Be Grateful to Everything

In order to grow, you need sorrow; in order to become loving, you very often need distress, and turmoil is often required to release  your deeper resources. Unless you have suffered yourself, it is not…

“Concentration Is Consecration”

Yulia and I are meeting weekly to discuss Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras. I found the following insightfulg passages from Swami Prabhavananda and Christopher Isherwood’s translation. 1.2  Yoga is the control of thought-waves in the mind.  1.13 …

Quit Complaining!

Cold Mountain: 100 Poems by the T’ang Poet Han-shanTranslated and with an Introduction by Burton Watson I first learned of Han-shan 30 years ago when reading Jack Kerouac’s novel, The Dharma Bums, which starred Japhy…

An Anti-Defamation League unto Himself

I’ve read half of Philip Roth’s books, a few more than once.  Recently I returned to the novel Operation Shylock and was struck by this testimonial outburst of one of the characters— “‘Grant me that…

A Yogi

Breakdown Precedes Breakthrough Graham earned enough to be under the taxable limitBecause he didn’t want to pay for war He couldn’t say “No” when someone asked“Would you help us fight back?” He gave and gave…

An Ashram for Modern America

Eknath Easwaran, With My Love and Blessings: The Teaching Years 1966-1999 In Photographs & His Own Word Nilgiri Press, 2000 For Chris and Andrew As we contemplate what an urban-rural ashram could look like, an…

Wherever We Are Useful

Katharina Mommsen, Goethe’s Art of Living Trafford, 2003 Translators: John Crosetto, John Whaley, Renee M. Schell A teacher who can awaken a sense of a single good deed or a single good poem accomplishes more…

Making It Be  Spring with Everything

Burton Watson, Chuang Tzu: Basic Writings, Columbia University Press, 1996 Once Chuang Chou dreamt he was a butterfly, a butterfly flitting and fluttering around, happy with himself and doing as he pleased. He didn’t know…