Everything you see has its roots
in the unseen world.
The forms may change,
yet the essence remains the same.
Every wondrous sight will vanish,
every sweet word will fade.
But do not be disheartened,
The Source they come from is eternal–
growing, branching out,
giving new life and new joy.
Why do you weep?–
That Source is within you,
and this whole world
is springing up from it.
The Source is full,
its waters are ever-flowing;
Do not grieve,
drink your fill!
Don’t think it will ever run dry —
This is the endless Ocean!
Rumi, A Garden beyond Paradise
When one has given up chasing after happiness…
Traveling through this world
I have entrusted myself to Heaven.
In my sack, three quarts of rice;
By the hearth, a bundle of firewood.
If someone asks what is the mark of enlightenment or illusion
I cannot say – wealth and honor are nothing but dust.
As the evening rain falls, I sit in my hermitage.
And stretch out both feet in answer
Ryoken, 1758–1831, Zen Buddhist monk and poet
One day we’ll lie down and not get up.
One day, all we guard will be surrendered.
Until then, we’ll go on learning to recognize
what we love, and what it takes
to tend what isn’t for our having.
So often, fear has led me
to abandon what I know I must relinquish
in time. But for the moment,
I’ll listen to her dream,
and she to mine, our mutual hearing calling
more and more detail into the light
of a joint and fragile keeping.
Li-Young Lee, To Hold (extract)
It must be a great disappointment to God
if we are not dazzled at least ten times a day
Mary Oliver, Blue Horses
in the quiet, ordinary things.
a book with a paper-knife stuck between the pages.
And the petal falling from the rose,
and the light flickering
as we sit silent.
Virginia Woolf, The Waves
Strive for the effortless.
Find flavor in that which has no flavor.
Deal with the small as if it were the great, deal with the few as if it were the many,
Respond to resentment with virtue.
Plan for the difficult while it is still easy;
work on the great while it is still small.
Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching, 63