Saturday, December 26, 2015

A thought for the day. A wish for the New Year.

A thought for the day: Gandhi once said, “The enemy is fear. We think it is hate, but it is fear.”

I believe, actually I know, this statement is true. Hate is born out of unbridled fear.

I’ve often wondered why so many straight people, mostly religious people, seemed to hate gay people so fervently. It finally occurred to me that it’s because, by going against their set of religious guidelines, gay people actually challenge those rules, which challenges their entire belief system. Even gay Christians and Muslims challenge those beliefs they profess to follow.

It seems a bit strange to me that Christians and Muslims are so insecure that any challenge to even a single rule sends them into a hateful dither, but as Gandhi points out, it comes down to fear. They must be deathly afraid of anyone poking holes in the blanket of faith they have wrapped themselves in. I can only think that it must be a very thin blanket indeed if there is so much fear of losing it.

I for one have no wish to strip anything away from religious people, even through I think in many cases organized religions do more harm that good in the world. I believe everyone has their own path to follow, and every path eventually lead to the same place. 


My wish for the New Year is that we all walk our separate paths hand in hand in a spirit of love and acceptance.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

A Life Lesson I Keep Relearning

I can, of course, only speak for myself, but in my years of practicing Zen, one of the lessons I have to relearn and relearn is that of letting go of the past.  Sounds easy, right? Oh so wrong…

Zen practice is all about staying in the moment, to be open and fresh for whatever this moment offers, or in some cases, whatever this moment throws at you. It’s about not carrying the weight of the past around on your shoulders. Believe me, personal history becomes heavier by the day until you become bogged down by the dense mass of it.

I don’t have to keep defending or explaining my past. It’s over. It’s not who I am anymore. And most importantly, it doesn’t have to influence the decisions I make now or in the future. 

The lesson I have to keep relearning is to forgive myself, for both my failures and triumphs, and move on, focusing on discovering what is right before me in this moment. 

On of my favorite quotes is related to staying in the moment: If you wish to travel far and fast, travel light. Leave behind all your envies, jealousies, unforgiveness, selfishness, and fears. – Glenn Clark