Monday, September 12, 2022

         Today, like all days, the universe will live simultaneously. I and all people and sliding snakes and well-prepared breakfasts and little yellow flowers will be existing in the present moment, at one and the same time. At the exact identical instant, several billion people, including me, will take in a new breath. Thoughts will flow in unison – kind ones and confused ones – in every nation, and feelings will roll along shoulder-to-shoulder everywhere, at the very same time. Whether we want to or not, we earth-dwellers live as a synchronized family. The universe is a vast and harmonious chorus, and today, as always, whether we know it or not, its song will be sung simultaneously, by one and all.  


Harmony helps us breathe,
brings the sky its newness,
and knows how sorrows sing
with well-balanced wisdom.
Old trees harmonize 
with the freshest sunshine,
and the youngest houses
help winter’s days
seem beautifully arranged. 
There are magnificent designs 
In breezes and noisy storms, 
and also in the clumsiness 
of our mistakes
and the occasional zigzagginess
of our days. 

Harmony will always
 quietly come to us
if we quietly ask.

“Harmony”, oil on panel by Ans Debije



Tuesday, August 16, 2022

         As my 80 years have passed, I have slowly realized, happily, that thinking is at the very heart of life, of reality, of the universe itself. Truly, I cannot get away from the process of thinking. Every single moment is actually a thought – a brand new opening and movement of consciousness, of awareness. Everything that happens, happens in consciousness. True, there do seem to be many ‘things’ outside of me, but it’s clear to me now that they actually exist within consciousness, or awareness – and not ‘my’ awareness, but the boundless awareness of life itself, of the ceaseless and mysterious universe itself. It’s fun for me now to picture the universe itself pondering and deliberating, and me as part of that thoughtful, ongoing process, participating in a vast and beautiful and endless mental exercise called ‘life’. Life, I see now, when I’m not lost in daydreams, is an adventure in thinking. New thoughts are constantly arising and sailing along in their wondrous freshness, and when I’m carefully watching, I see that I am always sailing with them. Each moment is never ‘things’, but always thoughts, and my job – lucky for me – is to stay still and observe with appreciation this astounding mental spectacle. 


these trees
may shelter some lost birds.
Their leaves may allow life 
to be a gift again to those birds, 
a treasure
they could take home to their nest.
he was thinking,
the timeless stars 
might display their light 
in flashes of splendor,
so that sorrowing children
might stare up and soothe themselves
with the reassurance
that life, like a soft broom,
will sweep the sorrow away.
there is simplicity
in the way my window closed
when I pushed it down,
just as there is simplicity
in the way the moon 
swings out from the trees 
to give its signal 
that worries should now
be set on the surface of rivers
and allowed to sink, 
for night and its holiness has come. 
he was thinking, 
some immense happiness
might be hurrying toward me
through the darkness, 
even as I sit here
in this small room
on this 



Monday, July 11, 2022

         This morning, when I raised the window shade in our bedroom, the daylight almost leaped into the room, something light seems to like to do. When I turn on a lamp in a dark room, the light instantly does away with the darkness, and headlights switched on can immediately transform a nighttime road with their brightness. I think, too, of the light a bright thought can instantly spread around my life. The sun can make my days shine, but what about the light of a single positive thought? What about the daylight a little confident thinking can quickly let into my life?   



Tuesday, June 21, 2022

            Delycia and I welcome people into our home every so often for tea or dinner, and I am realizing that I should be more welcoming to the thoughts that move through the home of my mind. A steady line of thoughts constantly passes through my life, and I want to learn to welcome them all, even those filled with fear or dismay or discouragement. What I am slowly understanding is that my thoughts are not me, but fairly frail and short-lived whispers that will slip smoothly away if I just stand aside, observe them in a welcoming way, and then let them quietly leave. I could welcome thoughts of fear, for instance – politely listen to them, let them take their time passing through, and then see them to the door and down the road. I’m learning that thoughts are as harmless as I allow them to be – simply evanescent voices that will soon disappear if I stand by with something like a smile.

Below are scenes from our wonderful walk on Sunday with Aaron on Mt. Ascutney (NH) …