Sharing for the benefit of beings everywhere. Beautifying this Buddha realm with Dhamma. Enjoy.
I’ve had a heavy heart. So, I’ve been carrying it around town on these long bike rides. This time I traveled to Lien Hoa Temple in the hope of meeting with Thich Hue Nhan.
I knocked at the temple door and a kind woman named “My “greeted me with a smile and invited me to eat some wonderful kind of tapioca, soy bean, sweet paste type stuff with rice. I hadn’t eaten all day. It was the perfect gift! Each bite of this stuff was taken with mindfulness and I found that this dish was certainly from the celestial abodes.
Nam Mo A Di Da Phat
We tried to talk, but it ended with a bunch of laughter, cause I don’t speak Vietnamese and she doesn’t speak much English. I discerned that Thay (Thich Hue Nhan) was gone at a funeral-type ceremony for three people that had recently passed on.
I ate half of the bowl of heaven-pudding-stuff and excused myself to the meditation hall.
I lit 7 candles, and invited a bell to sound for you.
It’s pretty quiet.
Then, I grabbed a cushion and the lights turned on. I looked over and saw Thay. Excited to see him, I went out of the meditation hall to hang out.
He was sitting on a chair against the wall. He invited me to sit next to him. It felt good. I felt like a kid sitting next to Santa Claus. I felt this strange relief of the pain of sadness. I told him that I missed him and he told me, “you can come here everyday”. That felt very good.
This community, and these Monks, although I don’t speak their language, and though I lack much of the cultural context, they make me feel at home. I attribute this to Buddha’s teaching.
Although, you must consider what I mean by “Buddha’s Teaching”. The Mahayana is the vehicle of vehicles. This community gnos compassion, they posses wisdom.
Thay started playing his stringed instrument. Thinking that it would be great to share this sound with the world, I asked if I could record it. (it’s funny, he just wanted me to record his fingers. we were laughing about that)
Then, he invited me to go back to meditation.
I sat to breathe. I noticed,
“short breath, long breath, pleasing breath, agitated breath, distraction, short breath, thought bubble pop, long breath, comfortable posture, breath body ease, distraction, short breath, agitated breath, long breath, pleasing breath, distraction, mind story distraction, thought bubble pop, good breath, bad breath, neither good or bad breath, both good and bad breath, infinite breath, short breath, mundane breath”.
This continued for some time and then I rode my bike ~15 miles to go see my children at their mother’s house.
It was a glorious day with my sons. So much fun! I also hung out with Greg. He is Ashley’s brother. Ashley is the mother of my children. It is perfect.
They live in the forest. Nestled up in some hills, in a place called, ‘Cedar Flats’. The ride there is difficult for me because of the distance and elevation gain. The ride away from there is easy.
A beautiful stream, called “Swift Creek”, runs through the trees and the property borders a vast swath of state land. There is endless opportunity for mindful walking.
The description of this day is almost complete. Obviously, there are many lost details. Many things are forgotten but integrated. I love love. Love my children, my friends, my teachers.
We’re going to wrap this up with some rockin’ out.
I sometimes carve rocks. You will notice a Dhamma Wheel, a rock with “GNO” carved into it and there is a faint dragon coming down onto the Dhamma Wheel.
And, below is a circle inside a triangle inside a circle.
You will also notice that I’m standing in a rock garden. When I lived there, I spent countless hours collecting and arranging these rocks. I used a shovel to terrace the hillside and build a path around it. There is something wonderful about aimless, mindful working.
There you go, internet.
There you go, hive-mind.
Have this little piece of something.
I offer it with compassion,
for the benefit of those like myself,
who may find use in my senseless rambling.
the fire grows brighter,
the wheel spins faster,
the setting sun burns its image into our deepest nonself,
and we bask in infinite pure light beams emanated out and brought in by ineffable Infinite Light Buddha.
standing, here and now, in this mind-made perfection.
imagining binding, imagining liberation,
then setting it all down for true rest.
Breathe and Gno.
As a perfectly practical being, take refuge in the completely ineffable ultimate. When you are beaten, rest in the arms of Infinite Love Mother Buddha. There is hope for the weary, if only you drop those burning coals, your flesh will stop melting. If only you stopped drinking that poison… If only you turned your mind away from the acquisition of petty material goods and toward the acquisition of the awareness of no-birth, no-death.
No birth. No death.