12/30/2015

Have A Natural New Year

The 'highest path' is simply being natural. Every true Master has said, the nature of consciousness is to expand toward bliss, toward peace, in a most effortless way. There is more wisdom in the intuition of a honey bee than in all the concentration, self-control, and effort of the human intellect.
Most of the chaos humans cause in the world comes from our need to control, through our own mental effort. This effort backfires and chaos is born from over-control. Religious fundamentalism is just one example of how chaos is born from an over-controlling mind.
There will be a lot of chaos in 2016, and this will be a hopeful sign that human effort is backfiring. We will spring out of control, out of the old paradigm, into something wonderful and fresh: a life lived naturally, from the level of intuition, rather than the drudgery of intellectual effort.
If you study the religious traditions of the West, you discover than the theologians highly distrusted nature. Being "natural" was sin, because nature was "fallen". So they prayed for supernatural grace. This fundamental divorce between Nature and Grace has nearly destroyed Western civilization.
My prayer for you this New Year is that, in every breath, in every cell of your body, and in each atom of dust, you may allow Natural Grace to overflow. Let the Divine Mother take over. She is so lovely. She is your intuition. And She will make honey out of you.

12/26/2015

Analemma

Analemma: The asymmetrical figure-8 made by the sun's position in the sky at a certain time of day measured from one location throughout the year.
Nature is bored by symmetry, by straight lines, by right angles and perfect circles. They are imposed by our thoughts, which are extraneous to her dance. Nature loves the curve, the open knot, the graceful tangle of illusion, the mirage of past and future shimmering in empty Presence.



12/17/2015

Gifts of the Magi

In the darkest place, the light is born. The mind is a busy inn. No room there for the birth of innocence. The weary pilgrim descends into a humbler, quieter place, nearer the fur and the feather. Animals know how to be still. That empty place beneath your breastbone is the womb of the Virgin. Her name is Silence. 
 
Three kings kneel there to offer their gifts to the newborn light, who is your own Christ Consciousness. These kings are your three faculties of intellect, will, and memory. They kneel in the hay, baffled out of all thought. What gifts do they bring to you, Child? 
 
They bring three talismans of power, talismans that every Child needs for the journey to enlightenment. They are not flaming swords or shields of invisibility, sandals for flight or helmets for seeing the future. Such mythic talismans pale in comparison to what you received at your birth as a human being. 
 
You have worn these talismans so near to your body that you forgot their power. You even forgot that they were there, like diamonds in your breast pocket. Yet these are the gifts and graces that make you most human, most divine. 
 
Now before you learn what these talismans are, you must promise that you will not take them for granted any longer. They are so subtle, so radiant, so fraught with energy, that they are an open secret: so obvious to those who are awake, yet hidden to those who are asleep. Please cherish and honor them as your birthright.
 
These gifts of the Magi will not simply guide and protect you on your journey: they will magically transport you to the journey's end. Wherever you are, at any step of the way, they make the way pathless! 
 
The first talisman is your Breath. One single breath unites heaven and earth in your flesh. Each inhalation fills you with the swirling night of distant stars. Each exhalation offers and blesses the fruits of the infinite past, dissolving all impurity. Just by breathing, your body becomes the stairway of angels. Trillions of celestial beings descend into the world through your in-breath. Trillions of souls are released from purgatory, ascending through your out-breath. Honor the sacrament of breathing.
 
The second talisman is your Heart. Not some metaphysical state or moral abstraction represented by the word heart, but this faithful organ beating night and day at the center of your body: perhaps you thought it was just a muscle, or a pump! No, this blood-gorged cardio-vascular ganglion is a portal to heavenly worlds. But those worlds are all entangled in this one, and the knot at the center of this sacred entanglement is your heart.
 
Simply to rest in your heart is the beginning and end of all spiritual practice. Descending into the heart-space, the mind becomes silent and boundless. Some people think that meditation is an out-of-body experience. But meditation is an ultra-body experience.
 
At harmony with every pulsing atom of your body, you glow. Your glow irradiates the space around you, enfolding cities and forests, cradling the earth, expanding into the stars. Your body has no edges when the mind is in the heart, because the heart is an energy field without circumference.
 
The “soul” is the radiance of your body. It is your ultra-body, and its center is your heart. Touching the heart with pure naked awareness activates the entire field, a field that includes the galaxy.
 
So when you meditate, you don't go anywhere. You are infinitely here. And your hereness begins in the hridaya chakra. Our English word heart is rooted in this Sanskrit word, hridaya. The divine power of utterly being here arises from the heart. Which brings us to the third gift of the Magi...
 
The third gift is so near that you never notice it all all. It is closer than any thought, so transparent that you cannot look for it: you must look from it. In fact, this talisman is the very space of no-thought, where the mirages of memory and desire have vanished. The third talisman is pure Presence.
 
The Present Moment is the only time you will ever be happy, the only wealth you will ever possess, the only place where you will ever encounter the intimate gaze of God. Returning the the Present Moment is the goal of your eternal journey. 
 
Breath, Heart, Present Moment: these are the gifts of the three kings offered to the Christ Child, who is born as your own radiance in the darkness of this holy night.
* Painting by Gerard Van Honthorst, 1622

12/16/2015

'Dialogue': A Poem from 'Wounded Bud,' Translated Into Arabic

"I will wound you for free."
"But I want to pay for it."
"This will cost you everything."
"I have already given that."
"Then give me your silence,"
Love said.
So I renounced the mind and dove
into the space between thoughts
where I swam all night among moonbeams
with creatures who glowed in namelessness.
Just before dawn, Love severed off my crown
with a scimitar of sweetness, a wave of stillness,
mirage of emptiness, sword of the Prophet,
forever slicing One in Two, for the sake of devotion.
"Take that!" Love said.
"Thank you!" cried Bewilderment,
breaking the silence, opening
the wound again.


حوار

“سوف أجرحكَ مجانا.”
“لكنني أريد أن أدفع ثمن الجرح.”
“سيكلفكَ ذلك كلَّ شيء.”
“لقد أعطيتُ كل شيء من قبل.”
“أعطني إذن صمتك.”
قال الحب.
فتخليت عن فكري وغصتُ
في فضاء ما بين الأفكار
حيث سبحت كل ليلة بين أشعة القمر
مع مخلوقات تتوهج بلا أسماء.
قبيل الفجر، اجتث الحب تاج رأسي
بسيف من حلاوة، بموجة من سكون،
بسراب الفراغ، بسيف النبي
الذي، إلى الأبد، يقطع الأحد اثنين لكي نختبر التفاني.
"خذ ذلك!" قال الحب.
“شكرا لك!” أجاب الذهول باكياً،
فكسر إذ ذاك صمته، وانفتح
الجرح من جديد.

Translated on Dec 16th, 2015, 
by Dana Chamseddine

12/09/2015

Happiness Is Energy, Not Thought

Happiness is energy, not thought. Happiness is not a state of mind, but Prana, the primordial bliss-energy of creation.

We won't attain happiness by replacing one thought with another, by imagining, or by manipulating mental states. Neither will we attain happiness by performing "good deeds." Many people perform constant work yet remain unhappy and depressed; even though they are outwardly active, their inner energy is low. People with low prana are not healing to be with.

The energy of happiness, the energy of prana, pours freely hroughout the universe. Wild animals and angels know how to breathe it in. When a creature of the forest is exhausted or sick, it knows how to curl up into a ball of fur, in soft green silence, to recharge with prana. Then it becomes wild and vital again.

But humans ruin this natural process of graceful restoration, by trying to "do" it with their minds.
If we want to receive healing or give healing, we must dive deep into the source of energy, far deeper than mere thinking. The well of prana lies beyond the mind. Tapping that source of bliss-energy, we imbibe pure happiness with every cell of our body. This is the power of meditation. Jai Guru Dev.

12/06/2015

The Nectar Of This Breath

If you truly taste the nectar of this Breath, you will need no other drink,  no other medicine, no other wealth, no other name for the Divine. There are billions of breathers, but only one Breath.
 

With your first inhalation, the infinite space of Love informed you. With your last exhalation, the infinite space of Love dissolves you. But this does not happen only at the beginning and the end: it happens now. With each Breath you are born, you die. With each Breath Love creates you, and welcomes you home.
 

Breathe Christ this morning. Breathe Buddha this morning. Drink the milk of the Breath of the Mother of God this morning. Here is the invitation of the Beloved, whatever name you call. Won't you join me in one infinite perfect Breath?


Courage To Love

Originally the word "couråge" meant love, from the Old French, based on the Latin word for "heart." But our hyper-aggressive culture of insecurity has separated love from courage. Keeping the heart open without judgment is love. Keeping the heart open to the pain, without shielding ourselves through judgment, requires very great courage. Love is the highest form of courage.

"Judge Not"

"Judge not, lest ye be judged." These plain-spoken words by Jesus are seldom practiced, or even heard, by his followers. I know that I fail constantly to rest in the purity of his teaching.
In the coming age, "moral decision making" will be on the level of intuition rather than intellect. Simply rest in the silence of the heart, then do what you love at this moment. Encourage others to consult the heart's silence, then do what they love at this moment. Do not judge them, do not judge yourself, even if your "decisions" appear to be completely opposite.
A passionate freedom from all judgment is the perfection of moral philosophy. Refraining from judgment strikes the intellect as irresponsible, but is in fact the purest response.
Judgment is a fear reaction to protect the heart, locking the heart away from its innate power. When we have the courage not to judge, the heart comes alive in the present moment. Then we can respond with vulnerability, which is the supremely invincible power of love.