There and Back Again

What remains after the chairs have been put away, the cups washed, lights switched off and the door locked? Do the words linger on? I’ve been pondering, as I do quite often, both the words offered during a talk on Buddhist practice and what the listeners carry away with them afterwards. Knowing for myself that I rarely remember strings of words spoken during a Dharma talk I imagine that must be the same for others.

Last afternoon as we were preparing to leave the Friends Meeting House in Lancaster after our mini retreat somebody came to me to say thank you and good by. He indicated good-naturedly that he would probably not remember the details of what I talked about, and I understood completely. Later a woman came to thank me for my sense of humour. Is that what she will remember I wonder? Yet another person said maybe what I said was a bit too ‘advanced’ for some since I seemed to be suggesting people take a leap from the known to the unknown. Perhaps she will remember that for herself, and leap!

All I can say now that it was good to go, and good to be back.

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4 thoughts on “There and Back Again”

  1. So much of what is passed from one person to another in a conversation is not in the words. I’ve had some very moving and important conversations, though I couldn’t reporduce exactly what was said. When something vital gets passed to you and it really sticks, it becomes part of you, and what need then is there for words?

  2. Hi Rev. Mugo, just got back from my monthly stay at the temple and read your blog…I’ve learned often that words from teaching come back when needed most…I think our brains are great recording devices and often play back what’s necessary when necessary. And sometimes teaching manifests simply…like feeling the security and trust at the temple and coming back on the train and remembering how the violet crocus opened in the security and joy of the sun on the temple grounds on Friday,I realized my heart had done the same from the teaching I had received while there—a simple feeling without words…but a True teaching! All the best…Jack

  3. Something of what you said on Sunday stuck. Monday night at the Group meeting I seemed to be more aware of the space around me.
    Perhaps this is what is meant inthe Scriptures where it says “…should anyone remember even only one word….”
    It was good to see you in Lancaster again.

  4. Tom, I’m glad you came in with this level of things as last night I was struggling to express just what you have said. You have given me an opportunity to expand on my posting. Thanks.

    In our tradition we have what is termed a transmission outside of the scriptures. This is pointing to the mutual recognition, without words, of the fundamental enlightened nature of the Universe. This is how the teaching line was started, by Shakyamuni holding up a flower and his disciple smiled. It was an inside kind of a smile, of mutual recognition. Where does the smile start, where does it go to and does it ever leave?

    Jack, Thank you too for your opened spring flowers brought back from the Black Forest.

    Norman, Well good, it is good to know and realize that one inhabits a larger space. May you know your true body, which of course is not seperate from the Universe. That was the basic I was attempting to point out on Sunday, amoung other things.

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