Published May 2, 2014 | Full size is 4896 × 3264 pixels
Bodhi mind has no tree. The mirror also has no stand. Buddha nature is always clear and pure. Is there room for dust?
The barn's burned down; now I can see the moon.
It is when we are near the end of a book that we enjoy it and begin to sense its loss. Guests whom we anxiously expect often fail to come. So the world runs always contrary to our wishes. How rarely in a hundred years do we encounter the Dharma. Look up and look out the window.
When a man's inner observer is hidden from him, he loses sight of how he is. He is lost in a world that seems to be his. Where is the mistake?
Contemplation does not arrive at reality after a process of deduction, but by an intuitive awakening in which our free and personal reality becomes fully alive to its own existential depths, which open out into the mystery of the Universe.
The contemplative is not merely a person who likes to sit and think, still less one who sits around with a vacant stare. Contemplation is not and can't be a function of this external self.
Contemplation can't be taught, or even clearly explained. To describe reactions or feelings one experiences as contemplation is considering a state of consciousness that does not exist. It is not the static awareness of metaphysical essence or abstract ideas. Contemplation is a sudden experience of awareness, an awakening to the reality within all that is real including our own Universal expression. It is a brief moment in connecting the dots, where the dots are only sensed but not defined. If you do not understand that, it can't be explained.
(The Trappist Monk, Fr. Thomas Merton, was a spiritual and contemplative monastic who explored Buddhism's valued history of the inner journey. He was a friend of the Dalai Lama and other spiritual leaders regardless of their traditions. What mattered most to him was their enlightened worldview.)
The most wonderful moment of the day is that when creation in its innocence asks permission to "be" once again, as it did on the first morning that ever was.
My worship is a blue sky and ten thousand crickets in the deep wet hay of the field. My vow is the silence under their song.
The reality of now --- the unreality of all the rest.
Although we know no hills, no country rivers, here in the jungles of our waterpipes and iron ladders, our thoughts are quieter than rivers, our loves are simpler than the trees, our prayers deeper than the sea.
It becomes very important to remember that the quality of one's night depends on the thoughts of the day. Still, the quality of one's nights depends on the sanity of the day. I bring there the sins of the day into the light and darkness of truth to be adored without disguise -- then I want to fly back to the disguises.