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...

Thursday, December 27, 2018

In Pursuit of Silence - George Prochnik

Silence has to do with the interruption of the imposition of our
own egos, our will, on the world...
Silence is where we hear something deeper than our chatter.
Silence is where we speak something deeper than our words.
Silence is the resting place of the Essential.

Silence is our natural milieu, and the more we get away from
Silence, the more we lose our humanity.

Silence returns us to what is real. 
Silence is a journey into the Heart of Being.
If you allow silence to circulate,  your mind becomes aware of
what Truth is.  It makes you aware that you're not in control
of anything.

Seek Silence...

In a world of noise,
silence calls to us...

It is not an esoteric practice.
It is as simple as shifting your attention
from the things that cause noise
to the vast interior spaciousness,
which is our natural silence.

From the documentary film:
In Pursuit of Silence
by George Prochnik

Monday, December 24, 2018

The Gift of Silence - Dada Gavand

Silence is the gate...

We are missing the aesthetic beauty of Silence, the fragrance
of quietude and inner peace, because the mind has become
overgrown and overactive. It has captured us and
the whole energy of life, going on and on ceaselessly,
continuing with its mechanical momentum in time.

In the present competitive commercial society there seems
to be no room for Silence.

Quietude and Silence are not the negation of life, but the
regeneration of it.  Silence is the means to elevate life energy
to a timeless dimension.

We have got to find this unknown dimension of life.  The
whole world is in desperate need of a new-dimensional
consciousness, so that human beings can live intelligently,
creatively, spontaneously and lovingly, and not just follow
the ego pursuits mechanically.

When one begins to realize the limitation of all thought
activity and ego drives the attachment [to them] drops.
One is left with a deep, profound Silence.

Silence becomes eloquent and active.  Silence becomes
intelligent and positive.  Action that springs from the depth
of Silence is spontaneous, truthful and universal.  It is
immaculate, timeless and spiritual.

Silence is the means and Silence is the end.
Creative Silence is the ultimate challenge.

Silence is the sap that rejuvenates life.
Silence is the source of eternal life.

Dada Gavand
East Indian Mystic


Find the Silence and you'll find "God."



If you celebrate Christmas
may you experience the
Gift of Silence...


"The Silence"
dwells among us
and in us...


Friday, December 21, 2018

Into The Twilight - Winter Solstice

There is a seamless "edge" when twilight comes...
And a twinge of longing when the
light wanes into twilight,
the edge of the veil;
that threshold between
light and dark...

A knowing that this life
is waning into twilight too,
from one state into another,
forever re-forming Itself...

Tree branches wave in the wind
in homage to the light
dimming in the West...

Owls hoo - calling the night
into existence
from the East;
prophets of twilight
standing at the edge
where ending meets beginning
and beginning, ending...

the in-between,
as Life cycles through time,
through light and dark,
through living
and dying.

This night we stand at the edge of time,
and timelessness beyond time...
peering through
for a glimpse
of the
Infinite Light
that knows no dimming
and no night;
only Its own Eternal Radiance

This Light we are...

Mystic Meandering
Winter Solstice
Dec. 21, 2012

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

The Invisible World - John O'Donohue

When you enter the world, you come to live on the threshold
between the visible and invisible.  You bring with you a sense
of belonging to the invisible that you can never lose or finally cancel.
There is always some magnet that draws your eyes to the horizon or
invites you to explore behind things and seek out the concealed
depths.  You know that the real nature of things is hidden deep
within them.

When you become aware of the invisible as a live background,
you notice how your own body is woven around your invisible
soul, how the invisible lives behind the face of those you love,
and how it is always there between you.  The invisible is one
of the most powerful forms of the unknown.  It envelopes our
every moment.  It is the region out of which we emerged and the
state we are destined for, yet we never see it...

John O'Donohue

Excerpt from: Eternal Echoes


Be sure to click on the full screen icon on the video
for the full effect.

Monday, December 17, 2018

What Draws You? - Rumi

Artist: Puisi - ambua.id

There are two types on the path, those who come against
their will, the blindly religious, and those who obey
out of love...

The former have ulterior motives.
They want a midwife near because she gives them milk.
The other love the beauty of the Nurse.

The former memorize the proof-texts of conformity
and repeat them.  The latter disappear into
whatever draws them to God.

Both are drawn from the Source.
Any motion is from the Mover.
Any love from the Beloved.

From: The Book of Love
translations by Coleman Barks


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



A baby pigeon on the edge of the nest hears the call
and begins her flight...
How can the soul not fly
when a message arrives saying,
"...come, come back to me!"

What is the secret that opens the door?

The key is the flutter of the heart's wings
and its endless longing.

When the door opens,
walk on the path...
where everything old becomes new,
and never look back...



On Dec. 17, 1273 the great Sufi poet and mystic, Rumi,
died in Konya Turkey.  He was universally loved by
Muslims, Jews, and Christians.  It was called his
"wedding night" because death to him (and the Sufis)
was the ultimate union with God.
May it be so for all of us, when the time comes,
no matter "who" we know God to be...

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Contemplative Experience - Thomas Merton

Contemplation is not trance or ecstasy, or a tendency to find
peace and satisfaction in liturgical rites; nor is it the hearing
of sudden unutterable words, nor the imagination of lights;
not the emotional fire and sweetness that come with religious
exaltation  It is not enthusiasm, not the sense of being "seized"
by an elemental force and swept into liberation by mystical

Contemplation is no pain-killer.

It is life itself - fully awake, fully alive.
It is spiritual wonder.
It is spontaneous awe at the sacredness
of life, of being.
It is gratitude for life,
for awareness and for being.
It is a vivid realization that life and being
proceed from an invisible, transcendent
and infinitely abundant Source.

Contemplation is, above all, awareness of
 the reality of Source.

And in that realization, the contemplative suffers the
 anguish of realizing that he no longer knows what "God" is.
This is great gain, because "God" is not a what",
not a "thing."
That is precisely one of the essential characteristics of
contemplative experience...realizing that there is no
such "thing" as "God", because "God" is neither a
"what" or a "thing", but pure Who [Pure Being],
the "Thou" before whom our inmost "I" springs
into awareness [being].

Thomas Merton
Christian Monk
From: New Seed of Contemplation


Personal Note - His description is somewhat
different from the "mystical experience".  Still -
I relate to some of his description.  In the end, "It" is
 all Pure Beingness/Pure Awareness/Pure Consciousness.

Friday, December 14, 2018

The End of All Exploring - John O'Donohue

They are to be admired, those survivors
of solitude, who have gone with no maps
into rooms without features,
where no wilderness awaits a footstep trace,
no path of danger to a cold summit
to look back on and feel exuberant,
no clarity of territories yet untouched
that tremble near the human breath,
no thickets of undergrowth with deep pores
to nest the litanies of wind addicted birds,
no friendship of other explorers
drawn into the dream of the unknown.

No.  They do not belong to the outside worship
of the earth, but risk themselves in the interior
space where the senses have nothing to celebrate,
where the air intensifies the intrusion of the human
and a poultice of silence pulls every sound
out of circulation down into the ground,
where, in the panic of being, each breath unravels
an ever deeper strand in the web of weaving mind;
shawls of thought fall off, empty and lost,
where only the red scream of the blood continues unheard
without anonymous skin, and the end of all exploring
is the relentless arrival at an ever novel nowhere...

John O'Donohue
From - Echoes of Memory
Original title of poem: Nowhere


Photo - looking into the inside of a basket,
as if into an empty room.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

The "Essential" - Baret and Adams

At some point you no longer seek to be less this and more that,
to be without fear, to be without desire; you seek nothing.
This can be called a form of respect for The Essential.
The Essential is not something that is hidden behind the
appearance - these are beautiful Indian stories - the Essential
is what is Here. There is nothing else than that.  There is nothing
 to understand, there is simply nothing.  That's what is reflected
 as lightness that apparently arises when the situations suit
 your ideology and which apparently disappears when the
 situations do not correspond to your plan for humanity...
 [or yourself :) ]

Eric Baret
teaches from the Tantric Tradition


Silence is the ultimate reality.  Everything exists in this
world through silence.  True silence really means
 going deep within yourself to that place where nothing
 is happening, where you transcend time and space.
You go into a brand new dimension of nothingness.
That's your real home.
In deep silence there is not good or bad,
no one trying to achieve anything.
Just being, pure being...
[What Beret calls The Essential]

Robert Adams
of the Advaita tradition

Monday, December 10, 2018

Awakening From Our Illusions - Ivan Granger

I am so aware of how much frustration people feel over the dark
turn in politics in recent years.  As an American, how do I
understand the racist, proto-facist, violent forces emerging within
my own country?  At the same time, similar tendencies are
appearing in the UK, India, the Philippines,
and several other nations.

While harmful forces must be answered with courage in the public
arena, I want to suggest that there is something important happening
on another level, as well: an enforced awakening.

We are going through a collective process of disillusionment,
whether we like it or not.  We are being required to drop our illusions
and witness unpleasant truths, about ourselves [individually and
as a nation], and about the world around us.  We may ask: What
have we ignored that has allowed such fear and hatred to fester?  How
have our political and social systems become so damaged that the
are unresponsive to the needs of society?  What cruelties are encoded
in society that I have ignored or made excuses for?  How did we
imagine things were solid, when they are so fragile?  How can my
neighbor [or family members] believe such things, and what is
their hurt that I was blind to?  These are the questions we are
forced to ask now.

Painful though it may be, we can only be strengthened by the
process of disillusionment.  We want to drop our illusions.
We want to see things as they are...

As a meditative exercise we can look at the reality we see,
the terrible and the beautiful together, and just sit with it;
[just be with it internally, meditatively].  It may break our hearts,
but we can just sit with it.  It may overwhelm us with its
immensity, but we don't run, we don't seek to merely feel good.
Instead, we just sit with it. 
We allow ourselves to see and feel fully.
We watch our reactions to it, but are not hooked by them.
In this way, we begin to inhabit a bigger reality, a fuller reality.
Our personal sense of reality becomes more integrated and a
truer reflection of what actually is.  As we do this, we become more
capable of fashioning healthier lives and healthier societies.

When I stop trying to assert some idea of how reality should work,
and just really notice what is.....everything just opens up.  The heart
opens in unexpected ways, making healing possible where only
walls seemed to stand.  It's easy to think that reality is somehow
broken, but when we really look, we discover that we inhabit an
improbable wholeness instead.  It's not entirely logical amidst the
world's fear and suffering, but look for yourself and see.  Really see.
Seeing the full picture, our actions become more effective and lasting.
Looking honestly, we become capable of compassion and
connection, where there was only anger and hatred...

Ivan Granger
Excerpt from a commentary on a poem by Mary Sarton
at Poetry Chaikhana


Photo - taken from inside, reflecting objects in the room
in the window - giving the illusion of another reality...

Saturday, December 8, 2018

The Art of Suffering - Etty Hillesum

Most of us in the West don't understand the art of suffering
and experience a thousand fears instead.  Man suffers most
through the idea of suffering, and through his fear of suffering.
We cease to be alive, being full of fear, bitterness, hatred and
despair.  Don't we live an entire life each one of our days,
and does it really matter if we live a few days more or less?
There is room for everything in a single life.

When I say I have come to terms with life, I don't mean I
have lost hope.  It is a question of living life from minute to
minute and taking suffering into the bargain.  But does it
matter if it is the Inquisition that causes people to suffer in
one century, and war and pogroms in another?

Suffering has always been with us, does it really matter in
what form it comes?  All that matters is how we bear it
and how we fit it into our lives.

I can sit for hours and know everything and bear everything
and grow stronger in the bearing of it.  And at the same time
feel sure life is beautiful and meaningful.  Despite everything.
But that does not mean that I am always filled with joy and
exaltation [about life and its circumstances].  I am often dog-
tired after standing in queues, but I know that this too is part
of life, and I know something inside me will never desert me...

We carry everything within us. God and Heaven and Hell and
Earth and Life and Death and all of history.  The externals are
simply so many props; everything we need is within us.  And
we have to take everything that comes; the bad with the good,
which does not mean we cannot devote our life to curing the
bad.  But we must know what motives inspire our struggle
[against] and we must begin with ourselves.

Living and dying, sorrow and joy, the blisters on my feet and
the jasmine behind the house, the persecution, the unspeakable
horrors - it is all as one in me, and I accept it all as one mighty
whole and begin to grasp it better, if only for myself, without
being able to explain to anyone else how it all hangs together.

If you destroy the ideas behind [suffering] which life lies
imprisoned within, you liberate your true life - and then you
will have the strength to bear real suffering...

Etty Hillesum
Jewish Mystic of the Holocaust
from: An Interrupted Life


Wishing the Jewish community
a peaceful and light filled Hanukkah
as it comes to an end...

Thursday, December 6, 2018

True Emptiness - Dorothy Hunt

True Emptiness - which we could also call formless Spirit -
fills the universe and is filled by the universe.  It contains
everything, yet is not separate from a single moment's arising,
or dissolving.  What I am calling Emptiness is simply empty of
self, and empty of definition.  The word "Emptiness" is not
really it, neither are any of our ideas about it, including the
ones I use to try to point to the Mystery that is Unnamable
and indefinable.  To be emptied of our attachment to
definitions and concepts - especially our self-concepts - is
to be unburdened, whole, fluid and free to truly be.

To be empty means we are open; to be empty means we are
available for whatever or whoever is in front of us; to be
empty means we are not stuck anywhere, but can experience
the fullness and the flow of life unhindered.  Our seeing is
empty until it lands on an object, is it not? Our freedom,
inherent wisdom and selfless love arise right out of

For a moment, just allow yourself to be the emptiness, open
and without definition, yet intimate with the moment as it is.
You might discover a vast and spacious Presence that feels
more real, more connected, more meaningful and lovingly
your truest Self than anything you could ever imagine.  And
even though the mind cannot say exactly what this is,
something knows; something in you remembers.
And what remembers tenderly holds anything that may arise
to be seen, experienced or liberated...

Dorothy Hunt
Buddhist Teacher


Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Be Still and Know - Pir Elias Amidon

Imagine you are alone...
You feel the stillness inside of things...
There are no sounds, except the almost-never-heard
hush of things being.

You sense the stillness on all sides
and an identical stillness within you.
The voice of your thoughts sounds thin, metallic.

You remember a phrase - "Be still, and know."

You let your body be motionless, quiet.
A quiet body at ease relaxes the persistence of thoughts.
Then you feel the still, empty openness "behind" each of
your senses, the openness in which your senses arise.
You relax into that openness.
This motionless is not definable -
it is not a sensation.  Nevertheless it has an almost
kinesthetic effect on you, as if it is vanishing you,
the receiver, the photographic plate that records your
experience, this "one" becomes transparent.
You relax and let be. Now unbidden comes the stillness
of Presence, the stillness of a clearness that is always here,
behind and within everything.  It is what allows everything
to show up.  It is empty too, not made out of anything, yet
it is awesome and radiant.

It is empty Presence without form,
appearing as all form...
Knowing is not thinking.
It is Presence being present
to Presence.

Be still, do nothing. Let be.
No need to figure anything out.

A sense of peacefulness opens in you,
vast and without dimension -
vast, peaceful tranquility without dimension...

...and you remember the Real...

Pir Elias Amidon
A Sufi
From Free Medicine


Photo - The Lone Skier
 taken by my brother...
Sunday River Ski Resort
Bethel, ME
early morning

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Inner Rhythms

"A balanced life is based on its own rhythm.  If you don't set your
own rhythm, and have the discipline to follow it, your life will
move at the speed of the culture around [you], which moves too
fast.  The space we make for quiet time affects our thought patterns
and, in turn, the quality of our lives.  To what extent is the rhythm
of your life a result of.....adapting.....to the flow that surrounds you?"
Rod McIver - Artist

I feel a resonance with his words, knowing that I need to find that
sense of my own rhythm.  But I also want to find the deeper
 Rhythm of Life; not just my own personal daily rhythm with life, but
 the Flow of the Inner Being, also called the Tao, the undercurrent flow
of Life within - from which all movement arises.

The only way I know to do this is to turn within to The Silence within
where The Rhythm of the Inner Being is felt - the Rhythm of Silence.
Finding that deeper Inner Rhythm is, for me, the Rhythm of Pure
Being ItSelf - the deeper Rhythm that animates all life... 
 But the "externals" of life distract me and distort the felt sense
 of this Inner Rhythm.

The hypnosis of the world keeps me/us magnetized to the ways of the
world, and pulls me/us out of this deeper way of living and knowing.
We are conditioned to be drawn to the external drama of the world, to
chew on it, teethe on it...  I recently started using my husband's FB
account, just to see what it would be like...  I was hooked within a
couple of days.  It sucks you in, and displaces all other attention... I
have since tried to wean myself off of this "obsessive attention
disorder." It's the pablum of the matrix we live in. 
But no one trains us, when we're young, to turn within to the
 Quiet Inner Presence of Silence.
And so we follow the rhythm of the world, the civilized, political,
chaotic world, with its hypnosis of separation from our Inner Being,
instead of turning to that interior space of The Rhythm that pulsates
Its Aliveness within us, and does not depend on a
 name, label, or identity - or the world's rhythms... 
I'm still using training wheels...

Before your innocent Heart was hypnotized by the rhythms of the
world, what did you want deep in your Heart?  Not what you wanted
 to be when you grew up, but what did you really long for?  What
 called to you?  Do you remember?  Do you know now?


Photo - Bliss Lotus Mandala
digitally blurred

Personal Note: I am aware that there are FB pages out there that are not part of the manipulative matrix of superficial social media - that offer substantive and inspiring writings.  For them I am grateful...