Sunday, December 30, 2012

if its happiness that we want...

Searching the Ox  -  I
Picture Searching the Ox kindly provided by h.koppdelaney

the new year beckons us to start afresh,
not to waste our precious time, with fruitless endeavors, 
which brings us nothing but suffering...

if it is happiness, that we want, know that the fruits are born of the seeds we plant...

if it is happiness, that we want, start by avoiding violence in all forms
from the tone of our voice, to avoiding watching violence, to avoiding creating a demand for it...

if it is happiness, that we want, start by good actions, however small,
from the gentleness of your voice, to the generosity of your words, to the thoughtfulness of your actions...

if it is happiness, that we want, simplify our lives,
we don't need to be a slave to all these things, the more things, the more confusion...

if it is happiness, that we want, practice humility
it is a lot less stressful, and lets us listen more carefully...

wishing all my readers, friends, family a happy new year...thank you for all your support...

Saturday, December 29, 2012

a spiritual expresso...

Buddha Moon - Buddha Stones
Picture Buddha Moon - Buddha Stones kindly provided by h.koppdelaney

 William Blake once wrote 'If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man (woman) as it is, infinite.' 

 What if there were no doors of perception in the first place? 
what if we could experience things with no filters, no judgement, no fear?

is this not what Zen is all about?
experiencing things as they are, getting out of your own way...

at this worldly level its about
being in the present, 
being non judgmental, 
embracing the current moment good or bad, 
being compassionate to all living things...
sort of like a spiritual latte...

on a deeper level, it is about meditation, 
shutting off our day to day mode of perceptions,
 experiencing reality directly, with no filters at all, 
with none of our physical sensory layers, 
emptying the mind of all thoughts,
where me, you, time have no meaning, 
where a glimpse of the infinite is possible...
sort of like a spiritual expresso...

Thursday, December 27, 2012

there should never be a big "I" in life....

i ask myself sometimes why do i bother writing?

i write to remind myself of the person i want to be, 
the person i should be, the person i can be...

i write with a small i to remind myself, 
there should never be a big "I" or Ego in life...
that is nothing but a bigger Illusion

i write because i know i am not the only one facing these struggles,
 my words echo the spiritual wrestling match that all of us face within...

enjoy one of my favorite tracks

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

adam, eve and the pomegranate

Adam & Eve
picture kindly provided by Sue Hasker

would you like a pomegranate, i asked my wife
oh yeah! i did not know we had one she answered....

as i cut into it, peeling off  the skin, and the seeds painfully one by one with my fingers and thumbs,
with red ink splattering all over the kitchen,
i am thinking to myself, i hope she does not come into the kitchen before i get to clean it.

i asked my son if he knew about the story of Adam and Eve,
he said he did and he started narrating it to me,

that Adam was in paradise,
he was alone, so he asked God for a mate,
God made Eve out of a rib of Adam,
Adam and Eve both enjoyed each other's company in paradise
God told them not to eat from the tree of knowledge in the garden of paradise,
but Eve was tempted by the serpent, she offered the apple to Adam...

that's where i corrected my son, no legend has it was not a apple, but a pomegranate, don't you think that it does look more like an inside of a brain than an apple does i asked...

it sure does he said, and he went on to finish the story:

after eating from the apple no pomegranate!, they were ashamed that they were naked, and got leaves to cover their privates, they feared God's anger, and hid, disappearing from the garden of paradise forever...they went on to populate the Earth, with nothing but a distant memory of paradise...

very good, i said to him now do you know the real meaning of that story, he said no...

i explained to him that before they ate from the tree of knowledge, they had no knowledge of themselves as being separate from God, they were ignorant that they were with God, although totally blissed out...

having eating from the tree of knowledge, they took on the sheath of the mind, emotions, fear and ego....knowing oneself as independent, knowing a full range of emotions other than love, knowing the sensual pleasures for the first time, free to make own choices and reap the consequences as such under the law of Karma...and being entrapped by it...

however now, for the first time they are able to recognize the beauty of what once was like looking at the mountain from far away....the gift that may be worth eating the pomegranate for, maybe thats why God did  not stop them in the first place...surely being all-knowing God could have...

i carefully scrubbed the remains of what i could find off the kitchen table, floor, the water wife has got a keen eye, i am sure i missed something...maybe with that extra rib that God took out of Adam, he took some brain cells too and a lot of attention to detail :) LOL...

my daughter and my wife loved the pomegranate, my son quickly scattered upstairs, before i could give him a long lecture on Karma....

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

you will land safely on shore one day...

Bali Temple Monk
Picture Bali Temple Monk kindly provided by h.koppdelaney

sometimes you wander, why is it all so difficult?
that's when reflection, faith and trust comes in,

that the only person you have to change is yourself,
that you will commit to doing the right thing when the time comes,
and that you will ask for forgiveness for any errors in judgement

that there is a purpose under all this madness,
that its all just a grand scheme for you to learn and be tested,
that you will land safely on shore one day...

Monday, December 24, 2012

merry xmas...i shall not want

wishing my readers a merry Xmas
may we come to realize how to live our lives as Jesus lived
showing love, forgiveness, acceptance
i would like to share my favorite Christian Prayer,
which has many layers of meaning:

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want
he maketh me to lie down in green pastures
he leadeth me beside the still waters
he restoreth my soul
he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake. 
yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death
i will fear no evil,
for thou art with me
thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. 
thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: 
thou anointest my head with oil; 
my cup runneth over
surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: 
and i will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

evil exists...

Picture "Farewell" kindly provided by h.koppdelaney
its sad to see so much
evil exists in the world,
a product of a defragmented society,
programmed with mindless images that appeal to the senses & ego...

the elders. the shamans, the gurus
have lost their place, their respect...

the new idols are the crazy people doing crazy things
glorified by attention given in the media

yes evil is bound to exist,
the wicked know no rest..
they plot and they scheme,
and the madness is only increasing...

best to keep yourself safe,
by following some basic guidelines...

read a nice fable on this in demons in the desert...
i highly recommend this book gift of fear
where the author teaches us to trust our gut
and expert approaches to keeping safe

Life of Pi - Movie Review

i watched life of Pi, with my son yesterday,
we both enjoyed it very much

when i asked my son what he liked about the movie,
he said he found it pretty amazing that Pi was able to befriend the ferocious tiger,
on a boat, with no food, no water and end up not being eaten alive,
and how this changed, once he changed his attitude towards the tiger

i said in return, see what a little bit of love and compassion can do...
you can achieve anything in life if you approach it without fear or hostility, with love;
despite Pi losing everything including his family, 
facing almost certain death...
he was able to turn things around by having faith and doing the right thing,
and grace was not held from him...

this is not too different to our lives
we are all on a boat,
we have immense challenges,
however we can choose, how we want to live our lives
death is inevitable in the end
but we can choose what sort of person we want to die

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Alma - My Soul

my daughter showed me this video, 
it is scary but it resonated deeply...
i explained to her after watching it, 
that our souls are trapped in these human bodies,
just like these dolls,
but under the law of Karma,
on which she replied, Alma means Soul in Spanish,
which is the name of the girl and the animated clip
go figure...

the most important contribution...

Zen Info
Picture Zen Info kindly provided by h.koppdelaney

if we want to see a change in the world,
the most important contribution that we can ever make,

is nothing more than showing an example,
out of our own lives, attitudes & actions...

Friday, December 21, 2012

21.12.12 may not be the end of the world but...

Buddha's Island
Picture Buddha's Island kindly provided h.koppdelaney
it may not be the end of the world,
but the world is in a pretty depressing state at the moment,
hopefully, this marks a turning point...

more than ever now,
we need spiritual education and evolution, 
we need to be the masters of our own mind, 
we need to show love, compassion, tolerance...

if not...
is a miserable life for everyone and everything?
not a lot more worse than the end of the world?

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

i trust the invisible hand

Picture Now kindly provided by h.koppdelaney
just like i trust the sun will rise in the morning and set at night
i trust i everything is as it should be for the day, good or bad...

just like i trust that gravity will hold me down when i walk
i trust that i will be able to walk on the right path guided by my conscious...

just like i trust the moon to show me the light at night
i trust the invisible hand that guides us all...

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

walking the path that hundreds don't

Monk at golden Lake
Picture Monk at gold lake kindly provided by h.koppdelaney
walking the path that hundreds don't, does not make you a fool
it may mean that you C, what others are blind 2

don't doubt yourself, 
although it may seem easy 2 do what others do

its hard 2 pay the price of ignorance, ego and self gratification in the long run
its much 2 much of an expensive bargain my dear

for the true and lasting joys are only ever those,
that are banked with love, compassion and self discipline...

Monday, December 17, 2012

the empty page of life craves for your brush stroke

Zen Path
Picture Zen Path kindly provided by h.koppdelaney

pick your self up,  dust yourself off
be clear on where you want to go
and how you want to get there

does clarity not pave an easier path?
the fog in the mind is the doubt, 
the confusion in the mind the fear
be fearless like a lion, 
for all is but an illusion anyway

like a Jedi knight don't let these get in your way
you will soon realize the biggest obstacle there ever was, 
that ever will be, is no other than yourself...

the empty page of life craves for your brush stroke...
but not a random one,
not a harsh one, that tears the paper with wet ink...

but gentle strokes done with purpose, 
held with the gentle hand of intention,
guided with only love and the fullest attention

Saturday, December 15, 2012

i shed tears, i say a prayer for the victims of the Connecticut Shooting, for their families, for their friends

Buddha in my Heart
Picture Buddha in my Heart kindly provided by h.koppdelaney
its much too painful to think about the suffering of those gone,
and the endless suffering of those that remain to mourn
i am too scared to embrace such thoughts
cause it rips my heart out to imagine such grief

i shed tears, i say a prayer
for the victims of the Connecticut Shooting, for their families, for their friends
for a world without violence,
for a world without insanity,
for a world of love and compassion only

it make no sense that this has happened
but it does make sense, even more so now
that we share the pain of others,
we ourselves double our efforts of learning and showing
love, compassion and tolerance

RIP :(

Thursday, December 13, 2012

truth and justice will always prevail

Follow the Flow
Picture Follow the Flow kindly provided by h.koppdelaney
when the world kicks you in the ribs while you are down,
and you lie there and taking it all as it comes,
know that you are showing more strength in taking the blows than those who are giving it
know that those giving the blows are receiving greater blows to their own conscious
while you are totally clear of yours
know that you don't have to retaliate
because truth and justice will always prevail
know that all you have to do your part and wait

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

stillness calls softly - Haiku

Picture Monk kindly provided by h.koppdelaney
stillness calls softly
it beckons true peace of mind
it soothes, it comforts
the ignorant forsakes this
not knowing time lost
cannot be gained back easy
stillness calls softly

Monday, December 10, 2012

what will be will be - Haiku

Zen Garden
Picture Zen Garden kindly provided by h.koppdelaney
try your best thats all
once you have done that sit back
watch it all happen
smile, accept what comes your way
what will be will be
what will not was lessons learnt

Sunday, December 9, 2012

want not want - Haiku

zen matters
Picture Zen Matters kindly provided by h.koppdelaney

best to want not want
what good is it anyway
why burden yourself
with things that you do not need
put it to good use
on good thoughts and good actions

Saturday, December 8, 2012

the biggest secret - Haiku

Buddha is a Butterfly
Picture Buddha is a Butterfly kindly provided by h.koppdelaney
the biggest secret
is one so near, yet so far
it is within you
holding the attention still
let the soul shine through

Thursday, December 6, 2012

The third ritual is to always do what is right..

Zen Walk
Picture Zen Walk kindly provided by h.koppdelaney

It is said that a man cannot stand firm walking on tippy toes.

A truthful moral life is the basis for all spirituality.

Quoting a previous blog post

as you scramble to cover your back
what truths do you bury?
as you profit from the suffering of others
what inner conscious do you drown?
why cry when suffering comes?
when you laughed when planting the seed
the short term result is temporary and gratifying
the long term is permanent and mortifying

How can our peace of mind, ever be at the expense of another?

No doubt the easy path is the one that gives us instant gratification, but at what cost? one must ask oneself...

The easy path is of sugar coated poisons, tasting sweet, killing you slowly, robbing you of real enduring happiness in the long run.  Its easy to do the wrong thing, when no-one is watching, or that we can get away with it, but the law of Karma is nothing but precise, there is an old saying that:

The wheels of karma grind slowly, but they grind exceedingly fine

Quoting Counterfeit pleasures blog:

what do you live for?
is it money? is it power? is it pride?

what does this cost you? and is it worth the price of your soul?
these are nothing but counterfeit,
gone are the days,
when you knew all these were nothing but shallow shells,
compared to the joy of love, meditation & discipline
tell me, is it not folly to exchange real notes with counterfeit ones?

where was this lost? when was this lost? why was this lost?
you lost it when you left the company of the spirit and took company of the mind and its counterfeit pleasures...

We see that these pleasures are cheap imitations of the joy of some deeper joys.

Is one happier to receive something or to give something?
Is one happier being distracted with thousands of different things, or fully engaged in the simplicity of the current moment?  
Is one happier with the reins of the mind held tightly or be lost in the world of addictions with no control?

The mind is a good servant but an dreadful master, much like a a car,  it is useful only until you have a destination, only when you have someone steering it and keeping the car is in running condition.  

What happens if you don't have a destination, you let go of the steering wheel, you forget to maintain the car?

Not having purpose equates to an empty mind, a playground for the devil.
Not steering the wheel equates to not being able to make the fine adjustments in your daily life to avoid a pot hole, a red light or a head on collision.
Not looking after your body leads to ill health which leads to an agitated mind

There is evil, that you cannot imagine in the world from illegal activities to more sanitized forms of corruption and manipulation, and it comes from negative programming, lack of self control,  lack of self discipline.

The question you have to ask is where will you draw the line and how far do you allow yourself to be stray away from it.

The line is the line of true happiness, for negative acts result in nothing but sorrow in the long run, positive acts result in nothing but enduring joy.

Doing the right thing is not limiting, it is freeing...

By doing the right thing you stand up with confidence, 
that nothing can be held against you, a thousand pounds of lies cannot weigh more than against a single ounce of truth.
By doing the right thing, you protect yourself from dangers of the consequences that will boomerang round and hit you in the head one day
By doing the right thing, it frees your spirit, to let it express itself in the world without worry of any repurcussions...

To establish this as a ritual, spend some time daily to reflect on your actions:

Ask yourself are your actions is taking you away from the truth, or towards it?
Ask yourself whether you are harming anyone as a results of your actions? make amends...
Contemplate on the opposite positive emotion to the negative emotion that led to this action: 
from anger turn to forgiveness;
from selfishness to generosity; 
from pride to humility....

Its ok if you don't meet your own expectations, knowing that you have wronged itself, itself is a big first step to any improvement, everyone falls initially, but fall forward towards where you want to go, this itself is a hardwiring process of establishing new positive habits.

Once you establish the basis of doing the right things, and catching yourself straying from the line, and getting your hands back on the steering wheel, you may find it important to take the next ritual...that of looking after the car of the body to make sure it is running well...

Read about the 2nd Ritual here...

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

a test of learning and of growing...

Zen Gold
amazing Pic Zen Gold byh.koppdelaney
we have to make the best out of the situations we find ourselves in, 
because in one way or another,
we have played a big part in causing it...

the key is in how we listen, it is in how we react to it,
there is a harmful way and a destructive way,
and there is a gentle way and a constructive way...

it is a ultimately test of character, 
a test of faith in yourself, 
a test of faith in believing that the whatever path lies ahead of you, 
is the right path, regardless of the outcome 
a test of learning and of growing

Sunday, December 2, 2012

1001 Inventions and The Library of Secrets

I came across these helping my son with his home work, they are really nice, the short movie is well worth the watch.

With all this negative attitude towards Islam, its quite amazing to learn that, we owe much to the innovation created by the muslim innovators, there ideas and early prototypes was the basis of today's comforts, the clock, the crank shaft, surgical instruments, flight, the camera...

I really liked the Elephant Clock which was a Clock symbolizing the timeless principals of Islam representing tolerance, incorporating elements of India, Greece, Egypt & China...very ingenious....runs just on water & gravity...

Saturday, December 1, 2012

treat each guest honorably...

Passion for Consciousness
Passion for Consciousness by h.koppdelaney

welcome and entertain them all...
even if they're a crowd of sorrows, 
who violently sweep your house and
empty of its furniture, 
still treat each guest honorably


because there is a purpose to each guest that arrives at your door, 
a lesson to be learnt, a lesson to be taught
karmic accounts to be settled, something to be sold, something to be bought, 
but not in the currency of money, but in the currency of joy and sorrow

do not try too hard - Haiku

Garden of Healing
Garden of Healing by h.koppdelaney

do not try too hard 
just shift the attention there 
this moves things itself

~thanks to my precious daughter~
~for helping me with this Haiku~