The Metta Sutta – Upaya Zen Center

Wow.

Thanks to the digitalZENDO for pointing this out, and to the Upaya Zen Center for sharing this.

“Relief for Victims of Typhoon Morakot: Over ten thousand Tzu Chi volunteers mobilize”

Please consider helping the Tzu Chi Foundation out.  There’s an IReport at CNN about their help so far.

disaster

Critters (Long one, sorry!)

American RoachI was delighted to find Gabriel Cohen‘s article “Night of the Cockroach” on Shambhala Sun‘s website.  It appeared in the July 2009 issue, but as magazines are a luxury purchase at the moment, I only stumbled upon it a few days ago.  It’s a quick read, and I recommend it.  If you want to read it with “ambiance” – read, cockroach photos all over the page – check out Cohen’s .pdf of the original article on his website.

Cockroaches and other small critters have definitely played their part in the daily Practice of my life, and it’s good to bump into other people thinking about the potential struggle they provide.

Let me tell you a little bit about my house, and I’ll explain what I mean. Continue reading

Check Out Built on Respect:

Via Shambhala SunSpace, check out Built on Respect, started by Heidiminx:

Many

Molly Brown, over at Destination the Journey, today broached something that is a strong component of my practice.

While you sit reading this, someone is giving birth, another is dying, another grieves the loss of a love one. Everything in the breadth and depth of daily human experience is happening right now.

As I move through my day, I do my best to bear this in mind, and honor all these beings and their experiences with my behavior. It doesn’t always work, and I am constantly having to pull myself back to this thought, but I try to do my best.

When I begin to pity myself or my situation, I find remembering that many of my brothers and sisters are in far worse places returns me to center. I pray for peace and strength of heart for them, and then also for myself.

Awakening

One of the deep honors of being a parent is the opportunity to be present when another human being reaches a new understanding of the world. Sometimes these moments are cotton candy sweet, happy affairs. Sometimes they’re not. In either case the blessing witnessing – or perhaps even occasionally midwifing – these moments remains the same.

The other evening one of these moments happened for my youngest, and all I could do was just wrap my arms around him and let him mourn.

See, we have a two diet family. My eldest so and I are vegan, my husband and younger two have not been. We coexist, and Warren and I very frank about where food comes from. Both of us believe its important to really understand the origins of what’s on our plate. It’s so easy in our society to divorce ourselves from this knowledge, and both the meat-eating husband and I believe that’s an ethical slippery-slope. (I’m giving my other half a hard time, but he honestly doesn’t eat a lot of animal products anymore, which I appreciate.)

So the other night my little guy didn’t understand what the optional meat for his bean burrito was all about. When I finally got through to him that it was ground up cow meat that my husband had cooked to add to his, and not vegan he was absolutely horrified. He finally understood, and he was absolutely wracked with grief for all butchered animals. Watching him extend his new knowledge into a growing sense of compassion was so wonderful. Holding him while he cried for them in empathy was painful, but beautiful, too. I’m grateful I was allowed to be there.

The Sangha Metta Project

This film looks to be (as far as I can tell from the trailer) a really good look at the Sangha Metta Project of Southeast Asia, “which which engages monks in HIV/AIDS prevention and care.” To learn more about the film project and also to find links relevant to this issue, check out http://aidsfrontline.org/.