Monthly Archives: July 2012

Jana’s poem

we dance
through hoops

doves fly
the earth
as we whirl around
five rings
become one
in a glorious moment
of peace

Monday thought by a cute friend

 i like other human beings and hate to be defined. They define you, and you are “confined” somehow

Chop wood, carry water

Work. What does the word mean to you? Is it something to be avoided? Is it a means to an end? Is it the only appropriate focus of your attention and energy? Is it a way to avoid the rest of your life? Is it a joy? Is it a part of  your spiritual practice?There is a Zen saying, “Before Enlightenment chop wood carry water, after Enlightenment, chop wood carry water.” What’s the difference? The tasks are the same. The need is the same. What about the frame of mind? Who is chopping? Who is carrying water?

When you labor, stay awake. Notice the frame of mind you bring to your work. Do you approach your work as if it were a nuisance? Do you remove your consciousness from work so that you are filled with resentment or worry?  What would you need to do to be more fully present in your work?

Practice mindfulness in work. It does little good to attain clarity of mind on your meditation cushion if you lose it as soon as you become active. Start with simple activities like brushing your teeth, ironing clothes, or washing dishes. Be fully alert as you move. Notice the position of your body in space. Notice the feelings in your body as you move. Pay attention to the thoughts that enter your mind when you do the task. See if you can let them go and just focus on the work itself.

If you are cleaning a countertop, feel the sponge in your hand. Feel the wetness. Feel the texture. Observe how the sponge moves in your hand from the sink to the counter. Sense your movements as you scrub. What do your eyes see? What do you hear as you work? Clean that countertop as if it were the most important thing you could do. Move with fluid motions. Waste no energy. Allow yourself the grace of economy of motion. Be grateful for the countertop, the sponge, the water, the soap. Be grateful for the hand, the arm, the whole body that can move a sponge. Be thankful for the floor you stand on and the roof that protects you. Without letting your mind wander too far, be grateful for all the circumstances that put you where you are at that moment with that sponge and that water and that countertop.

We travel to the ocean or to mountains, rivers and canyons, in part to escape the mundane world of work, but also to experience the awe that arises more spontaneously in nature’s magnificence. We give ourselves an incredible gift when we can  experience some of the same awe in the mundane world of our daily lives. The weed that grows in the crack of a sidewalk is a phenomenon as miraculous as the redwood tree that towers into the sky. The raindrops that streak the window are no less an occasion for awe than the spray that dampens our face at the waterfall. The fingers that tap a keyboard are as worthy of praise as the feet of a ballet dancer.

When we open awareness to the tasks in our lives they become lighter. When we are able to be in the moment, we no longer feel compelled to watch the clock. Whatever your work might be, bring all of yourself to it. When you are fully present, you may find that your labor is no longer a burden. Wood is chopped. Water is carried. Life happens.

Zen Buddhism Chop Wood, Carry Water 1 of 3

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Solo Cissoko

The kora is Africa’s sitar – at least that is how I think of it. Amazing instrument – beautiful shape – and heavenly vibes.

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Baaba Maal – Souka Nayo (I will follow you)

Baaba Maal is probably my most favorite musician – his voice just talks and reaches deeper than anyone else – when it comes to Sza ;) Why? I dunno ;)

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Sousou & Maher Cissoko – Allt vad vi på jorden äge

Such beautiful fusion of music from such different parts of the world. Amazing how diversity blends in so seamlessly.

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Trailer : Nowhere boy

From IMDb :

A chronicle of John Lennon’s first years, focused mainly in his adolescence and his relationship with his stern aunt Mimi, who raised him, and his absentee mother Julia, who re-entered his life at a crucial moment in his young life.

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From Alice’s video collection : What do trees do at night? ( Actors : Alice and Sza ;)

So what happened was – Alice sent me an IM with the link to the marketplace. I checked and it was a free mesh tree avatar. Not being able to resist – I clicked and suddenly there I was in tree form. And the rest … history ;)

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From Alice’s SL video collection : A trip to the sea ( Actors : Alice & Traji )

Alice is ….. magic in action. Best is to just say hello to her – no way one could ever describe how Alice is ;) Looking forward to the next videos sweetie ;)

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Disgrace (2008)

From IMDb :

After having an affair with a student, a Cape Town professor moves to the Eastern Cape, where he gets caught up in a mess of post-apartheid politics.

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Random Quote

Let this be the key for you, that love has to be lived each moment as totally as possible. It is not a question of relationship; it is a question of bringing a certain quality to your being — the quality of friendliness, the quality of compassion towards all that is, the quality of trust for all that is. The man of love is the man of trust, and the man of trust is the man of truth. — Osho


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