Category: Dharma Journal

Becoming Tasty

A human is a curious form of life. It seems like a mutated species maladapted to its environment. It uses finite resources as if they are infinite. It wages destructive wars as if to...

Eternal Sunshine of the Aging Mind

We are hiking in the Riley Ranch Preserve and meet an old acquaintance with a friend and relish the joy of reconnecting. As we catch up on things, the conversation steers toward our scars....

Hawkish

Our resident sharp-shinned hawk lands on the fence opposite our viewing window near the bird feeder. She looks at us and eyes our bird bath. The songbirds have long skedaddled. As she hops along...

As It Is

The filters of our habitual mind are so pervasive we rarely peek behind the curtain and see what is in front of us. The practice of my tradition suggests ways of dropping the veil,...

Death Takes Flight

A pine siskin is so small it could easily fit into a demitasse cup. This one is ill and probably will not last much longer. The little bird puffs up its feathers and stumbles...

First Breath, Last Breath

This morning a dear sangha sister passed away. She had a blessed life, even though her body suffered a disease that would eventually claim her. She was so beautiful in her last day. I could...

Bud of Awakening

The little dwarf weeping willow outside our front door has had a rough winter so far. Not because of the weather, it has been quite mellow as winters go, but because the mule deer...

Love Is Always Beginning

If your mind is empty, it is always ready for anything; it is open to everything. In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, in the expert’s mind there are few.      Shunryu Suzuki...

Ruminating on Emptiness

Neuroscientists say we experience 50 to 80,000 thoughts per day. A high percentage of those thoughts are repetitive. How many of these thoughts benefit anyone? Do our thoughts perpetuate the issues we wish to...

Return to the Light

As I write this, we mark the winter solstice of the solar year. It is a time to observe a return of the light, the beginning of increased daylight hours. Ancient cultures developed a...