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The way we react is our karma!

Saturday, September 08, 2012

Is this sound SparkAdvice -- or what! Rinpoche says, "When you judge another, you do not define them, you define yourself. Perception is not reality. What appear to be faults in others may actually be reflections of our own emotional afflictions. I don't have an attitude problem; you have a perception problem. Remember the way people treat us is their karma. The way we react is our own."

Judging ourselves and others in this SparkJourney to better health and wellness is one of the primary ways we sabotage our efforts! Along with losing body weight, I'm striving to lose mental baggage as well on this journey.

HH Trulshik was the "Teacher to the Stars" -- the most exalted teachers in this Tibetan Buddhist tradition -- e.g., HH the 14th Dalai Lama, Dudjom Rinpoche, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, Sogyal Rinpoche!!! Now I want to see the documentary about him narrated by Richard Gere now, titled Destroyer of Illusion!

Trulshik Rinpoche Ngawang Chokyi Lodro was born January 1, 1923 in Yardrok Taklung, Central Tibet and died September 2, 2011. He founded the monastery of Thubten Choling in Nepal. In 2010 he became the official head of the Nyingma school. Rinpoche lived in Solukhumbu, Nepal.

Trulshik Rinpoche, France, 2000

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FLORIDASUN 10/2/2012 11:19AM

    So VERY true! I find frequently that the things that BUG me the MOST about others...are the EXACT same issues that I have within my own imperfect little self! Enlightening and inspirational my beautiful friend!

And...of course the very thing that jumped out at me about this wonderful wise teacher (Trulshik Rinpoche Ngawang Chokyi Lodro is that he was born January 1,) so it's VERY encouraging that what I notice about him in my perception is that we hold hopefully similar characteristics...we are both Capricorns! Yay...for THAT perception...that's when we notice things about ourselves and others in a GOOD and positive way.

Thanks for are always so inspirational to me! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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RIDMYCOCOON 9/11/2012 10:48AM

    great post! emoticon

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KALIGIRL 9/11/2012 9:14AM

    I'm in for the mental and spiritual baggage!

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DDOORN 9/10/2012 11:00AM

    Not only are those judgments of others a reflection of our own self-judgments, but also often a reflection of life-changing messages we received from others during our early life.

Time to clean out the old data banks and replace with life-affirming thoughts & messages! :-)


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DOR2BFIT 9/10/2012 9:52AM

    So true, thank you!

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DEBIGENE 9/9/2012 8:13PM

    This is the BEST quote !!! It IS sound SPARKADVISE for sure !!!

Thanks for sharing it.

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AZIMAT 9/9/2012 3:06PM

    What a beautiful being. I wonder where his next incarnation will be or is.

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2BMYOWN 9/9/2012 2:12PM

    I think we would all do well to internalize this...and then try to live it. This is an absolutely wonderful quote, serendipitously appropriate for me right now. Thank you for posting this, Maha.

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TWINSFITBY40 9/9/2012 11:14AM

    emoticon thanks for yet another great quote and blog. I always look forward to learning all that you share with us at sp. you are such an inspiration. Thanks maha! emoticon

Comment edited on: 9/9/2012 11:15:46 AM

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JESPAH 9/9/2012 11:00AM

    Judging is kind of a two-part activity. It is a reaction to some other thing, person, etc. But the common denominator is the reaction, which is internal.

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    wonderful and thought provocating - thank you! Pat

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FRANCESCANAZ 9/9/2012 7:16AM

    Trulshik was the teacher to the stars, You my beloved Maha are The Teacher of the Spark People! emoticon

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GOANNA2 9/9/2012 5:59AM

    Wonderful blog as always. Thank you so much.
I will also post on my FB status.
Namaste. emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 9/8/2012 7:06PM

    I'm going to try and control my "perception problem": which reminds me that addiction to the approval of others is the most deep rooted addiction I know!!

And: those raspberry corn muffins sound fantastic, especially with (just a little) maple syrup!!

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ADAGIO_CON_BRIO 9/8/2012 4:04PM

    Thank you so much for this wonderful quotation. It is much to muse upon. Your blog is always wonderful to read.

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SLASALLE 9/8/2012 12:07PM

    As always, you share the best teachings out there!! xoxoxo

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EARTHSEAME 9/8/2012 11:24AM

    I might have to repost this as my Facebook status!

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CRYSTALJEM 9/8/2012 11:18AM

    This is such an important concept that I need to be reminded of often. Thank you.

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Why I Wake Early

Friday, August 17, 2012

Why I Wake Early

Hello, sun in my face.
Hello, you who made the morning
and spread it over the fields
and into the faces of the tulips
and the nodding morning glories,
and into the windows of, even, the
miserable and the crotchety --

best preacher that ever was,
dear star, that just happens
to be where you are in the universe
to keep us from ever-darkness,
to ease us with warm touching,
to hold us in the great hands of light --
good morning, good morning, good morning.

Watch, now, how I start the day
in happiness, in kindness.

~ Mary Oliver ~
(Why I Wake Early, 2004)

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The first chirps of the waking birds mark the "point vierge"
of the dawn.
Under a sky as yet without real light,
a moment of awe and inexpressible innocence,
when the Father in perfect silence opens their eyes.
They speak to Him, not with fluent song,
but with an awakening question
that is their dawn state,
their state at the point vierge.

Their condition asks if it is time for them to "be"?
He answers "Yes."

Then they one by one wake up, and become birds.
They manifest themselves as birds, beginning to sing.
Presently they will be fully themselves, and will even fly.

Meanwhile, the most wonderful moment of the day is that
when creation in its innocence asks permission
to "be" once again,
as it did on the first morning that ever was.

All wisdom seeks to collect and manifest itself
at that blind sweet point.
Man's wisdom does not succeed,
for we have fallen into self mastery and cannot ask
permission of anyone.
We face our mornings as men of undaunted purpose.
We know the time and we dictate the terms.
We know what time it is.

For the birds there is not a time that they tell,
but the virgin point between darkness and light,
Between nonbeing and being.

Here is an unspeakable secret: paradise is all around us
and we do not understand.
It is wide open. The sword is taken away,
but we do not know it:
we are off "one to his farm and another
to his merchandise."
Lights on. Clocks ticking. Thermostats working. Stoves
cooking. Electric shavers filling radios with static.

"Wisdom," cries the dawn deacon, but we do not attend.

~ Thomas Merton ~
(Confessions of a Guilty Bystander)
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Leaving soon to rendezvous with Melissa for the 8-hr road trip:

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:



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RIDMYCOCOON 8/27/2012 2:47PM

    Aaah the greatness! emoticon

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KALIGIRL 8/20/2012 9:21AM

    Wonderful emoticon I couldn't agree more - the NE sunrise was fabulous this morning...

Enjoy your trip - I will be there in spirit!

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DOR2BFIT 8/19/2012 9:16PM

    Sounds wonderful! Hope you enjoyed your adventure. emoticon

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BILLB000 8/19/2012 7:22PM

    I love the Mary Oliver poem I just ordered the book by the same title.

Thank you so much for letting me know about the daily poetry feed from Panhala. It has been wonderful.

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CARRAND 8/19/2012 7:20PM


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CRYSTALJEM 8/18/2012 10:21AM

    Lovely! "Watch, now, how I start the day
in happiness, in kindness. " How beautiful.

Thought you might like the quote by T. Merton that I read in an article yesterday.

“By the reading of the scripture I am so renewed that all of nature is renewed around me. The sky seems to be a deeper blue, and the trees a deeper green; the whole world is suddenly charged with the glory of God.”

(Though I must admit I tweak the interpretation for myself a little bit)

Comment edited on: 8/18/2012 10:22:16 AM

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GOANNA2 8/18/2012 8:39AM

    emoticonFor brightening my day once again.
Good luck on your trip. emoticon

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JUST_BREATHE08 8/17/2012 10:49PM

    Enjoy your rendezvous with Melissa...Hope you all have a wonderful time. Be safe and take care!

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2WHEELEDSHARON 8/17/2012 2:09PM

    Glorious! My morning bike rides are dedicated to Maha!

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SLASALLE 8/17/2012 1:52PM

    Prepping yourself for your weekend ... thanks for sharing some of the beauty!! Have a GREAT trip.

With love,

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SUNNY332 8/17/2012 1:07PM

    Do have a lovely time and thanks for bring Mary and Thomas to us this morning.

Lovely words.

Hugs, Sunny

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PANDADOT 8/17/2012 12:19PM

    I am trying to become a morning person - I always enjoy the silence and peace of an early morning, when I see one - and this helps me remember why! Thank you!

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KGWINDER 8/17/2012 10:41AM

    Your blog was a happy way to start the day!

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ADAGIO_CON_BRIO 8/17/2012 10:20AM

    Thank you so much! I love your thoughtful and inspirational musings and I love how appreciative you are of beauty in its many manifestations.

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BILLB000 8/17/2012 9:51AM

    Thank you for your blog and sharing the Mary Oliver poem. I have always loved that poem. You brightened my perspective today.

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DAISY443 8/17/2012 9:09AM

    Now I know why I rise early (other than the cat wanting her breakfast!) Enjoy your trip!

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JESPAH 8/17/2012 9:08AM

    Oh gentle day! Rapturous sunrise! Ignore the jackhammering idiot! :)

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BEARGODDESS 8/17/2012 8:57AM

    I'm reading these as the sun rises. Thank you Maha! Have a wonderful retreat. Whoever went with you is very lucky!

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AZIMAT 8/17/2012 8:26AM

    I woke early because the rascal husky was breathing in my face. Ha ha. Praying for a smooth trip for you.

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BD3269PM 8/17/2012 8:26AM


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DDOORN 8/17/2012 8:21AM

    Great celebrations of morning-personhood!

I find it nearly IMPOSSIBLE to sleep in once the sun is up! :-)


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GREENGENES 8/17/2012 8:11AM

    I'm trying to figure out when I became a morning person. Now, seeing the sun rise and hearing all the activity of the critters around me is certainly a great way to start the day. Every morning is just a little different and helps to realize it IS a new day and anything is possible.

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WATERMELLEN 8/17/2012 7:57AM

    Thank you! I'd wake up early any day for these poems!

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PUDLECRAZY 8/17/2012 7:13AM

    Thank you for these!

Early morning and dusk are my two favorite times of day. I have always been an early riser because I love the 'quiet' of morning. It is not officially quiet in the sound sense. Before the sunrise there is a chirping of insects, the conversations of screech owls, and often the raucous cries of coyotes as they pass by. But is is physically quiet, a time of peace for me. I enjoy drinking my coffee, watching the pink of the sunrise, and listening to the birds wake up and sing to each other.

I love the golden glow of the early evening, just before the skies turn pink with the sunset. That is my favorite time to take a walk before settling in for the night.

Isn't it wonderful to be graced with dawns and dusks?

Are you currently at your retreat?

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In memory of Sally Ride

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

**********In memory of Sally Ride*********
****Who got to see that the world is one****


Leave the familiar for a while.
Let your senses and bodies stretch out

Like a welcomed season
Onto the meadows and shores and hills.

Open up to the Roof.
Make a new water-mark on your excitement
And love.

Like a blooming night flower,
Bestow your vital fragrance of happiness
And giving
Upon our intimate assembly.

Change rooms in your mind for a day.

All the hemispheres in existence
Lie beside an equator
In your heart.

Greet Yourself
In your thousand other forms
As you mount the hidden tide and travel
Back home.

All the hemispheres in heaven
Are sitting around a fire

While stitching themselves together
Into the Great Circle inside of

~ Hafiz ~

Before Sally Ride, NASA wasn’t sure women had the right stuff

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SNOWYOGA 9/15/2012 10:29PM

    This memory was really sweet

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    I love it too. She was one of my role models as a young woman.

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TEENY_BIKINI 8/8/2012 4:26PM



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ADAGIO_CON_BRIO 8/5/2012 11:25PM

    That is a perfect tribute. You always know what to say.

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CINDYC53 8/2/2012 2:09AM

    Beautiful and moving!

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EARTHSEAME 7/29/2012 2:05PM

    emoticon Thank you for the lovely tribute. emoticon

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ONEKIDSMOM 7/29/2012 12:11PM

    One of my SHEROES, too. When I heard the news it was a but... but... she's YOUNG!

RIP, Sally!

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PEACEFULONE 7/27/2012 12:59PM

    Perfect tribute.
The world is one.
We are all one.
May we learn to live as one.

Thank you for sharing.

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JESPAH 7/27/2012 10:10AM

    Ride, Sally Ride. :)

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JUST_BREATHE08 7/26/2012 8:51PM

    That's right KALIGIRL.....Here's to the Right Stuff!!

RIP Sally!

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DAISY443 7/26/2012 1:39PM

    It's time the world is realizing that women CAN!

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GOANNA2 7/26/2012 7:36AM

    I love it. Thank you for introducing me to great poetry.
You are a gem Maha. emoticon emoticon

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CARRAND 7/25/2012 10:15PM

    I love Hafiz! Thank you for sharing.

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CRYSTALJEM 7/25/2012 9:42PM

    I agree with Watermellen. CJ

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DOR2BFIT 7/25/2012 8:31PM

    Ride Sally Ride! emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 7/25/2012 7:07PM

    Perfect poem . . . you are skilled at finding the "right" words!

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SUNNY332 7/25/2012 3:35PM

    Wonderful tribute to a great SHERO of mine.

Thanks so much!


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DDOORN 7/25/2012 12:17PM

    Wonderful tribute to Sally! Women offer far MORE than the Right Stuff! :-)


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    with love

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BEARGODDESS 7/25/2012 9:52AM

    We've seen so many wonderful new things happen in our lives, and she was certainly someone to be proud of in this one. I LOVE the lines; "Greet yourself in your thousand other forms, as you mount the hidden tide and travel back home"

Have a great trip home Sally Ride! Thank you for opening doors for future generations of women everywhere!

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DEBRA0818 7/25/2012 9:04AM

    It was quite a journey that she and others have taken us on through space.

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KALIGIRL 7/25/2012 9:01AM

    Here's to the Right Stuff!

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Praying and praying and praying....

Friday, July 20, 2012


To pray you open your whole self
To sky, to earth, to sun, to moon
To one whole voice that is you.
And know there is more
That you can't see, can't hear
Can't know except in moments
Steadily growing, and in languages
That aren't always sound but other
Circles of motion.
Like eagle that Sunday morning
Over Salt River. Circles in blue sky
In wind, swept our hearts clean
With sacred wings.
We see you, see ourselves and know
That we must take the utmost care
And kindness in all things.
Breathe in, knowing we are made of
All this, and breathe, knowing
We are truly blessed because we
Were born, and die soon, within a
True circle of motion,
Like eagle rounding out the morning
Inside us.
We pray that it will be done
In beauty.
In beauty.

~ Joy Harjo ~
(How We Become Human: New and Selected Poems 1975-2001)

Oh that it will be done in beauty. Oh that it will be done in beauty. Oh that it will be done in beauty. Praying the in-breath, praying the out-breath. May my prayers be thus...Joy's poetry IS a prayer, as is her life.

I have been fed now. I can go on with the day.

I heard Native American poet Joy Harjo interviewed on NPR last week about her just-published memoir. I was mesmerized by her words, as I always am by her poetry. Here's a link to listen to the interview:

For another glimpse at Harjo's depth and beauty:

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PEACEFULONE 7/27/2012 12:55PM

    Thank you Maha for adding so much beauty to my life. You have a gift for finding meaningful and truly beautiful poetry and images. Wishing you joy, blessings and answered prayers. Elaine

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WATERMELLEN 7/25/2012 7:10PM

    "We were never perfect." And: great to remember that, take that burden off our consciences!!

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DOKEYOKEY 7/21/2012 12:20PM

    My heart is opened by this poem!
Thank you for sharing!
I'm going to go wash the dishes and listen to the interview.
Namaste ~

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JESPAH 7/21/2012 11:31AM


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KALIGIRL 7/21/2012 9:20AM

    "Oh that it will be done in beauty. Oh that it will be done in beauty. Oh that it will be done in beauty."

A wonderful thought on such a sad day...

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GOANNA2 7/21/2012 7:09AM

    Absolutely beautiful Maha. Thank you so much. emoticon

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JUST_BREATHE08 7/20/2012 10:34PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TEENY_BIKINI 7/20/2012 9:41PM

    Wow! That was beautiful!

I love: "Like eagle rounding out the morning Inside us."


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_RAMONA 7/20/2012 5:27PM

    Praying and praying and praying... always, and in all ways... otherwise I'm just left with crazy... crazy brave is a more acurate reflection of my reality.

THANK YOU for sharing!

{{{{{{{{ HUGS }}}}}}}}}

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CORNERKICK 7/20/2012 5:07PM

  Beautiful...Thanks for sharing!

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FARRAH511 7/20/2012 1:56PM


´¨¨)) -:¦:-
¸.•´ .•´¨¨))
((¸¸.•´ ..•´ - -:¦:-
-:¦:- ((¸¸.•´* Farrah -:¦:-

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DDOORN 7/20/2012 11:44AM

    Another gem...thx 'Maha for sharing more treasures from your trove of heart wisdom!


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2WHEELEDSHARON 7/20/2012 10:27AM

    Thanks for adding more magic to my morning:-)

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    I listened to that on NPR also! Loved it! Love THIS!

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GENKI_WARRIOR 7/20/2012 9:58AM

    What a prayer! Oh how I wish to truly live like that!

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BEARGODDESS 7/20/2012 9:41AM

    How beautiful! What a way to start the day with a beautiful Native American inspired poem/prayer/meditation. I was immediately taken back to a time a few years ago when I used to get up as the sun was rising, walk to the pond with my dog while it was still a little dark, and sit by the water to meditate as the sun rose. Twice when I went there, an amazing thing happened. A Bald Eagle was nesting there and as the sun rose, he (or she) flew over the pond and the rising sun hit the white feathers on him/her and set them ablaze with golden light! It was like a gift! And to have it happen TWO times made me feel so special!
I love this poet, Joy Harjo, and will get this book now. You bring me so many gifts Maha. Thank you!

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NATNOEL 7/20/2012 9:28AM

    Oh how beautiful....thank you for the links

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DAISY443 7/20/2012 9:06AM

    Lovely! Thank you for sharing!

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What Is There Beyond Knowing?

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Thomas Merton at Gethsemani Abbey
with Buddhist monk
Merton write-up from Gethsemani Abbey:

I say in my SparkPage profile statement, "I adore adventure and authentic friendships and seek both out," and I've choreographed another dance which includes both!

A friend and I are driving to Kentucky mid-August where we will rendezvous with 2BMYOWN, cyber SparkFriend-soon-to-become-3D, who is driving from Ohio. The three of us are attending a program at The Merton Institute Retreat Center.

Thomas Merton has been a spiritual guide and one of my teachers for many years....and some of you remember that I attended a reading by Mary Oliver during a prior adventure in my Toyota Dolphin, sitting at the feet of the master. Here's the scoop on the retreat....
Thomas Merton & Mary Oliver: Poets of the Sacred, August 17-19

Thomas Merton and Mary Oliver are unique writers who resonate when they converge on aligning their lives with Wisdom in their poetry's approach to nature and the feminine.

In addition to praying with the monks of Gethsemani, this retreat will celebrate with reflections on Hagia Sophia [Holy Wisdom] as the feminine energies of God (Merton) and Wisdom as living a life of praise within Nature's embrace (Oliver). Participants will discern their need to recover the "unheard feminine voice" within themselves, whether they be man or woman (Karl Stern's The Flight from Woman).

Living in consonance with Wisdom's ways is foundational to experiencing the depths of our core relationships with ourselves, our neighbors, nature and the Source of all relationships, God. Each participant will receive Mary Oliver's latest volume of poetry.

This morning my gift of poetry from Joe at Panhala was a new-to-me Mary Oliver. And of course it is the inspiration of this sharing.

The Abbey of Gethsemani, Thomas Merton's last home


What is there beyond knowing that keeps
calling to me? I can't

turn in any direction
but it's there. I don't mean

the leaves' grip and shine or even the thrush's
silk song, but the far-off

fires, for example,
of the stars, heaven's slowly turning

theater of light, or the wind
playful with its breath;

or time that's always rushing forward,
or standing still

in the same -- what shall I say --

What I know
I could put into a pack

as if it were bread and cheese, and carry it
on one shoulder,

important and honorable, but so small!
While everything else continues, unexplained

and unexplainable. How wonderful it is
to follow a thought quietly

to its logical end.
I have done this a few times.

But mostly I just stand in the dark field,
in the middle of the world, breathing

in and out. Life so far doesn't have any other name
but breath and light, wind and rain.

If there's a temple, I haven't found it yet.
I simply go on drifting, in the heaven of the grass
and the weeds.

~ Mary Oliver ~
(New and Selected Poems Volume Two)

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

AZIMAT 7/30/2012 4:00PM

    Good for you! sound like a wonderful time. Do you still have your wonderful truck?

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SUNNY332 7/11/2012 8:26AM

    Enjoy the retreat, my friend and thanks - as always - for another poem from Mary Oliver.

Hugs, Sunny

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GOANNA2 6/30/2012 9:26AM

    Have fun on your trip. So enjoyed your blog.
Thanks for making my day.
Hugs emoticon

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REBCCA 6/29/2012 10:58AM

    I happy for you doing the things you resonate with and enjoy. emoticon

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FARRAH511 6/29/2012 9:38AM


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2BMYOWN 6/29/2012 9:05AM

    Can't wait, Maha. I didn't even know there was such a place, and I had never heard of Thomas Merton until you showed me both. You are broadening my horizons in a big way! LOL Then again, I've always been such a 'country bumpkin', which isn't really a BAD thing, but it can be a very limiting thing if you allow it to be, which I have most of my life. So this will be a whole new experience, and one I'm looking forward to in a big way. Thank you!

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KALIGIRL 6/29/2012 7:47AM

    Retreat sounds fabulous - TM is one of my all time favorites too - enjoy!

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DDOORN 6/29/2012 6:10AM

    Clueless as I am about such matters, I'm becoming more than intrigued and envious over the idea of a spiritual retreat...and to share with such special SparkFriends...? Go YOU!

Sounds like such a marvelous time!! Cannot wait to hear all about it!! Oh, and pics please...? :-)


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JUST_BREATHE08 6/28/2012 10:51PM

    emoticon so much for the beautiful poem. Enjoy your trip. Can't wait to hear about it. I live in won't be to far from me. emoticon

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2WHEELEDSHARON 6/28/2012 9:13PM

    Here's to becoming more and more invested in the satisfaction and simplicity of the grass and the weeds. Have a magnificent time!

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DOKEYOKEY 6/28/2012 8:33PM

    Wow, Maha....There amidst the usual Spark stuff about weights and running and eating and your wonderful blog pointing to the numinous. I'm so glad you're going to get to go to Thomas Merton's monastery...and with some Spark pals, no less. I hope it is wonderfully centering and inspiring.

Be well.

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ELEMENOPEO 6/28/2012 7:24PM

    Lovely poem. You always pick such good ones.

Have a wonderful trip!

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EARTHSEAME 6/28/2012 1:35PM

    Have fun on your trip! And thanks to Thom, Mary, and Joe for the inspiration for your blog....

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JESPAH 6/28/2012 12:37PM


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BEARGODDESS 6/28/2012 11:51AM

    What a wonderful experience you're going to have! Praying with the monks of Gethsemani! I haven't read Thomas Merton, but I think that I will. I'm very much interested in the feminine aspect of the divine. It's been sort of an on-going area of study in my life. More off than on lately, but you're inspiring me Maha!

Thank you for the beautiful Mary Oliver poem this morning too! What a lovely way to start the day!

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RAINBOWFALLS 6/28/2012 11:39AM

    Very nice - You adventure sounds like fun!

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    I needed this today. Thank you!

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