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graves

Memorial Day: A spiritual way to honor makers of peace

Watching our thoughts from a place of awareness, before they become action, is the path to peace — and highest way to honor fallen service men and women

DATELINE: Memorial Day service at the Presidio Interfaith Chapel, San Francisco. A sermon by Fr. DAVID RICKEY — On this Memorial Day 2009, we gather again to honor and remember those who have served and sacrificed for freedom in this country and around the world. Here and at national cemeteries throughout this land, row upon row of white markers pay silent but eloquent testimony to the thousands upon thousands of women and men who have lost their lives so that others may live in peace.

But they have not lost their lives so much as they have spent their lives, spent for a cause that was much deeper than themselves. It is not because they were killed or served in battle that we honor them, but because they lived in distinction. Not only did these heroic individuals fight for freedom and justice. So many of them lived in witness to the values they held with such deep respect.

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child

Is your ‘essence of being’ the same thing as your ‘inner child’?

The Indian poet Nachi Ma’s view of a child’s wisdom isn’t the street-smarts in Slumdog Millionaire.  It’s a theory of consciousness

SPECIAL TO SOUL’S CODE: NACHI MA — I feel that there is lot of wisdom rooted in childhood that is ignored, or not recognized because we never assume or look that way.

When a child is probing us with open, transparent eyes perhaps he is not looking at us from mere innocence perhaps there is something more there.

Maybe we need to look at it not in relation of being an adult to child but with an inquisitive mind to let the beauty and truth inside a child be revealed to us.

This poem is about the child in us all . . . the inner child that we carry . . . no matter what our age.

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girl hugging herself

“I Me Wed”: Making it Through the Day (and Night)

This poetic affirmation is beautiful for those moments when you are feeling down about yourself, or whatever . . .We ALL have days like that!

SPECIAL TO SOUL’S CODE, ROB BREZSNY —I first wrote these in a book called, Pronoia Is the Antidote for Paranoia: How the Whole World Is Conspiring to Shower You with Blessings. Since then, they’ve become an online viral hit and we’re blessed to share them with the Soul’s Code community.

This text is a sacrament with a spiritual spin: it invites you to make a contract to “marry yourself” — that is, allow a complete intimacy with your day-to-day experience, and essence:

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vaishali-bookcover.jpg

What is meditation? In my mind, *loving* whatever you give your attention to

ADVANCE BOOK EXCERPT: VAISHALI

The following is taken from Vaishali’s second book, Wisdom Rising.

It was the great spiritual teacher J. Krishnamurti who once said, “If you think that meditation is sitting in a corner of your room for fifteen to twenty minutes, and then getting up and paying no attention to the rest of your day, you are NOT meditating. You are fooling yourself!”

What does he mean by this? Meditation is the process of watching the mind, paying attention to where it wanders, and then bringing it back to a place or point of focus. The point of focus can be watching the breath; it can be holding a mantra or a specifically-designed intention or thought.

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Two Souls


A koan from the Zen master, Goso, and the legend of Seijo

SOUL’S CODE — We stumbled onto this Zen Koan and thought it worth sharing.

Chokan had a very beautiful daughter named Seijo. He also had a handsome young cousin named Ochu. Joking, he would often comment that they would make a fine married couple. Actually, he planned to give his daughter in marriage to another man. But young Seijo and Ochu took him seriously; they fell in love and thought themselves engaged. One day Chokan announced Seijo’s betrothal to the other man. In rage and despair, Ochu left by boat. After several days journey, much to his astonishment and joy he discovered that Seijo was on the boat with him!

They went to a nearby city where they lived for several years and had two children. But Seijo could not forget her father; so Ochu decided to go back with her and ask the father’s forgiveness and blessing. When they arrived, he left Seijo on the boat and went to the father’s house. he humbly apologized to the father for taking his daughter away and asked forgiveness for them both.

“What is the meaning of all this madness?” the father exclaimed. Then he related that after Ochu had left, many years ago, his daughter Seijo had fallen ill and had lain comatose in bed since. Ochu assured him that he was mistaken, and, in proof, he brought Seijo from the boat. When she entered, the Seijo lying ill in bed rose to meet her, and the two became one.

Zen Master Goso, referrring to the legend, observed, “Seijo had two souls, one always sick at home and the other in the city, a married woman with two children. Which was the true soul?”

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Spiritual Surf: 4 noble truths about meditation; 10 ways to improve your life; suicide

Looking for solutions? Meditation, Self-Improvement and Chainsaws…?

Two quick lists for you: 10 virtually instant ways to improve your life and 4 Powerful Reasons to Meditate and How To Get Started.

Homer Simpson has appeared next to the ancient pagan fertility symbol of Cerne Abbas, according to the BBC.

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The Pilates ‘body-rush’

The Pilates ‘body-rush’

Pilates can be as spiritual an experience as yoga. One teacher’s spontaneous guided meditation at the end of class

BY PAUL KAIHLA — People often talk about the “body-rush” they feel after doing pilates, and I experienced a long-lasting wave of that after a class this weekend.

There was this swirl of energy and aliveness in my body, and elation in the mind. It doesn’t happen for me every time. A lot depends on the presence of the instructor and who is in the room.

At the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco we have Nicole Tesson, a dancer by training.

To me, dancers like her are a step ahead of a lot of us in their spiritual evolution because their whole discipline is devoted to bridging the Cartesian division between mind and body.

The dance profession, by the way, preserved pilates for the rest of us, during decades of relative obscurity after Joseph Pilates introduced it in the 1930s in New York (to dancers in George Ballanchine’s and Martha Graham’s companies). Pilates finally became a fad among the beautiful people in L.A. in the 1990s, and now it’s a staple in the training repertoire of virtually every professional sports team in America. But dancers remain the first and foremost apostles of pilates.

The reason I think it’s also a spiritual practice is because it literally works on the core of your being, the muscles and tissues deep in your torso and that wrap around your bones. It takes so much attention to isolate these muscles that you can only do the movements if you totally withdraw your awareness from work-a-day thoughts. The movements bring you out of your mind and into your body — into a quasi-meditative state.

Nicole brought us all the way into one at the end of our class with these words that she later said, “just came out of my mouth”:

Bring yourself back into your breathing.

Enjoy your breathing . . .

Feel the weight of your body melt into the mat.

Let the inside fall to the outside,

and the outside, fall to the floor.

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