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The Antidote

The Antidote

Inflammation is now known to be a contributing cause for many different health issues, and methods to reduce inflammation are finding their way into...

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Let the Day Begin

Let the Day Begin

It is all very straightforward. For a long time, over the course of many years, to simply bring oneself to the present, seeing oneself as one is; working with...

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Tales From Not Too Long Ago

Tales From Not Too Long Ago

Fifty years ago I would backpack into the Sierra Nevada mountains, often returning to my favorite place there, Kings Canyon park. One could drink from the...

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Stop, Look, Repeat…

Stop, Look, Repeat…

Everything is there, waiting. Of course we’re usually oblivious, doing what humans do so well, creating layer after layer of thought that occludes the real...

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Social Insects and Social Media

Social Insects and Social Media

This week the arborists came and took down nearly a hundred trees from our property, all pine, mostly western white pine. The trees had been ravaged by the...

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Connection

Connection

Living most of the year here in the mountains, I am reminded every day that I and my kind are not the only inhabitants...

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When the Teacher Departs

When the Teacher Departs

Through some special combination of effort, grace and karma it may come to pass that a remarkable teacher comes into our lives. I am not referring to our...

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Winter

Winter

The snow is falling, it has been falling for several days now. Traffic moves at half speed and even so the cars slide in slow motion into the ditches, their...

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Obligation

Obligation

Obligation is one of those words that comes with a lot of heaviness. When I think of obligation there is usually a sense of something that is forced on me...

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Autumn

Autumn

Most of the trees on our land are natives; aspens and cedars and two large old ponderosa pines, looking down on all the rest. We also have a katsura tree, not...

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Love

Love

Most of us would say that love is the greatest of all human emotions, whether it might be romantic love, love of family, or love of country. In thinking about...

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What Are People For?

What Are People For?

There are a few questions one might ask oneself that stand apart, not unlike the Sphinx or the Great Pyramid, they are too large and too mysterious to submit...

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The Joy of Old Age

The Joy of Old Age

I was buying a few groceries at the local market last month and was engaged in a pleasant conversation with a young cashier. As I was swiping my credit card...

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The Songs We Sing

The Songs We Sing

The ancient practice of mindfulness is having its day in social media and in our culture at large. Googling the term, I encountered dozens of advertisements...

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The Conversation

The Conversation

I recently read that a scientist has measured electrical pulses being sent out by mushrooms through their mycelium, which is their interconnected root...

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The Two Sufis Return

The Two Sufis Return

The two Sufis were again seated beneath one of the great Buddha statues in the Bamiyan Valley, facing out towards a large assembly who had gathered to hear...

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The Midden

The Midden

Many years ago I visited the cliff dwellings of the Anasazi peoples in Mesa Verde National Park. When the park ranger explained that archaeologists have...

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We Are All Authors

We Are All Authors

Each of us are in the process of writing this one book, the book of our life. It is written, chapter by chapter, year by year, by how we chose to live out...

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Change

Change

Yesterday I read that some birds in the Amazon rain forest are shrinking in size, and have been over the last 40 years.The scientists studying the birds...

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Prayer

Prayer

It is a misunderstanding to think that prayer is an activity, or a proscribed form practiced within the context of a particular religion. In our moments of...

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We Belong Here

We Belong Here

We are not an accident. We were meant for this time, and the place where we find ourselves is exactly where we need to be, filling the role that is ours alone...

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My Companion

My Companion

My companion first appeared when I was only a year old and in the hospital with a severe case of pneumonia. He lingered there by my side for two or three...

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If Not Now, When?

If Not Now, When?

Most of us have some desire to maintain a forward momentum in life. We say to ourselves that we must mow the yard today, or, if a little older, finally...

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Partners in Crime

Partners in Crime

The understanding that everything; humans, animals, plants, mountains, rivers, everything that is here existing; is spiritualized, that everything has a...

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A Tale of Two Sufis

A Tale of Two Sufis

Many years ago two Sufis lived in the Bamiyan Valley at the center of what is now Afghanistan. One was in the ripeness of old age, and carried himself with a...

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There is Enough

There is Enough

We think of time, as measured by the hands of a clock and the pages of a calendar, as being the real time. It is true, in a way, but it is not true, in...

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Memento Mori

Memento Mori

“Those who practice philosophy in the right way are in training for dying...”     — Socrates Memento mori, "remember death,” was the salutation exchanged by...

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Equinox

Equinox

We pay special attention to the solstice, and, based on places like Stonehenge in Britain, human beings have been especially cognizant of the winter and...

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Fair Winds and Following Seas

Fair Winds and Following Seas

The phrase, may you have fair winds and following seas, is a toast commonly given to a mariner about to embark on a lengthy sea voyage. For a steady wind...

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Respect

Respect

There are a group of crows here where we live. I don’t know if they are a family, or just crows that are living on the same piece of land, but they appear to...

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Hierarchy

Hierarchy

Hierarchy is a word that comes with a lot of baggage these days, calling up thoughts of privilege, inequality, unfairness, abuse, and the list goes on. The...

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Repetition

Repetition

In life repetition is seen as a necessary precondition to mastery. A basketball player spends hundreds or even thousand of hours shooting foul shots in...

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The Recipe

The Recipe

After quite a few years I have come to believe that living life well is much simpler than I had always imagined. The recipe for living life well each day is a...

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Food

Food

For most of us reading this, the act of choosing is central to how we eat. Vegetarian or not. Organic or not. What is the sodium content? What is a proper...

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Less is More

Less is More

This post is somewhat different from the others. Perhaps it doesn’t belong on this blog; I’m not sure. I’ll let you be the judge of that. Let me know. Even as...

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And in the End

And in the End

It seems that very often expressions of love, or what we might call love, are intertwined with an element of some sort of transaction. This idea is probably...

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Fragments

Fragments

The image above is of what may be the oldest known carpet, the Pazkyryk rug, perhaps 2500 years old. A substantial part is missing, but most of it remains,...

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Only This Day

Only This Day

Probably some of you have come across the idea of treating today as though it were one’s last day on earth. The exercise seems to have merit at first glance;...

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Infinitely More Relaxed

Infinitely More Relaxed

“I can be infinitely more relaxed than I am.” William Segal Over the years I have come to see that what I need is not more, but less. Not effort, but letting...

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Remorse

Remorse

These last few days I have been thinking about this land, from the point of view of what might be special about this place on which we live. The settlement of...

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This Thought is Unnecessary

This Thought is Unnecessary

One of the greatest philosophers of his time was also the most powerful man in the world. His name was Marcus Aurelius, emperor of Rome and the author of the...

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Silent Spring

Silent Spring

(Photo: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/03/21/upshot/coronavirus-deaths-by-country.html)     I walked out the front door early this morning. Outside...

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Friendship

Friendship

Recently I was asked to consider what it might mean to be a friend of another. Simple enough, I thought. Upon reflection I realized that it is, for me, very...

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Sacred Places

Sacred Places

It was summer fifteen years ago that my son and I went on a road trip. He had just turned sixteen and had gotten his drivers license only a few weeks before,...

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The Great Sharing

The Great Sharing

I am grateful for special moments, or special expressions of affection or love, unexpected moments of clarity, or happiness. But I completely take for granted...

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Solstice

Solstice

Take part in a celebration of the return of the sun by listening to the wonderful creation story, "Raven Steals the Light."   This narration is from the...

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Immanence

Immanence

The wise ones, the sages and savants, have held forth over many centuries, arguing the question, is it through immanence or through transcendence that the...

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The Musician

The Musician

The Musician Is sitting in a room filled with millions of musical instrumentsScattered and strewn all across the floor.Over many kalpas he has sat in the...

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The Gift

The Gift

Last week I suffered a small stroke. Called a TIA, or ministroke, it heals itself, and I am fine now. When I was in the hospital, going through the protocols,...

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Greta

Greta

Like many others around the world, I have been “Greta’d.” Because of Greta Thunberg, hundreds of thousands, perhaps even millions of us, have been forced to...

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My Most Precious Possession

My Most Precious Possession

I imagine most of us would agree that the adage “less is more” has a lot of merit. Some of us might follow the lead of Marie Kondo, the Japanese author who...

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Resistance

Resistance

What does a seeker need?  Perhaps two things are paramount. The first is a deep wish. It is the sense in one’s life that something is missing,...

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The Age of Loneliness

The Age of Loneliness

The eminent biologist, E.O. Wilson, has proposed a Latin name Eremocene, which translated means “The Age of Loneliness,” for the coming time in which human...

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Only These

Only These

pon·der (/ˈpändər/), verb: think about, give thought to, consider, review, reflect on, mull over, contemplate, study, meditate on, muse on,...

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Morning Thoughts

Morning Thoughts

Early this morning, before the rising of the sun, I was thinking how it is that we human creatures create much of our own unhappiness by our...

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Two Foxes, One Dog

Two Foxes, One Dog

Last night my wife mentioned that she had seen a fox down the hill near a small seasonal stream that runs through our land. She spoke about its color and its...

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Tracks in the Snow

Tracks in the Snow

The experiences described by seekers from different traditions and across millennia are stunningly similar. The descriptions are of course couched in the...

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A Small Star at Solstice

A Small Star at Solstice

Up early, the sun not yet risen. But soon.   When it is a cloudy day and the sun shines through between the clouds, my mood shifts. I am...

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A Time of Quickening

A Time of Quickening

From today until the day of the solstice, seventeen days all told, the sun will be present less and less as the days grow shorter. The event of...

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Love and Loss

Love and Loss

Most likely many things mattered a lot when we were young. Finding our way through the world, whether you want to call it becoming successful or...

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Reincarnation

Reincarnation

Early this morning I was sitting in the kitchen. It was nothing special, simply drinking a cup of coffee and considering the change of seasons. At...

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This Present Moment

This Present Moment

For a long time, likely many years, to simply bring the attention to the present moment, seeing oneself as one is, working with a relaxed body, a...

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Blessed are the Peacemakers

Blessed are the Peacemakers

Those who have made peace inside themselves and are no longer living lives in the dark, muttering to themselves of imagined slights and small...

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Coming Home

Coming Home

The words of Thomas Wolfe, "You Can’t go Home Again," takes on a truth that is informed by one’s own life experience as one ages. Parents have, if...

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Holy the Firm

Holy the Firm

If I look, not as I almost always look, but if I look at anything, anything at all, and if I hold that real look, mind quiet, just allowing the...

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Less and Less

Less and Less

I need to desire less and less from life. Not only material possessions, but fewer experiences, fewer gratifications, less praise. Even the need to do good...

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Never Alone

Never Alone

A magnifying glass could be used to start a fire, if the conditions were right and one knew how to use it. Where I live the light of the sun is...

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Vibration

Vibration

Everything, every substance, every material object, everything, including feelings and thoughts and emanations, whether known or unknown to the human mind, is...

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Gratitude

Gratitude

It is late. I sit in front of the fire and recollect the day. I remembered to be polite to the checkout clerk. I gave no thought to the fact that I was able...

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Obedience

Obedience

When I am in connection with an energy that appears from above all of the parts of myself obey. The thoughts of the mind are stilled. I do not try to quiet...

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