December 30, 2004


Practice really is a lifelong thing.
Not because it's hard work,
but because it's beautiful and
because we love it,
and because seeing and experiencing and feeling
what it's really like to be human,
what this world and our connection to it is really like,
is a beautiful thing.

~ John Tarrant

December 28, 2004

Radiant Vision

“There is a Divine Center into which your life can slip, a new and absolute orientation to God. A Center where you live with God, and out from which you see all of life, through new and radiant vision, tinged with new sorrows and pangs, new joys unspeakable and full of glory.”

Thomas R. Kelly


Having material wealth, increasing possessions and your bank account will not cure inner poverty. Financial solvency will not fill that hole. We may have a measure of wealth, status and power in our little mini-series called "my life," in our little epic drama called "What About Little Me." But still we may be living in poverty within. What cures that hunger is divine love. And there are so many hungry people around. When you look, there seems to be so much misery. All this striving desperation; trying to shore up and built up, protect and defend a child's sandcastle on the beach, a house of cards. With our allegiance to ego fixation we go on laying our treasure up where it is corrupted. We spend our precious time and attention on the impermanent, and ignore being, we ignore the eternal. We are starved, and that which would feed us is minimized and discounted. In ego world divine love is scoffed at. It seems to have little or no value, yet it is the only food that will satisfy our deep hunger.

We have glimpsed the treasure house within. We have tasted this nectar, become intoxicated with the fragrance of divine love, meditative love. We have experienced firsthand the bliss of open space empty of self. We now know what real food, real sustenance looks like. We have eaten it. In other words there is awareness of enlightened energy, of energy moving in the enlightened state. This feeds us and encourages us to further opening. When we realize and share this enlightened energy, it grows in us; it manifests more and more in our world. Isn't this the fulfillment of our hearts desire? Isn't this the source of a rewarding and fulfilling life? Can you describe for me a deeper source of bliss? So however awkward it is to share, however clumsy we feel, however difficult or challenging or embarrassing it is to share, we should take the risk. Because in this sharing we are uplifted, the world is uplifted.

Post by Akilesh

December 26, 2004

Trusting Life Completely

The journey of spiritual awakening leads us into the arms of the Divine Beloved, the graceful Presence that transforms our life from ordinary to Ordinary -- a way of living beyond the confines of our habitual patterns, limiting beliefs and self-seeking desires. In order to manifest our spiritual destiny, the ego self -- that which perceives itself as separate and alone -- must discover and follow the Higher Self, or Spirit. In the beginning of one's spiritual journey, these two aspects of the Self seem to be at odds. Ultimately, they are realized as one and we come to trust life completely.

Rev. Ellen Grace O'Brian

December 21, 2004

At Blackwater Pond

At Blackwater Pond
the tossed waters have settled
after a night of rain.
I dip my cupped hands.
I drink a long time.
It tastes like stone, leaves, fire.
It falls cold into my body,
waking the bones.
I hear them deep inside me,
oh what is that beautiful thing
that just happened?

Mary Oliver

When we are quiet, we may notice a gentle, yet powerful consciousness in the background. This is a benign love we all possess; a love always available, if we pause, cup our hands, dip them into the cool water, deliciously take the time to drink in this presence, and let it refresh our bones. It is a beautiful thing.

December 17, 2004


I have a Friend who walks with me. Daily we meet for this time together. We walk and talk and share effortlessly, and sometimes we just walk silently together. Our cheeks blush radiantly from the fresh air, our heartbeat becomes strong and steady.

You, my friend, respond like you know my thought before I express it, and understand my feelings so intuitively. We share a comfortable and unique intimacy. You reassure and encourage me, and deepen my understanding of our reality with your insights. When I am cold you have put your arm around my shoulder. When I have fallen behind you have waited, and reached out and taken my hand to help me over the rough terrain.

I love how you draw my attention to the natural beauty of the changing seasons, and the multitude of little creatures that join us along the path. Sometimes we have walked in the rain, and have become delightedly drenched. You playfully stomp water onto my legs, and we laugh together. We have walked in the fog, when we couldn’t quite see what was ahead, though this fogbank usually lifted as we strolled. We have walked at night, and watched the stars turn in the sky, and found our way by moonlight. Other times, mid-day, the sunlight beams down on us, warming and illuminating us. We have melted into the sunrises and sunsets.

Often, our pace is even; I cannot hear your footsteps apart from my own… I have the sense that we are not two. You are a Divine Friend next to me, behind me, ahead of me, within me. Not separate, not two. Your graceful presence is everywhere and everything to me; we move together, we see this blissful world with the same eyes, love with the same heart, experience this Existence as one.

December 13, 2004

Little Tree

There is a little maple tree outside my back door. This tree had amazing crimson leaves this autumn – all blown off with the last windstorm. The tree is now completely bare, naked of adornment. How beautiful and graceful it is in its emptiness. It reaches up, toward the light, unafraid and unprotected. Within its core, this little tree holds a creative potential that will undoubtedly yield plentiful leaves and new growth this coming spring. This will happen without effort or striving, without longing or desire. The original nature of this little tree is pure and perfect in its emptiness, lovely in its form and formlessness. Something of this essence is in us, within each of us, in our most basic form. Our original nature, unadorned by ego or arrogance, is perfect and complete. When we are empty - quiet and not striving, we, too, may find an amazing creative potential within our core.

December 11, 2004

Growing Tender

In the middle of the night I was awakened by the strong winds in the forest, and the occasional crack, swoosh, and thud of falling limbs. As I quietly listened, I reflected upon the changing of the season, the changes in our lives, and the turmoil that changes sometimes bring. Sometimes changes are smooth, other times tumultuous. It seems our attention is drawn to the dramatic changes with an overt awareness, but our attention maybe much less attuned to subtle changes.

Our humanity, growing all the time, does not let us rest on any change for long - there is always another one around the corner, sometimes upon us before we even know what happened. These changes affect our very core, rubbing up against old parts of ourselves like a polishing cloth reaching into the dark crevices. We wince with the discomfiture change stimulates, and the inevitable uprooting of old wounds. Without this occasional tending, debris builds up, buries and hides our wounds, and we are weighed down.

How good and wholesome it is to periodically return to these dark places, move them and look at them, handle them gently and restore their proper place in us. An honest inventory here softens us, makes us tender, and brings the luminosity and luster back to the places that have grown dim in the shadows.

December 9, 2004

The Lotus Flower

The beautiful lotus grows in shallow water surrounded by mud. Here, the lotus opens each morning, and closes each evening. Exquisite in its purity, the lotus appears to float alone, however underneath the water its roots are connected to many other lotus flowers.

The lotus is a simple but potent metaphor for divine potential, deep wisdom, serenity, interconnectedness and transcendence.

Posted by Hello

December 7, 2004


A friend held a bulging brown paper sack and asked, “These are from my mother’s tree. Would you like some?” I peered into the bag, and let out a little gasp! I could hardly believe my eyes. The interior of the bag was illuminated by dozens of lemons, so beautiful, perfectly shaped, fragrant and flawless. All together they had a vivid, radiant quality, as though they were glowing from the inside. I felt a childish enthusiasm as my friend generously laid three iridescent lemons in my hands – an extraordinary and delightful gift from our beloved earth on a gray winter’s day.

What has us ripen, become radiant, and mature fully into the spiritual life? A friend told me: “We are all ripening in our own way, at our own pace. Ripening is going on all around us, naturally, ineluctably. Eventually we let go and drop -- pure, beautiful, ripe, juicy -- into open space. Existence is fully awake already, just waiting for us to drop into emptiness.”

And in this emptiness, an apparent radiance...

So much gratitude.

December 5, 2004


It happened again. This afternoon I was solitary, immersed in my artwork, when time turned into timeless, function dissolved into form, self forgetting self. Small thinking suspended, I was taken beyond myself into a quiet world of pattern, color, light and creative energy. The hours slipped away.

I don’t think about what happens in my consciousness when I am absorbed in this way. But I do know that when my ego recedes, when I’m not thinking about self, time, or facets of local awareness, there is a creative freedom and energy present. This capacity to enter realms of heightened and inspired creativity is available to me when I become quiet, immersed, and surrendered. Silent and open, creative sacred energy is present.