If you want to understand any faith of philosophy, live it. You must not follow the letter of the word but the spirit of the word. You must live the knowledge to understand it and experience it first hand. You may believe you are one thing, yet at the end of the day, your actions may speak differently. You must become the journey. You are the journey. Reflect your beliefs by your actions.
~ Brother Jangbu ~
Hearts broken open, minds blown open, eyes open wide,
We meet, face-to-face, space-to-space,
Here and now–and the search for love is always already over,
before it’s even begun.
How do the geese know when to fly to the sun?
Who tells them the season?
How do we, humans, know when it is time to move on?
As with the migrant birds, so surely with us, there is a voice within.
If only we would listen to it,
that tells us so certainly,
when to go forth into the unknown.
The universe and humanity are one, and my parents, brothers and all people are my self. Sun, moon, rain, dew, mountains, rivers, birds, animals and fish are also my self. Therefore I should love and sympathize with others, because they are my self and not separable from me.
~ Nakane Tori ~
Before the World Wakes
In the first moments of day before our mind is fully awake can be a wonderful time for meditation.
Just before the coming of the pale rays of dawn, Mother Nature exists in a state of flux. Earth’s energy is stable, free of the disordered vibrations that are a by-product of humanity’s comings and goings. In these first moments of day, when the sun’s golden light is only just peeking over the horizon, our animal mind remains in the land of slumber though we ourselves are awake. Deep sleep has washed away the impurities of existence that accumulated within us, so our mental, physical, and emotional potential is heightened. To meditate in this peaceful yet energetically charged in-between time is to connect with the divine in an extremely intimate fashion. We discover a new kinship with the universal life force during morning meditations because our awareness becomes a mirror for earthly consciousness—we wake as the world wakes, quietly embracing the joy of being and setting the tone for a serene, fulfilling day.
In the first glorious glow of morning, the light, air, and energy flowing around us speak in hushed tones of the activity to come. While we recognize that another day of being means becoming once again immersed in the challenges of action and reaction, we also understand that we can draw upon the unique energetic qualities of daybreak for comfort, creativity, and vigor. There is bliss in the simple knowledge that we have been given the gift of another day of existence. We are inspired by sights and sounds of the sun’s gentle ascension. Birds serenade the luminosity, which grows richer by the minute. And though we may feel a residual lethargy, our vitality returns as our meditation helps us to become one with the stirring of other beings rubbing the sleep from their eyes. At the start of each day, our destiny has not yet been written, and so there is nothing we cannot do.
How we choose to meditate is less important than our choice to attune ourselves to the spirit of wakefulness that travels round the world each and every day. Even the briefest moment of quiet contemplation in the muted light of the sun can put all that is yet to come into perspective. As a consequence of our daybreak reflections, our lives are imbued with the same stability, tranquility, and increased awareness that humanity has long associated with the stillness of early morning.
As a lotus flower is born in water, grows in water
and rises out of water to stand above it unsoiled,
so I, born in the world,
raised in the world having overcome the world,
live unsoiled by the world.
~ Buddha ~
To see the world in a grain of sand,
and to see heaven in a wild flower,
hold infinity in the palm of your hands,
and eternity in an hour.
The Li River, Guilin China