|Dr. Robert Puff|
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Issue #1357 - Friday, February 21, 2003 - Editor: Gloria
to know God's thoughts... the rest is details"
could but keep in mind what you do not know; it would reveal to
you its secrets."
Gems from Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj's Conversations
"Now come up close and
listen. When you look carefully, you do not find
the merest speck of real mind you can put your finger on and say, 'This
is it.' Not finding anything is an incredible find.
Friends! Mind does not merge from anything. It is primordially empty;
there is nothing there to hold onto. It is not anywhere; it has no shape
or color. And in the end, nowhere to go. There is no trace of its having
been by. Its motions are empty motions and that emptiness is obvious.
....Mind's nature is vivid as a flawless piece of crystal; intrinsically
empty, naturally radiant, unimpededly responsive. Stripped bare of
repetitive error, mind itself is surely and always buddha." ~Shabkar
From the book, "Verses From The Center," by Stephen Batchelor,
published by Riverhead Books.
"Learning is one thing;
and unlearning is another. The process of
spiritual attainment is through unlearning.... Spiritual attainment,
from beginning to end, is unlearning what one has learnt. But how does
one unlearn? One can do it by becoming wiser. The more wise one
becomes, the more one is able to contradict one's own ideas. In the
wisest person there is willingness to submit to others. And the most
foolish person is always ready to stand firm to support his own ideas.
The reason is that the wise person can easily give up his thought; the
foolish holds on to it. That is why he does not become wise because
he sticks to his own ideas; that is why he does not progress."
~Hazrat Inayat Khan
From Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space by Carl Sagan, Random House, 1994)
|Earth (the dot in the middle) as seen from 3.7 billion miles away by the Voyager 1 spacecraft, on 6/6/1990.|
... Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there - on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.
The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors, so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light.
Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.
The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.
It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.
David Bozzi HarshaSatsangh
Have you ever *heard* him
I had the blessing to hear a 12 tape recording
of one of his last talks before he died.
(Wake Up To Life)
He has a powerful effect. He is alive and awake.
I invite folks to listen to some exerts of him speaking.
Absolutely amazing human being.
(not quite up to par with 'Ice Cube' but pretty damn close)
[click 'Audio' on the left margin for samples]
Listen to 'Wake Up To Life' & 'Satellite Retreat' samples.
These are from live talks which is where this gem of a human really shines.
"Sadhana" & "Wellsprings" are readings.
"Lovesprings" is *not* Tony speaking. It is someone else reading his words.
Lost Treasures of Tibet
It wasn't until 1950 that the first European set foot in Mustang, a hidden Tibetan kingdom in the northwest of Nepal, and it was officially closed to other foreigners until 1992.
The summer of 2002 marked the fourth year of a five-year program to conserve and protect the Thubchen and Champa monasteries, artistic and religious centerpieces of the formerly forbidden kingdom of Mustang. For generations, these exquisite 15th-century Buddhist chapels or lhakhangs (literally "houses for divinities"), situated in Lo Monthang near Nepal's border with Tibet, have gone neglected, though the dry environment and the kingdom's very inaccessibility have provided some level of protection.
Before Leonardo da Vinci painted "The Last Supper," Tibetan craftsmen were creating stunning artistry of their deities in the remote Himalayan kingdom of Mustang. In "Lost Treasures of Tibet," NOVA goes behind the scenes with the first conservation team from the West, as it undertakes the painstaking restoration of these ancient masterpieces and the beautiful monasteries that house them.
Located in present-day Nepal, Mustang contains some of the last remaining relics of an almost vanished world of ancient Buddhist culture. Across the border in Tibet, Chinese occupiers have destroyed thousands of monasteries since taking control of the country in 1950. Therefore, the survival of Mustang's monasteries or gompas is more important than ever. But preservation is extremely difficult because of the centuries of neglect, weather, and earthquakes that have brought many buildings to the brink of collapse. Inside, their exquisite murals are in a near-ruined state.
(You can see photos from this program in four interactive formats from the above homepage link.)
Journey through this hidden Tibetan kingdom in northwest Nepal.
Before and After
Joseph Riley Panhala
Heron Rises from the Dark,
is the long-necked, long-bodied heron,
always it is a surprise
when her smoke-colored wings
and she turns
from the thick water,
from the black sticks
of the summer pond,
rises into the air
and is gone.
Then, not for the first or the last time,
I take the deep breath
of happiness, and I think
how unlikely it is
that death is a hole in the ground,
that ascension is not possible,
though everything seems so inert, so nailed
back into itself --
the muskrat and his lumpy lodge,
the fallen gate.
And especially it is wonderful
that the summers are long
and the ponds so dark and so many,
and therefore it isn't a miracle
but the common thing,
this trailing of the long legs in the water,
this opening up of the heavy body
into a new life: see how the sudden
gray-blue sheets of her wings
strive toward the wind; see how the clasp of nothing
takes her in.
~ Mary Oliver ~
(What Do We Know:Poems and Prose Poems)
Web version at www.Panhala.net/Archive/Heron_Rises.html
The Peace of Wild Things
When despair grows in me
and I wake in the middle of the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children's lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting for their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free
Web version at www.Panhala.net/Archive/Peace_of_Wild_Things.html
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|Dr. Robert Puff|