Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Krishna Das

Last night my neighborhood in Santa Rosa had a healthy potluck and then we walked over en masse to chant along with Krishna Das. As usual his music created a highly charged devotional setting. It has been a while since I have had the joy of doing kirtan (Indian devotion call and response) and it felt good to weep devotional tears. While there is only One in Truth, the wonderful and mysterious leela, or divine play, which has the One appearing as many, is joyous to play as devotee and the Beloved. There is nothing in the material world that can offer anything that compares to the bliss of feeling the loving Presence of God. Regardless of traditions, whether they be Gregorian chants, Tibetan, Native American, Sufi, Vedic, etc., the intention and power behind them are such a spiritual balm for me.

In all of my lives you have been with me; whether day or night I remember.
When you fall out of sight, I am restless day and night, burning.
I climb hilltops; I watch for signs of your return; my eyes are swollen with tears....
It's your beauty that makes me drunk.--Mirabai, Mirabai: Ecstatic Poems

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Celebrating Father's Day

Father! - to God himself we cannot give a holier name. ~William Wordsworth

I have just returned from a bike ride with my younger son. Besides the joy of being with my child on this day that celebrates fatherhood, I also felt the silent tangible embrace of That Which Is that can be so readily apparent in Nature for me. I called my father and left a message thanking him for his role of being my father. Although he is by no means without his shortcomings, knowing that there is a far greater "Father" has allowed me to forgive my dad his human imperfections and to accept mine as well in regards to my fatherhood. Fatherhood is but a role, a challenging one at that. It is an ongoing art form that can never be perfected. There can never be a perfect parent on this imperfect earth , every human, even if the most enlightened, has to work in the prism of being in a human body. My dad was one prism I have had the pleasure of being a son to, I am one prism and every father is a prism;but there is only one light shining through us all--our true Father.

I want to thank my earthly father for showing how to be: stoic when needed, strong, able to sacrifice one's own personal wants for the greater good of the family, able to tend an ailing wife for so many years, a gentleman with good manners, impersonal, one of few words in speaking while having a love for words, one who is disciplined and orderly, one on the outside who loathes (like Emerson) the herd, simple in one's needs, one who one who loves to travel . . .

May everyone find something for which to thank their dad and forgive them for all the mistakes.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

"Just as a dreamer is foolishly alarmed at his own dreams or as a fool is deluded by the serpents created in a magic performance, so also the man ignorant of the Self is terrified."--Tripura Rahasya

Where is the fear when there is no other? Fear can only happen when there is a belief that there is something outside omnipresent God. Which of course cannot be by definition alone. And if one is inside of God and God is inside (which has to be if God is omnipresent), and thus no separation between God and the Self, then fear is only a delusional thought of the ego that believes it is separate, alone and confined to a body that is only here a moment and awaits the inevitable hand of death.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Love includes All

"...exempt no one from your love, or you will be hiding a dark place in your mind where the Holy Spirit is not welcome. And thus you will exempt yourself from His healing power, for by not offering total Love you will not be healed completely."--A Course in Miracles

The Law of Love is simple: What you give you receive. If you offer love to all, then you will receive all of Love and be loved fully.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Heat of Spring

The Heat of Spring

Spring has come to this Bay
And with it a burning—
A burning so hot
It has cooked the waves of my dreams,
Washing me upon the shores of Consciousness,
In a bubbling bath of time.

In my hands I hold bloodied shears
Over the feathered pile of wings,
Reminding me of chickens plucked in Cameroon,
Soon to be washed down by beers.

I have tried, God,
You know I have,
To fall from my knowing of You,
To plunge into this House of Matter—
A house with a great wardrobe of pressed costumes,
Waiting for bodies to adorn;
Not one of them fit for flying.

And so I’ve cut and cut
And sometimes torn,
Trying to forget Your Name.

Then, just when I think
I have found my tailored suit,
Trimmed and measured by the footsteps behind,
Your Name I hear once more,
Uttered by one of Your Lovers,
And again such a fashionable garment
Becomes ruined by the sprouting of wings.

Oh, how the nights burn and burn
With its molten waves of dreams,
Cooking me just like one of those chickens.

However, I know, God, I know,
That behind the scorching heat
Of shredded wings,
Comes the cool Hand of fog.

--Janaka Stagnaro