Showing posts from 2022

Touching the Earth.

One day Siddhartha, the Buddha-to-be, felt that he was about to have a breakthrough. Meditating under a beautiful pippala tree, he had the sense that sometime that night he would realize full enlightenment and become a Buddha. Suddenly, Mara appeared. Mara sometimes appears as doubt, sometimes as anger, darkness, jealousy, craving, or despair. When we feel doubtful or skeptical, he is there. When we feel angry, irritated, or lacking in self-confidence, that is Mara. Siddhartha had been visited by Mara many times before, and he knew that the best way to treat him was to be very gentle. That day Mara came in the form of skepticism. He said, "Who do you think you are? Do you think you can attain great enlightenment? -- Don't you realize how much darkness, despair, and confusion there is in the world? How can you hope to dissipate all of it?" Siddhartha smiled, expressing great confidence. Mara continued, "I know you have practiced, but have you practiced enough? Who wil


Imagine you hold a banana in your hand. What is the experience? Yellow colour, smooth texture, a fragrant and sweet taste when you peel and bite into it. What is a real banana?  What is a book, what is a mountain, what is a cup or what is a computer?   Zen says they are names given by the mind, to a range of sensations and thoughts in response. Zen says that these forms are empty of independent existence. Meaning they can be traced back through interconnections to a place where we end up saying I don’t know. We experience the apparent final form in our minds.   Physics also says that dancing and interacting  quantum fields are the only fundamental reality, not the final form of stuff we see, feel or name. Zen says that thoughts and emotions are similarly empty.  Imagine a suffering thought. Most likely the suffering event is not happening at this moment. Your mind weaves various thoughts into a composite called anger, fear, jealousy, etc. These thoughts and emotions also do n

My Journey

What follows is the story of a listless life looking for the next shiny thing. Something has always been missing. I have trouble relating to a particular culture, a country, a colour, finding them restraining. Always had a great deal of sadness about why humanity can’t get it together. The Rolling Stones’ song said it best, “ I can’t get no, satisfaction”. Yep, I grew up in the sixties. By turn of the last century , I realised that my life path would never give me that satisfaction. My children had grown up, were at university, leaving quite a bit of time with little to do. I was quite involved in their lives, sports, bands, education until high school. Pouring myself more into growing my business, climbing the material ladder just didn’t interest me. At one point I considered changing my career yet again perhaps into Philosophy or Sanskrit. But that idea seemed fruitless. Fortunately, by then I was financially well enough to “drop out”. Empty stomach interferes a lot in the spi