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#2251 - Monday, September 5, 2005 - Editor: Gloria Lee


To live is so startling
it leaves little time for anything else.

     - Emily Dickinson


    The Sufi is he
whose thought keeps pace
with his foot.

He is entirely present;
his soul is where his body is,
and his body is where his soul is,

and his soul is where his foot is,
and his foot is where his soul is.

This is the sign
of presence without absence.

posted to SufiMystic by Farishtah  


Jack Kerouac's novel On The Road came out on this day in 1957, the story of Sal Paradise and Dean Moriarty roaring across America—the book that defined the Beat Generation. In the opening pages, Kerouac wrote: "I'd been poring over maps of the United States for months, even reading books about the pioneers and savoring names like Platte and Cimarron and so on, and on the road-map was one long red line called Route 6 that led from the tip of Cape Cod clear to Ely, Nevada, and there dipped down to Los Angeles. I'll just stay on 6 all the way to Ely, I said to myself, and confidently started." The book got good reviews: The September 5 New York Times review called it "the most beautifully executed utterance yet made by the generation Kerouac himself named years ago as 'beat'."

Here you can read an excerpt:

selected quotes:

Oh, smell the people!' yelled Dean with his face out the window, sniffling. 'Ah, God! Life!'"
-Jack Kerouac, On The Road

"Obviously the 'purpose' of the trip is carefully selected to symbolize the basic fact of purposelessness. Neal is, of course, the very soul of the voyage into pure, abstract meaningless motion. He is The Mover, compulsive, dedicated, ready to sacrifice family, friends, even his very car itself to the necessity of moving from one place to another."
-William Burroughs to Allen Ginsberg on Neal and his skeptical views of the man and voyage which spurred On The Road

"Love is all.'
-Jack Kerouac

"I went with him for no reason."
-Jack Kerouac on Neal Cassady

"What's your road, man? -holyboy road, madman road, rainbow road, guppy road, any road. It's an anywhere road for anybody anyhow."
-Neal Cassady as Dean Moriarty in On The Road

"Who are all these strange ghosts rooted to the silly little adventure of earth with me?"
-Jack Kerouac, on the final gathering/Snyders going away party

"...Ah, life is a gate, a way, a path to Paradise anyway, why not live for fun and joy and love or some sort of girl by a fireside, why not go to your desire and LAUGH..."
J. Kerouac- Big Sur

"Offer them what they secretly want and they of course immediately become panic-stricken." -Jack Kerouac

"I woke up as the sun was reddening; and that was the one distinct time in my life, the strangest moment of all, when I didn't know who I was- I was far away from home, haunted and tired with travel, in a cheap hotel room I'd never seen, hearing the hiss of steam outside and the creak of the old wood of the hotel, and footsteps upstairs, and all the sad sounds, and I looked at the cracked high ceiling and really didn't know who I was for about fifteen strange seconds."  -- "On The Road”

“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn, like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars..."
-- "On The Road”

audio files of Jack reading from his work:

There are too many things in this world to be learned, and life is too short to learn everything, so we should complete that which we have begun rather than dabbling in many things.

-Geshe Ngawang Dhargyey, "Advice From a Spiritual Friend"
Copyright Wisdom Publications 2001. Reprinted from "Daily Wisdom: 365 Buddhist Inspirations," edited by Josh Bartok  

  In this world
Men try all kinds of paths.
But they overlook the Self,
The Beloved.
Awake and pure,
Flawless and full,
Beyond the world.

-Ashtavakra Gita 18:35
From "The Heart of Awareness: A Translation of the Ashtavakra Gita," by Thomas Byrom, 1990.   from  

"Since appearances are the natural display of the mind, it is
unnecessary to abandon them.  Tilopa indicated this when he said, 'It
is not by appearances that you are fettered, but by fixation on them. 
So abandon that fixation.'  It is not what you experience that causes
confusion, it is your fixation on the experience as being inherently
what it appears to be.  Therefore only this fixation need be
relinquished, not experience itself."

From the book, "The Instructions of Gampopa," published by Snow Lion.

posted to Daily Dharma  

  Let It Do What It Does

In the quiet of our hearts
let us hold this...
oh, but not too tightly...
all this tenderness...
And if it is too big to hold...
then let it hold us, instead
That will do
just as well
Let us dare to taste it...
this sweetness...
this honey flavored Life...
and let it do
what it does
Let it rain...soft...gentle...
upon our desert
or a butterfly's wings
just out of the cocoon...
and fly
into a flame...if it must
oh, if it must...
Let it do
what it does.

posted to nondualnow by Aly  


Gurus I Have Known and Loved

My friend Peter has made a suggestion to me....that I write a bit
about the effect that certain spiritual teachers have had on me. I
said immediately that seemed like too big of a job, to review gurus.
"No," he replied, "just talk about the effect they had on
you." And so I begin with Peter himself.

Peter came into my life a number of years ago. I had begun my
website to write about my husband's multiple myeloma. It quickly
turned into a place where I began posting spiritual essays that I
wrote. I posted them on Jerry Katz's Nonduality Salon as well.
One day Peter posted something there about spirituality and illness.
I wrote him privately and thus began an instantaneous friendship. It
was based on nothing but hands clicking away at their respective
keyboards. And Peter apparently has a hard time with his, given that
he has been ill for many years. He prefers that I not discuss that
part of his life. He has overcome the illusion of having a separate
self. As far as he is concerned, it is all the same...suffering or
enlightenment are indistinguishable.

Peter's statements about life are inherently simple and therefore
effective. When you can not do anything but sit in the sunlight with
a cat on your lap, then that is what you do. Capice?

He once sent me a sound bite of himself playing the bagpipes in
earlier days. I sat at my computer listening, tears winking in my
eyes. I have seen his picture and he is an incredibly handsome man.
I do not know his last name or where he lives. In that way he is a
perfect mirror for what is beyond words and thoughts.

When my husband decided to die slowly, enduring chemo just to keep
himself on the planet as long as he could, Peter would say, "For
what it is worth, I hold your hand in this." Indeed. What
verbiage printed in ink or online can match the clarity of caring. I
knew that Peter's days were just like mine....hardly endurable.
But we were both choiceless in the matter. My job was to care for my
husband and his was to get through the day as best he could without
falling. "Ho ho!" he would say, after confessing to a
another episode of crashing into tall grasses.

So Peter has come to be a guru for me. He lives in the moment as a
matter of course. If coaxed, he will admit that at some point in
time, he lost his "me." That should be a profound relief,
but given that he also lost his balance, strength and career, etc.,
things have not been hunky dory for him. It does no good to try and
figure it out.

I go long periods of time without hearing from Peter, understandably
so. If I write about him, the love is activated as I click clack the
letters on the keyboard. He vows his cat holds the key to
enlightenment and I am not at all sure about that. Maybe it's
even simpler and he is just using words to keep me from experiencing
cosmic bliss. I mean, somebody is keeping me from it. I might as
well blame Peter. That is how much I trust him.

People whose lives have been drug down to the baseline of existence
and kept there for many years grow clear or crazy, one or the other.
Having lost a child, I know what baseline feels like. It is forcing
yourself to put your body through the motions while your heart is
scattered all over the universe. You cannot call it home; it just
won't come. It is stubbornly holding out on you. Mine wanted a
little girl named Laurie to come back. With Peter, it was his
ability to use his body.

But Peter and I found each other serendipitously. Forget
enlightenment, gurus and every word written about them. Loving what
is does the trick. When you can love the lost things in your life
and stumble forward knowing they will not return, good for you. Good
for Peter and good for me. We know the essential truth of life. It
will not change at our whim, but we can change in the moment of our
suffering. It's called love.

Vicki Woodyard

posted to Nonduality Salon  

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