Friday, February 27, 2015

two orders of reality & the light of consciousness


[Physicist David] Bohm suggested that the explicate order is extracted from the implicate order in a similar way in which a holographic image is extracted from a series of swirls and shadings into a three-dimensional image when illuminated by laser light.
The illumination that extracts the physical universe from the implicate order is the light of consciousness.

In this model the act of observation draws ‘in-formation’ out of the implicate order and manifests it in the explicate order. Bohm was keen to use the term in-formation rather than information. By this he meant a process that actually ‘forms’ the recipient.

–Anthony Peake 
Infinite Mindfield


A thought without a body is not a star. –Aaron Shurin


a thing is a think


A separate self is merely conventional reality, in the same sense as lines of latitude and longitude and the measurements of the clock; which is why one of the means of maya, illusion, is measurement. 

Things are measurements; they are units of thought, like inches are measurements. There are no things in physical nature.

How many things is a thing? However many you want. A “thing” is a “think”, a unit of thought; it is as much reality as you can catch hold of in one idea.

—Alan Watts

the brain is wider than the sky


The Brain—is wider than the Sky—
For—put them side by side—
The one the other will contain
With ease—and You—beside—

The Brain is deeper than the sea—
For—hold them—Blue to Blue—
The one the other will absorb—
As Sponges—Buckets—do—

The Brain is just the weight of God—
For—Heft them—Pound for Pound—
And they will differ—if they do—
As Syllable from Sound—

–Emily Dickinson




Accidents happen. That’s what everyone says. 
But in a quantum universe there are no such things as accidents, only possibilities and probabilities folded into existence by perception.

—Dr. Manhattan
from The Watchmen

not to worry



No experience has been too unimportant,
and the smallest event unfolds like a fate, 
and fate itself is like a wonderful, wide fabric in which
every thread is guided by an infinitely tender hand 
and is laid alongside another thread
and is held and supported by a hundred others.

–Rainer Maria Rilke


the nature of the mind


What is called ‘mind’ is a wondrous power residing in the Self.
It causes all thoughts to arise.
Apart from thoughts, there is no such thing as mind.
Therefore, thought is the nature of mind. 

Apart from thoughts, there is no independent entity called the world.
In deep sleep there are no thoughts, and there is no world.
In the states of waking and dream, there are thoughts,
and there is a world also. 

Just as the spider emits the thread (of the web) out of itself and again withdraws it into itself, likewise the mind projects the world out of itself and again resolves it into itself.
When the mind comes out of the Self, the world appears.
Therefore, when the world appears (to be real), the Self does not appear; and when the Self appears (shines) the world does not appear. 

When one persistently inquires into the nature of the mind, the mind will end, leaving the Self (as the residue).
What is referred to as the Self is the Atman. 

The mind always exists only in dependence on something gross;
it cannot stay alone.
It is the mind that is called the subtle body or the soul (jiva).

–Ramana Maharshi


Thursday, February 26, 2015



And a poet said, Speak to us of Beauty.
And he answered:
Where shall you seek beauty, and how 
shall you find her unless she herself be your
way and your guide?

And how shall you speak of her except 
she be the weaver of your speech?

The aggrieved and injured say, 
"Beauty is kind and gentle."

The tired and weary say,
"Beauty is of soft whisperings
She speaks in our spirit."

In winter say the snow-bound,
"She shall come with the spring leaping upon the hills."

All these things have you said of beauty,
Yet in truth you spoke not of her but of needs unsatisfied,
And beauty is not a need but an ecstasy. 
It is not a mouth thirsting nor an empty hand stretched forth,
But rather a heart enflamed and a soul enchanted.

It is not the image you would see nor the song you would hear,
But rather an image you see, though you
close your eyes and a song you hear, though
you shut your ears.

People of Orphalese, 
beauty is life when life unveils her holy face.
But you are life and you are the veil.
Beauty is eternity gazing at itself in a mirror.
But you are eternity and you are the mirror.

–Kahlil Gibran
from The Prophet


perfect goodness


Withdraw into yourself and look.
And if you do not find yourself beautiful yet, act as does the creator of a statue that is to be made beautiful: he cuts away here, he smooths there, he makes this line lighter, this other purer, until a lovely face has grown from his work. 

So do you also: cut away all that is excessive, straighten all that is crooked, bring light to all that is overcast, labor to make all one glow or beauty and never cease chiseling your statue, until there shall shine out on you from it the godlike splendor of virtue, until you see the perfect goodness surely established in the stainless shrine.



on a day


On a day when the wind is perfect, the sail just needs to open and the world is full of beauty ...

Today is such a day.



on a lonely spray


Under a lonely sky a lonely tree
Is beautiful. All that is loneliness
Is beautiful. A feather lost at sea;
A staring owl; a moth; a yellow tress
Of seaweed on a rock, is beautiful.

The night-lit moon, wide-wandering in sky;
A blue-bright spark, where ne'er a cloud is up;
A wing, where no wing is, it is so high;
A bee in winter, or a buttercup,
Late-blown, are lonely, and are beautiful.

She, whom you saw but once, and saw no more;
That he, who startled you, and went away;
The eye that watched you from a cottage door;
The first leaf, and the last; the break of day;
The mouse, the cuckoo, and the cloud, are beautiful.

For all that is, is lonely; all that may
Will be as lonely as is that you see;
The lonely heart sings on a lonely spray,
The lonely soul swings lonely in the sea,
And all that loneliness is beautiful.

All, all alone, and all without a part
Is beautiful, for beauty is all where;
Where is an eye is beauty, where an heart
Is beauty, brooding out, on empty air,
All that is lonely and is beautiful.

–James Stephens




You are flawed,
you are stuck in old patterns,
you become carried away with yourself.
Indeed you are quite impossible in many ways.

And still, you are beautiful beyond measure.

–John Welwood




The great corn arrives.

The child-rain arrives.

In a way of beauty arrives.

Grasshopper arrives.

From the west arrives.

Vegetation arrives.

Pollen arrives.

In a way of beauty arrives.



let your beauty manifest



Let your beauty manifest itself without talking and calculation.​

You are silent. It says for you: I am. 

And in comes meaning thousandfold​, comes at long last over everyone.

–Rainer Maria Rilke


Wednesday, February 25, 2015




Do not
Want to step so quickly
Over a beautiful line on God's palm
As I move through the earth's
I do not want to touch any object in this world
Without my eyes testifying to the truth
That everything is
My Beloved.

Something has happened
To my understanding of existence
That now makes my heart always full of wonder
And kindness.

I do not
Want to step so quickly
Over this sacred place on God's body
That is right beneath your
Own foot

As I
Dance with
Precious life

Daniel Ladinsky translation



I am what is around me.

Women understand this.
One is not duchess
A hundred yards from a carriage.

These, then are portraits:
A black vestibule;
A high bed sheltered by curtains.

These are merely instances.

–Wallace Stevens




I am a man: little do I last
and the night is enormous.
But I look up:
the stars write.
Unknowing I understand:
I too am written,
and at this very moment
someone spells me out.

–Octavio Paz

the potency of emptiness


Subhuti was Buddha’s disciple.
He was able to understand the potency of emptiness,
the viewpoint that nothing exists except in its relationship of
subjectivity and objectivity.

One day Subhuti, in a mood of sublime emptiness,
was sitting under a tree. Flowers began to fall about him.

“We are praising you for your discourse on emptiness,”
the gods whispered to him.

“But I have not spoken of emptiness,” said Subhuti.

“You have not spoken of emptiness, we have not heard emptiness,”
responded the gods.

“This is true emptiness.” 

And blossoms showered upon Subhuto as rain.

from Zen Flesh, Zen Bones:
Zen and Pre-Zen Writings
collected by Paul Reps, Nyogen Senzaki


a glossary of chickens


There should be a word for the way
they look with just one eye, neck bent,
for beetle or worm or strewn grain.
“Gleaning,” maybe, between “gizzard”
and “grit.” 

And for the way they run toward
someone they trust, their skirts
hiked, their plump bodies wobbling:
“bobbling,” let’s call it, inserted
after “blowout” and before “bloom.”

There should be terms, too, for things
they do not do—like urinate or chew—
but perhaps there already are.

I’d want a word for the way they drink,
head thrown back, throat wriggling,
like an old woman swallowing
a pill; a word beginning with “S,”
coming after “sex feather” and before “shank.”

And one for the sweetness of hens
but not roosters.

We think that by naming we can understand,
as if the tongue were more than muscle.

–Gary Whitehead



Alan Watts wrote: ‘Trying to understand God is like trying to fall in love with a kilometer’.

–Tony Parsons 


the greatest of these


Though I speak with the tongues of angels,
If I have not love...
My words would resound with but a tinkling cymbal.

And though I have the gift of prophesy...
And understand all mysteries...
and all knowledge...

And though I have all faith
So that I could remove mountains,
If I have not love...
I am nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind;
Love tolerates all things,
Aspires to all things.
Love never dies.
While the prophecies shall be done away,
tongues shall be silenced,
knowledge shall fade...
thus then shall linger only
faith, hope, and love...
but the greatest of these...
is love.

1 Corinthians 13


Monday, February 23, 2015

love is a verb


love never exists 
as a fact 

it is a verb 
and you can do 
all things 
with or without it 

it is nature 
in action 
being true 
to itself 
without even 
a thought

–Benjamin Dean

stone by stone


Stone by stone and step by step
And heart by heart and head by head
The beautiful days do pass

Thread by thread and leaf by leaf
And one by one and each by each
The days are beautiful and do not pass

Grain by grain and body by body
Side by side and hand by hand
Good will win the battle

Stone by grain and each by one
And hand by heart and head by heart
Love is as vast as the world.

–Robert Desnos
Todd Sanders translation


what birds do


The way of love is not a subtle argument.
The door there is devastation.

Birds make great sky-circles of their freedom.
How do they learn it?

They fall, and falling, they're given wings.





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

Carl Sagan 


ditty of first desire


In the green morning
I wanted to be a heart.
A heart.

And in the ripe evening
I wanted to be a nightingale.
A nightingale.

turn orange-colored.
turn the color of love.)

In the vivid morning
I wanted to be myself.
A heart.

And at the evening's end
I wanted to be my voice.
A nightingale.

turn orange-colored.
turn the color of love.

Federico García Lorca 


Lord of Love


Still your mind in me, still yourself in me,
and without a doubt you shall be united with me, 
Lord of Love, dwelling in your heart.

–Bhagavad Gita
Chapter 12 excerpt
Eknath Easwaren translation


what to do



Let your love flow outward through the universe,
To its height, its depth, its broad extent,
A limitless love, without hatred or enmity.

Then as you stand or walk,
Sit or lie down,
As long as you are awake,
Strive for this with a one-pointed mind;

Your life will bring heaven to earth.

–The Sutta-Nipāta


Sunday, February 22, 2015

another unity


Spring overall.
But inside us
there's another unity.

Behind each eye here,
one glowing weather.

Every forest branch moves differently
in the breeze, but as they sway
they connect at the roots.



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