September 28, 2006

I Pick up a Hitchhiker

After a few miles he tells me
that my car has no engine.
I pull over and we both get out
and look under the hood.
He’s right.
We don’t say anymore about it
all the way to California.

~Jay Leeming

September 26, 2006

Where I Disappeared

In After the Ecstasy, the Laundry, Jack Kornfield writes,

As we awaken, we discover that we are not limited by who we think we are. All the stories we tell ourselves - the judgments, the problems, the whole identity of the small sense of self, "the body of fear" - can be released in a moment, and a timeless sense of grace and liberation can open up for us.
St John of the Cross, in A Cloud of Unknowing, spoke of this when he wrote that to awaken we must “be willing to tread for a long time as a blind man in darkness.” Further, he wrote that we must “die to (ourselves), and lose the radical self-centered awareness of our being, for it is our own self that stands in the way of God.”

Jack shares a story of how a Sufi master describes this frightening loss of identity:
As I looked at all I had held to be me, the separate individual, it began to unravel. At first there was an openness and emptiness, but with it came a rush of fear, a struggling to exist, some kind of terror. I felt that I was letting go of everything – my whole sense of self had given way. One day during this I was sitting in a window seat on an airplane, and it felt like I was falling out of the window, and the terror came in big waves, irrational and very strong. I felt just like an animal falling in space. Only later when I learned to let go into it, to let myself fall, did it open up into a cloudless sky where I disappeared.

Akilesh: In the passage the individual is faced with groundlessness. What he or she describes closely matches my own experience. This existential terror went on more or less continuously with varying degrees of intensity for over 20 years. Over that time I gradually came to realize what was happening, and "only later when I learned to let go into it, to let myself fall, did it open up into a cloudless sky where I disappeared."

Most people have had many, many glimpses of groundlessness. Most often it is experienced as negative, although there are as many that are positive. When groundlessness is encountered people often feel some degree of existential terror or anxiety, fear or distress of some kind, and most often try to fill it with stuff - distractions, entertainment, preoccupations, work, relationship, adventure, substance use, toys, etc. - to provide a sense of solidity, groundedness, to shore up or secure the sense of self-identity which has been shaken. But there are a few individuals who go into that emptiness, explore it, imbibe it, "learn to let go into it," and come out with art and poetry, beauty and meditation.

Here it is again but with a Tibetan twist:
Look into the sphere of birthless mind!
Let dawn the enjoyment of ceaseless play!
When free of hope and fear, that's the result.
Why speak of birth and death?
Come to the natural, unmodified state!
- Milarepa

It is said in so many ways by so many lovers over the ages. All of them have a different twist, a different language for the ineffable, for groundlessness, emptiness. In the above passage Milarepa calls it the "birthless mind." How wonderful! Jesus calls it "God the Father" or "the kingdom of Heaven." All of our brothers and sisters over the ages have gone into it, Lao Tzu, Kabir, Rumi, Hafiz, Buddha, St. John of the Cross, and contemporaries like John Tarrant, Adya, Eckart, Trungpa, Osho and many others. Milarepa says "come to the natural, unmodified state!" - the unconditioned. The Sufi above calls it "the cloudless sky." Milarepa says that when we let go into it, when we allow and release from hope and fear, the result is a blissful dawning of ceaseless play; an enjoyment already, always and everywhere. With our fidelity we presence this everywhere, in our light and easy moments as well as when we are dealing with difficult or challenging circumstances.

September 25, 2006


In the woods I came on an old friend
and I asked him a question
and he said, "Wait."

Fish were rising in the deep stream
but his line was not stirring
but I waited.
It was a question about the sun

about my two eyes
my ears my mouth
my heart the earth with its four seasons
my feet where I was standing
where I was going

it slipped through my hands

as though it were water
into the river
it flowed under the trees
it sank under hills far away
and was gone without me
then where I stood night fell

I no longer knew what to ask
I could tell that his line had no hook
I understood that I was to stay and
eat with him

~ W.S. Merwin ~

September 21, 2006

Nothing at All

Meredith: In Emptiness Dancing, Adya speaks about the question "Who am I" or "What am I" without any script or role, without the story about who you are and what you are, releasing the script of what you think your life is about. He says something I often tell myself, that the roles and scripts we tell about ourselves are not who we truly are. Awakening is a radical change in identity, says Adya. He talks about disarming ourselves from our experience, our narrative, and ask instead, "What am I without my story?" He goes on to say that if you find someone else, underneath the story, this is likely just another script, such as "I am an enlightened one." The answer at the bottom of the pile is "I don't know" and to be without a script is to be totally disarmed. So anything we think about what awake is, or what enlightenment is, is yet another script.

This is the feeling of sky, of groundlessness, of evaporation into nothingness. This is the mystery of our own Being. Look at the layers we shed to find this, and then, find that this is nothing at all.

Akilesh: And...and...and... when you let go and let go and shed and let go of all of these stories and fall into open sky of groundlessness, and realize the mystery of your own Being, finding this ... this emptiness that is nonetheless so full and luminous... sharing naturally and spontaneously happens! It happens naturally from this groundlessness which is very much luminous and warm, light and unconditionally loving.

September 20, 2006

Play Me

One single breath from you
and the balloon that was my heart
expanded to bursting.
Then all the songs
of my deepest hearts yearning
spilled forth……
flowed into rivers and streams
populating the landscape
with flowers……..
with birds and beasts of rare beauty.

Upon the banks
sat Lovers feasting
and dancing on dreams
and shared visions……
of their hearts most ideal imaginings.

And the water of your Love
washed me so clean and clear
washed my eyes free
so they could see truly
then all was only a sea within me
sparkling with the light
of diamonds upon the water.

As you call my name
I am left to fall on my knees
and weep with thanksgiving…..
to receive the gift of your Omnipotent Love.

I now surrender to you
all that I am…..
Every label I ever thought of
and assigned to me……
it has all been washed away
in the flood of your magnificent Love……

I am left to Open and breathe and receive
Only that I may share this Love with all………

Beloved this body is yours now
use this mind, these hands, these ears, these feet
Steer my life anywhere it pleases you…….
use this sea….. where my heart used to be
to write these words
as you will…..

I am now, only your flute
play me.

Poem by Katherine estelle eveningstar
Art by Mostly Glass

September 19, 2006

The Mind of Absolute Trust

In the world of things as they are,
there is no self, no non-self.
If you want to describe its essence,
the best you can say is “Not-two.”

In this “Not-two” nothing is separate,
and nothing in the world is excluded.
The enlightened of all times and places
have entered into this truth.

In it there is no gain or loss;
one instant is ten thousand years.
There is no here, no there;
infinity is right before your eyes.

The tiny is as large as the vast
when objective boundaries have vanished;
the vast is as small as the tiny
when you don't have external limits.

Being is an aspect of non-being;
non-being is no different from being.
Until you understand this truth,
you won't see anything clearly.

One is all; all are one.
When you realize this,
what reason for holiness or wisdom?
The mind of absolute trust

is beyond all thought, all striving,
is perfectly at peace, for in it
there is no yesterday, no today,
no tomorrow.



Seng-ts'an lived in the late sixth century, was the third patriarch of Zen in China. There are many legends about him. According to one, Seng-ts'an was suffering from leprosy when he met the second patriarch Hui-k'o, who encountered him with the words, “You're suffering from leprosy; what could you want from me?” Seng-ts'an is supposed to have replied, “Even if my body is sick, the heart-mind of a sick person is no different from your heart-mind.” This convinced Hui-k'o of the spiritual capacity of Seng-ts'an; he accepted him as a student and later confirmed him as his dharma successor.

September 10, 2006

Awake Silence

All that is necessary to awaken to yourself
as the radiant emptiness of spirit
is to stop seeking something
more or better or different,
and turn your attention inward
to the awake silence that you are.

~ Adyashanti

September 9, 2006

Co-Creation with Intention

Meredith: What do you think about engaging in a co-creative process with divine order? Do you think we might be able, with intention, to transmute the love-energy of awakening to others?

We are always collaborating with Intention; co- creating with the Divine. Perhaps awareness prevents some from seeing this fully, but we are all locked into a beautifully mystical, sacred pact: Who will find whom first- we are both hider and seeker.

Yes, we can share our bliss and it is transferable. Each of us is an artist co- creating our work of Intention; everything is beautiful when our eyes are open in this way.

September 8, 2006


Softy a voice whispers in the midst of the quiet Heart...

Do not come with the intention to create...

Surrender.... and watch

as creation plays it's symphony

through you...

Kathleen, Ineffible Bliss


Meredith: I love this inspiration that rises from a quiet heart. Recently, though, I have been wondering about tapping into the energy of creation, wondering, can we be co-creators? For example, can we transmute loving energy to inspire wakefulness in others? Actually, you are doing this here, with your beautiful blog. What is the potential of this energy moving through our fingertips? Can we direct it?

Kathleen: Meredith.... thank you for you loving support... and well as far as I can tell "we" are already creators... with the best of intentions of course..., but I find that all of that comes from mind... and surrender, well surrender is just Heart... more and more and more... and getting out of the way so to speak, seems to make a lot more room for Love to come through... and it already knows what to do with itself... LOVE! :)

September 6, 2006

Compassionate Listening

The Compassionate Listening Project, a non-profit organization based outside of Seattle, Washington, promotes and teaches powerful listening skills of peacemaking, helpful for families, communities, job sites, and for social change work locally and globally. These skills employ speaking and listening from the heart, even in the heat of conflict. The Compassionate Listening Project is dedicated to empowering individuals to heal polarization and build bridges between people, communities and nations in conflict.

Gene Knudson-Hoffmn and others from Quaker, Buddhist, and Jewish backgrounds founded the Compassionate Listening Project based upon a belief that compassionate listening is a key to transforming the world. Committed to world peace, this project has sent teams to try to understand the most isolated and conflicted figures worldwide. They visited Mu’ammar Qaddafi in Libya, listened to all sides of the warring parties in Central American revolutions, given their ear to the most challenging factions in Asia and the Middle East. In Alaska, compassionate listening brought two sides of the whaling controversy together for deep listening. Their belief is that through compassionate listening to the sorrows and predicaments of others, these conflicts will change.

"Compassionate Listening is a process rather than a product. It is healing precisely because it does not pretend to 'have the answers.' Rather, it engages the participants in processes that have each side seeing the humanity of the other, even when they disagree." Rabbi David Zaslow, Ashland Oregon

The Tao calls this “listening with the heart so that we can find the Way.” Compassionate listening embraces our own struggles as well as our neighbor's. It is possible that deep listening is a vehicle to awaken our heart’s amazing capacity to hold all that is human, even what we previously may have considered incomprehensible. A sobering appreciation for others emerges with the realization that we are all That.

September 5, 2006


And all shall be well,
and all manner of thing
shall be well.

~Juian of Norwich