29 January 2006
I am waiting, I am passive. I
feel that developments are outside my power to influence.
The stance is frequently accompanied by a vague anxiety, and
sometimes by despair.
I am observing, I am active, engaged, curious.
I do not seek to control events or decisions in the outside world, or
even the content of my own mind and body. But as an active witness, I feel a positive relationship to all that
unfolds. I am in a stance akin
to hope, but with expectations less defined and specific. The attitude seems to include analysis, but of a kind that is
instantaneous, intuitive and effortless.
I do not deliberately contemplate action or seek ideas, but the
creative mind is open and engaged, so that ideas and later action may flow from
as I practice it, is a technique that transforms passive waiting into active
observing. Paradoxically, it is both a surrender
of control and an assumption of power.
~ Josh Mitteldorf
28 January 2006
who want to know the truth of the universe should practice the four cardinal
virtues. The first is reverence for all life; this manifests as
unconditional love and respect for oneself and all other beings. The Second
is natural sincerity; this manifests as honesty, simplicity, and
faithfulness. The third is gentleness; this manifests as kindness,
consideration for others, and sensitivity to spiritual truth. The fourth is
supportiveness; this manifests as service to others without expectation of
reward. The four virtues are not an external dogma but a part of your
original nature. When practiced, they give birth to wisdom and evoke the
five blessings: health, wealth, happiness, longevity, and peace.
Hu Ching of Lao Tzu,
as translated by Brian
27 January 2006
"Be what you would seem
to be – or, if you would like it put more simply,
never imagine yourself not to be otherwise than what it might appear to
others that what you were or might have been was not otherwise than what you
had been would have appeared to them to be otherwise."
Lutwidge Dodgson, better known as Lewis
Carroll, was born this day in 1832.
26 January 2006
IN TIME LIKE AIR
Consider the mysterious salt:
In water it must disappear.
It has no self. It knows no fault.
Not even sight may apprehend it.
No one may gather it or spend it.
It is dissolved and everywhere.
But, out of water into air,
It must resolve into a presence,
Precise and tangible and here.
Faultlessly pure, faultlessly white,
It crystallizes in our sight
And has defined itself to essence.
What element dissolves the soul
So it may be both found and lost,
In what suspended as a whole?
What is the element so blest
That there identity can rest
As salt in the clear water cast?
Love, in its early transformation,
And only love, may so design it
That the self flows in pure sensation,
Is all dissolved, and found at last
Without a future or a past,
And a whole life suspended in it.
The faultless crystal of detachment
Comes after, cannot be created
Without the first intense attachment.
Even the saints achieve this slowly;
For us, more human, less holy,
In time like air is essence stated.
25 January 2006
world changes at a bewildering pace, and the engine for change seems far
removed from us, beyond our reach. Science
and politics seem most remote. So
it’s empowering to hear about people who make major contributions to
science from outside the establishment.
New Scientist this week features three profiles of outsiders who have
moved the scientific community.
Mims devised a hand-held UV detector to monitor the hole in the
ozone layer, and used it to detect flaws in NASA’s satellites
dedicated to the same purpose.
He publishes a monthly column
in the magazine of the Society of
inspiration from an amateur in politics, I look to Cindy
Disclaimer: I am an independent
academic, doing research in evolutionary biology,
as well as a political activist, working on election
24 January 2006
mankind is of one author, and is one volume; when one man dies, one chapter
is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language; and
every chapter must be so translated…God's hand is in every translation,
and his hand shall bind up all our scattered leaves again for that library
where every book shall lie open to one another. As therefore the bell that
rings to a sermon calls not upon the preacher only, but upon the
congregation to come, so this bell calls us all…Never send to know for
whom he bell tolls: it tolls for thee...
John Donne, born this day in 1572
man hath affliction enough that is not matured and ripened by and made fit
for God by that affliction…Tribulation is treasure in the nature of it.
and the above taken
XVII, which is also the source of the phrase, 'No man is an island')
23 January 2006
when with elation you will greet yourself
arriving at your own door
in your own mirror
and each will smile at the other's welcome,
saying, 'Sit here. Eat. You will love again
the stranger who was yourself.'
is 76 years old today