brief teachings

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    The Three Times Paid Member

    It is essential to see that we live our lives most of the time in the three times; that’s to say, the past, the present, and the future. We spend our time playing past, present, and future. Why do I suffer now? It’s because of something in the past. What about what should I do in the future? Well, I should plan to do something in the future. The odd fact is that the past actually is dead. There are memories of it, but everything in the past is actually gone, and everything in the future has not yet arisen. There’s only one place where you can actually be, and that is now. This needs thinking about, because it’s very easy to say that’s a lot of nonsense—of course there’s past, present, and future. But actually, the only place where there is something, is-ness, is only now. How could there be anything else? More »
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    Tortoise Steps Paid Member

    Practicing dharma is necessarily a frustrating business. What practitioners, especially beginners, often fail to realize is that frustrations are the signposts of our success. An exasperating lack of concentration, devotion, or inspiration might be just what you need to make the extra effort to tune in to your practice fully. Alternatively, of course, it may topple you in the other direction and stop you practicing altogether—a temptation you must resist at all costs. Always remember, though, that frustration with your spiritual path is often an indication that you are becoming a genuine dharma practitioner. More »
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    Discovering Truth Paid Member

    Dreams, like metaphors, are often best left uninterpreted. The attempt to contain with meaning cuts off the unconscious process that the images work on us. Better to dwell peaceably in their corridors and meander through their eerie glades than try to see pathways of the mind and find dark memories in their stories. They will make known to us those things we need to know in their own time. Yet appreciating their rich presence and inviting their nightly unfolding, we embrace their healing quality. So too, religious experience appears, a gift to be appreciated in the moment, but not cemented into concrete analysis. More »
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    Gently Bowing Paid Member

    Imagine for a moment that everything you see, hear, smell, touch, and taste is your very best friend. The spoon in your hand and the distant sound of traffic; the raindrops running down your back and the smell of dirty laundry; the blue sky and the flavor of cumin—these are not mere passing encounters with two-dimensional items. Instead, imagine for a moment that everything you are experiencing is your very, very best friend saying hello. Such a hello is much more than just a passing handshake or kiss on the cheek. The sky’s blue hello invites us to discover something further—something vast and astounding. The smell of an ocean breeze invites us to explore further—to wonder and discover. The sights and sounds around us when fully acknowledged are quite an invitation indeed. More »
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    Let Grace In Paid Member

    Grace provides the framework within which a meaningful life is lived. Love is the substance of it day to day. To live a spiritual life, then, is essentially to do things “for the love of it”—to do things without attachment to a result or reward. It is a matter of living in a simple way and having a practice that enables you to return again and again to the consciousness of life’s all-enfolding blessing. Grace is the key to happiness. When bad things happen, if we have confidence in grace, then we can remain grounded in that and not be overwhelmed by the soap opera of life. And grace is a circular blessing. The more grace enters your life, the more grateful you are. The more grateful you are, the more easily grace seems to enter. You can do the following things in order to let grace enter your life: More »
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    The Right Mind and the Confused Mind Paid Member

    The Right Mind is the mind that does not remain in one place. It is the mind that stretches throughout the entire body and self. The Confused Mind is the mind that, thinking something over, congeals in one place. When the Right Mind congeals and settles in one place, it becomes what is called the Confused Mind. When the Right Mind is lost, it is lacking in function here and there. For this reason, it is important not to lose it. In not remaining in one place, the Right Mind is like water. The Confused Mind is like ice, and ice is unable to wash hands or head. When ice is melted, it becomes water and flows everywhere, and it can wash the hands, the feet, or anything else. More »