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Jerry Katz
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The wind carves shapes into the beach sand

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Nondual Highlights Issue #2044 Sunday, January 30, 2005 Editor: Mark


Markings in dry clay disappear
Only when the clay is soft again.
Scars upon the self disappear
Only when one becomes soft within.

Throughout our life, but especially during our youth, many scars are inflicted upon us. Some of them are the results of violence, abuse, rape, or warfare. Others arise from bad eduction. A few come from humiliation and failure. Others are caused by our own misadventures. Unless we recover from these injuries, the scars mar us forever.

Classical scriptures urge us to withdraw from our own lusts and sins. But scars that have happened through no fault of our own may also bar us from spiritual success. Unfortunately, it is often easier to give up a bad habit than to recover from the incisions of others' violence. The only way is through self-cultivation. Doctors and priests can only do so much. The true course of healing is up to us alone. To do this, we must acquire many methods, travel widely, struggle to overcome our personal phobias, and perhaps most importantly of all, try to acquire as few new problems as possible. Unless we do, each one of them will bar us from true communication with Tao.

- Deng Ming-Dao, from 365 Tao daily meditations, posted to SufiMystic


It starts as a small little thing,
indignation at a trespass,
anger, having been wronged.
It grows into a flag,
parading first down small streets,
sweeping up the meanderers,
then avenues and winning crowds,
cheers along the way.
It writes an anthem,
builds a campaign.
Marching through the mind
it settles thoroughly in memory and vein,
changing our posture,
the way we hold our chin.
By the time it reaches bone,
it has eaten through sinew and spine,
cost us all that was benign.
Then, rises up the starless night,
no song no light.
Suddenly afraid,
we want it out:
cut, poison, burn the blighted stem.
But rampant right breeds cell on cell
out of control,
And having eaten heart
it eats the soul.

- Susan Dane, from Allspirit

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Avoid the crowd. Do your own thinking independently. Be the chess player, not the chess piece.

- Ralph Charell, posted to truevision

The human mind is afraid of future pain. This is a sign of how extremely powerful the mind is. There cannot be any future pain. Never. Never has there been future pain, nor will there ever be future pain. Now see how clever the mind is to convince itself to take its own images of the future as being real. Don't underestimate the power of the human mind. But also see how it mistakenly takes an utter illusion called the future as something having substantial reality.

It is the "what if" that makes the mind believe in its own images of future pain. The "what if" is an idea, never concrete reality. The mind creates its own scary images and then frightens itself with those images. And so great is the power of the mind that it actually believes those scary images to be real. "This is how it is", the mind says. But is it?

- posted to Nisargadatta

Don't be bitter my friend
You'll regret it soon
Hold to your togetherness
Or surely you'll scatter

Don't walk away gloomy
From this garden
You'll end up like an owl
Dwelling in old ruins

Face the war and
Be a warrior like a lion
Or you'll end up like a pet
Tucked away in a barn

Once you conquer
Your selfish self
All your darkness
Will change to light

- Rumi, Ghazal 3299, translated by Nader Khalili
Rumi: Fountain of Fire


- Hazrat Inayat Khan

Commentary by Hazrat Samuel L. Lewis:

This is a concentration upon nufs, the cause of all disharmony. When one concentrates upon God, nothing but love will be found, but when the attention is centered around the thought of self, all ugliness, pain and illness will rise. Of course in a certain sense they were always there, but this concentration gives them more life. It deprives the body and mind of the usual life which is naturally bestowed upon them by the Grace of God. It feeds the elementals who derive their potency from the excrescences of man, and these elementals in turn increase his trouble. Concentration upon darkness does not increase the darkness, but it does impede the opportunity for light and health to reach the place of sickness.

- posted to truevision

Overcome your uncertainties and free yourself from dwelling on sorrow. If you delight in existence, you will become a guide to those who need you, revealing the path to many.

-Sutta Nipata, from
Buddha Speaks, edited by Anne Bancroft, posted to MillionPaths

Our true nature is that simple and undeniable presence of awareness that illumines all thinking, feeling and perceiving. Always present and radiantly clear, it is never obscured by time, circumstances or thoughts. The body, mind and world rise and set in awareness and have no independent existence apart from awareness. Awareness, your real being, is all there is. You are not the limited person you have taken yourself to be. Look for the separate self and you find it entirely absent. Seeing this, suffering, doubt and confusion effortlessly drop away, revealing your natural state of innate happiness and freedom. Understanding who you are is immediate and always available - here and now.

- John Wheeler

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