Tuesday, September 30, 2014



Emanating from the embrace
Of the Goddess and her God
Is a wheel of shimmering divine energies.
This is the sacred spot
Where worship is done.

The center of this wheel
Is right where you are.
Live here, and let your heart stream
With an unending flow of adoration.
In this way, tend the altar of love.  

The Radiance Sutras - 151
Lorin Roche 
Photo:  Peter Bowers

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Stand Still

Stand still.  The trees ahead and bushes beside you 
Are not lost.  Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,
Must ask permission to know it and be known.
The forest breathes.  Listen.  It answers,
I have made this place around you,
If you leave it you may come back again saying Here.

No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or bush does is lost on you,
You are surely lost.  Stand still.  The forest knows
Where you are.  You must let it find you.

David Wagoner
Photo:  Peter Bowers

Monday, September 22, 2014

the real work

It may be that when we no longer know what to do
we have come to our real work, 
and that when we no longer know which way to go
we have come to our real journey.
The mind that is not baffled is not employed.  
The impeded stream is the one that sings.

Wendell Berry
Photo:  Peter Bowers

Saturday, September 20, 2014

nothing to say

Birth, old age,
Sickness, and death:
From the beginning,
This is the way
Things have always been.
Any thought
Of release from this life
Will wrap you only more tightly
In its snares.
The sleeping person
Looks for a Buddha,
The troubled person
Turns toward meditation.
But the one who knows
That there's nothing to seek
Knows too that there's nothing to say.
She keeps her mouth closed.

Ly Ngoc Kieu
Photo:  Peter Bowers

Friday, September 19, 2014

like a fountain of water...thingness

For me there is no materiality to apparent
materiality.  In our bodies, 3 billion cells a minute are
dying and being reborn.  So our bodies look solid,
but they aren't.  How many minutes have just gone
by and how many cells have died and been reborn?
We're like a fountain.  A fountain of water looks
solid, but you can put your fingers right through it.  
Our bodies look like things, but there's no
thingness to them.  

Li-Young Lee
Photo:  Peter Bowers

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

I worried

I worried a lot.  Will the garden grow, will the rivers
flow in the right direction, will the earth turn
as it was taught, and if not how shall 
I correct it?

Was I right, was I wrong, will I be forgiven,
can I do better?

Will I ever be able to sing, even the sparrows
can do it, and I am, well, 

Is my eyesight fading or am I just imagining it,
am I going to get rheumatism,
lockjaw, dementia?

Finally I saw that worrying had come to nothing.
And gave it up.  And took my old body
and went out into the morning,
and sang.

Mary Oliver
Photo:  Peter Morgan

Sunday, September 14, 2014

The Message of the Rain

when i was a child
i was a squirrel a bluejay a fox
and spoke with them in their tongues
climbed their trees dug their dens
and knew the taste 
of every grass and stone
and meaning of the sun
and message of the night

now i am old and past
both work and battle
and know no shame
to go alone to the forest
to speak again to squirrel fox and bird
to taste the world
to find the meaning of the wind
the message of the rain

Norman H. Russell 


The sound of rain needs no translation.

Allan Watts

Happy are those ..

Happy are those who know
behind all words, the Unsayable stands,
and from that source, the Infinite
crosses over to gladness, and us.

Free of those bridges we raise
with constructed distinctions;
so that always, in each separate joy,
we gaze at the single, wholly mutual core.

Grace is not something to be acquired from others.
If it is external, it is useless.
All that is necessary is to know its existence in you.

Rainer Maria Rilke

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

drink from this cup

Adorable Goddess,
These practices are a nectar I share with you.
Drink from this cup whenever you are thirsty
Or crave to be refreshed in the essence of life.

Know that this ambrosia is available to you 
Everywhere, for the universe is made out of it.
Simply go to the intersection of flesh and spirit,
Breathe the tiny sparks that fly.

Within this very body
Are many gateways to the infinite,
Where incarnation and immortality
Consummate their passion for each other.

Share these teachings
With all generous-hearted people
Who come your way and ask.

When you meet someone
Whose heart is vibrating
With the flow of love,
Share the teachings without reservation.
Let your words and energies
Be free as your breathing.

Friends, relatives, neighbors, people who abide
in your village, city, country...
Be not concerned with their attitudes
Towards these teachings.
Everyone is discovering the intimate universe 
in their own way.
Openings to this nectar are here
In every breath, every desire, every transition
From waking to sleeping and sleeping to waking.

Once you have set out on the path of intimacy with
The immortal essence of life,
Never turn your back on it, my shining one.
Never turn away.
Though every moment be surprising,
Revelatory, unrecognizable and full of wonder,
Continue to cherish each breath.
Live in gratitude for the supreme nectar we imbibe
In each turning, outbreath to inbreath into outbreath.

Lorin Roche
The Radiance Sutras
Photo:  Peter Bowers

Monday, September 1, 2014


I'm lying on a couch by the open window, listening to a 
warm breeze fluttering the leaves of the sycamore, cars
sighing and grumbling down Broadway with some destination
in mind.  A crow drops elegantly toward the pavement, 
the noon light splintering silver across the tops of his flattened
wings.  The air stills.  An unseen jet rakes the sky with
thunder.  Small tufts of tree-cotton drift by, their progress
hesitant but always angled upward.  In less than a month 
I will have been ill for exactly half my life, a milestone I
could never have imagined reaching with my sanity intact.
I seldom know what I need to be doing, or if I really need to
be here at all.  And yet I am here, and my life is connected
to other lives in ways I cannot fully comprehend.  A ripple 
of breeze presses one leaf against another and another, and
the sound empties and fills my heart with a sensation that
is indistinguishable from love.  I think of Meister Eckhart:
If the only prayer you say in your entire life is thank you, it
will be enough. 

Elizabeth Nordeen