Category Archives: practice

Easing Into This Moment

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When I can sense in myself
a depth of being
underneath the idea that there is
something better out there,
I experiencing a softening,
an easing
into this moment as it is
a returning
to myself as I am.
The way to awakening
is not through a series of teachers
or spiritual paths,
each one of us is the way.
As we stop, breathe,
and find even a tiny bit
of stillness and silence,
we can all sense the
aliveness and beauty
in us and around us
always, at all times.
It’s not some grand moment
of blissful transcendence
or profound spiritual awakening–
it’s in all of the little moments
where we choose presence.
And so we don’t have to wait
to feel complete,
no teacher or doctor has to fix us.
Let us return to ourselves now.
Let us sense our depth of being,
softening and easing into this moment.

Always Important

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Waking up early
when I want to sleep in…
Feeling tired,
wanting to roll over
and go back to sleep–
getting up anyway.
Sitting on my cushion
feeling tired and heavy,
starting to nod off,
trying to staying awake.
Still feeling tired,
getting drowsier,
wanting to lie back down,
sitting up straighter,
staying awake somehow.
My meditation practice
teaches me
the meaning of discipline.
It’s hardly ever fun,
but it is always important.

In the Face of Opposition

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Disaster.
Misunderstanding.
Even though I was up early,
two kittens and a sleepy husband
started my day off with mayhem.
I wanted to sit first,
woke him up as I tried
to evict the cats from the room,
as he awoke he asked why I wanted to sit now–
he thought I should wait…
and this opened up a can of worms.
After five years of maintaining my daily practice,
I’m still wanting his support and understanding,
and he is still not giving it in the way I had hoped.
And this is part of my practice
and part of learning how to be in a marriage, I guess.
This is what I tell myself anyway.
At times like this I dream
of living in a community of like-minded practitioners,
but is this what will help me grow?
I must need to develop more conviction
because my husband is giving me an opportunity
to stand my ground and maintain my practice
even in the face of opposition.

A Nicer, Calmer Person

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Yes…
I woke up early today.
My husband answered Nature’s call
and the sounds of his nature woke me.
And so I found myself a little before 6
sitting, awake, ready.
I breathed, I was still,
it was the best sit in a while–
with no one to disturb me
and the world still quiet,
it was easier, simpler.
Yes…
The morning went better, smoother.
I made breakfast, I sipped my coffee.
Things were calm.
No one accused me of any edginess
or misplaced frustration.
So I’m going to bed early tonight,
wanting to keep testing this hypothesis
that has been tested and proven
many times before
by many practitioners,
but which means nothing
if it hasn’t been directly experienced:
If I sit before everyone else is up,
then I will be a nicer, calmer, person.

The Light the World Needs

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I keep writing these poems
because it has become a habit
to write one poem every day.
It has become part of my practice
to concentrate my thoughts,
to choose a few words,
to express a sliver of what is alive in me.
Sometimes a sliver is all that is needed
to let in the light the world needs.

The Cooling Waters of Compassion

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Breathing in depression,
the feeling of loneliness, of heaviness,
of sadness,
breathing this in for myself and all beings
who are feeling this same way–
Breathing out clarity,
calm, confidence, motivation, joy,
letting this radiate out from me
to heal and bless the world.
Breathing in anger,
feeling hot, amped up, tense,
explosive, out of control,
breathing this in for myself and all beings
who are feeling this same way–
Breathing out peace,
stability, calm, clarity, slowing down,
choosing deliberately,
letting this radiate out from me
to heal and bless the world.
Difficult emotions are not reasons to escape,
to hide, to muffle, to change or to fix–
they are the very reason we practice.
They give us the reason we need
to see how our suffering is not unlike
the suffering of others.
We are linked in our suffering,
and recognizing this, we feel compassion.
When you feel pain,
feel it not only for yourself,
but feel it for all beings who are in pain.
Let your tender heart burst open
to shower an endless stream of compassion
on this world so thirsty,
so thirsty for the cooling waters of compassion.