I will be taking a sabbatical leave to take care of some spiritual and practical matters. On the practical side, I'll be exploring ways to create more stable funding for the Mission and possibly find grants etc. In order to keep this vision going, some practical financial matters need some extra attention. From the spiritual side, quiet grace never hurts!
I will still be present to answer any emails etc but the main break will come in terms of writing full sermons regularly. I don't anticipate a very long break, however, I will update as needed. In lieu of the full length sermons, I will try to post regular 'shorts', almost Zen Koan style. I also encourage reading past sermons as we can often find new things a second time.
Thank you to everyone for their continued support. I pray I find a continuing source of financial stability for the Mission so that it may continue, and expand, its service.
20And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: 21Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.
God isn't whispering, you're screaming
God isn't hiding, but you've left to go looking
Be quiet, be still
Imagine a bubble arising from the ocean. Now imagine a small bubble forming within the larger bubble, both floating above the water.
The small bubble begins to examine its world. It becomes a master of the nature of the larger bubble, knowing all there is to know.
The small bubble bursts, becoming one with the large bubble, realizing all knowledge was no knowledge, a mere creation within himself.
The large bubble bursts, merging back to the ocean. No knowledge, no realization, no other, just ocean.
All knowledge is false. All unknowing is Truth.
A person has told you they have one week to live. They have asked you to read parts of the Bible to them. What parts do you choose to read?
Read the Bible this way for yourself. What you focus on, and what happens, may surprise you.
Your individual identity is like the breath. It arises and falls, and you will not be able to grasp anything.
Your thoughts, like breath, rise and fall. One we call breathing, another we call 'I".
Neither can be identified except as something we create as a stable thing.
They fall through the hands like grasping at water
Seek that within which breath arises
Seek that within which thought arises
This is Truth
This is the real You
Look at the picture, above, of the cloud breathing more cloud
You identify the image, the fleeting image
Do you see the blue sky?
We try to attach to the fleeting image, missing the sky that makes it possible
First we see the image
Then we see the sky
It is done
5 Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?”6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7 If you really know me, you will know[b] my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”
Jesus does not identify himself with his birth, his body, his name, the world- all things which will be crucified, sacrificed, and things which Thomas shows concern for. Jesus corrects Thomas and properly identifies his Divine nature. Find the way, the truth, and the life and you will find Jesus. He is beyond limitation, concept, identification, death, crucifixion, and anything of which the mind can conceive.
We can neither stay on the surface and be battered by waves
nor remain in the depths where we can't breath
If the ocean is perfection, who are you?
Uncontrollable crying and uncontrollable laughter are two polar ends of the same instinct leading you toward salvation, awakening.
There is a sense of great 'release' in these states- what is being released?
Both are hints at your absolute lack of control, the ultimate illusion of the individual identity you cling to in the face of the unknown.
Letting go, stillness, is the only way to find what is beyond the crying and laughter.
Living in the moment. We hear a lot about doing it, but how is it done? What does it mean?
The past is a fabrication, a woven together group of memories, created by our present idea of who we are as individuals. Our memory of events, that we take as the past, are recalled from the current moment, are subjective and incomplete. Not only have we selectively constructed our memory, based on whatever we choose to focus on, but the "person" that was in the moment remembered is not the same as the one who remembers.
The whole process is fraudulent. A different version of "you" remembers a past "you" and constructs a memory made of only parts of the original, infinitely vast, moments.
In the same way, we also imagine a future based on our current idea of ourselves, influenced by our fabricated memories of the past. This future cannot become reality because as the idea of ourselves 'moves forward' toward the future we imagined, the individual that imagined it no longer exists. We will have changed before the future ever makes it to us. The present "you" is left always chasing a future that doesn't exist, while realizing "you" have disappeared into the next moment also. It's like a waterfall trying to grab hold of itself!
So, that leaves the present moment. But, there's a catch. We cannot live in the moment either. No one in history has ever lived in the moment- no one. We all live only in our memory of the past, and our imagination of the future(which is really also just a part of the past- headache yet?).
The reason we cannot live in the moment, the infinite present, is because we cannot experience what we are. You can only BE what you are. "You" don't live in the moment, you ARE the moment. Your "I", the witness, creates a past and future that robs you of the being-ness you really are.
To live in the moment, we need only to stop trying to experience and be still. Just BE.
It's not about me, but if you must, click the "about" page.