RSS feeds

Zen Blog

Zen Blog

Noting a Printing Press and a Revolution


Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Patheos has the views of the prevalent religions and spiritualities of the world. Johannes GutenbergWikicommons         The 23rd of February has always been an important day in my personal calendar. It’s the day that has been officially designated as when the first pages were pulled for Johannes Gutenberg’s wonderful Bible in 1455. When I was a kid it was called the first printed book. A big deal. And as a bookish kid, I’m super glad. They had to chan...

Continue reading
  22 Hits

Struggle and Bliss

teaching Feb 22, 2024 We think we understand what's good and what's bad, but we don't know. So just breathe! And then whatever happens, that's what happens. You learn from all of it. That struggle is powerful. That moment of bliss is also powerful. There is something to be gleaned from all of it. It's just the craving of one and the pushing away of the other that creates a problem. By Zen Master Bon Soeng

Continue reading
  25 Hits

Reflections of a Shrinking Man


Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Patheos has the views of the prevalent religions and spiritualities of the world. Incredible Shrinking ManTheatrical Release Poster           I’ve mentioned on this blog before how I consider my first education to have come from Science Fiction. Among the authors who touched me is Richard Matheson. Richard Burton Matheson was born New Jersey in 1926. His parents divorced when he was eight. His mother took him to live in Brooklyn, where he was raised. ...

Continue reading
  26 Hits

A World Teacher Dies


Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Patheos has the views of the prevalent religions and spiritualities of the world. Jiddu Krishnamurtiby Albert Witzelcirca 1922wikicommons               About ten minutes past midnight on the 17th of February, in 1986, Jiddu Krishnamurti died in Ojai, California. He was ninety years old. Or thereabaouts. He had been several things in his life. One of them a world teacher. It’s not precisely sure when Krishnamurti was born, probably in May, but what day...

Continue reading
  31 Hits

Why I Am Vegan (and how to make it easy)

My wife Eva and I have been vegan for over 11 years now, and we love it. I don’t talk about veganism a lot on Zen Habits, but today I’d love to share a little about it, if you’ll indulge me. Let me start by talking about why I’m vegan, and then I’ll share a few tips on how to make becoming vegan as easy as possible, in case you’re interested. So the first thing is that veganism, for me, is about compassion. Yes, it has a huge environmental impact — probably bigger than anything else you can do, including ditching a car or going electric vehicle...

Continue reading
  86 Hits

The Meditation Pill

teaching Feb 15, 2024 If I can connect with what I am doing, I can stay grounded and pay attention to those reactions, see them and not get carried away with them. It doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy the good times or despair the bad times. But if I stay grounded, connected with something beyond my likes and dislikes, then there is some stability and clarity in my life because I am not jumping all around getting lost in my reactions. If somebody calls me something that I don’t like and that raises my anger, I then start acting out of my anger and los...

Continue reading
  31 Hits

An Ox reveals the Way and its Power


Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Patheos has the views of the prevalent religions and spiritualities of the world. The Ten Ox-Herding Songs, 1278Japan, Kamakura period (1185–1333)Handscroll; ink and color on paper; Image: 1 ft. 1/4 in. x 20 ft. 6 in. (31.1 x 624.8 cm)The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Mary Griggs Burke Collection         In the twelfth century a Chinese Zen master, Kuoan Shiyuan wrote a series of poems describing the arc of the spiritual life. He did these poe...

Continue reading
  29 Hits

How to Address What’s Really Causing Your Avoidance

When we are procrastinating, avoiding exercise or some other habit we want to create, or avoiding taking on a difficult project … the underlying cause is rarely what we think it is. We think that all we need to do is do the thing we’re avoiding, and stop procrastinating. Simple! But then when we fail, we wonder what’s wrong with us. The problem is that we aren’t really addressing the real cause. We’re addressing the symptom, and while there are tactics that can help with the symptom, they rarely last for very long. So what causes our avoidance?...

Continue reading
  26 Hits

The 84 Problems In Life

jason quinn jdpsn teaching Feb 08, 2024 During the Buddha’s time, there was a farmer who had many problems. He told the Buddha all about how difficult his life was. The weather never cooperated with what he wanted. It was too wet or too dry, so his crops often failed. His wife was very critical of him, and his children didn't show any gratitude for anything that he did for them. Also, his neighbors were always gossiping about him.   The farmer was expecting the Buddha to have a solution for his problems. But the Buddha said he could not help hi...

Continue reading
  34 Hits

Bonfires of the Vanities, Certainty, and Not Knowing


Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Patheos has the views of the prevalent religions and spiritualities of the world. Moses& the Burning BushFoster Bible, 1897             It was the 7th of February in 1497, that the Dominican Friar Girolamo Savonarola called the city of Florence into the orgy falò delle vanità, the “Bonfire of the Vanities.” Overcome with the fervors of faith he people gathered together what they and the good friar considered temptations into sin, piled them up, an...

Continue reading
  36 Hits

WHAT ABOUT WHEN YOU RUN OUT OF SERMONS ON LOVE?


Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Patheos has the views of the prevalent religions and spiritualities of the world. Death and the PreacherHans Holbein16th century                   A colleague of mine has just retired as a Unitarian Universalist parish minister.  He had what some would call a storied career, serving our denomination at every level. Me, I personally consider him a good friend, as well as just being a wise and generous human being. What people today mostly wouldn’t know...

Continue reading
  27 Hits

Slow Down to Fall in Love Again

“Smile, breathe and go slowly.”~ Thich Nhat Hanh Recently I got a running watch, and have been keeping most of my runs below a certain heart rate, to build up my heart’s aerobic fitness with lots of slow running. The pace of my runs has been incredibly slow for the last month. It’s helped me to fall in love with running again. I’ll share more about that, but it has me wanting to share a more general thought: slowing down can have us falling in love with anything if we let it. Let me share a few examples: Music: Often we listen to music while ru...

Continue reading
  28 Hits

The Basic Teaching Of The Buddha

teaching Feb 01, 2024 The basic teaching of the Buddha was that if you want happiness, don’t go chasing after the things that you want or like, and don’t push away the things that you don’t like. It's chasing after what you want and the resisting of what you don’t want that causes suffering. The very simple truth, the Buddha said, was if you can stay present in this moment and accept what’s here, happiness actually arises. In a way that’s counterintuitive and a little bit preposterous. Happiness is not about getting what I want and not getting ...

Continue reading
  72 Hits

Recalling the Great Soul Mahatma Gandhi


Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Patheos has the views of the prevalent religions and spiritualities of the world. Mahatma GandhiElliot & Fry Studio, 1931Wikicommons               On the 30th of January in 1948 Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi was attending an interfaith prayer service, when a radical Hindu nationalist came up to him and shot three bullets into his chest. The Indian spiritual and political leader was born on the 2nd of October, in 1869 in Porbander, a town in present d...

Continue reading
  30 Hits

Of Zen, Nonduality, and the Healing our Broken Hearts


Of Zen, Nonduality, and the Healing our Broken Hearts January 26, 2024 James Ford Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Patheos has the views of the prevalent religions and spiritualities of the world. Child blowing bubble pipeGeorge Garrigues, 1962Wikicommons Recently I received a note asking about my meditation on David Loy’s book Nonduality in Buddhism and Beyond. The writer said it was all so abstract. And wondered what it had to do with anything actually important. Fair question, and...

Continue reading
  88 Hits

Become Quiet So You Can Listen

“The quieter you become, the more you are able to hear.” ― Rumi There’s rarely a moment in the day when most of us stop moving and stop the noise. For most of us, we’re working, we’re moving, we’re driving, we’re listening to things on our headphones, we’re watching things, we’re filling up the little spaces by checking our phones. This isn’t wrong — it’s a very human tendency to want to be busy, productive, filling every space with something useful or entertaining. But what if we could let ourselves become quiet? What happens is something magi...

Continue reading
  71 Hits

Great Meaning To The World

jason quinn jdpsn teaching Jan 26, 2024 When we see the impermanence of this world and discover who we truly are, we can realize a truth that goes beyond impermanence. The truth is something every human being can perceive intrinsically and is already clear in every moment. It is acknowledging the difficulties and dissatisfaction in our own lives, which helps us to see the difficulties and dissatisfaction in the lives of others. We can see that many people are in a great need of help. When we perceive that need clearly, the meaning of life turns...

Continue reading
  74 Hits

The Joys of Getting Organized

The last couple of months, things have piled up on me: emails, tasks, random notes, a bunch of browser tabs with things I’m interested or need to do, financial stuff, etc. For the past week, I’ve been allowing myself the joys of getting organized. It’s beautiful, and I just had to share with you. Let me say a few things first: you don’t need to be organized all the time, or at all. This isn’t a “should” to add to your list of things you’re not doing. Also, there isn’t one way to do this, and my way isn’t the “right” way. Finally, this is about ...

Continue reading
  80 Hits

Richard Rolle’s Fire of Love


Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Patheos has the views of the prevalent religions and spiritualities of the world. Richard RolleRadcliffe College Monographs No. 151910                 A couple of years ago I offered a small reflection on the medieval Christian mystic Richard Rolle, together with an excerpt from his Fire of Love. Here I expand a bit my reflection about him and his spirituality, and include again the Fire of Love. The Church of England marks out the 20th of January as ...

Continue reading
  75 Hits

Recalling the Great Rinzai Teacher Hakuin Ekaku


Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Patheos has the views of the prevalent religions and spiritualities of the world. Hakuin Ekakuself-portrait, 1764                     Hakuin Ekaku died on January the 18th, 1769. He was born on the 19th of January, in 1686, in a village at the foot of Mount Fuji. In those years between death and birth, Hakuin became the great reformer of Japanese Rinzai Zen. Curricular koan study traces to two major strains, both named for grand students of his. As a ...

Continue reading
  39 Hits

About TAO of Light

Yoga is a practice for everyone because it meets you exactly where you are in the present moment. From beginner students to advanced yogis and everything in between, Tao of Light Yoga welcomes everybody at all levels of their journey. There is a place for everyone inside our studio and it is our goal to make each and every student feel at home. It is your time on your mat that is important to us. We, at Tao of Light, will create a space that provides modern comfort for an ancient practice. As both a yoga studio and a sangha, we honor the tradition of the practice while respecting the diversity and individual beliefs of our students.

Call Us

Phone: 1 800 123 4567

Mobile: 1 888 123 4567

Fax: 1 888 123 4567

Email Us

admin@taooflight.com

Drop us an email and we'll respond (usually) within 24 hours.