Friday, 30 September 2011

The Greatest | Great Middle Way

The Greatest | Great Middle Way:

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The Greatest

The greatest achievement is selflessness.
The greatest worth is self-mastery.
The greatest quality is seeking to serve others.
The greatest precept is continual awareness.
The greatest medicine is the emptiness of everything.
The greatest action is not conforming with the ways of the world.
The greatest magic is transmuting the passions.
The greatest generosity is non-attachment.
The greatest goodness is a peaceful mind.
The greatest patience is humility.
The greatest effort is not concerned with results.
The greatest meditation is a mind that lets go.
The greatest wisdom is seeing through appearances.

Saturday, 24 September 2011

Poem by Mary Oliver.

“And now my old dog is dead, and another I had after him, and my parents are dead, and that first world, that old house, is sold and lost, and the books I gathered there lost, or sold- but more books bought, and in another place, board by board and stone by stone, like a house, a true life built, and all because I was steadfast about one or two things: loving foxes, and poems, the blank piece of paper, and my own energy- and mostly the shimmering shoulders of the world that shrug carelessly over the fate of any individual that they may, the better, keep the Niles and Amazons flowing.” 

Poetry by Mary Oliver- The Journey, Wild Geese, Morning Poem and Others

Poetry by Mary Oliver- The Journey, Wild Geese, Morning Poem and Others:

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The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice--
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
"Mend my life!"
each voice cried.
But you didn't stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do--
determined to save
the only life you could save.

by Mary Oliver

Friday, 23 September 2011

Fragile and fleeting | Great Middle Way

Fragile and fleeting | Great Middle Way:

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Fragile and fleeting

Each moment is fragile and fleeting.
The moment of the past cannot be kept, however beautiful.
The moment of the present cannot be held, however enjoyable.
The moment of the future cannot be caught, however desirable.
The mind is desperate to fix the river in place:
Possessed by ideas of the past, preoccupied with images of the future,
it overlooks the plain truth of the moment.
Those who can quiet the mind
will suddenly discover the path at their feet, and clarity at hand.

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Dharma Dreams

Tashi Nyima | September 19, 2011 at 9:34 PM | Categories: Dharma View | URL:

Recently, three Dharma friends independently have asked questions regarding Dharma-related dreams and meditation experiences. Typically, they want to explore whether such experiences are valid, and if so, what is their basis. Are they memories from previous lives? Are they communications from Teachers, Buddhas, or Bodhisattvas? Or are they simply mental elaborations based on bits and pieces of accumulated information? 
Whether we’ve had those very experiences in a previous life, we are recipients of deliberate teachings from the Enlightened Ones, or our minds have developed particular narratives to manifest existing karmic tendencies does not make much difference.  
Those experiences, and the karmic seeds that inform them, are in our ground consciousness (alaya vijnana), and through the coming together of causes and conditions, are appearing now to our mental consciousness (mano vijnana). 
The dream, actual memory, or mental elaboration is just a vehicle for expressing an awareness. It is an internal mental representation of an existing karmic tendency or disposition. It is no less than that, but it is also no more. We must avoid the extremes of deprecating or exaggerating its importance. 
If an experience of this type leads us to turn inward, to practice the Dharma with greater enthusiasm, to develop more compassion, then it is extremely positive. However, it is important to accept the message, without dwelling on the narrative. If we dwell on the story, we run the risk of developing an acquired fixed view or an afflicted emotion.  
The teaching on the Four Reliances warns us to beware of becoming entangled in mere forms, mere words, mere logic, and mere concepts. Rather, we should seek for the intended meaning of each lesson received, and allow it to manifest as non dual wisdom, whatever the source.

Tricycle: Awake in the World

Tricycle Daily Dharma September 20, 2011

Love and Faith

Love and faith share the same essence of deep caring. The only difference is that love is aimed toward sentient beings, including those who are less fortunate than we are, while faith is aimed toward sublime beings, including all buddhas and enlightened guides. The nature of love is to give positive energy to others in order to benefit them and to release them from suffering. The nature of faith is to trust in sublime beings in order to receive the blessings of wisdom energy that benefit oneself and others. True faith creates the vast love of compassion that benefits countless beings.
– Thinley Norbu Rinpoche, "Continuous Mind"
Read the entire article in the Tricycle Wisdom Collection

Monday, 19 September 2011

Eating with Compassion | Great Middle Way

Eating with Compassion | Great Middle Way:

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Every day in the US, over 600,000 animals are slaughtered for meat. Like you and I, animals want to live. They suffer pain, they want happiness. If this fact alone does not move you to consider adopting a compassionate diet, please become familiar with some of the other arguments. 

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Tricycle Daily Dharma September 17, 2011

The Last Obstacle to Awakening

The conceit of self (mana in Pali) is said to be the last of the great obstacles to full awakening. Conceit is an ingenious creature, at times masquerading as humility, empathy, or virtue. Conceit manifests in the feelings of being better than, worse than, and equal to another. Within these three dimensions of conceit are held the whole tormented world of comparing, evaluating, and judging that afflicts our hearts. Jealousy, resentment, fear, and low self-esteem spring from this deeply embedded pattern. Conceit perpetuates the dualities of “self” and “other”—the schisms that are the root of the enormous alienation and suffering in our world. 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.
– Christina Feldman, "Long Journey to a Bow"
Read the entire article in the Tricycle Wisdom Collection

Tiny Little and very Cute House Designs.


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Tuesday, 13 September 2011

The Night Sky September 2011 | Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics

The Night Sky September 2011 | Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics


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A Cassini image of Jupiter . Nasa
Jupiter rises soon after 9pm BST in mid september and so, by midnight, will be ~30 degrees above the eastern horizon.   It shines at magnitude -2.7 in the constellation Aries, the Ram.   It is now well worth observing (if you do not mind staying up late or getting up early!) and, with an angular size of ~47 arc seconds, a small telescope will easily show the equatorial bands and the Galilean moons.   In contrast to Saturn which is moving towards the lower part of the ecliptic (and hence will not reach as high an elevation when due south), Jupiter is moving towards the higher part of the ecliptic and so, in the next few years, will be a superb object to observ

 A montage of the Solar System


The planet Saturn. Cassini - Nasa
Saturn.  At the very beginning of September, Saturn may still just be visible low (at an elevation of ~5 degrees) in the Southwest 40 minutes after after sunset in the constellation Virgo, some 7 degrees to the west of Spica.   But by the middle of the month it will be lost in the sun's glare.   It has a magnitude of +0.9.   Compared to early last year, its apparent brightness has now increased as the rings have opened out again - now tilted at +8 degrees from edge on.   The plus sign indicates that we are seeing Saturn's north pole.   The rings span an angular size of ~32 arc seconds - over double the 15 arc seconds of the planet's disk.   Given a small telescope it may be be possible (given the low altitude) to see Saturn's brightest moon, Titan. 


Messenger image of Mercury Nasa
Mercury passed between the Earth and the Sun (inferior conjunction) on the 16th August and emerged into the pre-dawn sky towards the end of August.   On the 1st of September it is just 4 degree above the eastern horizon an hour before dawn and reaches its peak brightness , at magnitude -0.3, on the 3rd when at greatest western elongation.  
It lies close to Regulus, in Leo,on the 8th and 9th but then rapidly moves towards the Sun and becomes lost in its glare until it passes behind the Sun (superior conjunction) on the 28th of the month.
See highlight above.


Mars showing Syrtis major.
A Hubble Space Telescope image of Mars.
Jim Bell et al. AURA / STScI / Nasa
Mars.   On the 1st of September, Mars,shining at magnitude +1.4 lies in Gemini just 1 degree north of the star Delta Geminorum and has risen to an elevation of ~30 degrees at sunrise so can be easily seen in the pre-dawn sky just north of East.   Its angular size is just 5 arc seconds mid month and so one is unlikely to see any detail on its salmon-pink disk.   Having moved into Cancer, on the last morning of the month it lies just to the right of the Beehive Cluster,M44, which should make a very nice telescopic view.
See highlight above. 


Venus showing some cloud structure
Venus passed behind the Sun on the 15th of August - called superior conjunction - and will reappear to view just above the horizon 25 minutes after sunset at the very end of the month.   Even with a magnitude of -3.9, binoculars may still be needed to spot it - but do not use them until after the Sun has set!

Radar Image of Venus
Radar image showing surface features

Find more planetary images and details about the Solar System: The Solar System

The Stars

The Evening September Sky

September Sky
The September Sky in the south - early Sept:~11pm, late Sept:~10pm
This map shows the constellations seen towards the south in late evening. To the south in early evening moving over to the west as the night progresses is the beautiful region of the Milky Way containing both Cygnus and Lyra. Below is Aquilla. The three bright stars Deneb (in Cygnus), Vega (in Lyra) and Altair (in Aquila) make up the "Summer Triangle". East of Cygnus is the great square of Pegasus - adjacent to Andromeda in which lies M31, the Andromeda Nebula. To the north lies "w" shaped Cassiopeia and Perseus.

The constellations Lyra and Cygnus

Cygnus and Lyra

Under Jupiter with Caz by Wingless Night on SoundCloud - Create, record and share your sounds for free

Under Jupiter with Caz by Wingless Night on SoundCloud - Create, record and share your sounds for free:

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I think this is beautiful.
I have never had anyone dedicate a piece of music to me...ever.
Jupiter says thank you too.
So now I will settle back and just let this music wash over me.

No such thing as tolerance | Great Middle Way

No such thing as tolerance | Great Middle Way:

Tashi Nyima once again says it with simple wisdom.

'via Blog this'

No such thing as tolerance

To the ordinary being,
others often require tolerance.
To the highly evolved beings,
there is no such thing as tolerance,
because there is no such thing as other.

They have given up all ideas of separateness
and extended their goodwill without prejudice in every direction.

Never hating, never resisting, never contesting,
they are simply always learning and being.

Loving, hating, having expectations:
all these are attachments.
Attachments prevent the manifestation of true self.

Therefore the wise are attached to nothing
and can relate to everyone with an unstructured attitude.
Because of this, their very existence benefits all things.

That which has form is equal to that which is without form.
That which is alive is equal to that which rests.

This is the subtle truth, not a religious invention.