Hózhó -

Hózhó - 

The Navajo believe the world to be an orderly place filled with interconnected objects all existing in a state of balance and harmony. The bedrock of the Navajo religion is the concept of Hózhó, which means a combination of existing in a state of balance, harmony, wellness, peace, and completeness. A sort of integrated oneness, with the universe running like an incredibly finely adjusted watch, with everything seamlessly working together. It is a complex concept that is remarkably similar to the Chinese Tao. The simplified translation of "to walk in beauty" trivializes the complexity of Hózhó. For the Navajo, Hózhó is everything, and when it goes awry, the orderly universe is disrupted and must be restored to its natural order. The issue is not one of aesthetics


Patient perseverance

"If we would create the capacities for understanding our future, then we must dwell in the tensions, the paradoxes, the annoying anomalies of our time. We dare not minimize, avoid, cover over, or anesthetize ourselves. On nearly every front we are being called on to re-imagine the world we inhabit. It simply awaits an act of courage for us to begin, and patient perseverance for us to succeed in the self-conscious education now in our hands."- Arthur Zajonc, physicist

Made for goodness

 "You and I are made for goodness. You and I are creatures who are made for transcendence, were made for love, were made for caring, were made for embracing one another. I have look out of door but I mean, although God looks down and sees all of the ghastly things and God says oh, dear. Whatever got into me to create that lot?  And then God sees and God sees the others, the ones who wipe the tears from the eyes of the many, the ones that say we want to do something about poverty eradication. We want to do something about the HIV pandemic and God begins to smile through the tears. And a little angel walks up to God and wipes God's tears from God's eyes. And God says, yes, they have vindicated me. Because you and I are ultimately made for goodness. And that is what is going to prevail."-- Archbishop Desmond Tutu at Clinton Global Initiative

Fragmentary thought

"At present, people create barriers between each other by their fragmentary thought. Each one operates separately. When these barriers have dissolved, then there arises one mind, where they are all one unit, but each person also retains his or her own individual awareness. That one mind will still exist even when they separate, and when they come together, it will be as if they hadn't separated. It's actually a single intelligence that works with people who are moving in relationship with one another. . . . If you had a number of people who really pulled together and worked together in this way, it would be remarkable. They would stand out so much that everyone would know they were different."  ~David Bohm (physicist, philosopher, & mystic)

Why they're really here

Every cell in the body is programmed to work collaboratively with every other cell, so together they can promote the healthy functioning of the organ they're part of. You and I are the same; we're programmed to work collaboratively with each other in order to promote the healthy functioning of civilization. But just as a cancer cell is a cell that goes insane, disconnecting from its natural programming and going off to do its own thing instead, so a malignant consciousness has come to dominate the human race, luring us into self-centered and competitive rather than collaborative attitudes toward each other. The body can heal though, and so can a civilization. Cells, and people, can remember who they really are and why they're really here. Then all is well. Marianne Williamson



The Man Who Lives Without Money

Stroke of luck

Seven whispers

"The Seven Whispers:
- Maintain peace of mind.
- Move at the pace of guidance.
- Practice certainty of purpose.
- Surrender to surprises.
- Ask for what you need and offer what you can.
- Love the folks in front of you.
- Return to the world."
- Christina Baldwin, from her beautiful little book,  "The Seven Whispers"


Got My Wings

Jarvis Masters [a prison inmate currently sentenced to death row who took vows as a Buddhist from behind bars] unintentionally helped some other inmates connect with the absolute, vast quality of their own minds. There is a teaching that says that behind all hardening and tightening and rigidity of the heart, there's always fear. But if you touch fear, behind fear there is a soft spot. And if you touch that soft spot, you find the vast blue sky. Jarvis, in this story of trying to avert harm, conveyed this fundamental openness to the other inmates. One day there was a seagull out on the yard in San Quentin. It had been raining and the seagull was there paddling around in a puddle. One of the inmates picked up something in the yard and was about to throw it at the bird. Jarvis didn't even think about it-he automatically put out his hand to stop the man. Of course this escalated the man's aggression and he started yelling. Who the hell did Jarvis think he was? And why did Jarvis care so much about some blankety-blank bird? Everyone started circling around, just waiting for the fight. The other inmate was screaming at Jarvis, "Why'd you do that?" And out of Jarvis's mouth came the words, "I did that because that bird's got my wings."
Pema Chödrön, Practicing Peace in Times of War


Deep Roots

"When the spiritual life has put down deep roots, there is a natural, organic evolution into deep nonviolence: the attitude and practice of non-harming.  Even individuals who come from aggression naturally progress beyond the need to the resort of violence. The realization of the interconnectedness of all beings brings with it a sense of the utter preciousness of all life. Every being in every species is precious and irreplaceable. Man and women on the spiritual journey who have made this realization would rather suffer harm themselves then harm another. They extend this attitude of non-harming to all sentient beings and to the planet itself. A commitment to deep nonviolence is necessary to the emerging global culture, and to inter-spirituality.  Nonviolence adjusts our external actions to our inner attitudes, and makes them consistent with compassion and the demands of love. As we grow in spiritual wisdom, we become more sensitive to the rights of others, including other species.  Gentleness, calm, patience, and humility are all aspects of non-harming; they are expressions of this wonderful quality often regarded as an attribute of the divine itself."
Brother Wayne Teasdale in "The Mystic Heart: Discovering Spirituality in the World's Religions"


A Vision

A Vision
If we will have the wisdom to survive,
to stand like slow-growing trees on a ruined place,
Renewing it, enriching it,
If we will make our seasons welcome here,
Asking not too much of earth or heaven.
Then a long time after we are dead
the lives our lives prepare will live here,
Their houses strongly placed upon the valley sides,
Fields and gardens rich in the windows.
The river will run clear,
as we will never know it,
And over it, birdsong like a canopy.
On the levels of the hills will be green meadows,
Stock bells in noon shade.
On the steeps where greed and ignorance cut down the old forest,
An old forest will stand,
Its rich leaf-fall drifting on its roots.
The veins of forgotten springs will have opened.
Families will be singing in the fields.
In their voices they will hear a music risen out of the ground.
They will take nothing from the ground they will not return,
whatever the grief at parting.
Memory, native to this valley,
will spread over it like a grove,
and memory will grow into legend,
legend into song, song into sacrament.
The abundance of this place,
the songs of its people and its birds,
will be health and wisdom and indwelling light.
This is no paradise or dream.
Its hardship is its possibility."
- Wendell Berry 


Clinging to hate

"I imagine one of the reasons people cling to their hates so stubbornly is because they sense, once hate is gone, they will be forced to deal with pain."  (James Baldwin)


God Has No Body

"God has no body but yours, no hands, no feet on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes with which he looks compassion on this world. Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good, yours are the hands, with which he blesses all the world. Yours are the hands, yours are the feet, yours are the eyes, you are his body. God has no body now on earth but yours."

Teresa of Avila (1515-1582)


Truly heard

"I like to be heard. I can testify that when I am in psychological distress and someone really hears me without passing judgment on me, without trying to take responsibility for me, without trying to mold me, it feels damn good! At these times it has relaxed the tension in me. It has permitted me to bring out the frightening feelings, the guilts, the despair, the confusions that have been a part of my experience. When I have been listened to and when I have been heard, I am able to re-perceive my world in a new way and to go on. It is astonishing how elements that seem insoluble become soluble when someone listens, how confusions that seem irremediable turn into relatively clear flowing streams when one is heard. I have deeply appreciated the times that I have experienced this sensitive, empathic, concentrated listening." 
Carl Rogers - Experiences in Communication


Anam Cara

Anam Cara means "Soul Friend." Anam is the Gaelic word for soul and Cara is the word for friend. In Celtic tradition, an Anam Cara is a teacher, companion or spiritual guide. With the Anam Cara you can share your innermost self to reveal the hidden intimacies of your life, your mind and your heart. This friendship cuts across all convention to create an act of recognition and belonging that joins souls in an ancient and eternal way. In everyone's life, there is a great need for an Anam Cara, a soul friend. In this relationship, you are understood as you are, without mask or pretention. When you are understood, you are at home.