet hands
and caught the scent of lavender and stone.


–Billy Collins




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hush







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The moment you start talking you create a verbal universe, a universe of words, ideas, concepts and abstractions, interwoven and inter-dependent, most wonderfully generating, supporting and explaining each other and yet all without essence or substance, mere creations of the mind.

Words create words, reality is silent.


–Nisargadatta



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real(ly






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Time is only an idea. There is only the Reality.

Whatever you think it is, it looks like that. If you call it time, it is time.
If you call it existence, it is existence, and so on. After calling it time, you divide it into days and nights, months, years, hours, minutes, etc.

Time is immaterial for the Path of Knowledge. But some of these rules and discipline are good for beginners.


―Sri Ramana Maharshi



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inner light






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In the inmost of the smallest of all spaces
runs a mute and constant play of color, inaccessible to eyes.
It is the light shut in that once in the moment of creation
was born inward and abode there, going on, once it had broken
up into the smallest of spectra in keeping with prismatic law at
frequencies that by the sighted would be called colors
if they encountered eyes able to see.

It moved in periods unimaginably small for time and space
but still with time and space enough for the least of the small.
In fact it found it had ample room and time.

It moved in cycles of nanoseconds and microspaces
from white light and the colors of the spectrum and back to white light.
A kind of breathing for light.

The photons breathed and pulsated with one another,
alternating signs and levels.

So the light kept going in spectral balance
from dense light to split and back to dense light and split,
in spectral cycles infinitely repeated.

It was like a play of fans,
in keeping with the same law that holds for rainbows,
but with spread and folded fans alternating with one another
in keeping with the law of light inscribed in them.

It was the light when it dances enclosed
when it is not traveling abroad and seen.

It belongs to the nature of light that it can be shut in and
still not die out in its movement,
that it preserves itself thus in the darkness as thought, intent
and aptitude, that it remembers its changes
and performs its dance, its interplay.

With this art the light keeps together the innumerable
swarms of matter and sings with light's spectral wings the
endless song in honor of the fullness of the world.


–Harry Martinson




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summer plain, excerpt







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We have seen so much.

Reality has almost used us up ...


–Tomas Tranströmer
Windows and Stones



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1 and 0






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When we understand,
we are at the centre of the circle
and there we sit
while Yes and No
chase each other
around the circumference.

–Chuang Tzu


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yes






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For all that has been, Thanks.
To all that shall be, Yes.

–Dag Hammarskjöld


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Thursday, July 20, 2017

questions





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Where there is a duality, as it were, there one sees another; there one smells another; there one tastes another; there one speaks to another ... 
But where everything has become just one's own self, then whereby and whom would one see? Then whereby and whom would one smell? then whereby and to whom would one speak? then whereby and whom would one hear? then whereby and of whom would one think? then whereby and whom would one touch?
then whereby and whom would one understand?



–Brihadaranyaka Upabishad  (2.4.14)



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5%





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... We perceive only a negligible portion of the vibrating ocean in which we are immersed.

We fail to detect the infrared and the ultraviolet, infrasound and ultrasound, and in general the very high and very low frequencies; we can’t even detect the X rays, gamma rays, radioactivity, and cosmic rays, which all still affect our bodies. And so many frequencies are still unknown.

The senses are therefore incomplete; our neural circuits can’t process the majority of inputs in order to translate them into images. According to some, our senses comprehend only 5 percent of the signals from the world, which means that we miss 95 percent of our environment.



–Citro Massimo, M.D.
The Basic Code of the Universe:
The Science of the Invisible in Physics, Medicine, and Spirituality



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Description Without Place





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In a description hollowed out of hollow-bright,
The artificer of subjects still half night.

It matters, because everything we say
Of the past is description without place, a cast

Of the imagination, made in sounds;
And because what we say of the future must portend,

Be alive with its own seemings, seeming to be
Like rubies reddened by rubies reddening.


–Wallace Stevens
closing lines to section V



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ears to hear






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The soul has been given its own ears to hear things the mind does not understand.

—Jalalud’din Rumi


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utterance






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Sitting over words
very late I have heard a kind of whispered sighing
not far
like a night wind in pines or like the sea in the dark
the echo of everything that has ever
been spoken
still spinning its one syllable
between the earth and silence



—W.S. Merwin


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say i am you

 



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Your body is away from me, but there is a window open
from my Heart to yours.
From this window, like the moon,
I keep sending news secretly.

–Rumi

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Hear the Wind Sing, excerpt






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... the wind has its reasons. We just don't notice as we go about our lives. But then, at some point, we are made to notice. The wind envelops you with a certain purpose in mind, and it rocks you. The wind knows everything that's inside you. And not just the wind. Everything, including a stone. They all know us very well. From top to bottom. It only occurs to us at certain times. And all we can do is go with those things. As we take them in, we survive, and deepen.

–Haruki Murakami


.
Lotta at Hof Butenland Farm Sanctuary
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listen






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I have come into this world to see this: the sword drop from men's hands even at the height of their arc of anger because we have finally realized there is just one flesh to wound and it is the Beloved's.

I have come into this world to see this: all creatures hold hands as we pass through this miraculous existence we share on the way to an even greater being of soul, a being of just ecstatic light, forever entwined and at play with Him.

I have come into this world to hear this: every song the earth has sung since it was conceived in the Divine's womb and began spinning from His wish, every song by wing and fin and hoof, every song by hill and field and tree and woman and child, every song of stream and rock, every song of tool and lyre and flute, every song of gold and emerald and fire, every song the heart should cry with magnificent dignity to know itself as God: for all other knowledge will leave us again in want and aching - only imbibing the glorious Sun will complete us. 

I have come into this world to experience this: men so true to love they would rather die before speaking an unkind word, men so true their lives are His covenant - the promise of hope.

I have come into this world to see this: the sword drop from men's hands even at the height of their arc of rage because we have finally realized there is just one flesh we can wound.


–Hafiz



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hush

  




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Sit and be still

until in the time
of no rain you hear

beneath the dry wind's
commotion in the trees

the sound of flowing
water among the rocks,

a stream unheard before,

and you are where
breathing is prayer.


–Wendell Berry



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Wednesday, July 19, 2017

a sweet question






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The moon came to me last night
With a sweet question.

She said,
“The sun has been my faithful lover
For millions of years.

Whenever I offer my body to him
Brilliant light pours from his heart.

Thousands then notice my happiness
And delight in pointing
toward my beauty.

Hafiz,
Is it true that our destiny
Is to turn into Light
Itself?”

And I replied,
"Dear moon,
Now that your love is maturing,
We need to sit together
Close like this more often

So I might instruct you
How to become
Who you
Are!"


–Hafiz



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beginning (it is north everywhere)






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Long before spring
king of the black cranes
rises one day
from the black
needle’s eye
on the white plain
under the white sky
the crown turns
and the eye
drilled clear through his head
turns
it is north everywhere
come out he says
come out then
the light is not yet
divided
it is a long way
to the first
anything
come even so
we will start
bring your nights with you


—W.S. Merwin
The Carriers of Ladders,
Pulitzer Prize for poetry, 1971




love is a place







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This is a place where a door might be
here where I am standing
In the light outside all the walls

there would be a shadow here
all day long
and a door into it
where now there is me
and somebody would come and knock
on this air
long after I have gone
and there in front of me a life
would open



–W. S. Merwin



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fishing for fallen light






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If each day falls
inside each night,
there exists a well
where clarity is imprisoned.

We need to sit on the rim
of the well of darkness
and fish for fallen light
with patience.


–Pablo Neruda



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done with mirrors


 



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One dervish to another, "What was your vision of God's presence"?


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I haven't seen anything. But for the sake of conversation,
I'll tell you a story.


God's presence is there in front of me - a fire on the left, a lovely stream on the right. One group walks toward the fire, into the fire, another toward the sweet flowing water.
No one knows which are blessed and which not.

Whoever walks into the fire appears suddenly in the stream.
And when a head goes under on the water surface, that head pokes out of the fire.
Most people guard against going into the fire, and so end up in it.
Those who love the water of pleasure and make it their devotion are cheated with this reversal.
The trickery goes further.
The voice of the fire tells the truth saying, "I am not fire.
I am fountainhead. Come into me and don't mind the sparks."
If you are a friend of God, fire is your water.
You should wish to have a hundred thousand sets of mothwings,
so you could burn them away, one set a night.
The moth sees light and goes into fire.
You should see fire and go toward light.
Fire is what of God that is world-consuming.
Water, world-protecting.

Somehow each gives the appearance of the other.
To these eyes you have now, what looks like water burns.
What looks like fire is a great relief to be inside.
You've seen a magician make a bowl of rice seem a dish of tiny, live worms. Before an assembly with one breath he made the floor swarm with scorpions that weren't there. How much more amazing God's tricks!
Generation after generation lies down, defeated, they think,
but they're like a woman underneath a man, circling him.
One molecule-mote-second thinking of God's reversal of comfort and pain is better than any attending ritual. That splinter of intelligence is substance.

The fire and water themselves:
accidental, done with mirrors.


–Rumi
Coleman Barks version














the window is the absence of the wall





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The window is the absence of the wall, and it gives air and light because it is empty. 
Be empty of all mental content, of all imagination and effort, and the very absence of obstacles will cause reality to rush in.


–Nisargadatta Maharaj



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if you want

 




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If
you want
the Virgin will come walking down the road
pregnant with the holy
and say
“I need shelter for the night, please take me inside your heart,
my time is so close.”

Then, under the roof of your soul, you will witness the sublime
intimacy, the divine, the Christ
taking birth
forever,
as she grasps your hand for help, for each of us
is the midwife of God, each of us.

Yes there, under the dome of your being does creation
come into existence externally
, through your womb, dear pilgrim—
the sacred womb of your soul,
as God grasps our arms for help; for each of us is
His beloved servant
never
far.

If you want, the Virgin will come walking
down the street pregnant
with Light and
sing . . .



–St. John of the Cross

Daniel Ladinsky translation,
Love Poems from God




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be light

 




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be light.
as minerals in the ground rise inside trees
and become tree,
as plant faces an animal
and enters the animal,

so a human
can put down the heavy
body baggage and
be light.


–Rumi
Coleman Barks version



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one rule






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The sky
Is a suspended blue ocean.
The stars are the fish
That swim.

The planets are the white whales
I sometimes hitch a ride on,
And the sun and all light
Have forever fused themselves
Into my heart and upon
My skin.

There is only one rule
On this Wild Playground,
For every sign Hafiz has ever seen
Reads the same.

They all say,
"Have fun, my dear; my dear, have fun,
In the Beloved's Divine
Game,

O, in the Beloved's
Wonderful Game."


–Hafiz 
Daniel Ladinsky version




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