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#4137 - Monday, January 17, 2011 - Editor: Gloria Lee

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  • Gloria Lee
    #4137 - Monday, January 17, 2011 - Editor: Gloria Lee The Nonduality Highlights - http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights A Sangha by Another Name By the
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 17, 2011

      #4137 - Monday, January 17, 2011 - Editor: Gloria Lee
      The Nonduality Highlights - http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NDhighlights
      A Sangha by Another Name
      By the mid-1950s, as the Beats looked toward Zen, so did a few black
      musicians and poets; and of course by then the Civil Rights Movement was
      underway, led magnificently by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who took
      Mahatma Gandhi as his inspiration. After a pilgrimage to India in 1958,
      where he visited ashrams and sought to learn more about nonviolence not
      simply as a political strategy but as a way of life, King came back to
      America determined to set aside one day a week for meditation and fasting.
      In the 1960s, he nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize the outstanding
      Vietnamese Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hanh. King was, at bottom, a Baptist
      minister, yes, but one whose vision of the social gospel at its best
      complements the expansive, Mahayana bodhisattva ideal of laboring for the
      liberation of all sentient beings (“Strangely enough,” he said, “I can never be
      what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. You can never be what
      you ought to be until I am what I ought to be”). His dream of the “beloved
      community” is a sangha by another name, for King believed that, “It really
      boils down to this: that all of life is interrelated. We are caught in an
      inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny.”
      from article by Charles Johnson

      Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get
      better. It's not. - Dr Seuss


      King’s use of skillful means (upaya kushala) brought something uniquely
      redemptive to the struggle for black liberation in America; he established
      the actions of the Civil Rights movement as morally superior to those of its
      opposition. However, King never sought to humiliate his opponents. A
      practitioner of satyagraha* endeavors to respect his opponent, retain him as
      friend, and provide him with a way to save face during their encounter so
      that he can maintain his dignity and join the ranks of the enlightened. [...]
      When practicing soul force, activists were urged to work for change in the
      world and in themselves simultaneously. These “moral experiments” were
      intended to be performed in their daily lives as scientists might test their
      theories. Such an approach is in perfect accord with satyagraha’s* insistence
      that it is futile to implement ideas in the public realm if we fail to practice
      them in our personal lives. Dharma teacher and mendicant monk Claude
      AnShin Thomas understood this well when he said, “As a Buddhist, I cannot
      think myself into a new way of living, I have to live myself into a new way of
      thinking.” If we hope to end war and violence, Thomas noted, “we must simply
      stop the endless wars that rage within.”
      article by Charles Johnson
      *Truth (satya) implies love, and firmness (agraha) engenders and therefore
      serves as a synonym for force. I thus began to call the Indian movement
      Satyagraha, that is to say, the Force which is born of Truth and Love or
      non-violence, and gave up the use of the phrase “passive resistance”, in
      connection with it, so much so that even in English writing we often avoided it
      and used instead the word “satyagraha”....[definition by Gandhi]

      Collage by Rashani Rea

      It is from that place of intense aliveness, spacious presence, that you can
      appreciate the aliveness in all things. It is more than just the sense
      perception of the chair or the perception of the table or the glass of water.
      Within the sense perceptions you can sense that there is more than what you
      are perceiving on the surface; that everything has a presence, an alive
      presence to it. When you touch that within you, then you don't have to wait
      for something to happen in your life to feel more alive.
      - Eckhart Tolle

      What is not-knowing?
      The state of not-knowing is a riveting place to be. And we don’t have to
      climb rocks to experience it. We encounter not-knowing when, for instance,
      we meet someone new, or when life offers up a surprise. These experiences
      remind us that change and unpredictability are the pulse of our very
      existence. No one really knows what will happen from one moment to the
      next: Who will we be, what will we face, and how will we respond to what we
      encounter? We don’t know, but there’s a good chance we will encounter some
      rough, unwanted experiences, some surprises beyond our imaginings, and some
      expected things, too. And we can decide to stay present for all of it.
      - Elizabeth Mattis-Namgyel


      Editors Note: We always appreciate hearing from our readers, and if you
      have written us, well you know who you are. Thank you, one and all.
      I would like to return the favor to just one reader who often sends notes of
      appreciation. Emilie Unkrich, congratulations on your son, Director Lee
      Unkrich, winning a Golden Globe for Best Animation Film for Toy Story 3. I
      saw all three of the fantastic Toy Story movies and loved them. And I was
      most impressed by the way Toy Story 3 presented issues of change,
      impermanence, betrayal, loss and the loyalty of love, all in a way that both
      children and adults could appreciate. The storyline went to some surprisingly
      dark places while still being very uplifting and funny. This award was a most
      well deserved accolade.
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