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#3210 - Friday, June 27, 2008 - Editor: Jerry Katz

Nonduality Highlights - 



A poem with impact, by Gerald Stern, a quotation from Thich Nhat Hanh, and an introduction to two nondual children's books, one by Eckhart Tolle.

You contributions are welcome. A lot of emails came in between June 16 -21. If I told you your contribution would appear in the Highlights, and it hasn't, please send me a reminder or re-submit the material. Meanwhile, I'll double check the emails and improve my filing system! Thanks.

A Bernadette Roberts update: Joe Conti is preparing a writing to be included on the Roberts webpage on Also to be included on the page as commentaries are emails addressing the topic, which appeared in Nonduality Salon.

[email protected]


Anna writes...  

I took one course in Poetry in (1978) by the then, NJ poet Laureate
Gerald Stern; one of my favourite poems was this:

Blue Skies, White Breasts, Green Trees  

(from "Lucky Life" 1977 Lamont Poetry Selection)

What I took to be a man in a white beard
turned out to be a woman in a silk babushka
weeping in the front seat of her car;
and what I took to be a seven-branched candelabrum
with the wax dripping over the edges
turned out to be a horse's skull
with its teeth sticking out of the sockets.
It was my brain fooling me,
sending me false images,
turning crows into leaves
and corpses into bottles,
and it was my brain that betrayed me completely
sending me entirely uncoded material,
for what I thought was a soggy newspaper
turned out to be the first Book of Concealment, written in English,
and what I thought was a grasshopper on the windshield
turned out to be the Faithful Shepherd chewing blood,
and what I thought was, finally, the real hand of God
turned out to be only a guy wire and a
pair of broken sunglasses.
I used to believe the brain did its work
through faithful charges and I lived in sweet surroundings for the brain,
I thought it needed blue skies, white breasts, green trees,
to excite and absorb it,
and I wandered through the golf courses dreaming of pleasure
and struggled through the pool dreaming of happiness.
Now if I close my eyes I can see the uncontrolled waves
closing and opening of their own accord
and I can see the pins sticking out in unbelievable places,
and I can see the two lobes floating like two old barrels on the Hudson,
I am ready to reverse everything now
for the sake of the brain.
I am ready to take the woman with the white scarf
in my arms and stop her moaning,
and I am ready to light the horse's teeth,
and I am ready to stroke the dry leaves.
For it was kisses and only kisses,
and not a stone knife in the neck that ruined me,
and it was my right arm, full of power and judgment,
and not my left arm twisted backwards to express vagrancy,
and it was the separation that I made
and not the rain on the window,
or the pubic hairs sticking out of my mouth,
and it was not really New York falling into the sea,
and it was not Nietzsche choking on an ice cream cone,
and it was not the president lying dead again on the floor,
and it was not the sand covering me up to my chin,
and it was not my thick arms ripping apart and old floor,
and it was not my charm, breaking up an entire room.
It was my delicacy, my stupid delicacy,
and my sorrow.
It was my ghost, my old exhausted ghost,
that I dressed in white, and sent across the river,
weeping and weeping and weeping
inside his torn sheet.

-Gerald Stern


From the point of view of time, we say “impermanence”, and from the point of view of space we say, “non-self”. Things cannot remain themselves for two consecutive moments, therefore there is nothing that can be called a permanent “self”.

- Thich Nhat Hanh, from The Heart Of Buddha’s Teaching, Chapter: The Three Dharma Seals, page 132.

(Posted in Dennis Landi's blog:



Claudia, whose something-for-everyone nondual forum is at, sends the following info:

I haven't read this book for a couple of years, but I am pretty sure it is a good starting point for nondual for kids.  It's a beautiful book.  "All I See Is Part Of Me" by Chara Curtis:   “Sister Star, how can it be
That I am you and you are me?”

She glowed, “You’re larger than you know,
You are everyplace there is to go.
You have a body, this is true...
But look at what’s inside of you!”  

Also, Eckhart Tolle has a kids book coming out in October, "Milton's Secret" it can be pre-ordered on

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