The Place In Us Where Everything Merges

–por Mark Whitwell (Jun 23, 2017)

The heart is where left merges with right, above with below, front with back, inhale with exhale, outer with inner, female with male, and strength with receptivity; it is where heaven meets earth, the source becomes seen, and spirit takes form. It has a specific location, where all opposites arise and return, and is the source of body and mind; but it is felt only in and as the body’s Life-given relatedness and natural state.

The intelligence and force of life appears in the form of polar opposites in union. Through natural participation in the mutuality of all opposites, any remnants of the mind’s assumed separation from reality dissolve. The mind becomes clear as it links to the whole body, which is pure intelligence. Thus the mind is informed by the native intelligence of Life, and becomes useful as the communication means of Life. Male and female qualities are restored. In this natural state, male and female characteristics are distinctly differentiated both within and without, and are felt to be ecstatic and continuous union as the basic process of Life, uniquely expressed in each individual.

Ancient wisdom cultures identified these polarities and expressed them in concepts as yin-yan or shiva-shakti. However, without the practical means to experience these polarities as the actual conditions of one’s Life, such language tends to create abstractions and falsely encourages a search for their realization, as if they were absent.

The right side, the base and the back of the body carry the male principle, and the left side, the crown and the front carry the female. The exhalation expresses the male force as strength, and the inhalation expresses the female power as receptivity. Strength and receptivity, giving and receiving, are restored as the natural state of mind. When we practice the union of the system’s polarities, each principle increases the other. The intelligence of male-female mutuality is present in every cell of the body-mind and in the social wisdom of a free life.

Life’s union of polarities occurs as male receptivity to the female principle. A most simple enactment of this union is the ability for the strength of the whole body to receive an inhalation. Strength (male) must receive (female) and be received. This is the form of all Life. Strength lies in the base of the spine, and receives from above through the crown and front. Strength is served by exhalation and receptivity is served by inhalation. This is anciently known as hatha yoga, ha (sun or male) and tha (moon or female) in perfect union. Through hathayoga the heart (hridaya) is realized, giving and receiving in perfect union, hr– (to receive) and da– (to give). Female strengths male and vice versa. This reveals the polarity of heaven and earth to be One, the source and seen realities to be the same reality, and is the means by which spirit takes form. Its ultimate expression is the willingness to receive another, and all others, including the mother and all her offspring in the nurturing force which is Life.

Human contentment, wellness, wisdom and realization lie in the power of mutuality between the polar opposites, male and female, whether in the case of same sex or opposite sex intimacy. All people have the same male-female union as the substance or building blocks of reality, as all come through mother and father. The power of this mutuality is the acknowledgement of and participation in the fact that one pole does not exist without the other. This is the realization of the heart or whole. Intimacy with all ordinary conditions, all polarities, becomes the spiritual priority including male-female union and continuity. […]

Spiritual and social elitism has been reduced in our time. The ordinary is now celebrated and valued as extraordinary, not different from the highest. Spiritual transmission does not occur through exclusive agency but only through ordinary and equal individuals, especially between male and female, where heaven surges to earth in the creation of new form. In the ordinary the unseen is known (via the seen). The union of heaven and earth is known in the natural state. To surrender to or to receive all ordinary conditions reveals the infinite. They are not different.

Yoga arose in the great Upanishadic culture at a time before the concept of the holy personality or exclusive God had developed in history. It was a wisdom culture that simply acknowledged that everything is Brahman or God. Sun, moon, male, female, breath, senses, food: everything is God. There was no concept of a special person as God, implying that everyone else was not. This dichotomy was made worse when the idea of the divine person was packaged, distributed and forced into the social mind and behavior as doctrine. This is the cause of human misery, trying to be something we are not rather than enjoying the wonder and power of Life already abundantly given.

It is simply clear that the wonder of Life and its source is our natural condition and already utterly established in us as us. This is perfect faith in, and surrender to Life; whatever Life is altogether in its extreme intelligence and vast interrelatedness. Actual yoga then arises naturally as the movement of Life in body, breath and relationship rather than the manipulation of Life and the qualifying of the living organism with concepts and effort in mind and body. You are the power of the Cosmos appearing as pure intelligence, beauty and function. There is only reality. Nothing else.

— Mark Whitwell. Excerpts from Hridayasutra: The Heart Sutra. [The art above by Colleen Choi]

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La Revolución Es Un Arte / The Revolution Is An Art

–por Howard Zinn (Jun 15, 2017)

Parto de la suposición de que el mundo está patas arriba, que las cosas están completamente mal, que las personas erróneas están en la cárcel y las personas erróneas están fuera de la cárcel, que las personas erróneas están en el poder y que las personas erróneas esta fuera del poder, de que la riqueza está distribuida en este país y en el mundo de tal manera que no se requiere alguna pequeña reforma sino una drástica redistribución de la riqueza… Y nuestro tema está patas arriba: la desobediencia civil. Tan pronto uno dice que el tema es la desobediencia civil, están diciendo que nuestro problema es la desobediencia civil. Ése no es nuestro problema… Nuestro problema es la obediencia civil… Nuestro problema es que la gente es obediente en todo el mundo ante la pobreza, la hambruna y la estupidez, y la guerra y la crueldad. Nuestro problema es que la gente es obediente cuando las cárceles están llenas de rateros pequeños mientras que los grandes rateros están a cargo del país. Ése es nuestro problema. […]

Tener esperanza en tiempos difíciles no es sólo tontamente romántico. Está basado sobre el hecho de que la historia humana es una historia no sólo de crueldad, sino también de compasión, sacrificio, valentía, bondad. Lo que optemos por enfatizar en esta compleja historia determinará nuestras vidas. Si vemos sólo lo peor, eso destruye nuestra capacidad para actuar. Si recordamos esos tiempos y lugares, y hay muchos, donde la gente se ha comportado de manera magnífica, eso nos da la energía para actuar, y por lo menos la posibilidad de enviar este trompo de mundo a que gire en otra dirección. Y si actuamos, por más pequeña que sea la acción, no tenemos que esperar un gran futuro utópico. El futuro es una sucesión infinita de presentes, y vivir ahora tal como pensamos que deberían de vivir los seres humanos, en desafío de todo lo malo que nos rodea, es en sí un triunfo maravilloso. […]

El cambio revolucionario no llega como un momento cataclísmico (¡cuidado con tales momentos!), sino como una sucesión interminable de sorpresas, caminando de manera zigzagueante hacia una sociedad mas decente. No tenemos que participar en grandes acciones heroicas para participar en el proceso del cambio. Acciones pequeñas, multiplicadas por millones de personas, pueden transformar el mundo.

La palabra ‘anarquía’ perturba a la mayoría de la gente en el mundo occidental; sugiere desorden, violencia, incertidumbre. Tenemos buenas razones para tenerle miedo a estas condiciones, porque hemos estado viviendo en ellas por largo rato, no en sociedades anarquistas (nunca han existido), pero precisamente en esas sociedades más temerosas de la anarquía, los poderosos estados-nación de los tiempos modernos.

En ningún momento en la historia humana ha existido tal caos social. 50 millones de muertos en la Segunda Guerra Mundial. Más de 1 millón de muertos en la parte del Planeta que llamamos Korea, 1 millón y medio millon en los lugares de la Tierra que llamamos Vietnam e Indonesia respectivamente, cientos de miles de muertos en las partes del Planeta que llamamos Nigeria y Mozambique. Un centenar de luchas políticas violentas en todo el mundo en 20 años después de la segunda guerra para ponerle fin a todas las guerras. Millones padecen hambre o están en prisiones o en instituciones psiquiátricas. Agitación interna simbolizada por enormes ejércitos, reservas de gas nervioso y almacenes de bombas de hidrógeno. Dondequiera que hombres, mujeres y niñ@s están apenas un poco conscientes del mundo fuera de sus fronteras locales, empiezan a vivri con la incertidumbre final: si la raza humana sobrevivirá o no en la siguiente generación. Son estas condiciones las que l@s anarquistas desean anular, para traer un tipo de orden al mundo por primera vez. Nunca l@s hemos escuchado atentamente, excepto a través de los audífonos suministrados por los guardianes del desorden: los líderes del gobierno nacional, ya sean capitalistas o socialistas.

El orden deseado por l@s anarquistas es diferente de la “ley y el orden” de los gobiernos nacionales. Ell@s quieren una formación voluntaria de las relaciones humanas, surgiendo de las necesidades de las personas. Tal orden viene desde dentro y, por ello, es natural. La gente se organiza de forma fácil, en lugar de ser forzada y empujada. Es como la forma dada por una artista, una forma agradable, a menudo agradable, a veces hermosa. Tiene la gracia de un acto voluntario y seguro.

La anarquista ve el cambio revolucionario como algo inmediato, algo que tenemos que hacer ahora mismo, donde estamos, donde vivimos, donde trabajamos. Implica empezar desde ahora mismo a deshacerse de las relaciones autoritarias y crueles, entre hombres y mujeres, entre padre e hijos, entre un tipo de trabajador y otro tipo. Tal acción revolucionaria no puede ser aplastada como una insurgencia armada. Ocurre en la vida cotidiana, en las esquinitas donde las manos poderosas pero torpes del poder estatal no pueden fácilmente alcanzar. No está centralizada o aislada, y por lo tanto no puede ser destruida por los ricos, la policía, los militares. Ocurre en 100 mil lugares al mismo tiempo, en familias, en las calles, en los barrios, en los lugares de trabajo. Suprimida en un lugar, reaparece en otro hasta que está en todas partes. Tal revolución es un arte. Eso es, requiere la valentía no sólo de la resistencia, sino de la imaginación.

–Howard Zinn. Selecciones escogidas de: 1)Discurso en un foro en Baltimore en 1970, al cual fue en lugar de presentarse ante un juez para ser sentenciado por un acto de desobediencia civil contra la guerra, y fue arrestado al regresar a Boston a dar su clase en la universidad). 2) No puedes ser neutral en un tren en movimiento. 3) “El arte de la revolución”, 1971, introducción al libro de Herbert Read Anarchy and Order. [Arte de arriba por Colleen Choi] Continue reading

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El Verdadero Esplendor de la Ciencia / True Splendor of Science

–por Alan Watts (Jun 2, 2017)

El verdadero esplendor de la ciencia no es tanto que nombra, clasifica, anota y predice, sino que observa y desea conocer los hechos sean cuales sean. Sin embargo se suelen confundir los hechos con las costumbres y la realidad con separaciones arbitrarias, en esta apertura y sinceridad de la mente se mantiene cierta semejanza con la religión, entendida en otro sentido más profundo. Cuanto más grande es el científico, más le impresiona su ignorancia de la realidad y más se da cuenta de que sus leyes y etiquetas, descripciones y definiciones, son productos de su propio pensamiento. Le ayudan a utilizar el mundo para el propósito de concebir su propias ideas más que para entenderlo y explicarlo.

Cuanto más analiza el Universo en partículas infinitesimales, más cosas encuentra que clasificar y más percibe la relatividad de todas las clasificaciones. Lo que no sabe parece incrementarse en progresión geométrica ante lo que si sabe. Constantemente se aproxima al punto donde lo desconocido no es un mero espacio en blanco en una maraña de palabras sino una ventana en la mente, una ventana cuyo nombre no es ignorancia sino asombro.

La mente tímida cierra esta ventana con un portazo y se calla, y no reflexiona sobre lo que no conoce, para parlotear más sobre lo que cree que sabe. Llena los espacios inexplorados con meras repeticiones de lo que ya ha sido explorado. Pero la mente abierta sabe que los territorios más minuciosamente explorados no se conocen en absoluto, aunque hayan sido marcados y medidos cientos de veces. Y el fascinante misterio de que lo que marcamos y medimos al final ‘nos toma el pelo’ hasta que la mente olvida rodear y perseguir su propio proceso y se hace consciente de que estar en este momento es puro milagro.

Ante tal maravilla no hay deseo sino realización. Casi todo el mundo lo ha vivido, pero sólo en escasos instantes como cuando la deslumbrante belleza o extrañeza de una escena aleja a la mente de su auto-persecución, y por un momento le hace incapaz de encontrar palabras para el sentimiento. Nosotr@s somos, entonces, de lo más afortunad@s de vivir en una época en la que el conocimiento humano ha llegado tan lejos que empiezan a perderse las palabras, no sólo por lo extraño y maravilloso, sino también por las cosas más ordinarias. El polvo en las estanterías se ha convertido en algo tan misterioso como las remotas estrellas; sabemos lo suficiente de ambos como para saber que no sabemos nada. Eddington, el físico, está más cerca de los místicos, no en los irreales vuelos de su imaginación, sino cuando dice simplemente, ‘Algo desconocido está haciendo algo que no sabemos’. En tal confesión el pensamiento se ha movido en un círculo completo y estamos de nuevo como niñ@s.

–Alan Watts. Extracto de su libro, ‘La sabiduría de la inseguridad.’  [Pasaje escogido de Awakin. Dibujo creativo de Dharma Comics :-)]


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Allegiance to Gratitude

–by Robin Wall Kimmerer  (Jun 08 2017)

[ A Thanksgiving Address, a gift from the Haudenosaunee to the World. ]

Today we have gathered and when we look upon the faces around us we see that the cycles if life continue. We have been given the duty to live in balance and harmony with each other and all living things. So now let us bring our minds together as one as we give greetings and thanks to each other as People. Now our minds are one.

We are thankful to our Mother the Earth, for she gives us everything that we need for life. She supports our feet as we walk about upon her. It gives us joy that she still continues to care for us, just as she has from the beginning of time. To our Mother, we send thanksgiving, love, and respect. Now our minds are one.

We give thanks to all the waters of the world for quenching our thirst, for providing strength and nurturing life for all beings. We know its power in many forms — waterfalls and rain, mists and streams, rivers and oceans, snow and ice. We are grateful that the waters are still here and meeting their responsibility to the rest of Creation. Can we agree that water is important to our lives and bring our minds together as one to send greetings and thanks to the Water? Now our minds are one.

We turn our thoughts to all of the Fish life in the water. They were instructed to cleanse and purify the water. They also give themselves to us as food. We are grateful that they continue to do their duties and we send to the Fish our greetings and our thanks. Now our minds are one.

Now we turn toward the vast fields of Plant life. As far as the eye can see, the Plants grow, working many wonders. They sustain many life forms. With our minds gathered together, we give thanks and look forward to seeing Plant life for many generations to come. Now our minds are one.

When we look about us, we sees the berries are still here, providing us with delicious foods. The leader of the berries is the strawberry, the first to ripen in the spring. Can we agree that we are grateful that the berries are with us in the world and send our thanksgiving, love, and respect to the berries? Now our minds are one.

With one mind, we honor and thank all the Food Plants we harvest from the garden, especially the Three Sisters who feed the people with such abundance. Since the beginning of time, the grains, vegetables, beans, and fruit have helped the people survive. Many other living things draw strength from them as well. We gather together in our minds all the plant foods and send them a greeting and thanks. Now our minds are one.

Now we turn to the Medicine Herbs of the world. From the
beginning, they were instructed to take away sickness. They are
always waiting and ready to heal us. We are so happy that there are
still among us those special few who remember how to use the plants
for healing. With one mind, we send thanksgiving, love and respect to
the Medicines and the keepers of the Medicines. Now our minds are one.

Standing around us we see all the Trees. The Earth has many families of Trees who each have there own instructions and uses. Some provide shelter and shade, others fruit and beauty and many useful gifts. The Maple is the leader of the trees, to recognize its gifts of sugar when the People need it most. Many peoples of the world recognize a Tree as a symbol of peace and strength. With one mind we greet and thank the Tree life. Now our minds are one.

We gather our minds together to send our greetings and thanks to all the beautiful animal life of the world, who walk about with us. They have many things to teach us as people. We are grateful that they continue to share their lives with us and hope that it will always be so. Let us put our minds together as one and send our thanks to the Animals. Now our minds are one.

We put our minds together as one and thank all the birds who move and fly about over our heads. The Creator gave them the gift of beautiful songs. Each morning they greet the day and with their songs remind us to enjoy and appreciate life. The Eagle was chosen to be their leader and to watch over the world. To all the Birds, from the smallest to the largest, we send our joyful greetings and thanks. Now our minds are one.

We are thankful for all the powers we know as the Four Winds. We hear their voices in the moving air as they refresh us and purify the air we breathe. They help to bring the change of seasons. From the four directions they come, bringing us messages and giving us strength. With one mind we send our greetings and thanks to the Four Winds. Now our minds are one.

We now turn to the West where our grandfathers the Thunder Beings live. With lightening and thundering voices they bring with them the water that renews life. We bring our minds together as one to send greetings and thanks to our Grandfathers, the Thunderers.

We now send greetings and thanks to our eldest brother the Sun. Each day without fail he travels the sky from east to west, bringing the light of a new day. He is the source of all the fires of life. With one mind, we send greetings and thanks to our Brother, the Sun. Now our minds are one.

We put our minds together and give thanks to our oldest Grandmother, the Moon, who lights the nighttime sky. She is the leader of women all over the world and she governs the movement of the ocean tides. By her changing face we measure time and it is the Moon who watches over the arrival of children here on Earth. Let us gather our thanks for Grandmother Moon together in a pile, layer upon layer of gratitude, and then joyfully fling that pile of thanks high into the night sky that she will know. With one mind, we send greeting and thanks to our Grandmother, the Moon.

We give thanks to the Stars who are spread across the sky like jewelry. We see them at night, helping the Moon to light the darkness and bringing dew to the gardens and growing things. When we travel at night, they guide us home. With our minds gathered as one, we send greetings and thanks to all the Stars. Now our minds are one.

We gather our minds to greet and thank the enlightened Teachers who have come to help throughout the ages. When we forget how to live in harmony, they remind us of the way we were instructed to live as people. With one mind, we send greetings and thanks to these caring Teachers. Now our minds are one.

We now turn our thoughts to the Creator, or Great Spirit, and send greetings and thanks for all the gifts of Creation. Everything we need to live a good life is here on Mother Earth. For all the love that is still around us, we gather our minds together as one and send our choicest words of greeting and thanks to the Creator. Now our minds are one.

We have now arrived at the place where we end our words. Of all the things we have named, it is not our intention to leave anything out. If something was forgotten, we leave it to each individual to send such greeting and thanks in their own way. And now our minds are one.

 

–Robin Wall Kimmerer from the her book Braiding Sweetgrass. [Illustration offered as an anonymous gift :-)]

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Clinging Causes the Pain

–by Ani Tenzin Palmo (May 27, 2017)

 

Genuine love and kindness is desperately needed in this world. It comes from appreciating the object, and rejoicing in the object, wanting the object to be happy and well, but holding it lightly, not tightly. And this goes for possessions too. You are in an extremely materialistic society in which the possession of more and bigger and better is held up as the total criteria for being happy. […]

What we own is not the problem, it’s our attitude towards our possessions. If we have something and we enjoy it, that’s fine. If we lose it, then that’s OK. But if we lose it and we are very attached to it in our heart, then that’s not fine. It doesn’t matter what the object is, because it’s not the object which is the problem. The problem is our own inner grasping mind that keeps us bound to the wheel, and keeps us suffering. If our mind was open and could just let things flow naturally, there would be no pain. Do you understand? We need our everyday life to work on this, to really begin to see the greed of attachment in the mind and gradually begin to lessen and lessen it

There’s a famous story of a coconut, which is said to be used in India to catch monkeys. People take a coconut and make a little hole just big enough for a monkey to put its paw through. And inside the coconut, which is nailed to a tree, they have put something sweet. So the monkey comes along, sees the coconut, smells something nice inside, and he puts his hand in. He catches hold of the sweet inside, so now he has a fist. But the hole is too small for the fist to get out. When the hunters come back, the monkey’s caught. But of course, all the monkey has to do is let go. Nobody’s holding the monkey except the monkey’s grasping greedy mind. Nobody is holding us on the wheel, we are clinging to it ourselves. There are no chains on this wheel. We can jump off any time. But we cling. And clinging causes the pain.

–Ani Tenzin Palmo [passage picked from Awakin. The drawing is an anonymous gift :-)]

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Llámame Por Mis Nombres Verdaderos / Call Me by My True Names

–por Thich Nhat Hanh (May 19, 2017)

No digas que partiré mañana
porque todavía estoy llegando.

Mira profundamente: llego a cada instante
para ser el brote de una rama en primavera,
para ser un pequeño pájaro de alas aún frágiles
aprendiendo a cantar en su nuevo nido,
para ser oruga en el corazón de una flor,
para ser una piedra preciosa escondida en una roca.

Todavía estoy llegando para reír y llorar,
para temer y esperar,
el ritmo de mi corazón es el nacimiento y la muerte de todo lo que vive.

Soy la libélula en metamorfosis
sobre la superficie del río,
y soy el pájaro que cuando llega la primavera
llega a tiempo para devorar este insecto.

Soy una rana que nada feliz
en el agua clara de un estanque,
y soy la culebra de agua que se acerca
sigilosa para alimentarse de la rana.

Soy el niño de la parte del Planeta que llamamos Uganda, todo piel y huesos,
con piernas delgadas como cañas de bambú,
y soy el comerciante de armas
que vende armas mortales a la parte del Planeta que llamamos Uganda.

Soy la niña de 12 años
refugiada en un pequeño bote,
que se arroja al mar
tras haber sido violada por un pirata,
y soy el pirata
cuyo corazón es incapaz de ver y de amar.

Soy el miembro del Politburó
con todo el poder en mis manos,
y soy el hombre que ha de pagar su deuda de sangre
a mi pueblo, muriendo lentamente
en un campo de trabajos forzados.

Mi alegría es como la primavera, tan cálida
que hace que florezcan flores en todo lugar.
mi dolor es como un rio de lágrimas,
tan desbordante que llena los cuatro Océanos.

Por favor llámame por mis nombres verdaderos
para poder oír al mismo tiempo todos mis llantos y mis risas,
para poder ver que mi alegría y mi dolor son la misma cosa.

Por favor, llámame por mis nombres verdaderos
para que pueda despertar
y pueda dejar abierta la puerta de mi corazón,
la puerta de la compasión

–Thich Nhat Hanh  [pasaje escogido de Awakin. Dibujo creativo de Dharma Comics :-)]


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Heartfulness

–by Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu  (May 12, 2017)

These are the times that try our souls. Each of us needs to undergo a tremendous philosophical and spiritual transformation. Each of us needs to be awakened to a personal and compassionate recognition of the inseparable interconnection between our minds, hearts, and bodies, between our physical and psychical well-being, and between our selves and all the other selves in our country and in the world. Each of us needs to stop being a passive observer of the suffering that we know is going on in the world and start identifying with the sufferers. Each of us needs to make a leap that is both practical and philosophical, beyond determinism to self-determination. Each of us has to be true to and enhance our own humanity by embracing and practicing the conviction that as human beings we have free will; that despite the powers and principalities that are bent on objectifying and commodifying us and all our human relationships, the interlocking crises of our time require that we exercise the power within us to make principled choices in our ongoing daily and political lives, choices that will eventually, although not inevitably—there are no guarantees—make a difference. […]

In Japanese, heartfulness is represented by the character 念 consisting of two parts: 今, now; and 心, heart. 心 is Kokoro, which includes feeling, emotion, mind, and spirit—the whole person. In English, “heartfulness” may be closer to this holistic meaning than the word “mindfulness”, which for some people evokes images of the brain as detached from the heart.

Minds and hearts are separated in a Western sense, with mind as reason deemed superior to emotion or feeling of the heart. Heartfulness rejects this dominance of the mind and intellect, and opens us to be guided by one’s heart. Being in a state of heartfulness means listening to the heart, to one’s inner voice and forgetting the self, becoming selfless. Heartfulness is cultivating the heart through inner stillness and silence, becoming more human, being more truthful with one’s self. It is opening the heart, becoming more loving, compassionate, and kind, to one’s own self and to all other human beings. Its practice is gentle, appreciative, and nurturing.

Heartfulness begins with mindfulness and extends into other ways of being, embracing vulnerability, humility, acceptance and authenticity. Realizing our connectedness with others leads to empathy, deep listening, and respect. We become compassionate persons and responsible citizens acting to eliminate suffering in self and others and in the world. Heartfulness is compassionate mindfulness in which the awareness of being connected to the self, perhaps a Higher Self and with everything and everyone makes us hate injustice and moves us to do things for others because their welfare is our concern.

Listen to your heart.
Listen with your heart.
See with your heart.
Open your heart.

What will your heart tell you today?

–Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu from his website [Illustration offered as an anonymous gift :-)]

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La Vulnerabilidad es el Camino / Vulnerability is the Path

por  Brene Brown (May 05, 2017)  [English below]

La vulnerabilidad no es ni buena ni mala: no es lo que llamamos una emoción negativa, ni tampoco es siempre una experiencia luminosa y positiva. La vulnerabilidad es el centro de todas las emociones y sentimientos. Sentir es ser vulnerable. Creer que la vulnerabilidad es debilidad es creer que sentir es debilidad. Excluirla de nuestra vida emocional por miedo a que los costos sean demasiado altos es alejarse de la misma cosa que da sentido y significado a la vida.

Nuestro rechazo de la vulnerabilidad generalmente viene porque la asociamos con emociones oscuras como el miedo, la vergüenza, la aflicción, la tristeza y la decepción (emociones que no queremos analizar, incluso aunque afecten de forma profunda a la forma en que vivimos, amamos, trabajamos e incluso lideramos). Lo que la mayoría de nosotr@s sigue sin entender, y lo que a mí me llevó una década de investigación aprender, es que la vulnerabilidad también es la cuna de todas las emociones y experiencias que deseamos. Queremos unas vidas espirituales más profundas y significativas. La vulnerabilidad es donde nacen el amor, la pertenencia, el gozo, el coraje y la creatividad. Es la fuente de la esperanza, la empatía, la responsabilidad y la autenticidad. Si queremos una mayor claridad en nuestro propósito o unas vidas espirituales más profundas y con más significado, la vulnerabilidad es el camino.

Se que es difícil de creer, especialmente cuando pasamos nuestras vidas pensando que la vulnerabilidad y la debilidad son sinónimos, pero no es verdad. Yo defino la vulnerabilidad como incertidumbre, riesgo y exposición emocional. Con esta definición en mente, pensemos en el amor. […] El amor es incierto. Es increíblemente arriesgado. Y amar a alguien te deja expuest@ emocionalmente. Sí, da miedo y sí, estamos abiert@s a ser herid@s, pero ¿puedes imaginarte la vida sin amar o sin ser amad@?

Poner nuestro arte, nuestra escritura, nuestras fotografías, nuestras ideas en el mundo sin asegurarnos de que vayan a ser aceptadas o apreciadas, eso también es vulnerabilidad. Dejarnos sumergir en los momentos de alegría de nuestras vidas incluso cuando sabemos que son fugaces, (incluso cuando el mundo nos dice que no seamos demasiado felices, que no vaya a ser que estemos llamando a la desgracia), esa es una forma intensa de vulnerabilidad.

El peligro profundo es que, como se señala arriba, empecemos a creer que sentir es debilidad. Con la excepción del enfado (que es una emoción secundaria, una que sólo sirve como una máscara socialmente aceptable para muchas de las emociones subyacentes y más difíciles que sentimos), estamos perdiendo nuestra tolerancia a la emoción y por tanto a la vulnerabilidad.

Empieza a tener sentido que desestimemos la vulnerabilidad por la debilidad sólo cuando nos damos cuenta de que hemos confundido sentimientos con fracasos y emociones con cargas. Si queremos reclamar la parte emocional esencial de nuestras vidas y volver a encender el fuego de la pasión y el propósito, tenemos que aprender a apropiarnos y comprometernos con nuestra propia vulnerabilidad y a sentir las emociones que vienen con ella. Para algunos de nosotr@s, es un aprendizaje nuevo y para otr@s es “reaprender”. De cualquier manera, la investigación me ha enseñado que el mejor sitio para empezar es definiendo, reconociendo y entendiendo la vulnerabilidad.

— Del libro de Brene Brown llamado Retándonos Grandemente: Cómo el valor de ser vulnerable transforma la manera en que vivimos, amamos, educamos a nuestros hijos y somos líderes.  [Pasaje escogido de Awakin. Comic creativo de Dharma Comics ;-)]

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Contributing To The Total Upliftment Of Humanity

–by Vimala Thakar (Apr 27, 2017)

Most of us are not aware of our motivations for living or our priorities for action. We drift with the tides of societal fashions, floating in and out of social concerns at the whim of societal dictates and on the basis of images created by the media or superficial, personal desires to be helpful, useful persons. We are used to living at the surface, afraid of the depths, and therefore our actions and concerns about humanity are shallow, fragile vessels easily damaged. Ultimately most of us are concerned chiefly with our small lives, our collection of sensual pleasures, our personal salvation, and our anxiety about sickness and death, rather than the misery created by collective indifference and callousness.

We have reached the point, however, where we no longer have the luxury to indulge in self-centered comfort and personal acquisition or to escape into religious pursuits at the cost of collective interests. For us there can be no escape, no withdrawal, no private arena in which we can turn our backs on the sorrows of humanity, saying, “I am not responsible. Others have created a mess; let them mend it.” The writing on the world’s wall is plain: “Learn to live together or in separateness you die!” The choice is ours.

The world today forces us to accept, at least intellectually, our oneness, our interrelatedness. And more and more people are awakening to the urgency of arresting the accelerating madness around us. As yet, however, our ways of responding are superficial, unequal to the complexities of the challenge. We do not take or even consider actions that threaten our security or alter our habitual ways of drifting through life. If we continue to live carelessly, indifferently, emphasizing private gain and personal indulgence, we are essentially opting for the suicide of humanity. […]

We can become involved in many acts of social service, according to our resources, without ever moving one inch from the center of our private interests; in fact, the very act of social service typically enhances self-image and self-centeredness. But we cannot become involved in true social action, which strikes at the roots of problems in the society and in the human psyche, without moving away from ego-centered motivation. We must look deep into the network of personal motivations and discover what our priorities are. Our yearning for peace must be so urgent that we are willing to free ourselves from the immaturity of ego-centered action, willing to grow into the sane maturity required to face the complex challenges that affect our existence. If we are motivated by desire for acceptance either by the dominant culture or the counterculture, clarity of right action and passion of precise purpose will not be there. We may be praised for our contributions, but unless there is a deep awareness of the essence of our lives, a penetrating clarity about the meaning of human existence, our contributions will not penetrate to the roots of human misery.

To be ready for social responsibility, we will have to be mercilessly honest with ourselves. Wherever we are, we are responsible to resist injustice, to be willing to put our comforts, securities, our lives at stake in fearless noncooperation with injustice and exploitation. If we adopt all the habit patterns of the enslaved—the fear, the acceptance of tyranny, the intellectual and emotional blindness to injustice—we deserve the inevitable consequences that are descending upon us in a dark storm cloud. If we are submissive, clinging to our small islands of security, naturally terror will reign. If we are willing to allow all others to perish—the peoples of other parts of the Planet, races, castes, cultures, religions; the other creatures of the Earth—so that we may flourish and endlessly increase our network of pleasures and comforts, obviously we are doomed to rot and decay.

When we come face-to-face with the actualities of human and planetary suffering, what does the powerful moment of truth do to us? Do we retreat into the comforts of theories and defense mechanisms, or are we awakened at the core of our being? Awareness of misery, without defense structures, will naturally lead to action. The heart cannot witness misery without calling the being to action, without activating the force of love. […] Social responsibility flowers naturally when we perceive the world without the involvement of the ego-consciousness. When we relate directly to suffering, we are led to understanding and spontaneous action—but when we perceive the world through the ego, we are cut off from direct relationship, from communion that stirs the deepest level of our being.

We can become socially responsible readily, if we have the fearlessness to cast aside all theories, ideologies, all authorities of conditioned society, to free ourselves from the grip of the ego-structure. When we perceive life as a whole, we don’t have to struggle to create interrelatedness, unity; it is the fact of our existence. When living beyond fragmentation, separateness, moving in wholeness, there is no barrier between us and others. On the mental plane, we construct artificial barriers, divisions, but in wholeness there are no barriers. Only relatedness exists. Then we share the sorrow of the world and in spontaneous total responsiveness we act.

The social action we undertake in this state will vary according to the scope of our awareness, our talents, capacities, and the place where we are living. When we live in wholeness, we cannot use any of the devices of the society or the psychological structures to put distance between ourselves and the problems of humanity. The awareness of oneness will sweep aside all doubts about our capabilities, commitments, all self-consciousness, fears about the work ahead. Wholeness is spontaneous energy which moves without the doubts, fears, insecurities of the ego-structure.

We may not act on a global or national scale; it may be only on a community or neighborhood scale—but act, respond, we must. According to our capabilities, talents will move easily, effortlessly into social action. We may contribute to social action by drawing pictures or creating pieces of sculpture; we may write poetry or prose to awaken and stimulate the consciousness of people, to intensify the awareness of the problems and stimulate values. We may travel around or serve where we are — there are ways and ways of engaging in social action.

Social action becomes an extension of personal life. We move into it spontaneously because we cannot do otherwise. It is a choiceless movement, taking into its fold the whole human global family, and that concern, that care, that revolutionary fervor is expressed in different individuals, in different ways. Some will sing and by singing put fire into benumbed hearts and arouse them, stimulate them to dedicate themselves to the cause of social action.

As social activists we do not use our talents and capabilities for self-enhancement, for amassing personal prestige. In an easy, simple way, the humility that the sense of oneness arouses, we each mobilize our individual abilities and skills for the total upliftment of humanity. Each of us will need to discover individual resources for social action and not depend on any revolutionary formulas or models. Each is unique.

–Vimala Thakar. Excerpt picked from Spirituality and Social Action: A Holistic Approach [Image is a poster from the upcoming General May 1st Strike]

Posted in ahimsa, anarchism, anarchy, ARTivism, astrobiology, Awakin Oakland, education, fearlessness, gift-economy, meditation, natural philosophy, noncooperation, nonviolence, Peace Army, poetry, satyagraha, science, Shanti Sena, soulforce, WednesdaysOnFridays | Tagged | Leave a comment

No Hacer Nada Una Vez / Do Nothing For Once

por  Pablo Neruda (Abril 20, 2017)  [English below]

A Callarse
Ahora contaremos doce
y nos quedamos tod@s quiet@s.

Por una vez sobre la tierra
no hablemos en ningún idioma,
por un segundo detengámonos,
no movamos tanto los brazos.

Sería un minuto fragante,
sin prisa, sin locomotoras,
tod@s estaríamos junt@s
en una inquietud instantánea.

Los pescadores del mar frió
no harían daño a las ballenas
y el trabajador de la sal
miraría sus manos rotas.

Los que preparan guerras verdes,
guerras de gas, guerras de fuego,
victorias sin sobrevivientes,
se pondrían un traje puro
y andarían son sus hermanos
por la sombra, sin hacer nada.

No se confunda lo quiero
con la inacción definitiva:
la vida es solo lo que se hace,
no quiero nada con la muerte.

Si no pudimos ser unánimes
moviendo tanto nuestras vidas
tal vez no hacer nada una vez,
tal vez un gran silencio pueda
interrumpir esta tristeza,
este no entendernos jamás
y amenazarnos con la muerte,
tal vez la tierra nos enseñe
cuando todo parece muerto
y luego todo estaba vivo.

Ahora contare hasta doce
y tú te callas y me voy.

 

Por boca cerrada entran las moscas
¿Por qué con esas llamas rojas
se han dispuesto a arder los rubíes?

¿Por qué el corazón del topacio
tiene panales amarillos?

¿Por qué se divierte la rosa
cambiando el color de sus sueños?

¿Por qué se enfría la esmeralda
como una ahogada submarina?

¿Y por qué palidece el cielo
sobre las estrellas de junio?

¿Dónde compra pintura fresca
la cola de la lagartija?

¿Dónde está el fuego subterráneo
que resucita los claveles?

¿De dónde saca la sal
esa mirada transparente?

¿Dónde durmieron los carbones
que se levantaron oscuros?

¿Y dónde, dónde compra el tigre
rayas de luto, rayas de oro?

¿Cuándo comenzó a conocer
la madreselva su perfume?

¿Cuándo se dio cuenta el pino
de su resultado oloroso?

¿Cuándo aprendieron los limones
la misma doctrina del sol?

¿Cuándo aprendió a volar el humo?
¿Cuándo conversan las raíces?

¿Cómo es el agua en las estrellas?
¿Por qué el escorpión envenena,
por qué el elefante es benigno?

¿En qué medita la tortuga?
¿Dónde se retira la sombra?
¿Qué canto repite la lluvia?
¿Dónde van a morir los pájaros?
¿Y por qué son verdes las hojas?

Es tan poco lo que sabemos
y tanto lo que presumimos
y tan lentamente aprendemos,
que preguntamos, y morimos.
Mejor guardemos orgullo
para la ciudad de los, muertos
en el día de los difuntos
y allí cuando el viento recorra
los huecos de tu calavera
te revelará tanto enigma,
susurrándote la verdad
donde estuvieron tus orejas.

–Pablo Neruda en “Estravagario“. Fotografía de la Foto de Astronomía del Día. (APOD) Continue reading

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