Posts Tagged ‘meditiation’

“Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it.
Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many.
Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books.
Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders.
Do not believe in traditions simply because they have been handed down for many generations.
But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”

The words above are attributed to Shakyamuni Buddha. They are great things to ponder as you inquire or hear things about various religions, philosophies, and belief systems. They can help you discern what is worthy, truthful, helpful, and right for you to live by.

Then after much time, prayer, meditation, and sitting with what you’ve read or heard you can decide if those ideas are of value to you and if they will help you live a life of peace, love, and compassion. If they will you can determine how you will incorporate them into your daily life and share them in your communities and at your jobs.

Good luck with that! Keep me posted on what you find out…

In gassho,



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My Zen teacher, Doshin Mitch Cantor, asked me to read an article by Tsoknyi Rinpoche that he was using in our November Zen Prison Ministry Newsletter and to write the opening comment for it.  As I read the article from “Open Heart; Open Mind” by Tsoknyi Rinpoche I read these words:“What is the mind?” he asked. “Where is it? Does it have a color? A size? A shape? A location?” And as I continued on Tsoknyi wrote,  “But I suppose, even at thirteen, some of us begin to wonder why we think the things we think, why we feel the way we feel-what, to use an American expression, makes us ‘tick.'”

What makes us “tick” as Tsoknyi  queries in the article is an age old question that humans have been asking since, well, maybe even before time began. Whenever that thought gets into my mind I think of the 1966 movie “Alfie” with Michael Caine, Shelley Winters, and Millicent Martin and the theme song by Burt Bacharach sung by Dionne Warwick “What’s it all about Alfie?”  I just wanted to share a few verses with you but as I read them through I thought no, I could not have choosen one or two or even three that left the whole feeling. So I decided to share them all with you.

What’s it all about, Alfie?
Is it just for the moment we live?
What’s it all about when you sort it out, Alfie?
Are we meant to take more than we give
or are we meant to be kind?
And if only fools are kind, Alfie,
then I guess it’s wise to be cruel.
And if life belongs only to the strong, Alfie,
what will you lend on an old golden rule?
As sure as I believe there’s a heaven above, Alfie,
I know there’s something much more,
something even non-believers can believe in.
I believe in love, Alfie.
Without true love we just exist, Alfie.
Until you find the love you’ve missed you’re nothing, Alfie.
When you walk let your heart lead the way
and you’ll find love any day, Alfie, Alfie.

Tsoknyi writes “It’s not enough to be aware. We also have to be alert. We have to ask ourselves, when we experience discomfort, trouble, or pain, ‘What’s going on here?’” Lack of love is what’s going on here because love, love is what makes us tick. Find love and you’ll find out what makes you tick.  Begin your search today, everywhere, all day…and let me know what you’ve found.

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