Come meander with me on the pathless path of the Heart
in these anecdotal,
sometimes inspiring, sometimes personal meanderings of the Heart's opening in the every-day-ness of life...

Monday, January 29, 2018

The Silent Articulation of a Face - Rumi

Love comes with a knife, not some
shy question, and not with fears
for its reputation!...

Love is a madman...


There are love stories,
and there is obliteration into love.

You've been walking the ocean's edge,
holding up your robes to keep them dry.

You must dive naked under and deeper under,
a thousand times deeper!
Love flows down...


Don't put blankets over the drum!
Open completely.  Let your spirit-ear
listen to the green dome's passionate murmur.

Let the cords of your robe be untied.
Shiver in this new love beyond all
above and below.
The sun rises, but which way
does night go?

I have no more words.

Let soul speak with the silent
articulation of a face.


excerpt from the original poem

Thanks to The Beauty We Love
for the photo and poem...

Saturday, January 27, 2018

To be kind - Hermann Hesse & Maslow

To hold our tongues when everyone is gossiping,
to smile without hostility at people and institutions,
to compensate for the shortage of love in the world
with more love in small, private matters; to show
greater patience, to forgo the cheap revenge
attainable from mockery and criticism:
all these things we can do.

Hermann Hesse


Let people realize clearly that every time they threaten
someone or humiliate or unnecessarily hurt or dominate
or reject another human being, they become forces for
the creation of pathology, even if these be small forces.
Let them recognize that every person who is kind, helpful,
decent, affectionate, and warm, is a therapeutic force...

Abraham Maslow


Compassion is knowing that
you are part of everyone,
and everyone is part of you - is you.
When seeing this there is no longer judgment,
just a deeper understanding and respect
for our humanity -
a deepening of compassion.

Mystic Meandering
Meditative writings
c. 2004 - 2006

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

A Story of Unexpected Compassion

While at the cardiologist's office last week, signing in with the receptionist, asking her some questions, a woman suddenly appeared behind me.  She interrupted in a frantic, anxious voice, obviously distressed:

"I don't mean to interrupt, but I just need to know when my appointment is because I have an echogram scheduled down the hall and I want to make sure I don't miss my appointment with the doctor."

I gently responded " no problem" to her interruption and stepped aside while she frantically went on.  I immediately noticed a portion of a vertical scar on her chest above the open top of her blouse - a sign of open heart surgery.

She was a fairly young (through my 68 year old eyes) short woman, disheveled, with stringy, dirty-blonde hair.  And even though it was nearly 60 degrees with no snow on the ground, she wore snow boots and a winter coat that sat cockeyed on her shoulders as she flailed her arms about excitedly; the unbuttoned coat flapped around as she flailed, in very apparent anxiety.  She reminded me of one of those odd characters in stories or movies, who interrupt a scene to bring awareness to something; to get your attention.  I could see the stress and fear on the woman's face, and in her body motions...  It was a familiar look and feeling.  I could relate...  I saw myself in her - although not quite as exaggerated - but often how I feel inside...

She kept apologizing for interrupting, and I kept saying it was no problem at all, that I understood; trying to put her at ease.

The receptionist, somewhat guarded, responded to her in a firm, almost stern voice - that her appointment was at 2:30 (it was now just after 1pm), and that she had time to get her echocardiogram done and come back in time for her appointment.  The woman left in a hurry, scuffing her snow boots across the carpeted floor.

I finished with the receptionist and took a seat, waiting for my turn.

After my visit with the doctor, I came out to a full waiting room - a sea of faces.  As I stood at the desk to make another appointment, I turned and saw the disheveled woman sitting there - fidgeting.  While I waited for the scheduler to attend to me, as she made no acknowledgment of my presence, I turned to the woman and said: "I see you made it back ok" - smiling.

She exhaled a long drawn out "yessss", looking frazzled - making more antsy body movements in her chair.

I said to her - "I have anxiety too" and smiled again, just wanting to soothe the woman's obvious internal suffering, as I knew deeply what that feels like - to be so anxious, to be so wound up inside that calmness doesn't seem possible at times.  And how "peace" often feels like a noble idea, just out of reach, while my frenetic mind and body take over, just like hers did.

I am haunted by the memory of her now - knowing how painful it is to go through life with such emotional intensity and the fear that lies hidden in the body, erupting in uncontrollable outbursts of anxiety at times - or heart problems :) - when awareness fails - although I have learned to meet it when the fearful mind arises, embracing it - trying to ride out its ferocity...  still...  I know how it feels when it is out of control...

Afterwards I was very aware that "I" didn't *decide* to be compassionate, yet Something in me responded automatically to her, from the Heart.  Compassion arose unexpectedly; a heartfelt response to reach out to someone in trouble - emotionally.

How ironic - in the cardiologist's office, where they take care of hearts, that I would experience a real Heart opening for another human being; meeting her where she was in her fear, not making judgments about her behavior...  Maybe that was a reflection, just a little glimpse in the mirror, of who "I" truly am - the True Self within.  Deep inside this fearful heart beats a Heart of Compassion...  I find that somehow comforting...

It's there in all of us, our True Nature, if we only open to it...


Please note:  this is not written to say how wonderful I am.  It's not about "me" being compassionate, but how the Heart opened and compassion arose unexpectedly.  How the disheveled woman came to me to teach me that it is there even when I don't realize it.  The woman's "condition" slowed my mind and gave me a different perspective.  I am forever grateful to the disheveled woman, and send her blessings wherever she is...


The only difference between "you" and "me"
are the words and concepts of "you" and "me."
The Source of everything is the same
- Love and Compassion -
this is [the True] Self.


Sunday, January 21, 2018

Travel Lighter - Rumi

Be foolishly in love,
because love is all there is.
There is no way into presence
except through a love exchange.

If someone asks, But what is love?
answer, Dissolving the will.

True freedom comes to those
who have escaped the questions
of free will and fate....

Love and lover live in eternity.
Other desires are substitutes...

How long do you lay embracing a corpse?
Love rather the soul, which cannot be held.

Anything born in Spring dies in the Fall,
but love is not seasonal.

With wine pressed from grapes,
expect a hangover.
But this love path has no expectations.

You are uneasy riding the body?
Dismount, Travel lighter.
Wings will be given.

Be clear like a mirror
reflecting nothing.

Be clean of pictures and the worry
that comes with images.

Gaze into what is not ashamed
or afraid of any truth.

Contain all human faces in your own
without any judgement of them.

Be pure emptiness.
What is inside that? you ask,
Silence is all I can say.

Lovers have some secrets
That they keep.

excerpts from: No Expectations


Photo - Mandala Art
digitally altered

Thursday, January 18, 2018

The Liberated Soul - Marguerite Porete

I am God, says Love, for Love is God and God is Love...
...and the Soul is God by condition of Love,
thus I am God by divine nature...

(The liberated soul) loses her name in the one in whom she
is melted and dissolved.  Thus she would be like a body of
water which flows from the sea.  And when this water returns
to the sea, it loses its course and its name, and is now in the
sea where it rests...

This Soul is always in full sufficiency, in which she swims
 and bobs and floats, is surrounded by divine peace, without
any movement in her interior, and without any exterior work
[effort] on her part.

(The liberated soul) is at rest without obstructing the outpouring
of divine Love.  She no longer seeks God through penitence, nor
through any sacrament; not through thoughts, nor through words,
nor through works, nor through divine understanding, nor through
divine love, nor through divine praise.

Her will is planted in the One...  She is dissolved into that prior
existence where Love has received her.

She has fallen into certainty of knowing nothing and into
certainty of willing nothing.  And this nothingness...gives her
the All...

Marguerite Porete
14th Century French Mystic
Her writings, of which the above is only a
small excerpt, were considered heretical.
She was burned at the stake in Paris in 1310.

Porete's vision of the Soul is one of ecstatic union with God...
Once united with God the Soul's will becomes that of God's.

Interestingly 200 years later St. John of the Cross
expressed an almost identical view of the nature of the
Soul's union with God in his Ascent of Mount Carmel, i.e.
that once united with God the Soul's will becomes that of God's,
but he was not denounced as a heretic.


The naked, open, loving, Self-aware, luminous Being
within, our Essential Nature, is God...
God is The Silence within us...
God is the Self...

Rupert Spira
Contemporary Non-Dual teacher


Photo - rainbow light on wall

Monday, January 15, 2018

The Rhythm behind the rhythm...

I've heard a deeper rhythm...
Composed of cello, viola and oboe, I think.
I heard it when I was in the kitchen
cooking dinner one night,
a few years ago,
and every other night after that,
for several weeks,
until it stopped...
when the noise of my life
became too loud - again,
and the weight of a weary heart
drowned it out...

There was no music playing on the stereo,
just the sound of the meal cooking,
and the sounds of daily living
outside the window:
children playing,
dogs barking,
lawn mowers,
power saws,
and birds -

Underneath it all was a Rhythm
so melodious I could even hum it.
I just listened, and hummed, with wonder...
Where was this coming from -
this music -
this slow, deep, melodic rhythm,
drawing me into itself...

I didn't even have to try to listen,
it was just there
soft - in the distance,
barely audible,
as if in another room,
through another door,
maybe even in another realm;
a cosmic rhythm...

I knew then, somehow, that my own life rhythm
was hidden in this deeper Rhythm...
But I no longer hear it now;
drowned out by the
noise of living
other people's
rhythms -
the endless
of daily

But I know it is there -
playing somewhere.
And I listen for it -
this deeper Rhythm,
that underlies
all other rhythms...

The Rhythm behind the rhythm...

Love mysteriously playing its song...

Mystic Meandering
Nov. 5, 2015


Photo - the inside of a sea shell
digitally altered

Saturday, January 13, 2018

The Refuge Within - St. Teresa of Avila & Angeles Arrien

There is a secret place.
A radiant sanctuary.
As real as your own kitchen.
More real than that.
Worlds within worlds.
A clarity so complete you will
never again forget.

This magnificent refuge is inside you.
Enter. Shatter the darkness that shrouds the doorway.
Step around the poisonous vipers that slither
at your feet to throw you off course.
Be bold.  Be humble.
Put away the incense and forget
the incantations they taught you.
Ask no permission from the authorities.
Close your eyes and follow your breath
to the still place that leads to the
invisible path that leads you home.

St. Teresa of Avila
Mirabai Starr translation


I trust the mystery.  I trust what comes in silence
and what comes in nature where there's no diversion.
I think the lack of stimulation allows us to hear and
experience a deeper river that's constant, still, vibrant,
and real.  And the process of deep listening mobilizes
exactly what's needed at that time.

With thanks to Michel
at No Mind's Land

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

The Fathomless Pull - Papaji

There is a perpetual fathomless pull of Love into Love,
an undercurrent of Forever expanding Self into Self.
This is how I experience Love as the depth of Emptiness.
The more you go into this Fathomlessness
the more you will be pulled, attracted, dissolved into It.
...as you go deeper into it you will be more in Love
every moment.

This moment is pure Love
which is Absolutely Forever,
all is Love, everything is this Love,
there is no escape!
Love is the Self
and this is so complete
that it doesn't even need understanding.
There is nothing besides Love.

In the Heart there is no need for maps to get home.
Love, the Heart, this Moment, Is the Truth.
To see this Love everywhere see only from Love.
See from the Heart and you will see only the Heart.
This Love does not belong to a "me", or a "you."
Heart is Self...
Fathomless Love is where
Existence, Consciousness and Bliss
arise from.

Love is always Loving you...

You are this Love...

Be and radiate Love...

Simply Be

From - The Truth Is

Sunday, January 7, 2018

A Unitive Place...

In these sometimes harsh, divisive times
one must dive deep and refocus
on the depths of the Stillness of Being within oneself,
moving inward beyond the polarities of existence
where nothing is disturbed, nothing harmed...

There we will find a deeper unitive place of Restful Presence,
knowing that externally it's just the duality of existence
playing itself out in the construct of time...

In the Primordial Womb of Stillness,
in which matter reality exists,
everything is allowed...
The world will go the way it goes -
life will continue to unfold as it unfolds -
the light and the dark will continue to dance together -
in time bound reality.

If we focus only on the divisive chaos we will
react out of the mind-created contractions of fear and ignorance...

If we are able to experience the depths of this True Silence,
the Silence of the Everlasting Depths of Existence,
we can experience what's beyond the outward mentations
of chaos and fear:
- the Silence that holds the Cosmos together -
- that is the Cosmos -
the enduring Silence of the Universe within all form;
the pure Stillness of Being...

The Unitive Place...

In this deep Silence that sustains Existence
we Rest...in the True Heart of That which animates Life...

The True Timeless Heartbeat of Reality...


Mystic Meandering
Jan. 5, 2018


Photo - Vortex Art
Craypas Oils
done with fingers

Friday, January 5, 2018

For Light - John O'Donohue


In the glare of neon times,
Let our eyes not be worn
By surfaces that shine
With hunger made attractive.

That our thoughts may be true light,
Finding their way into words
Which have the weight of shadow
To hold the layers of truth.

That we never place our trust
In minds claimed by empty light,
Where one-sided certainties
Are driven by false desire.

When we look into the heart,
May our eyes have the kindness
And reverence of candlelight.

That the searching of our minds
Be equal to the oblique
Crevices and corners where
The Mystery continues to dwell,
Glimmering in fugitive light.

When we are confined inside
The dark house of suffering
That moonlight might find a window.
When we become false and lost
That the severe noon-light
Would cast our shadow clear.

When we love, that dawn-light
Would lighten our feet
Upon the waters.

As we grow old, that twilight
Would illuminate treasure
In the fields of memory.

And when we come to search for God,
Let us first be robed in night,
Put on the mind of morning
To feel the rush of light
Spread slowly inside
The color and stillness
of a found word.

John O'Donohue
From: To Bless the Space Between Us


Photo - Mandala Art

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

A Wish for the World - Rabindranath Tagore

Where the mind is without fear...
Where knowledge is free...
Where the world has not been broken up
into fragments by narrow domestic walls...
Where words come out from the depths of Truth...
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way
into the dreary desert sand of dead habit...
Where the mind is led forward...
into ever-widening [inclusive] thought and action...
Let my country [the world] awake...

Excerpt from Verse 35 of the Gitanjali
by Rabindranath Tagore


Only the inspired should make decisions
that effect the lives of many,

never a man who has not held God in his arms
and become the servant of unity...

St. Teresa of Avila

Monday, January 1, 2018

Failures of Kindness - George Saunders

What I regret most in my life are failures of kindness...

Those moments when another human being was there, in front
of me, suffering, and I responded...sensibly. Reservedly. Mildly.
Or, to look at it from the other end of the telescope:
Who, in your life, do you remember most fondly, with the
most undeniable feelings of warmth?

Those who were kindest to you, I bet.

Now, the million dollar question: Why aren't we kinder?

Here's what I think:

There's confusion in each of us, a sickness, really:

Each of us is born with a series of built-in confusions...
They are:

1) we're central to the universe (that is our personal story
is the main and most interesting story, the only story, really).
2) we're separate from the universe (there's US and "out there").
3) we're permanent (death is real, o.k., sure - but nor for me).

Now, we don't really believe these things - intellectually we know
better - but we believe them viscerally, and live by them, and
they cause us to prioritize our own needs over the needs of others,
even though what we really want, in our hearts, is to be less selfish,
more aware of what's actually happening in the present moment,
more open, and move loving.

So - second million dollar question: How might we DO this?

...to the extent that you can, err in the direction of kindness.

One thing in our favor: some of this "becoming kinder" happens
naturally, with age.  It might be a simple matter of attrition:
as we get older, we come to see how useless it is to be selfish -
how illogical, really.  We come to love other people and are
thereby counter-instructed in our own centrality.  We get our
butts kicked by life, and people come to our defense, and help
us, and we learn that we're not separate, and don't want to be.
We see people near and dear to us dropping away, and are
gradually convinced that maybe we too will drop away
(someday, a long time from now.)  Most people, as they are,
become less selfish and more loving.  I think this is true.

And so, a prediction, and my heartfelt wish for you: as you
get older, your self will diminish and you will grow in love.
YOU will gradually be replaced by LOVE. 

That luminous part of you that exists beyond personality
 - your soul, if you will - is as bright and shining as any
 that has ever been.  Clear away everything that keeps you
 separate from this secret luminous place.  Believe it exists,
 come to know it better, nurture it, and share its fruits tirelessly.

George Saunders

Excerpts from the convocation speech
to the graduating class of 2013
at Syracuse University


You are Eternal Being
unbounded and undivided.
Be kind to yourself
Open to your Heart...

If you want to help the planet
Live a life of compassion
Live a life of Love...

From - The Truth Is