“Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring those ripples build a current which can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.”
― Robert F. Kennedy
(my granddaughter, Fin, posing the question)
Moses put a low gate in the Jerusalem wall,
so that even unconsciously
everyone would have to put down his pack
and lower his head, bowing at least that much,
as though to say,
I pray that I can put down what I carry.
The function given kings and all authorities
is so that people who won’t bow down
and surrender to the presence
will have one place where they are humble.
The gate was called Babi-Saghir,
the little door.
Consider the world-power you acknowledge
as a small gate you must go through
to pay homage to a dunghill,
and instead of doing that, recognize the holy ones,
who are sweet as sugarcane.
Don’t grovel in front of political leaders.
Not your highness, say your lowness
to those empty weed-stems. Honor the sun we see by.
Don’t play a cat-and-mouse game.
Join the lion and swift deer in their hunt for soul.
Let pot-lickers follow the big basin-licker.
I could continue and make some rulers and administrators
very angry. They know who I’m talking about.
We have to look deeply at things in order to see. When a swimmer enjoys the clear water of the river, he or she should also be able to be the river. . . .
If we want to continue to enjoy our rivers–to swim in them, walk beside them, even drink their water–we have to adopt the non-dual perspective. We have to meditate on being the river so that we can experience within ourselves the fears and hopes of the river. If we cannot feel the rivers, the mountains, the air, the animals, and other people from within their own perspective, the rivers will die and we will lose our chance for peace.
If you are a mountain climber or someone who enjoys the countryside, or the green forest, you know that the forests are our lungs outside of our bodies, just as the sun is our heart outside of our bodies. Yet we have been acting in a way that has allowed two million square miles of forest to be destroyed by acid rain, and we have destroyed parts of the ozone layer that regulate how much direct sunlight we receive. We are imprisoned in our small selves, thinking only of the comfortable conditions for this small self, while we destroy our large self. We should be able to be our true self. That means we should be able to be the river, we should be able to be the forest, the sun, and the ozone layer. We must do this to understand and to have hope for the future.
“There’s always the money for missiles and tanks, there’s always the money for generals and banks, There’s always the money for new ways to kill, but a limited budget for you when you’re ill, Yes there’s always enough for a war, but there’s never enough for the poor….”
…another chance to get it right.
Inside every human chest there is a hand,
but it has nothing to write with.
I hold my face between my hands
no I am not crying
I hold my face between my hands
to keep my loneliness warm
two hands protecting
two hands nourishing
two hands to prevent
my soul from leaving me