Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Via Ram Dass / Words of Wisdom - December 27, 2019 💌

"My route is through the heart, of devotion. That is a path. There are many pathways through here. One is the path of wisdom, one is the path of calming the mind, one is the path of opening the heart. My path is the path of love."

- Ram Dass -

Via Daily Dharma: Move Through Transitions with Care

Do not think of doors as obstacles to whatever is on the other side. Practice opening them magnanimously and closing them with care.

—Gary Thorp, “Crossing the Threshold”


Monday, December 30, 2019

Via Daily Dharma: How Morals Arise

Morality is an outcome or consequence of a well-ordered mind, and such a mind is well-ordered because there is correct understanding of the true situation.

—Dharmavidya David Brazier, “Other-Power”


Via Daily Dharma: How Insight Can Transform You

Insight is the beginning of transformation, not the end.

—Oren Jay Sofer, “Turning a Ship”


Sunday, December 29, 2019

Via Daily Dharma: Toward Our Buddha Nature

For the entrusting heart, you don’t work toward Buddha; you make yourself available to let Buddha work toward you.

—Andrew Cooper, “Regret: A Love Story”


Via Daily Dharma: Opening to What Is Truly Here

The insights that arise in the course of meditating are often surprises. The awakening mind lets go of the old fictions we invent and opens to what is really here: simply this.

—Sylvia Forges Ryan, “Bare Branches, Bare Attention”


Via Ram Dass / Words of Wisdom - December 29, 2019 💌 🎆

"Old age is rife with change. Old age is training you in change: change in your body, of relationships, change of your energy, change in your role. The last part of your life is sensational; yum, yum, yum. Ego things calm down and wisdom comes forth. And compassion comes forth—compassion for yourself, compassion for others, compassion for the world."
- Ram Dass -

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Via Daily Dharma: Building Strength in Trying Times

In times of trial, one must learn to endure whatever may come and thereby strengthen and improve oneself. After all, it is only the person who has experienced the cold of winter who can savor and enjoy fully the warm sunshine of spring.

—Daisaku Ikeda, “On Hardship & Hope”


Ram Dass Via Querty: Rest in peace / The LGBTQ figures we lost in 2019

Spiritual philosopher Ram Dass died December 22 in Hawaii. He was 88. Born Richard Alpert, he was a clinical psychologist but a trip to India, and experimentation with LSD in the late 60s, set his life on a different path. He published several motivational and inspiring books, including The Only Dance There Is, and How Can I Help? Compassion in Action. A stroke in 1997 left him disabled, but he continued his work, saying his health challenges only led him to look even further inward into the spiritual heart of life.

Actress Helen Hunt was among those to mourn his passing. She posted a photo of herself to Instagram with one of his quotes on the subject of death.

 “Dying is the most important thing you do in your life. It’s the great frontier for every one of us. And loving is the art of living as a preparation for dying. Allowing ourselves to dissolve into the ocean of love is not just about leaving this body; it is also the route to Oneness and unity with our own inner being, the souls, while we are still here. If you know how to live and to love, you know how to die.”

Make the jump here to see who else we lost this past year and more

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Via Daily Dharma: The Blessings of New Beginnings

Life moves in circles, goes through cycles, regenerates, starts over. Every 24 hours the sky goes dark and night comes and we sleep and the next morning sunshine pours in and we are given another chance to begin anew.

—Taylor Plimpton, “Starting Over, Again”


Via Sounds True / In Gratitude for Ram Dass

A Remembrance and a Gift of His Teachings
Sounds True
Dear friends,

If you're a spiritual explorer of any age, chances are good that you've heard of Ram Dass.

Born Richard Alpert, Ram Dass is known to millions as the stellar young 1960s Harvard-psychologist-turned-hippie who tripped with Timothy Leary, befriended beat poets and Tibetan lamas, found his guru Neem Karoli Baba in India, and penned the perennial classic Be Here Now.

All of that is true . . . but for those of us who've leaned into his teachings, you know that he was also an extraordinary and beloved soul who sparked transformation throughout generations.

His teacher, Neem Karoli Baba, revealed the way for him: "Ram Dass, love other people and serve them. That is all."

Brilliant, irreverent, wise, and most of all, unconditionally loving, Ram Dass lived his life as "an experiment in truth." He helped the dying, the blind, and the imprisoned, and considered service as essential as meditation or prayer.

We are all manifestations of the same greater Self, we are meant to enjoy our roles here on Earth, and our dying is simply a point of transit. And along our way, as he so often reassured us:

"We're all just walking each other home."

Thank you, Ram Dass, for all that you have shared with us.

In celebration of Ram Dass, we would like to share this free gift with you:

The Ram Dass Audio Collection:
Conscious Aging
The Path of Service
Cultivating the Heart of Compassion

May these classic audio sessions with Ram Dass help you to love, serve, and remember—as we celebrate his wisdom, humor, and inspiring life lessons.

We also would like to share two episodes with Ram Dass from our Insights at the Edge podcast:

To learn more about Ram Dass, his teachings, and the continuing work of the organizations he helped create, visit ramdass.org.

In gratitude,

Your friends at Sounds True

Via Ram Dass - Love Serve Remember Foundation - Statement from the Love Serve Remember Foundation on Ram Dass’ Passing


Ram Dass (born Richard Alpert) died peacefully at home in Maui on December 22, 2019

Click here to read Ram Dass’ obituary.

Please share your reflections on Ram Dass, via email: remember@ramdass.org or post with the hashtag #LovingRamDass
For more than 50 years, Ram Dass was a key influence on American spiritual culture. His monumentally influential and seminal work BE HERE NOW–part graphic novel, part introduction to yoga and inner transformation–is an enduring classic that has sold over two million copies. BE HERE NOW still stands as a centerpiece of Western articulation of Eastern philosophy. In the 1970s it was the hippies’ bible; today it continues to be the instruction manual of choice for generations of spiritual seekers.
As a psychologist, Richard Alpert–along with his cohort, Timothy Leary–played a pivotal role in the psychedelic movement of the 1960s, lecturing on the healing effects of psychedelics at college campuses across the country. At the time, Alpert and Leary influenced a generation to “turn on, tune in, and drop out” with psychedelics, providing the inner fuel during a turbulent era of social change, sexual liberation, and political unrest.
In 1967-68, Alpert journeyed to India, where he met the famed Indian saint, Neem Karoli Baba (Maharaj-ji), whose central teaching is to love everyone, serve everyone, and remember God. After learning yoga and meditating in the Himalayas for six months, he returned to the West as Ram Dass, meaning “Servant of God.” For decades, Ram Dass crisscrossed America, lecturing on an eclectic spiritual path. He was a guide for thousands seeking to discover or reclaim their spiritual identity beyond or within institutional religion.
In early 1997, Ram Dass had a hemorrhagic stroke that left him with paralysis and expressive aphasia. He recovered his speech and went on to continue his teachings online, at retreats in Maui, and through film, and music, inspiring the next generation of seekers.
The Love Serve Remember Foundation is planning a worldwide BE HERE NOW moment in celebration of Ram Dass’s extraordinary life.

Additional details on this event forthcoming shortly.

 In the meantime, if anyone would like to share their reflections on Ram Dass, please email remember@ramdass.org, or post on social media using the hashtag #lovingramdass.

We want to offer gratitude to the outpouring of love that has been shared over the last day. It’s a true testament to the volume of hearts Ram Dass was able to connect with.


Love Serve Remember Foundation

Via Daily Dharma: A Generous Love

Imagine loving one hundred percent. Imagine acknowledging someone one hundred percent, with no thought of getting something in return.

—Roshi Nancy Mujo Baker, “On Not Being Stingy”


Via Daily Dharma: Everything Is Given and Received

In the end, it’s not so important who gives and who receives. What matters is cultivating the openhandedness that takes us beyond clinging to our separation and into an awareness that all is given and received.

—Hai An (Sister Ocean), “The Dance of Reciprocity”


Monday, December 23, 2019

Via FB: Food for thought: To all my Trump-loving friends who can't wait for him to beat these impeachment charges so he can run for a second term

I had to share. Food for thought: To all my Trump-loving friends who can't wait for him to beat these impeachment charges so he can run for a second term. I ask you, are you sure that is what you want? I don't think you have given this any real thought. If you had, you would not want him to get that second term.

If Trump gets re-elected he won't need you, he won't need his base. He won't be able to run for a third term, so why would he need you and the rest of the MAGA community? He will do whatever he wants. He will treat you like one of his ex-wives. He will kick you to the curb and there won't be a thing you can do about it. Job numbers- slob numbers, who cares; he won't. He will do everything he can to bend things to his personal liking. His golfing habit will double as well as the number of visits from Moscow. He will rent out the Army to the highest bidder. Think back to when Trump pulled out of Syria. Where did those US troops go? Some did come home but most went to Saudi Arabia to guard Saudi oil fields.

This will all be on you, after all, you're willing to let Moscow Mitch give him a pass. The worst part is that once he wins that second term and you realize that you have been had, you and the rest of the red hat-wearing throng won't be able to get rid of him. He will stonewall every investigation you throw at him and you won't be able to impeach him without the help of the democrats. And I hope you're not thinking that they will rush to your side.

What's that you say, he would never do that? Open your eyes; look around you. He has already done it. Trump is only loyal to Trump.

Via Daily Dharma: Recognizing Our Precious Human Life

Compassion for others builds self-confidence, as does remembering our precious human life, its meaning, purpose, and rarity.

—H. H. the Dalai Lama and Ven. Thubten Chodron, “The Self-Confidence of a Bodhisattva”


Via Daily Dharma: Create Light with Your Actions

ust as fire can be used for beneficial purposes or for destruction, our actions can create either happiness or suffering.

—Beth Roth, “Family Dharma: The Sacred and the Ordinary”


Via Ram Dass / Words of Wisdom - December 22, 2019 💌

"I have three major instructions for my life from my guru: love, serve, and remember. Love everyone, serve or feed everyone, remember God… In all cases it’s my work on myself, because I am loving, serving, and remembering, but what I love and serve is a function of what I remember. What I remember is who we all are. I remember the Self—and that remembering means that my love and service towards another being are directed towards the place in them in which they are already free. "

- Ram Dass -

Via Daily Dharma: Can Solitude Include Connection?

For me, solitude is not loneliness, but a space where I can be fully aware of the myriad ways that all things, myself included, are connected.

—Lauren Krauze, “Not Alone During the Holidays”


Thursday, December 19, 2019

Via Daily Dharma: What Can Humility Make Room For?

Our commitment to awakening asks us to honestly explore the ways in which conceit manifests in our lives and to find the way to its end. The cessation of conceit allows the fruition of empathy, kindness, compassion, and awakening.

—Christina Feldman, “Long Journey to a Bow”


Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Behind the Bahá'í faith, one of the fastest growing religions

Via Daily Dharma: What Happens When You Still Your Mind

Our mind is analogous to a cup of muddy water. The longer you keep a cup of muddy water still, the more the mud settles down and the water will be seen clearly.

—Bhante Henepola Gunaratana, “Sitting Still”


Via Ram Dass / Words of Wisdom - December 18, 2019 💌

"For every teacher, every life experience, everything we notice in the universe is but a reflection of our attachments. That is just the way it works. "

- Ram Dass -

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Via Daily Dharma: Understanding Buddhism

If our goal is to understand Buddhism accurately and to integrate it into our own lives authentically, we have to develop deep understanding both of Buddhist tradition and of ourselves.

—Linda Heuman, “A New Way Forward”


Monday, December 16, 2019

Via Budismo Engajado / FB:

“Budismo Engajado, é um termo redundante, já que budismo significa estar consciente, estar desperto para o que está acontecendo no seu próprio corpo, sentimentos e mente, como também no mundo que o cerca. Se você está desperto, não pode agir de outra forma senão compassivamente para aliviar o sofrimento que vê ao redor.
O budismo é, portanto, implicitamente engajado. Se não é engajado, não é budismo”.  - Thich Nhat Hanh

Via Budismo Engajado / FB:

Não fique recordando / Deixe ir o que passou

Não fique imaginando / Deixe ir o que possa estar vindo

Não fique pensando / Deixe ir o que está acontecendo agora

Não fique examinando / Não tente solucionar coisa alguma

Não fique controlando / Não tente fazer algo acontecer

Relaxe, agora mesmo, repouse (na verdadeira natureza da mente)
(Tilopa - 988-1069)

Arte: Matias Barahona /
Budismo Engajado

Via Budismo Engajado / 5 sabedorias budicas

Oprah Winfrey talks with Thich Nhat Hanh Excerpt - Powerful

Tibetan Buddhist Library at Sakya Monastery in Tibet

Via White Crane Institute / oday's Gay Wisdom

2017 -
The Wisdom of George Santayana
  • Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
  • To be interested in the changing seasons is a happier state of mind than to be hopelessly in love with spring.
  • Never build your emotional life on the weaknesses of others.
  • History is a pack of lies about events that never happened told by people who weren't there.
  • Friends are generally of the same sex, for when men and women agree, it is only in the conclusions; their reasons are always different.
  • Tyrants are seldom free; the cares and the instruments of their tyranny enslave them.
  • The Difficult is that which can be done immediately; the Impossible that which takes a little longer.
  • Prayer, among sane people, has never superseded practical efforts to secure the desired end.

Via Daily Dharma: Examine Your Intention

The Buddha’s focus was volition, intentional motivation. Everything hangs on motivation and understanding as clearly as possible the individual’s own motivation underlying all action.

—Interview with John Peacock by James Shaheen, “Investigating the Buddha’s World”


Sunday, December 15, 2019

Via Ram Dass / Words of Wisdom - December 15, 2019 💌

"If you were to take your consciousness and bring it out of your senses and out of your thinking mind and bring it down into awareness, what then? Who would you be? Well, what you would be at that point is awareness. Just awareness or consciousness.

There are ways of subjectively being in the universe so that things are available to you, or in you, that would otherwise only be knowable to you by collecting them through your senses and through your thinking mind."

- Ram Dass -

Via Daily Dharma: Opening to All Things Equally

Equanimity contains the complete willingness to behold the pleasant and the painful events of life equally. It points to a deep balance in which you are not pushed and pulled between the coercive energies of desire and aversion.

—Shaila Catherine, “Equanimity in Every Bite”


Saturday, December 14, 2019

Via Daily Dharma: Examining Our Actions and Intentions

In trying to cultivate lucidity regarding our own actions, we gradually become smarter about ourselves, more sensitive to other people, and more nuanced in our actions.

—Krishnan Venkatesh, “How to Practice Right Speech Anywhere, Anytime, and With Anyone”


Friday, December 13, 2019

Via Kaiser-Permenent / Thrive: 52 positive affirmations to brighten your day

The old saying, “You are what you think” may be true. For example, negative thoughts may lead to a more negative outlook on life, which then can lead to more negative thoughts. This cycle of negativity may result in stress, anxiety, and depression, which can damage your physical health.

To break the cycle, it’s important to introduce more positive thoughts into your life as often as possible.

What is an affirmation? 

The word “affirm” means to validate or confirm. In the mental health world, affirmations are short, encouraging statements that you can use to create a more positive frame of mind.

You can repeat an affirmation to yourself as often as you’d like — while brushing your teeth, driving to work, or before you fall asleep. The more often you use an affirmation, the more it can help reinforce your value and self-worth and it may even positively affect your behavior.

And with the New Year on the horizon there’s no better time to turn positivity into a year-long habit. Try using one of the following 52 affirmations each week in 2020 to help you tackle your goals.

1. I am ready.
2. My efforts help me succeed.
3. All is well.
4. I can make a real difference.
5. My hard work will pay off.
6. I am strong.
7. I choose happiness.
8. I have the power to make the right choices for me.
9. I have faith in my abilities.
10. I got this.
11. I am grateful for what I can do.
12. I am happy to be me.
13. My goals are achievable.
14. I am confident.
15. I will practice self-kindness.
16. I am on the right path for me.
17. I am thankful for the love in my life.
18. I will take action and accomplish my goals.
19. I am healthy.
20. Success is mine.
21. I will find the good in all things.
22. I am always learning.
23. I trust myself.
24. I will try new things.
25. I will turn negative thoughts into positive ones.
26. I can do this.
27. Anything is possible.
28. I am safe.
29. I love myself.
30. Life is beautiful.
31. I am powerful.
32. There’s no limit to what I can do.
33. Life brings me joy.
34. Good things are coming my way.
35. I believe in myself.
36. I release my fears.
37. Every day, I am getting better, stronger, healthier.
38. It’s OK for me to have fun.
39. My possibilities are endless.
40. I am well-rested and full of energy.
41. I am thriving.
42. I am relaxed and at peace.
43. I am strong in mind, body, and spirit.
44. My life is a gift.
45. I deserve love and happiness.
46. I care for myself.
47. New opportunities come easily to me.
48. Healthy food fuels my body.
49. Today, I will succeed.
50. I give myself room to grow.
51. Each day is filled with joy.
52. I embrace my power.

Via Daily Dharma: How to Let Go

We can’t simply “let go.” It doesn’t work like that. It’s certainly not what the Buddha teaches. Letting go, the Buddha tells us, will come when we “develop” wisdom.

—Peter Doobinin, “Sutta Study: The Ship”


Thursday, December 12, 2019

Via Daily Dharma: Uncovering Enlightenment

Enlightenment is not a matter of adding anything but rather of peeling away the false, fabricated sense of self to allow the innate Buddha being to emerge.

—Judith Hooper, “Prozac & Enlightened Mind”


Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Via Daily Dharma: The Beauty of Impermanence

When we can accept that people and things are always shifting and changing, our hearts can open.

—Zenju Earthlyn Manuel, “The Hunger for Home”


Via Ram Dass / Words of Wisdom - December 11, 2019 💌

"Having empathy for another means your heart is breaking, because you understand the intensity of their experience, and at the same moment, you are absolutely, equanimously present. You are not clinging to anything, just watching the phenomena of the universe change.

It’s then that your acts can be compassionate. That is where the root of compassion is. The root of compassion is not empathy; that’s along the lines of kindness, and that’s good, but it’s not compassion. The ultimate compassion is the act itself, which has the potential to relieve every level of suffering, not just the food in the belly, or the mattress to safely sleep on at night. The suffering that comes from separateness is only relieved when you are present with another person."

- Ram Dass -

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Via White Crane Institute: This Day in Gay History December 10 / Emily Dickinson

EMILY DICKINSON, American poet born (d. 1886); Dickinson is another of those pale, frail, Victorian ladies whose psyches are encased in concrete, generally by their families and later by academicians. To tamper with the official versions of their lives is tantamount to spitting on the flag, with the same dire consequences. Just look at what happened to Rebecca Patterson when she dared to suggest in a biography some years back that Dickinson was a Lesbian in love with her girlhood friend Kate Scott Anthon. She was fried. “What do you mean?” was the cry in the land. “How can Emily Dickinson be a Lesbian? She’s an American.” Although there are some who think that the great poet was, in fact, a Lesbian, the official story remains the same as that innocently told about our Lesbian grammar school teachers: their boyfriends died in World War I so they remained old maids.
He ate and drank the precious words, His spirit grew robust,
He knew no more that he was poor,
Nor that his frame was dust.
He danced along the dingy days,
And this bequest of wings
Was but a book. What liberty
A loosened spirit brings!

Dickinson, E. (1993). The Collected Works of Emily Dickinson.  New York: Chatham River Press.

Via Daily Dharma: Work with What You Have

Until enlightenment, our practice is vulnerable, our meditation and conduct both prone to wobble. Nonetheless, until we do confirm our innate wisdom, we need to work at it as best we can.

—Roshi Bodhin Kjolhede, “Don’t Just Sit There”


Monday, December 9, 2019

Via Daily Dharma: Appreciate the Precious Present Moment

All things already have their endings within them. If we become attuned to this, then we can appreciate the moment. We can appreciate the extraordinary fact of our unique and precious lives.

—Thanissara, “The Grit That Becomes a Pearl”


Sunday, December 8, 2019

Via FB: Ram Dass

Via CBS: World of Weddings: Same-sex couples in Israel find legal loophole to recognize marriages

Via Meanwhile in Canada / FB

Via Daily Dharma: Noticing What We Can Change Inbox x

When we succumb with grace to the fact that we are, basically, hopeless cases, we have an extraordinary opportunity to discover in what sense we are not hopeless.

—Henry Shukman, “The Art of Being Wrong”


Via Ram Dass / Words of Wisdom - December 8, 2019 💌

"It's interesting that as long as you identify with your personality, the things that get you uptight are your enemies. The minute you identify with your awareness, then the things that gets you uptight show you where your awareness has still sticky fingers. Most of us with the mind, because your mind deals with polarities, you feel that if you're happy, you're not sad, and you want to be happy. So you push away that which makes you sad.

But if you are going to be free, there's nothing you can turn away from or turn off. Like if you live fully in this moment, does this moment include that baby that's taking its last breath from starvation? Yeah. So are you sad? Yes. Does it include the baby taking its first breath as it comes out of its mother’s womb, and the joy of the beginning? Yes. So you're happy. If you are the fullness of the moment, all of it, these are all your voices. If you and I are to be free, there is nothing we can push away."

-  Ram Dass -