God is love – inspiration & structure for One Garden groups

The ONE GARDEN– Meditation & Dialogue celebrating the Oneness behind diverse traditions via

exquisite inspiring interspiritual beauty,truth & goodness – for justice & peace. God is love!

JUDAISM: Blessed are the men and women who are planted on your earth, in your garden,

who grow as your trees and flowers grow, who transform their darkness to light.

Their roots plunge into darkness; their faces turn toward the light. All those who

love you are beautiful; they overflow with your presence so that they can do

nothing but good. There is infinite space in your garden; all men, all women

are welcome here; all they need do is enter.

SOURCE – The Odes & Psalms of Solomon – http://onetruename.com/solomon.htm

HINDUISM: For those who set their hearts on me/ And worship me with unfailing devotion and faith,/ The way of love leads sure and swift to me. Krishna – Bhagavad Gita – SOURCE

CHRISTIAN: God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.            –                                                                                                                  SOURCE 1 John 4:16

SUFI/ISLAM: O Marvel! a garden amidst the flames.

My heart has become capable of every form:

it is a pasture for gazelles and a convent for Christian monks,

and a temple for idols and the pilgrim’s Kaa’ba,

and the tablets of the Torah and the book of the Quran.

I follow the religion of Love: whatever way Love’s camels take,

that is my religion and my faith.

Muhyiddin Ibn ‘Arabi: The Treasure of Compassion ‘Tarjuman al-Ashwaq’ Theosoph Pub House 1911.Poem XI

RUMI: I profess the religion of love,

Love is my religion and my faith.

My mother is love

My father is love

My prophet is love

My God is love

I am a child of love

I have come only to speak of love

BAHA’I: Love is the secret of God’s holy Dispensation, the manifestation of the All-Merciful, the fountain of spiritual outpourings.

Love is heaven’s kindly light, the Holy Spirit’s eternal breath that vivifieth the human soul.

Love is the cause of God’s revelation unto man, the vital bond inherent, in accordance with the divine creation, in the realities of things.

Love is the one means that ensureth true felicity both in this world and the next.

Love is the light that guideth in darkness, the living link that uniteth God with man, that assureth the progress of every illumined soul.

Love is the most great law that ruleth this mighty and heavenly cycle, the unique power that bindeth together the diverse elements of this material world, the supreme magnetic force that directeth the movements of the spheres in the celestial realms.

Love revealeth with unfailing and limitless power the mysteries latent in the universe.

Love is the spirit of life unto the adorned body of mankind, the establisher of true civilization …. SOURCE

TODAY’S BUDDHISM:“When we are mindful, deeply in touch with the present moment, our understanding of what is going on deepens, and we begin to be filled with acceptance, joy, peace and love.” – Thích Nhất Hạnh

NB Below: our Meditation & Dialogue framework- it is a way of life, a mission, a vision, a curriculum

‘One Garden groups’– our focus = practicing healing Wholeness via perennial wisdom

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”Sipping the healing perfume, nectar & wisdom from various spiritual flowers!”

The ‘One Garden’ goal = living in balance – 2 wings i) realizing mystical connection to the whole & ii) dialogue-ing Perennial Wisdom/Philosophy. Together their concern = Awakening:Detaching:Serving

‘One Garden’ groups are about having a supportive ‘family’ to inspire living in the interspiritual way.

We are a sacred space for practice & dialogue – using eternal wisdom sources. Why? – for greater happiness & peace, both as individuals & for the wider community, the planet’s global family.

OUR 3 SPIRITUAL CHALLENGES – awakening; detaching; serving.

Awakening is primarily learning to stay mindful in our connection with the Whole (God if you prefer), conscious breathing is for many the No 1 re-minder.

Detachment is learning to reduce the average level of ‘radio’ interference (ego) as we serve others within consciousness of the Whole.

Service is action dedicated to the well being of others – starting with a our friends, family & workmates – through to planetary concerns.

INTERSPIRITUALITY (21stC inter-faith) = “…the sharing of ultimate experiences across traditions.” – see Teasdale’s The Mystic Heart & Tolle’s The Power of Now etc.

They teach the 2 ‘wings of spirituality’ – A) Connection with the Whole + B) perennial wisdom & dialogue for 1) Awakening: 2) Detaching: 3) Serving.

1) to AWAKEN – “We are here to awaken from the illusion of our separateness.” T N Hanh SL p504

A) • There’s a reality beyond the material world & its life force: • Which is uncreated. • It pervades everything, • but remains (as a Whole) beyond the reach of human knowledge & understanding.

2) to DETACH – “A (wo) man is a slave to anything s/he cannot part with that is less than her/himself” – George MacDonald –

“Mindfulness allows us to spend more time in eternity! ” (RP)

B) • You approach that reality by: • Distinguishing ego from true self • Understanding the nature of desire • Becoming unattached • Forgetting about preferences • Not working for personal gain • Letting go of thoughts • Redirecting your attention • Being devoted • Being humble • Invoking that reality • Surrendering etc.

C) • That reality approaches you through: • Grace • The ‘way’ or the teacher seems to appear whenever we need to move on up through the next stage.

D) • You’re transformed – enlightened – so that you embody or reflect that reality by:

• ‘Dying’ and ‘being reborn’ (i.e transformed & living more via the true higher non-egoistic Self).

3) to SERVE – “The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve.” – Albert Schweitzer

E) .You then find (even better) ways to serve – realizing that all work done in the spirit of service can be ranked as worship. NB the 3 Awake:Detach:Serve work synergistically – we can start anywhere.

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OUR PURPOSE & our PRACTICE

Our One Garden a) PURPOSE =Awaken:Detach:Serve b) PRACTICE = Smile:Breathe:go mindfully

CONTACT: Roger (Dr Roger Prentice) onesummit AT gmail DOT com

CUTTINGS – the Newsletter of the One Garden Groups 10th Dec 2013

Hi Everyone – welcome to CUTTINGS – the Newsletter of the One Garden Groups 10th Dec 2013

Our two wings of spiritual development in the One Garden groups are unitive meditation and dialogue for as the beloved Heschel says;
“The worship of reason is arrogance and betrays a lack of intelligence. The rejection of reason is cowardice and betrays a lack of faith.”
― Abraham Joshua Heschel

ON WED: On Wednesday, (tomorrow)
we will be looking at the three ‘voices’ – in which we all communicate with each other – as part of our spiritual development. This is inspired by Ken Wilber’s work, especially in his The Marriage of Sense and Soul – see video below –

 

FRIDAY: On Friday we are studying the 4th section of Abraham Joshua’s Heschel’s ‘Who is Man’ .

“The world presents itself in two ways to me. The world as a thing I own, the world as a mystery I face. What I own is a trifle, what I face is sublime. I am careful not to waste what I own; I must learn not to miss what I face.
We manipulate what is available on the surface of the world; we must also stand in awe before the mystery of the world. We objectify Being but we also are present at Being in wonder, in radical amazement.
All we have is a sense of awe and radical amazement in the face of a mystery that staggers our ability to sense it.”
– From Who is Man Ch. 5

Do come along – you will be made welcome – Wednesdays and Fridays we meet at 9.45AM – at the Friends Meeting House.

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Photo source

Poster source

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NEW EVENING COURSE: Please tell your friends that at last we can offer an evening, after-work, course – 5.45PM at the Friends Meeting House starting Thursday 2nd Jan 2014.

Seeing beauty, truth & goodness in the ten thousand things

Ikkyu – see HERE

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I was so happy that my friends at A Circle of Friends an Interspirituality site – HERE– sent out this quotation;

“Studying texts and stiff meditation can make you lose your Original Mind.

A solitary tune by a fisherman, though, can be an invaluable treasure.

Dusk, rain on the river, the moon peeking in and out of the clouds.

Elegant beyond words, he chants his songs night after night.”

~Ikkyu~

to put alongside this;

The great Master Dogen said,

“To study the Buddha Way is to study the self,

to study the self is to forget the self, and

to forget the self is to be enlightened by the ten thousand things.”

To be enlightened by the ten thousand things is to recognize the unity of the self and the ten thousand things.

and this;

“Tao gives birth to one,

One gives birth to two,

Two gives birth to three,

Three gives birth to ten thousand beings.

Ten thousand beings carry yin on their backs and embrace yang in their front,

Blending these two vital breaths to attain harmony.”

along with this;

 

“Every being in the universe

is an expression of the Tao.

It springs into existence,

unconscious, perfect, free,

takes on a physical body,

lets circumstances complete it.

That is why every being spontaneously honors the Tao.

 

“The Tao gives birth to all beings,

nourishes them, maintains them,

cares for them, comforts them, protects them,

takes them back to itself,

creating without possessing, acting without expecting,

guiding without interfering.

 That is why love of the Tao is in the very nature of things.”  


(Stephen Mitchell’s interpretation of chapter 51 or the Tao Te Ching talks of the ongoing relationship between Tao and

the ten thousand things – SOURCE )

 

‘Cuttings’ the newsletter of the ‘One Garden’ groups Edition 21st July 2013

Please forward to your friends who might be interested

‘Cuttings’

– the newsletter of the ‘One Garden’ groups

Edition 21st July 2013

Quote of the week:

‘Sanctity/holiness is realizing how much we are being conditioned by the ego’ – Bede Griffiths quoted by Wayne Teasdale

Teasdale goes on to say that once we have this perspective we have a tool to transcend it (the ego)! – POW!

Wilber comes back with ‘spirit is that ever-present noticing’ – DOUBLE-POW! See Video 7 HERE

NEW RESOURCES UPDATE – the latest, or updated, sets of resources – as promised recently to group members is below – if I have forgotten any please email me.

1 Interspirituality is ‘…the sharing of ultimate experiences across traditions.’

Wayne Teasdale in The Mystic Heart p26

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2 NAMASTE: “I honor the place in you in which the entire Universe dwells. I honor the place in you which is of Love, of Integrity, of Wisdom and of Peace. When you are in that place in you, and I am in that place in me, we are One.” – Namaste!

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3 THE WHOLE & THE PARTS: “Behind every moment, behind every particular, is the enveloping Whole. Two wings; connection to the Whole, delight in every particular.” (RP)

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4 PLEASE SIGN UP TO i) SoulNeeds & ii) the One Garden WordPress sites

5 The Perennial Philosophy by Aldous Huxley – HERE online

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6 Ken Wilber & Wayne Teasdale videos HERE

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7 Key article on Vipassana meditation and MindfulnessHERE

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8 The ‘Spirituality & Practice site – film reviews, book reviews etc – HERE

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9 SACRED MUSIC sublime examples of sacred music and chanting:-

The Mahamrityunjaya Mantra chanted by Hein Braat – HERE

The mantra Om Mani Pädme Hum – HERE

Music in a public place – HERE

Thich Nhat Hanh – HERE

Exquisite Baha’i chant for the departed – HERE

A Maronite Chant to Mary – HERE

PS I would like these included in my funeral!

10 Mission Statement & summary of the One Garden ‘curriculum’HERE

Photo source WP HERE

Shambhala Sun – Life is Tough: Six Ways to Deal With It (March 2013)

Shambhala Sun – Life is Tough: Six Ways to Deal With It (March 2013).

Life Is Tough: Six Ways to Deal With It

An ancient set of Buddhist slogans offers us six powerful techniques to transform life’s difficulties into awakening and benefit. Zen teacher NORMAN FISCHER guides us through them.

There’s an old Zen saying: the whole world’s upside down. In other words, the way the world looks from the ordinary or conventional point of view is pretty much the opposite of the way the world actually is. There’s a story that illustrates this.

Once there was a Zen master who was called Bird’s Nest Roshi because he meditated in an eagle’s nest at the top of a tree. He became quite famous for this precarious practice. The Song Dynasty poet Su Shih (who was also a government official) once came to visit him and, standing on the ground far below the meditating master, asked what possessed him to live in such a dangerous manner. The roshi answered, “You call this dangerous? What you are doing is far more dangerous!” Living normally in the world, ignoring death, impermanence, and loss and suffering, as we all routinely do, as if this were a normal and a safe way to live, is actually much more dangerous than going out on a limb to meditate.

While trying to avoid difficulty may be natural and understandable, it actually doesn’t work. We think it makes sense to protect ourselves from pain, but our self-protection ends up causing us deeper pain. We think we have to hold on to what we have, but our very holding on causes us to lose what we have. We’re attached to what we like and try to avoid what we don’t like, but we can’t keep the attractive object and we can’t avoid the unwanted object. So, counterintuitive though it may be, avoiding life’s difficulties is actually not the path of least resistance; it is a dangerous way to live. If you want to have a full and happy life, in good times and bad, you have to get used to the idea that facing misfortune squarely is better than trying to escape from it.

This is not a matter of grimly focusing on life’s difficulties. It is simply the smoothest possible approach to happiness. Of course, when we can prevent difficulty, we do it. The world may be upside down, but we still have to live in this upside-down world, and we have to be practical on its terms. The teaching on transforming bad circumstances into the path doesn’t deny that. What it addresses is the underlying attitude of anxiety, fear, and narrow-mindedness that makes our lives unhappy, fearful, and small.

Transforming bad circumstances into the path is associated with the practice of patience. There are six mind-training (lojong) slogans connected with this:

Turn all mishaps into the path.
Drive all blames into one.
Be grateful to everyone.
See confusion as buddha and practice emptiness.
Do good, avoid evil, appreciate your lunacy, pray for help.
Whatever you meet is the path.