The Way of the Mountain


At the time when there is neither thing nor non thing to occupy a place before the mind, at that point there is no projected image.   This lack of reference point is perfect peace.”       SHANTIDEVA :  The Guide to the Boddhisattva’s Conduct.

Meditation opens a door in the mind.  When we fully walk through that door, there is the direct experience of peace.  No thoughts, no images, no concerns, perfect balance.  Peace is what you call “no thing happening in the mind.”  But as soon as you call it peace, out the door you go!

Practice meditation daily, maybe you can stay in the doorway!

The Empty Mountain Report

When a person reaches the depths of despair, they feel empty of any feeling of goodness, empty of peace or gratitude.  This “terrible” condition indicates one is in the presence of one’s soul and  it is the beginning of great wisdom.  It can be said of such moments, “we have touched our souls and become aware of how empty we truly are..” 

We are truly a reflection.  It’s as if we are looking into the dark depths of a pool of a water seeing our reflection.  Touch the surface and the reflection dissolves away instantly.  We are ultimately that.  Despair brings realization of the emptiness of our being in a direct way. 

This realization should bring us great joy.   If what we think of ourselves is merely a reflection, of what do we reflect?   This emptiness we feel is the beginning of the realization  that we are not what we appear to be.  We are something beyond this reflected being.  Despair is a natural response to seeing through the reflection.   It is quite disappointing to see that what we thought was real, was not. 

The empty feeling that despair conjures up is the direct experience that we cannot be satisfied with appearances.  We reflect something greater than we have the power to see.  When I stir up my reflection,  I dissolve the appearance of me.  I am not a permanent being and whatever saddens me, frustrates, me or drives me crazy will not last either. 

 I am aware of strong feelings.  I am aware my feelings of happiness and joy do not last.  Therefore my anger, frustration and sadness cannot last either.  The mountain looms up before my eyes, I cannot imagine a day that it would not be there.  Yet the appearance of it changes every day. 

 I am empty, just like that mountain.

The Mountain Dawn Report

j0402277I meditate in the morning as the sun rises above the mountain ridge.  The sunlight glints across the new fallen snow, illuminating my face with bright golden light.

Clouds pass over the sun and my face darkens, the sky clears and sunlight illumines my face.  Again and again.  Moment by moment.  The appearance of darkness.  The appearance of light.  The presence of the sun illuminates my mind with awareness.


It’s Raining Leaves

Fall Leaves

It is a rainy day.  Chilly and bleak.  Yet I am surrounded by fire red burning bushes and glowing yellow trees.  The wind blows around the corner of my house and suddenly its raining leaves.  Golden leaves are swirling all around.  This is not momentary, it lasts for several minutes.  The leaves are floating to the ground by the hundreds.

Where did all these leaves come from?  I have a neighborhood of golden leaves in my backyard.  I want to go outside and lie down on those wet leaves.  Maybe more will blow onto my face.  Where will they go tomorrow?

Maybe they will simply blow away.

Finding Time to be Mindful

Hand holding seedling

It’s difficult to find the time to meditate.  I always think that morning is best.  Its truly the most quiet time for many people.  If I start my day with meditation, it seems to set the theme of the day.  Oh yes, things can get stressful and I can feel rushed, unfocused and out of synch.


But then I can remember my meditation breath, my first exhalation of becoming present right here and right now, to whatever is really happening around me.  Then my inhale comes from my belly, reminding me to breathe in trust as my exhalation then allows me to let go.  To let go of whatever is “not happening” right now.


That is a moment of mindfulness.  And my intentional meditation breath always returns me to now.


As a careful observer I have noticed that whatever I have been thinking about generally ISN’T happening right now.  Over the years I have found, the more I meditate, I am prepared to respond to whatever happens just naturally.  I don’t have to “run scenarios” over and over and stress myself out.


I just came back from a hike around a lake in the mountains about 1500 feet above sea level.  It was a beautiful lake with lily pads on its surface and was surrounded by trees with softly turning autumn leaves.  The wind spoke gently through the the leaves of the trees.  Everything around me was aware of this very moment, becoming the next moment.  These moments seemed to take care of themselves.   They didn’t need me to take care of them.  Why should I even try to, when becoming the moment itself was so much more beautiful.


be mindful, each moment is observing you.

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