Finding the way back home

Its important for me to meditate…to let go of my thoughts breath by breath and instead slowly lean back into that which was inside me before I was born, and which will endure when the rest of me dies. For me its like something I’ve longed for all my life, without knowing what it was. As though someone, for as long as I can remember, has been sitting on my shoulder whispering “Come home”

So how does one find the way back home? The best answer to that question I’ve come across so far comes from Meister Eckhart, a German priest in the early fourteenth century who was supposedly enlightened. After a Sunday sermon, an elderly member of his congregation came up to him and said “Meister Eckhart, you have clearly met God. Please help me to get to know God like you do. But your advice must be very simple as my memory is failing me”

“It’s very simple” Meister Eckhart replied. “All you need to do to meet God the way I have, is to fully understand who is looking out through your eyes”

Bjorn Natthiko Lindeblad, I May be Wrongand other wisdoms from life as a Forest Monk.

You didn’t mess up

I feel gratitude to the Buddha for pointing out that what we struggle against all our lives can be acknowledged as ordinary experience.

Life does continually go up and down. People and situations are unpredictable and so is everything else.

Everybody knows the pain of getting what we don’t want: saints, sinners, winners, losers. I feel gratitude that someone saw the truth and pointed out that we don’t suffer this kind of pain because of our personal inability to get things right.

Pema Chodron

Watch the excuses

When you blame, you open up a world of excuses,

because as long as you’re looking outside,

you miss the opportunity to look inside,

and you continue to suffer.


 Donna Quesada, Buddha in the Classroom: Zen Wisdom to Inspire Teachers

Not black and white

Solace is the spacious, imaginative home we make where disappointment is welcomed and rehabilitated.

When life does not in any way add up, we must turn to the part of us that has never wanted a life of simple calculation.

David Whyte, “Solace” in Consolations: The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words

Balance

I suspect that we too often have lost contact with the source of our own existence and have become strangers in our own house. We tend to run around trying to solve the problems of our world while anxiously avoiding confrontation with that reality wherein our problems find their deepest roots: our own selves.

In many ways we are like the busy executive who walks up to a precious flower and says: “What for God’s sake are you doing here? Can’t you get busy somehow?” and then finds the flower’s response incomprehensible: “I am sorry, but I am just here to be beautiful.”

How can we also come to this wisdom of the flower that being is more important than doing?

How can we come to a creative contact with the grounding of our own life?


Henri Nouwen

Tie your camel

On getting the right balance between action and acceptance:

Anas ibn Malik reported: A man said, “O Messenger of Allah, should I tie my camel and trust in Allah, or should I leave her untied and trust in Allah?”

The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Tie your camel and trust in Allah.

Imam Abu `Isa Muhammad at-Tirmidhi, Sunan al-Tirmidhī, 2517