Know that you don't know
Sustaining the truth is like tending your own garden.
To use refrigerator food, or restaurant food all the time might be reliable, like the Bible, or Sanskrit. We all need that kind of nurturing, but in reality, we each have our own interpretation and experience of life, that like the food that comes from our own garden, originates with our self.
We savor food from our own garden much more than food that comes from the grocery store, and we tenderly preserve it for harsh winters or lean times ahead.
Food that was planted in soil tilled by our own hands with compost that results from the natural consequences of our daily living, rather than the distant lives of others in remote ages and places.
Flavor and appreciation that comes with the satisfaction of having tended, weeded and watered the emerging plant and watching it grow.
The ripening of our fruit for harvest too, has an appreciation we can't always share with others. Knowledge peculiar to ourselves that can only be appreciated by others in a more general way.
From a Dharma Talk by Tim Burkett
The Grace of a Good Woman
After gathering raspberries for breakfast, I returned....to find they had all been eaten by my son.
I said to my wife:
"Darling, our son has eaten all the berries!"
"Ah, but how good they tasted!"
From a Dharma Talk by Tim Burkett
Karma encompasses everything that has ever happened: Past and present.
We live in a giant echo chamber, and whatever starts with us must end with us.
We cannot ignore the observations of others, or observations of our ancestors, as we are perceived to be them.
Thus is the universe alive. All things are moral. That soul within us a sentiment, outside of us is law.
It is in the world, but the world was made by it. It is eternal but it enacts itself in time and space. Justice is not postponed. A perfect equity adjusts its balance in all parts of life. Every secret is told, every crime is punished, every virtue rewarded, every wrong redressed, in silence and certainty. What we call retribution is the universal necessity by which the whole appears wherever a part appears. If you see smoke, there must be fire. If you see a hand or limb, you know that the trunk to which it belongs is there behind.
~exerpt from Compensation by Ralph Waldo Emerson
The Eightfold Path
- Right Belief
- Right Aspirations
- Right Speech
- Right Action
- Right Livelihood
- Right Endeavor
- Right Thought
- Right Meditation
The Four Noble Truths
- All existence involves suffering.
- All suffering stems from indulging desire.
- All suffering will cease with the suppression of desire.
- To achieve the end of desire a person must follow the Eightfold Path; Mere living creates suffering. To end suffering is to cease to exist and be reabsorbed into the motionless underpinning of the universe.
What is Zen
- Doing one thing at a time.
- A state of stability or composure arising from a deep awareness and acceptance of the present moment.
- Unlike sunlight, and more like the light of the moon, a removal of the veil on life itself, and all its shades of grey - rather than bright white dispensation of the shadows relevant to our lives.
- The deathless state.
- Just sitting.
Black Elk's Vision
When Black Elk was nine years old, he was suddenly taken ill and left prone and unresponsive for several days. During this time he had a great vision in which he was visited by the Thunder Beings (Wakinyan).
In his vision, Black Elk is taken to the center of the earth, and to the central mountain of the world.
As Black Elk related: "While I stood there I saw more than I can tell and understood more than I saw; for I was seeing in a sacred manner the shapes of all things in the spirit, and the shape of all shapes as they must live together like one being.
Black Elk's Prayer for All Life
"Hear me, four quarters of the world - a relative am I! Give me the strength to walk the soft earth, a relative to all that is! Give me the eyes to see and the strength to understand, that I may be like you.
Only with your power can I face the winds. Great Spirit, Great Spirit, my Grandfather!
All over the earth the faces of living things are all alike. With tenderness have these come up out of the ground. Look upon these faces of children without number and with children in their arms, that they may face the wind and walk the good road to the day of quiet. This is my prayer; hear me now!"