Start Again

by Kendra Mulgrew

she’s starting again
with another chance of a new beginning after the end was found.

& as always, the present chapter of the book she holds unfolding
reads, “as it is.”
for it this way for a reason they say.
so she erases all those memories
and starts again.

ahh, freshness at last,
but the moment has past
so she lets it go.

even if it’s a story told with harmony
she thought no lines were needed,
but she had to learn the hard way that boundaries sure do come in handy
when defining the rules
that are hers for the making
instead of taking those she was told.

so she prepares to hold on tight
as she starts again.

for the journey’s never ending
until she says, “the end,”
with a strong determination to bow out of everything she could’ve done
the decision to sit
cause she knows it’s all been done
& there’s nothing left to do.

simply put – there’s no more fruit.

even if she can find
sweetness inside
she knows the mind plays tricks
and if she thinks it isn’t it probably is.

“this must be the end,” she says,
but it starts again anyways.

detoxicated from the medicine
the seeds of Dhamma have reeled her in.
there’s a sense of freedom at last with what she already knew…
the truth.

for somewhere along the way she forgot
the gift of creation is an art,
but now she feel the shift from inside
the starting breath so wide
open and expansive
from beginningless time.

as she breathes she sees
that Dhamma plays no tricks nor deceives.
there are no secrets, nor lies.
only, “pure love…compassionate love…”

having gratitude for her teacher,
& compassionate love for all beings
she bows down saying, “sadhu”,
but even if she agrees that was very well spoken
& understands the universe is just joking
she knows she must work very seriously…
patiently and persistently
again, and again, and again.

she doesn’t have to listen,
as her job is just to observe,
while she lets the Dhamma do it’s job…
sound absurd?

but she’s tried to make her own rules
all the while knowing there are boundaries within Nature’s truths.
now there’s wisdom that it has her back if she has it’s.
this right type of awareness brings a more profound bliss.

like two wings of a bird equanimous sama sati
brings her suffering to an end.
yet another breath comes
so she starts again.

Safe

I find it unspeakable to speak the truth.

I find all shallow thoughts of men are my own.

I find wholeness lights every way I can see.

Now, moving in truth, I see no other way.

I find myself feeling for sensation,

when my heart is weary and tender.

I find the cries of old and young the same.

Each of us, responsible.  This world.

I find no thoughts to reach a living.

To be held onto what I know is treacherous.

It slips out and into the depths unknown.

Where there is no guide, only home.

Quiet silence of waves for the sensitive one.

They act in the kind and ruthless ways.

All living coming to pass.

All that suffered brought to shore.

Each of us, many guides.

And we are the only ones, of all.

May we be true to ourselves.

To light a home that will be unperturbed

through all storms, strong and small.

Like light and dark, see the change.

Hear the calling from your frames

and be with all that is.

You’re safe.

-Anthony Ross
(Flexanimous Art)
flexanimousart.blogspot.ca

 

 

Simplicity

What amazes me again and again about Vipassana is its simplicity. I’ve started to get my daily sits in without having to think about TRYING to do so. They are a natural part of my life now. I think this is ideal with any form of art. For it to really be something you’re involved in, you have to do it on a consistent basis.

Vipassana is one of the few things in my life that really hits at the core. Everything connects to everything, but this practice is the deepest art form. It’s a way of living that runs through the whole body at all times. There is not much that we can compare it to in terms of other daily activities, because it itself is an activity all the time. Therefore, there is no time that we can really put aside to do it, in a sense. Even those of us who haven’t sat a ten day course have some level of body awareness. It’s happening. The way to ‘get with it’ is to sit.

There’s a poem in ‘The Moon Appears When the Water Is Still,’ that goes like this:

Sitting does not create truth,
Meditation does not produce insight,
Just as smelling a flower
Does not make it fragrant

The perfume of the rose is there.
We slow down to attend the unfolding.

There’s immense simplicity in that. There’s no ‘doing’ or ‘making it happen.’ It is. Awareness and attention of it is what we cultivate, and that is the truth we carry in all areas of our life. Everything is included in the Dhamma, but not everything includes the Dhamma. Always come back to your practice of Vipassana. Even if you stop practicing, it doesn’t leave you. Another ‘poem’ comes to mind. It speaks of the difference between liking something and loving it. When you like a flower, you pick it. When you love a flower, you water it every day.

 

Writing for this site helps me with my practice, but I’d also like it to help you (readers) as much as possible.  If there’s a topic you want me to write about or anything else you’d like to share, comment on this post or email me at: flexanimousart@gmail.com

Visit flexanimousart.blogspot.ca for other writings and things I explore.

A Candle Sits

It is so nice to sit here writing by the fire on a little candle stick lighting up the room.  The only light except my clock and the computer screens and the desktop, or whatever you call it.  The core of the root of the computer, that makes all this happen, that makes my creativity process and come to life.  I understand there is a certain thing about life that may seem slippery, that may cause us to know that sometimes there is a bowling alley away from our heads and we just want to sink into it.  We just want to run and slide down it until we end.

To believe that we could be what we are meant to be… Creators, perceiving the world through its own eyes.  Living ourselves in full beauty in discovery in compassion and love for all.  In peace among heroes, among strangers, among boa constrictors, all who land and squirm and sink in the ships and mysteries of our days.  I want to believe that writing is something that will flow with me to the grave.  I want to believe that my dragon in the swamp with its sharp teeth longing for a part of my meat for breakfast will discover my longing for sex and that sometimes I just want to party and sometimes I want to have somewhere within me, in the heart, that makes me feel more alive and alive and alive and alive and alive and alive and actually present with the being-ness of what I am.

I looked in the mirror today and I thought, for the first time perhaps, what it would be like to look old?  To be an old person, in look. and I started to see my face as an old man, and what wrinkles I would have and from what.  What would be my character, my essence?  How it would shine through.  What my hair would be like, long or short?  How I would look, my eyes still young, but my body old on the outside, decaying.  Slower, but happier, would I be?

Would I move freely and without care for things that do not bother me tomorrow, that are so laughable that I may share with you now their secrets of being, why they are, these little mysteries, wanderings of the mind.  What they are for and what we can do to help ourselves live with them in more ways than one, because chance is so much fun and I wouldn’t want you to ever stop changing, because you know, that’s what life is.  That’s another word for it.  Change.  And to think that life doesn’t change is to think that you could put water in a hole and it won’t drain. I’m hoping not to control you, but to watch with careful, brilliant, sharp eyes, who you are, now and in every moment.  Like an old man would see a child playing and be wise to know that this change is taking place in this child, in his wonder for life.

That every moment is a precious one for the imagination to unfold, to be bold, to make mistakes.  Fantastic mistakes and every once in a while we will not be blind, but open our eyes to the child inside, who still plays.  Who laughs out loud in public, who might be seen in public with a bad hair cut, with boogers in his nose, with clothes with mud and sand all over them, and waves of tears in his eyes, with crying moments and angry ones and peed pants and silly sounds and unforgettable smiles.  Or just a duulll look that says, man, life is beautiful, I am so impressed with life right now. Everything in it.  Everything it can be, everything I can imagine it is not right now, I know it is, because I’m imagining it, and that is, and that is so special.  And that everything, no matter what it is, it is amazing, just because it is.  Just because we are and I can see we are because we are.  I can say that we are because I am, whatever I is, this ball of memory, of impressionism, of surfacing emotions and training notions.  What do I fear?  What do I know?  What do I see that is new?  What do I want to carry out of this world?  The same thing I saw coming in.  My hands.  My sensation of compassion for all that the parent who brought me into their arms went through to have me be.

Love Thyself

I do now, but for a while I didn’t know how.
What after all, am I? Who am I? I would go to the assistant teachers asking this.
Is this me, this emotion, these thoughts?

How can I give love to myself?

Often superficial, during times when I wasn’t fit to give metta to others, I’d put my hand on my heart and say, “I love you Anthony.” This only goes so far, because you realize:

1) In these states, love can’t be forced. We have to fall in love. It takes a bit of a stumble.

2) Going deeply into what you are, you find that you are only you because of everyone else.

If you’re not you then I wouldn’t be me.
If I’m not me then you wouldn’t be you.
So you’re not you and I’m not me.

So you can only love yourself as much as you love the universe, because you are that.
That means everything is self-love.

When you meditate and take away all the sankharas that crowd the vibration of purity, of love, of Dhamma, then you realize that you don’t love yourself or the universe. You are the love. It’s a verb without a subject. It’s just an action.

Love is universal.
Love is the self.
Love is.
To see what is not leaves nothing else.