“A lily or a rose never pretends, and its beauty is that it is what it is.” Jiddu Krishnamurti
“Life begins well. It begins enclosed, protected, all warm in the bosom of the house.” Gaston Bachelard
“Dreams die hard and we watch them erode, but we cannot be denied the fire inside.” Bob Seger
“Plato in the peonies, Socrates force-growing his own hemlock. A man toting a sack of blood manure across his lawn is kin to Atlas letting the world spin easy on his shoulder.” Ray Bradbury
“Horses are divine mirrors, reflecting back our inner emotional truth.” Allan J. Hamilton, Zen Mind, Zen Horse
“The human mind is so complex and things are so tangled up with each other that, to explain a blade of straw, one would have to take to pieces an entire universe. A definition is a sack of flour compressed into a thimble.” Remy de Gourmont
“When you like a flower, you just pluck it. But when you love a flower, you water it daily.” Buddha
Shunryu Suzuki once said: “Life is like stepping onto a boat which is about to sail out to sea and sink.” On the other hand, Ernest Hemingway said: “Every man’s life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another.”
Note to self: DO NOT TAKE THE BOAT!
Charlotte Joko Beck in Everyday Zen explains a famous Buddhist parable: “A man was being chased by a tiger. In his desperation he dove over the side of a cliff and grabbed a vine. As the tiger was pawing away above him he looked below and saw another tiger at the base of the cliff, waiting for him to fall.
To top it off two mice were gnawing away at the vine. At that moment he spotted a luscious strawberry and, holding the vine with one hand, he picked the strawberry and ate it. It was delicious! What finally happened to the man? We know, of course. Is what happened to him a tragedy?
Notice that the man being chased by a tiger didn’t lie down and say, Oh, you beautiful creature. We are one. Please eat me. The story is not about being foolish even though on one level, the man and the tiger are one. The man did his best to protect himself, as we all should.
Nevertheless, if we’re left hanging on that vine, we can either waste that last moment of life or we can appreciate it. And isn’t every moment the last moment? There is no moment other than this. The man being chased by the tiger is finally eaten. No problem.”
“Before you speak, let your words pass through three gates: At the first gate ask yourself, Is is true? At the second gate ask, Is it necessary? At the third gate ask, Is it kind?” Rumi