What is Nonduality
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Issue #2476, Saturday, May 20,
2006, Editor: Mark
A ray of sunlight started down between the tree trunks. It touched
the pool with liquid gold. The pool became transparent to its green
depths and her self was plunged in those depths and yet upraised with
joy upon the rushing wind. The light grew stronger and turned white.
In this crystal whiteness there was ecstasy.
Against the light she saw a wren fly by; the wren was made of rhythm,
it flew with meaning, with a radiant meaning. There was the same
meaning in the caterpillar as it inched along the rock, and the moss,
and the little nuts which had rolled across the leaves.
And still the apperception grew, and the significance. The
significance was bliss, it made a created whole of everything she
watched and touched and heard - and the essence of this created whole
was love. She felt love pouring from the light, it bathed her with
music and with perfume; the love was far off at the source of the
light, and yet it drenched her through. And the source and she were
The minutes passed. The light moved softly down, and faded from the
pool. The ecstasy diminished, it quietened, but in its stead came a
serenity and sureness she had never known.
- excerpt from The Winthrop Woman by Anya Seton, posted to NondualitySalon
A Walking Fire
Today, now, this is when
we can meet the Friend,
now, as the sun comes up.
The Beloved, who yesterday
was so distant, today is
kind and bringing food.
Someone who knows this
one and isn't demolished
completely and reborn, that
someone is made of marble,
not blood and bone and brain
and eyes and hair. Gabriel
knocks on the Friend's door.
"Who is it?" "Your servant."
"Who came with you?" "Your
love." "Where?" "In my
arms." But the whole world
is in love with me. What
you've brought is a common
thing. Go away." Now Shams
comes along, a walking fire
beyond anything I can say.
- Rumi, Ghazal (Ode) 448, version by Coleman Barks, with Nevit Ergin, from The Glance, posted to Sunlight
Zen liturgy functions as an empowerment of the self. Suddenly you realize that it all boils down to you, that you are responsible for the entire universe, the whole catastrophe. When no-separation is realized, you can no longer blame, you can no longer be a victim; there is only the master. And that empowerment comes from yourself to yourself. With the wisdom of realization, compassion necessarily arises. Compassion is the actualization of wisdom in the activity of the world. When the self is forgotten, only the ten thousand things remain. Everything is realized as nothing but yourself. Compassion, then, is nothing but taking good care of yourself. If someone falls, you pick them up; if the environment is polluted, you clean it up. It's your world. Intimately and personally taking good care of it is compassion.
- John Daido Loori, from The Eight Gates of Zen,, posted to DailyDharma
To My Teacher:
An old grave hidden away at the foot of a deserted hill,
Overrun with rank weeks growing unchecked year after year;
There is no one left to tend the tomb,
And only an occasional woodcutter passes by.
Once I was his pupil, a youth with shaggy hair,
Learning deeply from him by the Narrow River.
One morning I set off on my solitary journey
And the years passed between us in silence.
Now I have returned to find him at rest here; ow can I honor his
I pour a dipper of pure water over his tombstone
And offer a silent prayer.
The sun suddenly disappears behind the hill
And I'm enveloped by the roar of the wind in the pines.
I try to pull myself away but cannot;
A flood of tears soaks my sleeves.
Like the little stream
Making its way
Through the mossy crevices
I, too, quietly
Turn clear and transparent.
- two poems by Ryokan, posted to AdvaitaToZen
You must realize first of all that you are the proof of everything, including yourself. None can prove your existence, because his existence must be confirmed by you first. Your being and knowing you owe nobody. Remember, you are entirely on your own. You do not come from somewhere, you do not go anywhere. You are timeless being and awareness.
- Nisargadatta Maharaj, from I Am That: Talks with Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, posted to AlongTheWay
Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:
The Soul that rises with us, our life's Star ...
Hath had elsewhere its setting,
And cometh from afar:
Not in entire forgetfulness,
And not in utter nakedness,
But trailing clouds of glory do we come
From 'God,' who is our home...
Therefore am I still
A lover of the meadows and the woods,
And mountains; and of all that we behold
From this green earth; of all the mighty world
Of eye, and ear - both what they half create,
And what perceive; well pleased to recognise
In nature and the language of the sense,
The anchor of my purest thoughts, the nurse,
The guide, the guardian of my heart and soul ...
Of all my moral being.
- William Wordsworth, on Revisiting the Banks of the Wye, posted to Poetic_Mysticism
"Crow Medicine Story" by Helena Nelson-Reed, by kind permission
More of Helena's wonderful art can be seen at: http://www.fine-art-studios.com/intro.html
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