What’s In a View?

I’m sitting as the sun rises over the horizon. There liquid the sea between Canada and America. Further the rocky Olympic Mountain range in Washington State. High up on the top floor of a Victorian house in Victoria (Vancouver Island) I can see for miles and miles. Expansive, and inspiring in a particular kind of way.

I’ve been thinking of life and death. Viewing death, a newly dead body, there seems to be life. Was that a ripple of a breath? Did the eyes flicker, a little. (The sea glass-still is alive.) And the liveliness radiates; a joyful illumination. People notice that about dead bodies. There is joy present.

Rev. Master Meiten, recenty passed here in Victoria, I was at her Cremation on Tuesday. Though gone days before from her shell there was a certain ‘life’ or light. A kind of vibration perhaps, was present in the stillness. Best I can say.

What’s in a view? What is it that comes through our eyes and registers in our brains? Mountains and water? A seeming dead person. Completely solid only? Liquid light, vibrational only? I’m contemplating lines from the Heart Sutra – ‘form is only pure (empty), pure is all form’….’for what is form is pure and what is pure is form’.

What’s in a view, any view, close or distant? Could it be that we are looking into a mirror reflecting back to each of us our liquid light, taken form. Here and gone, being and non being. Simultaneously!

Just sitting we ‘know’, we ARE this!. And just sometimes that truth comes in a flash atop a mountain, or looking through a microscope. Expansive and inspiring in a certain kind of way. That Truth though is ever entering each of us. It just seems we have to stop and view. A wall is as good a view as any.

This post is for Rev. Master Meiten and the Sangha she served here in Victoria and around the world through her writings.

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The Place Where The Light Enters In

"Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing there is a field. I’ll meet you there. When the soul lies down in that grass the world is too full to talk about.

Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.

The wound is the place where the Light enters you": Rumi

Here is Harley, rescue dog, German Shephard Collie cross. Her person works at an outdoor store in down town Victoria, Canada. Harley greets customers. The Light certainly entered her and she is giving it away freely.

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Jewel Tree in The Mountains

……."heading down to Hobcarton End from Grizedale Pike in August – yes a fully decorated Xmas tree! Its probably still there. That’s Skiddaw in the background." That’s the Lake District.

Photo by one of my walking companions in England. Too good not to share.

And here in Portland Oregon the sun is shining out of a clear blue sky. Mount St. Helens is sitting on the horizon glowing with snow. Back in the late 1970’s it became active, it’s top blew off and the region was covered in ash. And could that be what happens when we blow our top?

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Teaching of Whale


"We are all connected. Whales reflect the spirit of living in harmony with other."
Ernest Swanson, Haida

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The Still Point

Happy New Year to come dear Jade Mountains readers and Face Book Friends.

At the still point of the turning world.
Neither flesh nor fleshless;
Neither from nor towards; at the still point, there the dance is.
But neither arrest nor movement. And do not call it fixity,
Where past and future are gathered, either movement from nor towards.
Neither ascent nor decline. Except for the point, the still point,
there would be no dance. And there is only the dance.
Burnt Norton, T.S.Eliot

Tomorrow I leave Mt. Shasta on a Greyhound bus heading towards Eugene Oregon. It has been a good stay at the monastery and now I’m heading back to England arriving mid February. Hopefully there will be space enough to make some posts here on Jade Mountains.

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Practice Within The Order of Buddhist Contemplatives