everything belongs

One point that Ajahn Sumedho would stress regularly, is that loving things is not the same as liking them. Having kindness for ourselves or for other beings is not the same as liking everything.

We often come a cropper by trying to make ourselves like everything. This is a completely wrong approach. When we taste something that’s bitter and try to force ourselves to believe it’s sweet this is just falsity, it’s just sugaring things over. It doesn’t work. It just makes the bitter even worse….We’re not trying to like everything, rather we’re recognising that everything belongs. Everything is part of nature: the bitter as well as the sweet, the beautiful as well as the ugly, the cruel as well as the kindly. The heart that recognises that fundamentally everything belongs is what I would describe as being the heart of kindness, the essence of kindness.

Ajahn Amaro, Radical Acceptance

To be yourself

To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t
need to be accepted by others. You need to
accept yourself.

When you are born a lotus
flower, be a beautiful lotus flower, don’t try to be
a magnolia flower. If you crave acceptance and
recognition and try to change yourself to fit what
other people want you to be, you will suffer all
your life.

True happiness and true power lie in
understanding yourself, accepting yourself,
having confidence in yourself.

Thich Nhat Hanh, The Art of Power

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Quiet

If you could only keep quiet,

clear of memories and expectations –

you would be able to discern the beautiful pattern of events.

It is your restlessness that causes chaos.

Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, 1897 – 1981, Indian non dualist teacher

Sunday Quote: Going slow

The season of Advent commences: a period for waiting, for simplifying things and for seeing what is important. To have space for what has not yet come, we need to notice what gets in the way of being still and open.

In an age of speed, I began to think, nothing could be more invigorating than going slow.

In an age of distraction, nothing can feel more luxurious than paying attention.

And in an age of constant movement, nothing is more urgent than sitting still.

Pico Iyer. The Art of Stillness: Adventures in Going Nowhere

Turning towards

The last day of the year in the Christian calendar. Advent starts this evening

How many nights must it take
one such as me to learn
that we aren’t, after all, made
from that bird that flies out of its ashes,
that for us
as we go up in flames, our one work
is to open ourselves
, to be
the flames?

Galway Kinnell, Another Night in the Ruins

On a journey

The Sufi tradition contains the idea that each of our souls has come down here from some other place and will, like the Prodigal Son, eventually develop a desire to go back.

Robert Bly

Where did I come from, and what am I supposed to be doing?
I have no idea. My soul is from elsewhere, I’m sure of that,
and I intend to end up there.

This drunkenness began in some other tavern.
When I get back around to that place,
I’ll be completely sober. 

Rumi

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