Thursday, August 31, 2017

on the road home


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.
You….You said,
“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.

–Wallace Stevens


Wednesday, August 30, 2017


Explain quantum mechanics in 5 words or less.

"Don’t look : waves.
Look : particles."
(an answer to a challenge asked by Sean Carroll on Twitter,
originally posed by physicist John Wheeler)


There is a lot to say about quantum mechanics, perhaps the most mysterious idea ever to be contemplated by human beings, but all we need is one simple (but hard to accept) fact: 

How the world appears when we look at it is very different from how it really is.

–Sean Carroll
The Particle at the End of the Universe -
The Hunt for the Higgs and the Discovery of a New World




Behind matter there is some kind of heat, around and behind things,
so that what we experience is not the turtle nor the night only,
not the rising whirlwind, not the certainty,
nor the steady gaze.

–Robert Bly  


Friday, August 25, 2017

not to worry


Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love.

It will not lead you astray.





By whatever path you go, you will have to lose yourself in the One. 

Surrender is complete only when you reach the stage ‘Thou art all’ and ‘Thy will be done’.

–Ramana Maharshi


Learn who it is within you who makes everything his own
and says, “My God, my mind, my thought, my soul, my body.” 

Learn the sources of sorrow, joy, love, hate. 

Learn how it happens that one watches without willing,
rests without willing, becomes angry without willing,
loves without willing.

–Hippolytus of Rome




Be crumbled, so wild flowers will come up where you are.

You have been stony for too many years.
Try something different -



Thursday, August 24, 2017

It is by God’s Grace that you think of God. –Sri Ramana Maharshi


You said, ‘Who’s at the door?’
I said, ‘Your slave.’

You said, ‘What do you want?’
‘To see you and bow.’

‘How long will you wait?’
‘Until you call.’

‘How long will you cook?’
‘Till the Resurrection.’
We talked through the door.
I claimed a great love and that I had
given up what the world gives, to be in that love.

‘You said, ‘Such claims require a witness.’
I said, ‘This longing, these tears.’

You said, ‘Discredited witnesses.’
I said, ‘Surely not!’

You said, ‘Who did you come with?’
‘The majestic imagination you gave me.’

‘Why did you come?’
‘The musk of your wine was in the air.’

‘What is your intention?’

‘What do you want from me?’

Then you asked, ‘Where have you been most comfortable?’
‘In the palace.’

‘What did you see there?’
‘Amazing things.’

‘Then why is it so desolate?’
‘Because all that can be taken away in a second.’

‘Who can do that?’
‘This clear discernment.’

‘Where can you live safely then?’
‘In Surrender.’

‘What is this giving up?’
‘A peace that saves us.’

‘Is there no threat of disaster?’
‘Only what comes in your street, inside your love.’

‘How do you walk there?’
‘In perfection.’

Now silence.
If I told more of this conversation,
those listening would leave themselves.

There would be no door, no roof or window either!

talking through the door


Wednesday, August 23, 2017

boil me


A chickpea leaps almost over the rim of the pot

where it’s being boiled.

‘Why are you doing this to me?’

The cook knocks him down with the ladle.

‘Don’t you try to jump out.

You think I’m torturing you.

I’m giving you flavour,

so you can mix with spices and rice

and be the lovely vitality of a human being.

Remember when you drank rain in the garden.

That was for this.’

Grace first. Sexual pleasure,

then a boiling new life begins,

and the Friend has something good to eat.

Eventually the chickpea

will say to the cook,

‘Boil me some more.

Hit me with the skimming spoon.

I can’t do this by myself.

I’m like an elephant that dreams of gardens

back in Hindustan and doesn’t pay attention

to his driver. You’re my cook, my driver,

my way to existence. I love your cooking.’

The cook says,

‘I was once like you,

fresh from the ground. Then I boiled in time,

and boiled in the body, two fierce boilings.

My animal soul grew powerful.

I controlled it with practices,

and boiled some more, and boiled

once beyond that,

and became your teacher.’

The Essential Rumi,
Coleman Barks and John Moyne version




Saturday, August 19, 2017

not to worry



If you cannot find a friend who is good, wise, and loving, walk alone, like a king who has renounced his kingdom, or an elephant roaming at will in the forest.


Friday, August 18, 2017



What is the key
To untie the knot of your mind’s suffering?
Is the esoteric secret
To slay the crazed one whom each of us
Did wed

And who can ruin
Our heart’s and eye’s exquisite tender

Hafiz has found
Two emerald words that

That I now cling to as I would sacred
Tresses of my Beloved’s 

Act great.
My dear, always act great.

What is the key
To untie the knot of the mind’s suffering?

Benevolent thought, sound
And movement.





In this house of mirrors you see a lot of things —-

Rub your eyes.

Only you exist.



The eye with which I see God is the same eye
with which God sees me.

–Meister Eckhart


One eye sees, the other feels. –Paul Klee


If you want to know who someone is, what is flowing through or not flowing, stay in a listening posture.
Close your eyes inside your companion’s shadow. 



Wednesday, August 16, 2017

dear world


One regret, dear world
That I am determined not to have
When I am lying on my deathbed

Is that
I did not kiss you enough.



Tuesday, August 15, 2017

if i were the moon


She kept a diary, in which she wrote impulsive thoughts.
Seeing the moon in the sky, her own heart surcharged,
she went and wrote:
‘If I were the moon, I know where I would fall down.’

–D. H. Lawrence
The Rainbow


Saturday, August 12, 2017

when I am most fragile


A woman's body, like the earth, has seasons;
when the mountain stream flows,
when the holy thaws,
when I am most fragile and in need,
it was then, it seemed, God came closest.

God, like a medic on a field, is tending our souls. Our horns get locked with desires, but don't hold yourself too accountable; for all desires are really innocent. That is what the compassion in His eyes tell me.

Why this great war between the countries -- the countries -- inside of us?

What are all these insane borders we protect?
What are all these different names for the same church of love we kneel in together? For it is true, together we live; and only at that shrine where all are welcome will God sing loud enough to be heard.

Our horns got locked with the earth and sky in some odd marriage ritual; so what, don't worry. We should be proud of ourselves for everything we helped create in this magic world.

And God is always there, if you feel wounded. He kneels over this earth like a divine medic, and His love thaws the holy in us.

–St. Teresa of Avila
Daniel Ladinsky version


Friday, August 11, 2017



Stay open and quiet, that is all. 
What you seek is so near you that there
is no place for a way.

—Nisargadatta Maharaj


Thursday, August 3, 2017

the hard part


For one human being to love another:
that is perhaps the most difficult task of all....,
the work for which all other work is but preparation. 

It is a high inducement to the individual to ripen...
a great claim upon us, something that chooses us out
and calls us to vast things.

–Rainer Maria Rilke




Just rest. 

Just sit there right now
Don’t do a thing
Just rest.
For your separation from God,
From love,

Is the hardest work
In this

Let me bring you trays of food
And something
That you like to

You can use my soft words
As a cushion
For your

Daniel Ladinsky translation