Every moment

Recognizing and welcoming what is here in front of us, instead of always waiting for things to be “better” than the situation we are actually in:

The mind and external conditions are just as they are (“such”).

The gate of liberation is open.

Dogen, 1200-1253, founder of the Soto branch of Zen Buddhism, Commentary on the Precepts

Our natural home

The more I remove myself from nature and the more I increase my availability to the modern world, the more restless I become. I am no scientist and realize that I may be mistaken, but my experience is that feelings of insecurity, loneliness and depression to a large extent stem from the flattening of the world that occurs when we are alienated from nature. There is, of course, a lot to be said in favour of man-made environments and new technology, but our eyes, nose, ears, tongue, skin, brain, hands and feet were not created for choosing the road of least resistance.

Mother Nature is 4.54 billion years old, so it seems to me arrogant when we don’t listen to nature and instead blindly place our trust in human invention.

Erlinge Kagge, Philosophy for Polar Explorers

A possibility of beauty

What do I do with all this texture? What does it mean about the kind of world in which I have been set down?  

The texture of the world, its filigree and scrollwork, means that there is a possibility of beauty here, a beauty inexhaustible in its complexity, which opens to my knock, which answers in me a call I do not remember calling, and which trains me to the wild and extravagant nature of the spirit I seek?

Annie Dilliard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

Fully alive

Most of life only lasts a moment. Then our life becomes a memory, a dream. We are only alive a millisecond at a time. This moment! Or as one teacher put it, holding his thumb and forefinger about a quarter-inch apart, “All of life is only just this much – just a moment in time.” When we open to this very instant in which awareness produces consciousness, we are fully alive. Completely present. Big-minded. To the degree we are present for “just this much”,  this living moment, we are alive.

Stephen and Ondrea Levine, Embracing the Beloved


To me, this is what bearing witness is; just relaxing and settling down, and learning to be in, as Carl Jung would say “the time of your life”…

Life becomes alive only when we are expansive, and we can expand only when we learn to relax: into our seat, into our feet on the floor, into our breath and our belly. From this place of relaxation we can bear witness to anything.

Koshin Paley Ellison, Wholehearthed