Thursday, July 31, 2014

Via JMG: CHINA: Man Sues Search Engine For Directing Him To "Ex-Gay" Torture Clinic

Via the Associated Press:
A gay Chinese man said Thursday he was suing a psychological clinic for carrying out electric shocks intended to turn him straight, as well as the search engine giant Baidu for advertising the center. The Beijing LGBT Center, which campaigns for gay rights, said it was the first court case involving so-called conversion therapy in China. China declassified homosexuality as a mental disorder in 2001. The center's executive director, Xin Ying, said some professional hospitals in China, as well as smaller private clinics, still provide conversion therapy and that the group hopes the case at the Haidian District People's Court in Beijing will lead to a ban on the therapy. Yang Teng, 30, told The Associated Press that the therapy given to him included hypnosis and electric shock and he was left physically and mentally hurt. He said he voluntarily underwent the therapy in February following pressure from his parents to get married and have a child.
Local activists demonstrated outside the court today carrying a banner that read: "Homosexuality is not a disease, we don't need to be cured." A judgment in the case is expected by the end of the year.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Via FB:

Flower of the Day: 07/31/14

"When you develop the virtue of trust to the point where you are able to surrender yourself to the flow of life, you become a hollow bamboo flute which God’s melody is played through."
Sri Prem Baba

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Via JMG: UTAH: Language School Fires Teacher For Blog Post Explaining Homophones Because There And Their Is Totally Gay

From the you-can't-make-it-up-department in Provo, Utah:
Homophones, as any English grammarian can tell you, are words that sound the same but have different meanings and often different spellings — such as be and bee, through and threw, which and witch, their and there. This concept is taught early on to foreign students learning English because it can be confusing to someone whose native language does not have that feature. But when the social-media specialist for a private Provo-based English language learning center wrote a blog explaining homophones, he was let go for creating the perception that the school promoted a gay agenda. Tim Torkildson says after he wrote the blog on the website of his employer, Nomen Global Language Center, his boss and Nomen owner Clarke Woodger, called him into his office and told him he was fired. As Torkildson tells it, Woodger said he could not trust him and that the blog about homophones was the last straw. "Now our school is going to be associated with homosexuality," Woodger complained, according to Torkildson, who posted the exchange on his Facebook page.
The school has denied the teacher's claim of homophonia - but has also deleted his post from its website. Their clunky mission statement could use some work: "Nomen Global Language Centers substantially helps students from all cultures and walks of life to excel in each aspect of their English acquisition and to obtain their goals for the future. We achieve this goal by means of qualified and experienced faculty, dedicated staff, engaging and challenging curriculum, and professional and ethical student services." (Tipped by JMG reader Joseph)
Reposted from Joe Jervis

Flower of the Day: 07/30/14

"When you fall in love with someone, you project all of your dreams onto them and you start to daydream. The other person does the same thing, and you both go on trying to keep this dream alive while avoiding the truth. You avoid revealing yourself to the other, just as you avoid seeing the other’s revelation because it could be a threat to your dream. Thus, the truth becomes a threat, because you prefer to keep on living in your dreamworld."
Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

Romantic Love | July 30, 2014

In Buddhist practice, we discover that mindful attention can reveal a deeper truth in whatever object we are paying attention to. The same is true in romantic love. When we use our attention to touch and open the deeper truth in a person, we not only catalyze the experience of love, we become love. The source of love is revealed to be within us; we no longer have to go looking for it somewhere outside. 
- Nicole Daedone, "Love Becomes Her" 

Via Daily Dharma

Blowin' in the Wind | July 29, 2014

How do we renounce? How do we work with this tendency to block and to freeze and to refuse to take another step toward the unknown? If our edge is like a huge stone wall with a door in it, how do we learn to open the door and step through it again and again, so that life becomes a process of growing up, becoming more and more fearless and flexible, more and more able to play like a raven in the wind? 
Pema Chödrön, "Like a Raven in the Wind" 

Monday, July 28, 2014

There Goes the Gayborhood? By Amin Ghaziani

Flower of the Day: 07/28/14

"We waste a great part of our journey looking for someone to blame for our unhappiness, and believing that we are not good or worthy enough to be happy. This addiction to accusing others is so deeply rooted and can be so subtle that, when you least expect it, you find yourself accusing the other and believing that you are a helpless victim. But when you can transform this victim within you and free yourself from the lenses that distort your perception, you experience a major change in perspective: you stop seeing the glass half empty and start seeing it as half full."
Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

Heart of Mine | July 28, 2014

Men ask the way to Cold Mountain
Cold Mountain: there’s no through trail.
In summer, ice doesn’t melt
The rising sun blurs in swirling fog.
How did I make it?
My heart’s not the same as yours.
If your heart was like mine
You’d get it and be right here. 
—Han-Shan and Gary Snyder, "Parting Words Summer 2014"

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Via Daily Dharma

Clear Insight | July 27, 2014

A clear insight into the nature of physical forms and mental events will release you from all suffering and stress. 
—Upasika Kee Nanayon, "Tough Teachings to Ease the Mind"

Flower of the Day: 07/27/14

~ Worldwide current of Prabhu Ap Jago for peace in the Middle East ~

“This mantra in itself only has an effect on the body, mind and spirit. But if one is aware of the meaning of the words and sings them with awareness, then this song is transformed into a prayer. It becomes a prayer from God to God. The meaning of this mantra is: ‘God awaken, God awaken in me, God awaken everywhere.’ But we can understand its meaning in other ways as well. Since we know that God is love, we are also saying: ‘May love awaken, may love awaken everywhere’, or still, ‘Open my heart, and with my heart open, I ask you to open the hearts of my brothers and sisters.”

Sri Prem Baba

Friday, July 25, 2014

Flower of the Day: 07/25/14

"Trust and freedom are intimately related to vulnerability. Human beings fear being vulnerable, which is why trust and freedom are rare phenomena. A leaf doesn’t know where the wind is blowing, but that doesn't stop it from going with the wind. If you are a leaf full of expectations, always trying to control the wind's direction, your life will become full of challenges. This controlling self is fear itself trying to make things go the way it imagines they should be. But this approach always ends up creating separation, destruction and suffering."
Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

A Place for Desire | July 25, 2014

The ultimate aim of my own Buddhist practice is an indestructibly confident and happy state of life through which I can help suffering people. Finding a balanced place for desire in that pursuit helps keep me motivated to do the hard, personal work demanded of a Buddhist practitioner. 
—Jamie Liptan, "Chanting for Stuff" 

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Flower of the Day: 07/24/14

"The mind tries to understand the truth, as it wants a rational answer to everything, so it actively seeks out these answers. But these answers only arrive when the mind quiets down. This is when you understand the truth, and when knowledge becomes wisdom. Knowledge only transforms into wisdom through experience, not through the mind."

Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

Real Devotion | July 24, 2014

Real devotion only arises when you have a glimpse of emptiness, some glimpse of the nature of mind. Once you have some very precise insight as to how emptiness helps to alleviate suffering, then devotion is based on a real, embodied experience. 
—Kyabgön Phakchok Rinpoche, "Keys to Happiness"

Wednesday, July 23, 2014


The Imitation Game - Official Trailer - The Weinstein Company

Flower of the Day: 07/23/14

"The deepest reason for our being here on this planet is to awaken love. This is what moves us in this world, what makes us get up in the morning, and keeps us alive. Some people are aware of this, and they experience the joy of being alive. If you are not aware of this, you feel anxious because you are unable to find any meaning in life. You have no reason to get up in the morning. This generates depression and the feeling that you don’t belong. Giving meaning to life is a choice: we choose what to do with our time. But we can only make this choice once we are mature enough to hear our heart's calling, which is always exclaiming, ‘Awaken love! Awaken in everyone and everywhere!’ "

Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma:

Non-Lying | July 23, 2014

Fully facing, getting to know, and actually welcoming the various kinds of liar that I am gives me a taste of not excluding anything; a taste of no inside, no outside. The more I can do this with no outcome or gaining idea in mind, the more truth-speaking and selflessness can naturally arise. 
—Roshi Nancy Mujo Baker, "Non-Lying"

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Via Gay Politics Report: White House bans LGBT discrimination by federal contractors

President Barack Obama on Monday signed an executive order protecting LGBT employees of federal contractors and the federal government from workplace discrimination. The order makes it illegal to fire or harass employees of federal contractors based on their sexual orientation or gender identity and also bans discrimination against transgender employees of the federal government. The order did not include a religious exemption opposed by LGBT groups. NBC News (7/21), The Huffington Post (7/21), Politico (Washington, D.C.) (7/21), The Washington Post (tiered subscription model)/PostPartisan blog (7/21)

Flower of the Day: 07/22/14

"Who am I? Who inhabits this body? Who is playing this game of life? Why am I here and what am I here for? Why am I being led to live certain experiences? Sensible people ask themselves these questions. This sensibility is where you begin remembering who you really are."
Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma:

Mindful of the Dharma | July 22, 2014

We can be mindful of the dharma as we go about our lives. Then we notice our imperfections, but rather than becoming frustrated by our inability to rid ourselves of these shortcomings, we notice that our interdependence with all life also brings us kindness and joy, unconditionally.
—Rev. Patricia Kanaya Usuki, "The Great Compassion"

Via JMG: IDAHO: "Add The Four Words" Protesters Given Light Sentences By Cheering Judge

Via Idaho's Spokesman-Review:
The last of more than 100 Idahoans arrested this year in gay-rights protests at the state Capitol were sentenced in a four-hour-plus hearing Monday, and the judge had this message for them: “I respect your courage in doing what you did.” The protesters took part in “Add the 4 Words” demonstrations during this year’s session of the Idaho Legislature, standing silently, hands over their mouths, and refusing to leave until lawmakers agreed to hold a hearing on legislation to amend the Idaho Human Rights Act – or until they were arrested. No hearing was held. The protesters want the words “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” added to the types of discrimination banned by the act. Lawmakers have refused to hold a hearing on the proposed legislation for the past nine years.
The vast majority of the protesters, who were arrested only once, had their charges dismissed. Another two dozen activists who had been arrested multiple times were fined $10 per arrest plus court costs. (Tipped by JMG reader Javier)

RELATED: The entire national LGBT movement should heed the actions of our heroes in Idaho. Adding those four words (sexual orientation and gender identity) to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is our only way forward after the crumbling of ENDA.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Monday, July 21, 2014

Via JMG: MINNESOTA: Vikings Coach Suspended For Anti-Gay Remarks, Kluwe Vindicated

Early this year former Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe declared that Vikings Special Teams Coach Mike Priefer had called for rounding up all gay people, putting them on an island, and "nuking it until it glows." Kluwe has contended that his departure from the team came, at least in part, because Priefer objected to his nationally famous advocacy for LGBT rights. On Friday, the Vikings announced that their investigation showed that Priefer had indeed made the anti-gay remarks and that he has been suspended for three games. Via CBS Sports:
The Vikings said that three-game suspension could be reduced to two games provided that Priefer "also attend individualized anti-harassment, diversity and sexual-orientation sensitivity training." Priefer also apologized in a statement. "I owe an apology to many people -- the Wilf family, the Minnesota Vikings organization and fans, my family, the LGBT community, Chris Kluwe and anyone else that I offended with my insensitive remark," Priefer said. "I regret what has occurred and what I said. I am extremely sorry but I will learn from this situation and will work on educating others to create more tolerance and respect." The team announced that it would donate $100,000 to LGBT rights charitable and educational organizations.
The Vikings report also contains "negative information" about Kluwe, prompted him to threaten to release more "dirty" stories about the Vikings. He also said that his $10M lawsuit against the team will continue. The Vikings' action against Preifer is being denounced as "homofascism" across Teabagistan.

More from Think Progress:
The Vikings lawyers acknowledge that Kluwe was encouraged by Vikings management to scale back his activism in support of LGBT rights, but insist it was completely unrelated to the substance of his activism. The analysis claims that “players and management were concerned about the distraction that Kluwe’s activism was creating, as opposed to the nature and content of his activism.” Of course, it was the “nature and content of his activism” that ultimately created the “distraction.” It’s hard to image if Kluwe was speaking out to reduce childhood obesity that it would have become an issue.

Although the full investigation has not been released, the Vikings lawyers did make sure to include information that casts Kluwe in a negative light. Specifically, the analysis alleges that Kluwe made crude jokes about the Penn State rape scandal. Kluwe appeared to confirm the allegations were true on Twitter but that the jokes were pervasive throughout the entire team. No one claims Kluwe was fired for the jokes so it’s unclear what relevance they had to the investigation.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Via Scott Stabile / FB:

Flower of the Day: 07/21/14

"One of the mind's numerous traps is guilt. People easily go from being the victim, to feeling guilty and condemning themselves for being in a bad situation. This is one way of keeping oneself stuck in a hole. Self-responsibility is not blaming oneself; one instead recognizes what exactly lures one into a hole or towards some negative situation. Examples of these situations could be having financial difficulties, problems in a relationship, dissatisfaction with one’s professional life, or even an existential anguish."
Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

At Ease in Goodness | July 21, 2014

Moral resolve is like this. A noble person does not do good because of willpower. She does it through a combination of, on the one hand, modesty about self, and, on the other hand, faith in a higher purpose, a higher meaning, in powers more potent than self-will. Such a person is not moral through gritted teeth. She is at ease in goodness.
—David Brazier, "Other-Power"

Via the Advocate: Op-ed: All Gay People Are Screwed Up and It's OK

We all face a deficit for growing up LGBT in a straight world. Admitting it is the first step in making sure the next generation gets a better deal. 
My boyfriend was sent to conversion camp. An ex was beaten by his gay-hating father and brothers on a regular basis. My father wouldn’t let me take bubble baths because they were too “gay.”
 These experiences are not life affirming. So, during a recent conversation regarding the disquieting behavior of some LGBT peers, it seemed entirely innocuous to note that, “All gay people are damaged.” A fellow editor agreed, but mentioned many folks would take offense to that. That blew my mind.

Who could argue with that? How could we not be emotionally harmed by a society that tells us we’re screwed up at every turn? I don’t know one gay guy who never had “Fag” hurled at them, or many lesbians never told they could switch teams if they wanted to. That’s a cakewalk compared to the beatings and killings we’re still subjected to on the streets or the fear most of us have walking hand-in-hand with our partners and spouses, even in big cities. Most disturbing is that our experiences, as Americans, are much less frightening than those experienced by LGBT people in most of the world.

Glorifying victimhood is rarely helpful, but denying it exists is ignorant and dangerous. All of this hatred we experience, whether it be overt or covert, is internalized and exerts itself in different ways — some succumb to drugs, promiscuous sex, or self-hate. But most of us deal with it and prosper. I wonder if some gays would equate the “damaged” label with weakness; that to be affected by an intolerant society is a reflection on your own strength or perseverance. For me, being aware of the injustices is part of being an active part of society. Keeping your eyes open and reveling in tragedy are different.

It sometimes takes a harsh circumstance to remind us how different our lives are. In The Case Against 8, HBO's powerful documentary on the defeat of California's antigay ballot initiative, lead plaintiff Kristin Perry had an "a-ha moment" while testifying in front of a federal judge. Defense attorney Ted Olson asked Perry if she thought granting marriage equality to gays and lesbians would have an effect on other forms of LGBT discrimination. Perry said her whole life would have been different, and better, if the biggest choice she made in it — marriage — was given the same weight and respect as everyone else's: "So, if Prop. 8 were undone and kids like me, growing up in Bakersfield right now, can never know what this felt like, then I assume their entire lives would be on a higher arc, they would live with a higher sense of themselves that would improve the quality of their entire life."

Reflecting on that moment later, she said, "It was powerful to connect the dots spontaneously on the stand and realize you’ve been living under this blanket of hate everywhere you turn. People tell you, 'Tough shit, you don’t get to have that. You don’t get to feel protected at work, you don’t get to feel your kids are like other people’s kids, you don't get to feel like your relationship is like other people’s relationships. You have to come out every single day everywhere you go, and good luck with that... This isn’t just about me being a strong enough person, this is what the whole lesbian and gay community is dealing with and, frankly, any minority group."

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Flower of the Day: 07/19/14

"As difficult as the symptoms may be, this planetary transformation is a change for the better. The sustainability crisis, the economic crisis, the lack of water and food – all of this is happening precisely to create space for a new vision to emerge, a new way of looking at life in a way that includes spirituality. As long as we believe that nature is spiritless, or something to be negotiated for like a product, nature will show its limits. As long as the economy is based on a fear of scarcity and money remains at the service of greed, it is natural that a there will be a collapse in the system. Change comes to shine light on these aspects of life."
Sri Prem Baba

Buddhism for Our Time | July 20, 2014

Since we find ourselves living at a time when it is the individual and not the group that is privileged and empowered, we should acknowledge that, like practitioners throughout history, we orient our Buddhisms to the realities we’ve constructed rather than the other way around. 
—John Nelson, “Experimental Buddhism”

Friday, July 18, 2014

The Welcome - United Nations Free & Equal

Flower of the Day: 07/18/14

"We can translate the journey of life as the transition from the false to the real, from the sleeping state to the state of awakening. Once awake, we stop projecting the contents of our minds or dreams onto the other and we discover that separation is but an illusion. We find unity within multiplicity. We finally discover the answer to the big question, ‘Who am I?’ Then, all other questions disappear and our minds start to be at peace. This happens because we begin to have a profound understanding of the play of life, and this brings us contentment and satisfaction."
Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

Inspiration from the Inside | July 18, 2014

Inspiration must come from within ourselves. If we hope to get inspiration from the outside—as if it was falling from the sky—this is wrong. It should be like water coming out of a source. From where else could we receive it? 
—Myongsong Sunim, “What Does Being a Buddhist Mean to You?”

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Flower of the Day: 07/17/14

"The essence of codependency lies in one’s need for the other to suffer in order for one to be happy. Codependency is when one needs the other to feel inferior so one can feel superior, or for the other to feel helpless so one can feel powerful."
Sri Prem Baba

Coming, Going | July 17, 2014

Empty-handed I entered the world
Barefoot I leave it.
My coming, my going—
Two simple happenings
That got entangled. 
—Kozan Ichikyo, "Coming, Going"

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Flower of the Day: 07/16/14

“There are moments along one’s journey when there is nothing to be done. One must give in, because even though there is a desperate controlling self inside of oneself, it cannot do anything at all. This moment comes when one realizes the senselessness of trying to force things to happen in a different way than life is providing. In other words, one perceives the absurdity of trying to go against the flow of life. This is not an easy passage because it requires a deep trust in divine justice. One is being called to discover the wisdom of uncertainty, and should begin to value the signs that appear along the way, even if they seem unfair.”
Sri Prem Baba

Monday, July 14, 2014

Via Project Happiness / FB:

Flower of the Day: 07/14/14

“The world is full of distractions that can completely overwhelm you. The mind can easily be dragged down and fall into decay. This is the nature of the world. It is your work to learn how to walk the fine line of living in the world without getting lost in it. This is the path of the yogi, the one who becomes Lord of himself. On this path, it is important that you be able to rein in your mind in order to re-inform it. To this end, I suggest practicing silence daily, even if it’s for short periods of time.”

Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

The Results of Practice | July 14, 2014

One becomes an ordinary person, but in an extraordinary way. Your words are still there, your hang-ups may still be there, you still have to deal with all your karmic baggage and so on, but you see it in a totally different light. You’re at peace with yourself, at peace with the world. Not in a complacent sense, but in the sense that you can simply devote yourself to a life of compassion.
—L.F. Habito, “Other Fingers Pointing to the Moon”

Sunday, July 13, 2014

20 Misconceptions About Sex - mental_floss on YouTube (Ep.212)

Via JMG: World Health Organization: ALL Gay Men Should Be On Anti-Retroviral Drugs

A stunning declaration from the World Health Organization:
The World Health Organization has suggested for the first time that all men who have sex with men should take antiretroviral medicine, warning that HIV infection rates among gay men are exploding around the world. In guidelines published Friday, it said that it “strongly recommends men who have sex with men consider taking antiretroviral medicines as an additional method of preventing HIV infection.” Similar guidelines were issued by the U.S. in May.
In May, the CDC expanded its own recommendations, saying that anybody at risk for HIV, not just gay men, should be taking Truvada.

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Reposted from Joe Jervis

JMG Editorial Of The Day

From the editorial board of the New York TImes:
President Obama should resist a pressure campaign by some religious groups to weaken a promised executive order that would prohibit federal contractors from discriminating against gay men, lesbians and transgender people in their hiring practices.

Emboldened by the Supreme Court’s addlebrained Hobby Lobby decision, several groups wrote to Mr. Obama on July 1 asking him to allow federal contractors to fire or refuse to hire workers based on their religious objections to a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity.

This is not a question of religious freedom. It is a question of whether to allow religion to be used as an excuse to discriminate in employment against a particular group of people. Many states already have laws protecting gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender workers. There is no such federal law, so the presidential order (promised but not yet produced) would extend those rules to companies that receive federal contracts in states without those kinds of anti-bias laws, protecting millions more people.

Mr. Obama’s resolve is being tested. There is no good reason to give religious employers a special privilege to inflict undeserved pain by, for example, refusing to hire someone to work on a government-backed project just because she happens to be a lesbian, or firing a capable employee who marries someone of the same sex.
(Tipped by JMG reader Win)

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Via JMG: Ian Thorpe On Coming Out

Via the Guardian:
On Sunday night on Australian television Thorpe faced Sir Michael Parkinson to overturn what he said had become the "big lie" in his life. "What happened was, I felt that the lie had become so big that I didn't want people to question my integrity and a little bit of ego comes into this," Thorpe said in a 90-minute interview on the Ten network. "I didn't want people to think that I had lied about everything." Now 31, the swimmer said the words he had been avoiding: "I'm not straight and this is only something that very recently – we're talking in the past two weeks – I've been comfortable telling the closest people around me." His mother was shocked; his friends less so. But everyone had embraced him and he was relieved. When the interview goes to air in Australia, he said, I can finally "breathe out".

(Via Towleroad)

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Via Robert Reich / FB

The real dividing line in America today isn’t between conservatives and liberals or between Democrats and Republicans. It’s between the haters and the big-hearted. The haters direct their venom not just at child refugees seeking asylum from the drug war we created, but also at gays who want to marry, African-Americans who want to vote and exercise their other rights of citizenship, women who seek abortions, or even women in general, Latinos who want their children to be taught in Spanish, immigrants in general, Muslims, Jews, government “bureaucrats,” the poor and needy, anyone who dares suggest a required background check before buying guns, people they call “liberals” or “socialists” or “communists,” even the President of the United States. The haters are enflamed by hate-mongers in the media who blame the nation’s troubles on “them.” The haters are loud and angry; they yell and wave their signs before the cameras. But the haters are not America. They are a small and vocal minority. Most Americans are generous and welcoming, decent and kind-hearted. We are the silent majority, who have been silent too long.

 - Robert Reich

Via Daily Dharma

Room for Everything | July 13, 2014

Noticing the space around people and things provides a different way of looking at them, and developing this spacious view is a way of opening oneself. When one has a spacious mind, there is room for everything.
—Ajahn Sumedho, “Noticing Space”

Flower of the Day: 07/13/14

“It is important to differentiate between vertical and horizontal religions. Vertical religion is spirituality, the path towards enlightenment. It represents the deepest meaning of the word ‘religion,’ which is the reconnection of the individual soul with the Absolute. This union is only possible when one is able to follow the orders given by one’s own heart. Horizontal religion is a creation of the human mind in order to meet a social need. In this sense, I do not work with religion. I never say do this or that. I simply suggest that you become silent, receptive and increase your perception enough to notice the commandment that comes from within.”

Sri Prem Baba

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Flower of the Day: 07/12/14

“Misunderstanding the true nature of the master teacher is a great obstacle. The master is not a human nor a body – this is but a limited understanding of spiritual reality. The spiritual master is life itself, your true self. By surrendering to the guidance of a master, you surrender to the flow of life and to the truth of who you are. You surrender to the heart.”
Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

Awareness Breaks the Spell | July 12, 2014

Seeing attachment, aversion, expectation, and disappointment as they arise allows the mind to understand and to disengage from them. Awareness breaks the spell; the mind is no longer enchanted when we see the defilement for what it is. When a defilement has no hold on the mind, suffering ceases.
—Steve Armstrong, “Got Attitude?”

Friday, July 11, 2014

Via Daily Dharma

On the Cushion | July 11, 2014

Our practice is to meet life exactly as it is and to notice whatever fear, anger, or doubt gets in the way of direct intimate contact with this moment, bringing attention to that as well. Rather than changing something or seeking to get somewhere we imagine we should be, practice is about seeing clearly exactly how things really are and how we relate to them.
—Douglas Phillips, "Q&A with Douglas Phillips"

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Via JMG: Michael Sam For Out Magazine

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Via JMG: ARGENTINA: Gay Activists To Stage Kiss-In During Visit By Vladimir Putin

The kiss-in will take place today outside the Russian embassy. Source.

Reposted from Joe Jervis

Via JMG: Updated Marriage Map

I think the reason that Nebraska  and Mississippi are lacking the ticking clock is because the lawsuits there only ask for recognition of out-of-state marriages. According to the linked recaps at Freedom To Marry, both those cases have been dismissed but the plaintiffs plan to appeal. I'm sure some of you folks can fill us in. Is anybody else starting to lose track of all this? It's a good thing, right? I really do like this guy's maps.

Ewposted from Joe Jervis

Flower of the Day: 07/10/14

“Laziness is a psychological matrix created by blocked feelings and repressed energy. Laziness can manifest in the form of paralysis, or even as compulsive action. But in this case, the compulsion to do is a distraction that prevents you from doing what really needs to be done. There is something stopping you from accomplishing precisely that which is most important to you. So you are overcome with guilt about not doing what your consciousness demands. When this happens, it is important to open yourself up to understanding what is paralyzing you. In this way you begin a healing work that will lead you to confront the points of blockage that are robbing you of your energy and willpower.”

Sri Prem Baba

Via Daiy Dharma

Liberation through Insight | July 10, 2014

The whole point of Buddha-dharma is that liberation comes not by believing in the right set of tenets or of dogmatic assertions, or even necessarily by behaving in the right way. It’s insight, it’s wisdom, it’s knowing the nature of reality. It is only truth that will make us free.
—B. Alan Wallace, "What is True Happiness?"

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Nothing Lasts Forever (1984)

Flower of the Day: 07/09/14

“Anxiety, sadness, depression and a constant anguish are all symptoms of that aspect of pride known as perfectionism. This is an aspect of the idealized self that is addicted to self-criticism and is always condemning and judging. The idealized self is a cruel tyrant who does not accept mistakes. We have to be the best of the best; the most precious stone. Thus, we begin to compulsively do things, and put pressure on ourselves demanding all sorts of things, as a constant form of self-punishment. This prevents us from relaxing enough to notice that we are already a diamond. We already are the most precious stone there is, and it is precisely this compulsion to prove something to the world that prevents us from truly shining.”

Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

Complete Engagement | July 8, 2014

Only one thing
made him happy
and now that
it was gone
made him happy.
—Leonard Cohen, "Leonard Koan"

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Flower of the Day: 07/08/14

“Do not feed your sadness – this is unnecessary suffering created by the victim trying to sneak in through the back door. True pain doesn’t last long. You get in touch with it, and soon after it passes. Oftentimes, sadness is a messenger that prepares you for getting in touch with the deep-rooted pain that leads to your healing. This is a healthy sadness, while an unhealthy sadness is always linked to an accusation. It is born out of anger; and although anger’s role in the divine game is to take you somewhere, anger can also be a major distraction. In most cases, anger is merely an escape from this sadness that could get you in touch with the primordial pain.”

Sri Prem Baba

Via Daily Dharma

Complete Engagement | July 8, 2014

Ultimately, from the point of view of the dharma—at least, my understanding of it—cultivating your mind through meditation is also social radicalism. Because if the goal is to produce more people who are manifesting the attributes of enlightenment—namely, wisdom and compassion—then that, by necessity, is a transformation of the social situation as well.
—Richard Reoch, "The Path of Complete Engagement"