November 2013 Blog Posts (4)


I asked a wise friend if loss would change me--I felt I could descend into this cave if I knew I would later crawl out into sunlight bearing a small treasure. He said without a doubt it would.

A year later, it's becoming clear to me what he meant. Loss unfolds you.

Kind of like the agave plant…


Added by Robin Bradford on November 30, 2013 at 6:01pm — 1 Comment

"Even if the sun comes up in the West, the bodhisattva has only one way."

Even if the sun comes up in the West, the bodhisattva has only one way.”

Suzuki Roshi

Zen Mind Beginner’s Mind

One of our ritual practices in the Hawaii retreat is to make an early morning pilgrimage three miles up the road from the retreat center to the overlook to the Kalaupapa peninsula, the site of the leper colony on Molokai. We…


Added by Flint Sparks on November 27, 2013 at 12:34am — No Comments

On Lovingkindness

Yesterday I visited the Zen group at Live Oak, where they had asked me to say a bit about lovingkindness practice. Here are the reflections I shared.

On Lovingkindness

Sharon Salzberg and many others have made the term lovingkindness well-known in spiritual circles. There are books, CDs, workshops, online trainings, and even research in psychology, economics, and other fields about the benefits of lovingkindness. Lovingkindness in Buddhist practice is one of the four…


Added by Peg Syverson on November 22, 2013 at 10:28am — 1 Comment

Against the Stream

These are the quotes and practice questions that I used in the November 13 Inquiry session at Appamada.

“The Buddha described the dharma as 'going against the stream.' As long as one swims with the current of a river, one remains unaware of it. But if one chooses to turn against it, suddenly it is revealed as a powerful, discomforting force. The 'stream' refers to the accumulated habits of conditioning. The practice of dharma means to turn around midstream, to observe…


Added by Flint Sparks on November 13, 2013 at 7:29am — No Comments



Appamada is not just the occasional mindful thought or attentive state of mind, it’s actually a commitment to being attentive. It’s more than just a meditative state of mind, it’s more than just being mindful. It has to do with that primary ethical or moral orientation we have in life, with which we bring into being whatever activity we’re engaged in. Whether in formal meditation, in our interactions with other people, in our social concerns, or in our political choices, it’s the energetic cherishing of what we regard as good.

—Stephen Batchelor


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