Category Archives: Buddhist

The 52: Bhakti = Love: Was This the Message of Shyamdas?

Standard

butterflyblueskyI have been quite surprised and struck by the events of this week.

I had another blog written for this week.  It was all set to go. But I was driven to change it and instead wrote about Divine Love and Stephen/Shyamdas.    There seemed to be a dynamic energy pulsing at the Memorial/Celebration held for him last Saturday.  I felt compelled to share what I experienced as the bhakti lesson I wrote.

Anyway, I accept that I (me, Deanne) am not the “doer,” so if this is what unfolded, it was meant to be. And it came as a kind of gift.  It was not as if I knew Shyamdas very well.  Indeed, probably almost every one there knew him better than I, yet it felt like he spoke to me.  Call me goofy, if you like, but this is not an uncommon experience for me.  It has happened, always unexpectedly, on previous occasions, so I have come to recognize this sort of transmission/ mystical event when it happens.

Love is truly the message!  It is the reason we all gathered together, to share a love for Stephen/Shyamdas and/or for the family and friends who grieved for him.  Maybe that love was so great that the soul of Shyamdas could not contain himself.  After all, that is what bhaktis do, the love is so big it explodes in the heart.  Especially if you are a chanter, singer, musician, as Shyamdas was.  It becomes a living expression of that exuberant love.  I am familiar with this feeling — of tears of joy spontaneously falling, of feeling connected to everything and everyone with a purity of heart, and of feeling “home”  (as in hOMe) at last.

This then is a celebration of Love, of Divine Love.  Whatever brought that Love to a deeper and more vibrant level warrants my thankfulness and gratitude.  Thank you!  Thank you!  Thank you!

Now take a moment and look at the previous post. There are ideas you might try to enhance your own experience of Love  — for yourself and for all that it!

With love and namaste, Deanne

For more on “The 52” and other writings, please go to http://www.deannemincer.com

The 52: Lesson Twenty Four — What Will YOU Hear in the Silence?

Standard

butterflyblueskyYou can hear the footsteps of God when silence reigns.

Sri Sathya Sai Baba spoke these words, to share with us the depth of power and the healing grace of engaging in silence.  Imagine the notion of being so close to the Presence, Divine Consciousness, to God?  We don’t have to be literal in interpreting Sai Baba’s words.  Even without belief, miracles can still occur.

We meditate to shut off the cacophony of the world and to go within. We turn off our iPods and computers, our televisions and radios so that we can be on our own, without the trappings of the world.  For anyone familiar with the practice of silence, it is well-known that the real adventure, the heroic exploring, is within us.  But, if we are addicted to the world and its busyness, we never experience or understand what is so special about resting in stillness.  If you try it, you might meet with some surprises — like touching the essence of your own Self, your own transcendent wisdom. Anything can happen…

LESSON TWENTY FOUR

SILENCE IS YOUR TRUE FRIEND

My favorite Sufi poet/mystic, Rumi, wrote this:

Now I will be quiet and let silence separate what is true and what is illusion,

as thrashing does.

“Thrashing ” may not be a familiar term to some of you.  It means to beat or hit repeatedly.  It is also a farming term.  Farmers thrash the seed from the husk, separating it from the hay.  This I see as Rumi’s intent in using the word – to find the “kernel” of wisdom while we are quiet.

You don’t have to go anywhere special to engage in silence.  Often we think it is necessary to go to a retreat, a meditation “cave,” a weekend seminar — somewhere other than our everyday life.  You don’t have to wait for a special occasion or event.  Right where you are you can start.

A weekly class I teach is called Meditation in Movement.  We settle ourselves into meditation and then, while meditating, we begin to slowly start moving through yoga postures.  It is paramount to recognize that the depth of meditation does not leave us and does not have to fit into a box or set period of time.

Here are some ideas that might prove useful:

  • Choose an activity,  usually something quite routine like riding a train or bus or drying dishes or eating lunch, when you will stop, for a moment, and remind yourself to be quiet.  Be in the present.
  • You might become super conscious of your “routine” activity and let it become an impetus to be present and silent.  At one time, during a period of upheaval, I made driving my car the practice.  I focused on every aspect of my driving — my hands on the steering wheel, my foot on the accelerator, watching for traffic — in truth, I was witnessing myself doing these things, but from a place of silence and acceptance.
  • If it suits you, pick a specific time to be still.  Early in the morning, before the world “kicks in” too much, just before dinner or bedtime.
  • Repeat the word “silence” whenever you feel the need.

We are learning, little by little, to “be.”  To hone our skills at altering our perception of who we are and what the world represents.

It is a worthwhile endeavor and can bring riches beyond our wildest dreams.

With love and namaste, Deanne

For more, go to http://www.deannemincer.com

The 52: Are You Lighter and Happier and More Patient?

Standard

butterflybluesky

Being patient may seem like a trivial thing, especially when we consider gratitude and love and so many other “virtues.” But, make no mistake, a lack of patience results in a lack of peace and wellbeing.  When we are impatient, we have given away the sense of calm and have replaced it with anxiety and “not right-ness.” We are agitated, and who wants that?

Our world, when we engage it too much and take it too seriously, sets us up to be permanently in a state of dis-comfort.  Think of the constancy of the 24/7 news cycle, usually filled with bad news rather than good.  Consider our propensity to compulsively “stay in touch” through texting, emails, and social media.  Everything is happening FAST and, to my way of thinking, this makes patience difficult to attain. 

How about taking some examples from nature?  The great poet, author, and, some would say, mystic, Ralph Waldo Emerson, wrote this:

Adopt the pace of nature.  Her secret is patience.

Where I live, in Connecticut, we have had a long winter and spring has taken its time to unfold.  Is nature saying, “Come on, you daffodils, get up and bloom!” or “What’s wrong with you trees?  Can’t you start budding and spreading your leaves out to the sky?”  Instead, we wait.  Being impatient will not make a difference in the course of nature.  There is a lesson to learn here.

In like manner, we may give thought to “time.”  Some things take time to evolve. William Shakespeare, in his great wisdom, wrote:

How poor are they that have not patience.  What wound did ever heal but by degrees?

When my mother passed away some years ago, I learned that some people believed that grieving had a time limit.  Someone said to me, after three months had passed and I was still sad and feeling loss — well, I just missed her — that I should just “get over it.”  but that is not the way healing occurs.  We all have our own way to heal, and we should relax, be patient, and let it unfold in due time.

Being patient is being kind to yourself and all that is around you.  Try it!

I am a little impatient to find out what you think of this.  Just kidding!

With love and namaste, Deanne

For more, go to www.deannemincer.com