A common man marvels at uncommon things. A wise man marvels at the commonplace. CONFUCIUS

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Cats And Ducks Are Our Teachers

It's about realising that there are no problems. Only situations.

So do not be concerned with the fruit of your action - just give attention to the action itself. The fruit will come of its own accord.

Your outer journey may contain a million steps; your inner journey only has one: the step you are taking right now. As you become more deeply aware of this one step, you realize that it already contains within itself all the other steps as well as the destination.

True love has no opposite. If your love has an 'opposite', then it is not love but a strong ego-need for a more complete and deeper sense of self, a need that the other person temporarily meets. It is the ego's substitute for salvation, and for a short time it almost does feel like salvation.

A Buddhist monk once told me: 'All I have learned in the twenty years that I have been a monk I can sum up in one sentence: All that arises passes away. This I know.' What he meant, of course, was this: I have learned to offer no resistance to what is; I have learned to allow the present moment to be and to accept the impermanent nature of all things and conditions. Thus have I found peace.

I have lived with several Zen masters - all of them cats. Even ducks have taught me important spiritual lessons. Just watching them is a meditation.



George said...

I've been very impressed with Eckhart Tolle's books, both "The Power of Now" and "A New Earth." There is so much wisdom in the excerpt you have quoted that it's rather difficult to add anything, except to say that this, for me, is the challenge—to relinquish the ego, to accept what is, and to engage life fully without attachment to the outcome. As you might have guessed, I would add that dogs can also be great Zen masters.

HKatz said...

So do not be concerned with the fruit of your action - just give attention to the action itself. The fruit will come of its own accord.

I need to remind myself of this. To focus on the present and to be patient.

Susan Scheid said...

"I have lived with several Zen masters - all of them cats." You know, I'd never thought about our cats that way, but I think you're exactly right (or, as to one of our two, at least on most days . . .)

Ruth said...

You make me want to read The Power of Now again; and George makes me want to read A New Earth.

Back in 2006 I posted several times while reading the book. Not to detract from your post, this one is about the ducks, flapping their wings:

"When two ducks get into a fight, which never lasts long, they will separate and float off in opposite directions. Then each duck will flap its wings vigorously a few times, thus releasing the surplus energy that built up during the fight. After they flap their wings, they float on peacefully, as if nothing had ever happened."

Humans have a lot to learn.

Grace said...

So you're reading Eckhart Tolle's books and practicing yoga now, hmmm . . .

The Weaver of Grass said...

Inscrutable is the word that immediately springs to mind about cats Robert - love 'em.

The Solitary Walker said...

Yes, dogs too, George, of course!

HKatz, indeed, patience can be so hard to learn, but when it comes, and you focus completely on the present, and do this consciously and regularly - it's such a blessing and a relief.

Hi Susan! You'll be thinking too about ducks that way soon, I promise you (check out Ruth's link below).

Ruth, that's pretty wise of the ducks ... but I suppose wisdom isn't the word, as they do it instinctively...

Now, what's in the 'hmmm...', Grace?!

Inscrutable, independent, and secure in their unique 'cat-ness', Pat...

Paul Sunstone said...

"True love has no opposite."

I not familiar with Tolle, but after reading that much, I think I'll take a look at what else he has to say.