My eyes already touch the sunny hill,
going far ahead of the road I have begun.
So we are grasped by what we cannot grasp;
it has its inner light, even from a distance-
and changes us, even if we do not reach it,
into something else, which, hardly sensing it,
we already are;
a gesture waves us on, answering our own wave-
but what we feel is the wind in our faces.
One of the great paradoxes of the spiritual life is that our struggles are not separate from the luminous vastness within each of us. We don’t get rid of struggle to discover this open space; nor does its discovery necessarily rid us of our struggles. The riddle of the obstacle is solved not by pushing it away or by holding on to it, but by meeting it with silence and by discovering in this meeting that sacred ground, which upholds both joy and sorrow, both struggle and freedom from struggle. When we realize this we will struggle less with our struggles, and we will have solved by our own silence the riddles that guard the doorway into the silent land…..Martin Laird
the soul wanders in and out of the truth of our lives…..where the essence of perception lies in the endowment of our human experience…..spiritual vision is a shift away from illusion, away from the intangible mysteries and into the reality of our suffering…..
Pain is hard to acknowledge directly because there is so much of it. Perhaps our collective alarm that the Buddha was right about life being suffering causes us to try and minimize pain. ‘Things could be worse,’ well-meaning people say to friends. Or the ultimate spiritual comparison, ‘In the sphere of the cosmos, what does it matter?’ These add humiliation to preexisting pain and make it worse. Of course, it is true that in the sphere of the cosmos our current heart pain is minute, inconsequential. In that same sphere-of-the-cosmos perspective, everything is equally inconsequential. This does not fit our emotional reality. We don’t live in the sphere of the cosmos. We live here. Remembering the sphere-of-the-cosmos point of view, remembering earthrise from the moon, remembering the interconnectedness of all beings- all these remembrances make it possible to look more directly at pain. Remembering our own special affinities, our own kinship feelings, our own heartbreaks in our stories, which seem so real and important, keeps us in this world, not out of it, caring deeply and acting kindly……Sylvia Boorstein