The Paradise Inside
"There's not too many people on the face of this earth who can truly stand up and say, 'You know, I'm going through about the worst time in my life, but you know what? My happiness has not been taxed. My joy has not been taxed.'
That is unique. That is beautiful. That's the way it should be.
It isn't about a coconut floating in the ocean going, 'Well, how come there's waves?' It uses what it has been given.
So, let there be waves. Big deal. And probably it gets to a point where the coconut says, 'The bigger the waves, the better. Because that means I'll be thrown far inland.'
Everything switches, everything turns around. This is how you are meant to be. This is what the Paradise inside is. This is what the heaven inside is.
You don't need to be in the hell of this world, counting all the problems. In the middle of all of it, there is something so beautiful. In the middle, there's something so real. And the real is more real than the fake is fake." - Prem RawatMay 21, 2010
Beneath the Tree
Lots of people think that if you have a Master all your love goes there -- leaving not much left for the other people in your life.
This is not true.
The love a Master awakens in a human being is overflowing. There's plenty for everyone.
The old routine of focusing only on the "Divine Beloved" (and treating the other people around you as if they were second class citizens) is a sure sign you haven't understood a single thing.
Anyway, in the spirit of continuing to shake things up on this little blog, here's a poem I wrote to Evelyne, my unbelievably awesome wife and mother of our two insanely great kids.
PS: It's best read aloud...
This is a piece of paper.
It used to be a tree.
Birds lived in its branches and sang.
In the winter it stood naked
just like you and me.
If I had known you then before we both had lives,
I would have kissed you more than once
beneath its cool September shade,
I would have read you poetry, the songs of saints
who longed for God and nights
when darkness was the sword they carried by their side.
Small deer would come and stare at you,
wondering in their strange and silent way
how you became so much like them,
living in the city as you did.
You would turn to me and smile,
half here and somewhere else,
heart about to open like the mouth of one whose mother's breast was near.
I'd suckle you, but don't know how,
feed you berries cooled in snow,
wipe the sadness from your brow,
and just when you were thinking it was time to go,
take your hand and hold it --
proof again that even if we had to die
the time we loved was all we ever had to know.
(the place no man had ever been,
the prayer you are, your Master's twin)
would fly and I would meet you there
beneath the tree,
drunk with love and majesty,
knowing you were sent to me
by the only one who loved us both.
Unsure of who I was or what you were about to feel,
you'd pull your knees against your chest,
lean further back against the trunk,
moving as you always were towards roots
and the endless possibility that called to you
beyond the man now child at your breast.
I'd want to tell you everything, the ache, the need,
the quaking God within my bones
that like a sudden thunderstorm from Mars
releases me at once from all my loneliness and pain.
What shall I do with my hands here?
Pluck something from the sky
that you might recognize the feeling
most men hide from you in fear they'd never love again?
Could you take it -- my looking at you -- the adoration
that moved me to hold you in the first place?
Would you look the other way or wish I'd leave
so neither you or I were left to interrupt eternity,
the refuge of a perfect life beneath a perfect tree?
I'd do my best to take my cue and see beyond your eyes,
but seeing nowhere in this world to rest my gaze,
I'd circle round and round until I met you once again
beneath the shade of my eternal longing.
a pilgrimage away from you,
the one in human form who called me here
and wasn't sure and isn't clear and doesn't know
and cannot say what both our hearts have understood.
Was there a nest above our heads, a cloud, the moon?
Was the light reflected in that lover's sphere
once stolen from the sun?
I take your hand,
I kiss your lips,
I hold you and am gone.
A small deer speaks, the Master grins,
the dance of love begins again.
Excerpted from Thirst Quench ThirstJessica on the Bathroom Sink
You can meditate until the cows come home. You can fast, chant, and read your favorite Holy Book a thousand times. But if you can't find the place of infinite delight that little Jessica has discovered, you ain't done nothing...May 19, 2010
Falling in Love?
There's a phrase in the English language that makes no sense to me even though I've used it hundreds of times: "Falling in love."
Certainly there must be a better way to describe one of the sweetest feelings a human being can have. Falling isn't exactly the word we associate with great experiences.
The stock market falls. The temperature falls. Civilizations fall. Adam fell from grace. Nobody in their right mind really wants to fall.
Falling is all about coming down, descending.
Love, on the other hand, is an elevation, a rising, a being uplifted.
Then again, if you stop to think about it, the phrase "falling in love" makes some sense -- because the act of falling ends in "hitting bottom."
The phenomenon is all too recognizable. You meet someone special. Your heart opens. You're flying, you're free, you're feeling no pain -- not unlike the feeling of weightlessness that comes from falling.
Eventually, however, the falling ends. You land. Hard. The object of your devotion, proves less than unconditional. Their attentions drift. Their flaws become apparent. And so begins the painful process of falling out of love.
But it doesn't have to be that way.
There IS a love that is unconditional. There is a love that only gets better with time -- a love that neither disappoints or disillusions.
Human beings have been searching for this love from the beginning of time.
That's what Maharaji talks about. And that's what he reveals to those who truly thirst to experience it.May 10, 2010
There Is Another Part of You
Words of wisdom from Prem Rawat...
"Guess what? There is another part of you.
That other part of you is called the heart. Do you know how to use that part? Because if you don't, it's just like walking around with one leg tied, with one arm tied, with a patch on the eye and an earplug in the ear.
You have a whole part of you that wants to be content. There is a part of you that wants to be happy. Yes, there is a part of you that wants to have a posh briefcase and run off to the office every day and hobnob with the friends, and watch the latest things on the TV, and go to the movies, and do this and do that.
But there is a part of you, not an imagined part, a very real part of you, that wants to be content. That is all. No glory, no certificates. no climbing the steps, no climbing the ladders, no arguments.
Just wants to be content. Just wants to be happy. Happy. A simple, basic necessity of every human being on the face of this earth."May 04, 2010
The Wisdom of George Carlin
"The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings but shorter tempers, wider freeways, but narrower viewpoints. We spend more, but have less, we buy more, but enjoy less. We have bigger houses and smaller families, more conveniences, but less time.
We have more degrees but less sense, more knowledge, but less judgment, more experts, yet more problems, more medicine, but less wellness. We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.
We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often. We've learned how to make a living, but not a life. We've added years to life not life to years! We've been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet a new neighbor.
We conquered outer space but not inner space. We've done larger things, but not better things. We've cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul. We've conquered the atom, but not our prejudice. We write more, but learn less. We plan more, but accomplish less. We've learned to rush, but not to wait. We build more computers to hold more information, to produce more copies than ever, but we communicate less and less.
These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion, big men and small character, steep profits and shallow relationships. These are the days of two incomes but more divorce, fancier houses, but broken homes. These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throwaway morality, one night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer, to quiet, to kill.
It is a time when there is much in the showroom window and nothing in the stockroom. A time when technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to share this insight, or to just hit delete.
Remember, spend some time with your loved ones, because they are not going to be around forever. Remember, say a kind word to someone who looks up to you in awe, because that little person soon will grow up and leave your side. Remember, to give a warm hug to the one next to you, because that is the only treasure you can give with your heart and it doesn't cost a cent.
Remember, to say, "I love you" to your partner and your loved ones, but most of all, mean it. A kiss and an embrace will mend hurt when it comes from deep inside of you.
Remember to hold hands and cherish the moment for someday that person will not be there again. Give time to love, give time to speak, and give time to share the precious thoughts in your mind.
HOW TO STAY YOUNG:
1. Throw out nonessential numbers. This includes age, weight and height. Let the doctor worry about them. That is why you pay him/her.
2. Keep only cheerful friends. The grouches pull you down.
3. Keep learning. Learn more about the computer, crafts, gardening, whatever. Never let the brain be idle. "An idle mind is the devil's workshop." And the devil's name is Alzheimer's.
4. Enjoy the simple things.
5. Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for breath.
6. The tears happen. Endure, grieve, and move on. The only person who is with us our entire life, is ourselves. Be ALIVE while you are alive.
7. Surround yourself with what you love, whether it's family, pets, keepsakes, music, plants, and hobbies, whatever. Your home is your refuge.
8. Cherish your health. If it is good, preserve it. If it is unstable, improve it. If it is beyond what you can improve, get help.
9. Don't take guilt trips. Take a trip to the mall, to the next county, to a foreign country, but NOT to where the guilt is.
10. Tell the people you love that you love them, at every opportunity.
AND ALWAYS REMEMBER: Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.
If you don't send this to at least 8 people....who cares?"
- George Carlin
Thanks to Matt Miller for forwarding this...May 02, 2010
A General Rule of Thumb
-- General George Patton