April 11, 2006


Aki's post on the Joy of Shining really touched my heart. Sometimes I hear a word or have a thought that keeps circling, bouncing back repeatedly in a synchronistic fashion that says, "Notice me!" From Aki's post, the words radiance and radiate keep circling, and rise like warm steam, sending waves out into the ether - words demonstrating themselves.

I experience many people, as well aspects of our amazing natural world that exude this quality of radiance. Actually, when seen through pure eyes, "Everyone and everything shines and everyone registers this radiance at every moment."

"From within or from behind," Emerson wrote, "a light shines through us upon things and makes us aware that we are nothing, but the light is all." This is radiance. This is the flow of Presence, of benevolent warmth, moving through all things.


  • send out rays or waves; "The sun radiates heat"

  • send out real or metaphoric rays; "She radiates happiness"

  • extend or spread outward from a center or focus or inward towards a center; "spokes radiate from the hub of the wheel"; "This plants radiates spines in all directions"

  • glow: have a complexion with a strong bright color, such as red or pink; "Her face glowed when she came out of the sauna"

  • cause to be seen by emitting light as if in rays; "The sun is radiating"

  • glow: experience a feeling of well-being or happiness, as from good health or an intense emotion; "She was beaming with joy"; "Her face radiated with happiness"

  • issue or emerge in rays or waves; "Heat radiated from the metal box"

  • diversify: spread into new habitats and produce variety or variegate; "The plants on this island diversified"

  • diverging or spreading outwards from a central point.

  • to give off heat or light.

  • To spread or move like rays or radii from a center.

April 9, 2006

True Revolution

St. Francis and the Sow

The bud
stands for all things,
even for those things that don't flower,
for everything flowers, from within, of self-blessing;
though sometimes it is necessary
to reteach a thing its loveliness
to put a hand on its brow
of the flower
and retell it in words and in touch
it is lovely
until it flowers again from within, of self-blessing;
as Saint Francis
put his hand on the creased forehead
of the sow, and told her in words and in touch
blessings of earth on the sow, and the sow
began remembering all down her thick length,
from the earthen snout all the way
through the fodder and slops to the spiritual curl of the tail,
from the hard spininess spiked out from the spine
down through the great broken heart
to the sheer blue milken dreaminess spurting and shuddering
from the fourteen teats into the fourteen mouths sucking and blowing beneath them;
the long, perfect loveliness of sow.

~ Galway Kinnell

(Recovered comment from this post)

A spiritual revolution is possible, but it requires your willingness. Are you willing to reteach a thing its loveliness, to put a hand on its brow... and retell it in words and in touch it is lovely, until it flowers again from within, of self-blessing? Are you willing? The question is not rhetorical. Even in a godless society, are you willing? Even if it is only to a sow or a donkey, like St. Francis? The Italian society of his day was no less corrupt or godless or contemptuous of revolutionaries than ours. Are you willing to love unconditionally? Like St. Francis, are you willing to lower your self to the sow and whisper in her ear, telling her in words and in touch, the blessings of earth? For this is where true revolution begins: in the lowering of our selves to the blessings of earth. How otherwise would you be able to feel the great broken heart of sadness in the sow? How would you realize that brokenhearted sadness in your own chest? How otherwise would the hardened heart be crushed blessedly into awakening? Where else do we go to find the wellspring of compassion, if not into the dark earth of our own broken hearts?

April 7, 2006


Perception shifts, discovering
liberation is all there is.
Oneness is apparent,
not from something gained,
but from something lost.
Suddenly seeing,
falling away from seeking,
Oneness is being this...
only just this.

No effort, no doing,
all is simply aliveness, oneness, being.
Neither taught nor achieved,
resisting oneness is oneness resisting,
seeking oneness is oneness seeking itself.

The drama we call life,
is the drama of oneness looking for itself,
all desire is the longing for oneness.

April 6, 2006

Atman met Allah

From the Life of Pi, by Yann Martel

Page 62, Pi describes his teacher, Mr. Kumar:

(Mr. Kumar) was a hafiz, one who knows the Qur’an by heart, and he sang it in a slow simple chant. My Arabic was never very good, but I loved the sound. The guttural eruptions and long flowing vowels rolled just beneath my comprehension like a beautiful brook. I gazed into this brook for long spells of time. It was not wide, just one man’s voice, but it was as deep as the universe.

I described Mr. Kumar’s place as a hovel. Yet no mosque, church or temple ever felt so sacred to me. I sometimes came out of that bakery feeling heavy with glory. I would climb onto my bicycle and pedal that glory through the air.

One such time I left town and on my way back, at a point where the land was high and I could see the sea to my left and down the road a long ways, I suddenly felt I was in heaven. The spot was in fact no different from when I had passed it not long before, but my way of seeing it had changed. The feeling, a paradoxical mix of pulsing energy and profound peace, was intense and blissful. Whereas before the road, the sea, the trees, the air, the sun all spoke differently to me, now they spoke one language of unity. Tree took account of road, which was aware of air, which was mindful of sea, which shared things with sun. Every element lived in harmonious relation with its neighbor, and all was kith and kin. I knelt a mortal; I rose immortal. I felt like the center of a small circle coinciding with the center of a much larger one. Atman met Allah.

April 4, 2006

Round Luminosity

When the inward and the outward
are illuminated, and all is clear,
you are one with the light of sun and moon.
When developed to its ultimate state,
this is a round luminosity
which nothing can deceive.

Lui I-Ming
Taoist poet

April 2, 2006


What happens when the unconditioned meets the conditioned, when Oneness, the Self meets the conditioned self? In that meeting, what way will self express Self? Or in what way is the vertical dimension expressed in the historical dimension? Or how will your self embody Self?

Allow self to give way to Self; give way to openness, freedom, unknowing, pure consciousness. You do not know if you will descend into depravity or debased behavior. It is utterly out of your control. Basic trust seems to be needed to make the transition. One does not know if Self will express through substance abuse or other abuse, greed, manipulation, exploitation, decadence, or indulgence of some kind. Self expresses in these ways as well. Self embodies these manifestations as well , does it not? Self leaves it up to the individual. When choiceless awareness emerges, when it is realized, the conditioned self can give way to it and keep giving way moment to moment forever, or the conditioned self can at any moment regain its illusory sovereignty through identification, thinking it is permanent and separate, and believing in these thoughts and feelings of separateness.

At any point awareness in the individual can degrade into separation and delusion, and Self will allow it. Place your human fidelity on your thoughts of existing as a self-identity and focus on its survival and aggrandizement - the persistence and continuity of that self-image - and you will be back in the trance of separate self so fast it will make your head spin. Pure consciousness, authentic presence, the Self will quickly and quietly recede into the background.

Always and everywhere, Self will give way to self assertion. In my experience, at any point after Self-realization, Self will give way and concede to self-identification. This can be extremely confusing and disillusioning to one who has had an experience or many experiences of Self-realization. It can be a shock and induce a spiritual crisis in those whose beloved and Self-realized teachers have fallen back into the trance of separation, and behave out of conditioned personality. An example is when the teacher succumbs to the downward spiral of addiction.