Tag Archives: darshan

An Encounter with Christ

Below is a record of the day when there was no doubt that I had met the Guru. Its the day that I gained a true faith in Grace. Since that day She has taught me that there is only in fact One, True Guru, and He/She/It is beyond anything that we can grasp.  The Guru is within. It’s the deepest reaches of our own heart, but its also a relationship. Its not just love in an impersonal form, but that which loves us and wants nothing more than our evolution towards that love. Its that gentle hand of Grace that helps us along our path. It can come to us in the form of an angel, spirit guide, or our own Inner Voice.  For me, the Guru has come to me in the form of the great Indian Saint Neem Karoli Baba, but my first meeting was not in that form.

The First Day of the Rest of My Life

It was the Summer of 2008. I had just turned 23 years old. I moved to Eugene, Oregon for the summer to work as a wildland firefighter. This was my second summer in Eugene doing this work, and so my plan was to stay with Alden, a fellow fire fighter, as we waited for the call to action. Due to a paperwork error at my fire company, I was not eligible to firefight when the call came to ship out to California.

It was a big fire, and the entire company was sent down there except me. This left me alone in Eugene, waiting until the error was fixed so I could go with them. In the mean time, the lease on Alden’s room was up and his next house would not be available for ten days. Alden and I were going to stay with some of his friends, but now he was out on fire and had no cell service. The only people I knew in town were firefighters who were all gone as well. So I made the best of it and decided to sleep in the park until either the house became available, or I got the fire call.

In the mean time I was dead broke and had debt to pay.  About seven months earlier I had been scammed out of 8,000 dollars, all of the money I had in my savings. (That is a story for another day.) After this I decided to move to the desert to work on myself and do some soul-searching. I was camping on the outskirts of Las Cruces, New Mexico and working just enough to buy food, see my spiritual healer and pay off my student loans. The solitude of desert life allowed me to practice pranayama, meditation and other spiritual exercises, thus I experienced some extreme spiritual highs. This was a big deal to me because it was the first time I had ever been “high” without the use of drugs. I used these peak experiences as a marker for my spiritual “progress.”

I was not saving any money, however, and on my way back to Seattle I had car troubles that ended up maxing out my credit card. My credit card company, as a penalty for maxing out my card, raised my interest rate to 30 percent. I was not even able to pay off the interest as it accrued.

Not only was I broke and in debt, but emotionally broken. Once I returned to Seattle, all of the spiritual work I had done felt like it had completely shattered. I was having trouble reconnecting to my old friends and found myself still in love with a girl I had worked very hard to get over.

So here I was, homeless in Eugene and extremely depressed. I began having intense periods of longing for some Guru to come and take me away on my path to liberation, some Divine Being who could make everything alright. I had read Be Here Now, and I remembered its solemn words, “It’s really just another cop-out to be searching for the Guru.” God is within, and by waiting for some external thing to save me, I was just pausing the inevitable.

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This (blade of grass)

 
The bottom half folds into the stem the way
some tongues do, cupping a soft streak 
of shadow. 

The top half glistens with sparkle 
and subtle sun glaze. It bends forward 
to a slightly drooping tip. Beneath it 
hangs a bold sphere 
of dew;       

(
                  It could be any 
              blade of grass, but its not 
                         just any 
                     blade of grass,                its this 
             blade of grass

 here before me as the sun hovers above the canopy
                   to cheerfully greet
                        this day, this breath,                   this 
             blade of grass

 that through chance or circumstance or something 
                             unknown
             has enchanted me into a beauty
                       so deep
            that {even if it could 
                           get any better}
) 

all I really want 
is this.



Darshan

It’s the subtlest of the subtle
that we give our hearts to-

deeper than a smile, softer
than an eyelash,

the way a cat’s paws
barely lend their weight
to the mattress,

the way they prowl
with those slow
swooning purs,

the way they gently nudge
two sleeping eyes
awake.


Intimacy

I see a bright crescent
forming like a smile
at the bottom of your
pupil. (This is how pain
condenses to
honey.)

I unwrap the wool from
my body and allow
this thick nectar
to soak
through my skin.


Collapsing the Distance

 
This is what Thank You means-
it is when the pores become 
             so wide
that the wind 
can slip through the skin
and tickle the heart.

It is acceptance
with Love.

And it draws our surroundings
closer- the chair, the ocean,
the trees... it brings them
inside.

It holds the atoms in my body
together, and now holds
your atoms
to mine.

The Way the Earth is Lit

I have heard it was said
by them of old time
that the Moon
borrows her light
from the Sun.

But I say
a beauty as great as the Moon’s
inspires a great lover,
and it was this muse
that sparked the Sun’s flame.

The Sun’s sweet ballads
of love and longing
share the Moon
with all of us, and
in that sharing we are

given hope
that we too can find
such a beauty
to ignite us
into existence.


Afterthought

…it is Thank You
and I Love You, it is Joy and it is
Yes! it is the rising sun revealing
a soft pair of hands
sprinkling salt on the
snow-covered
sidewalk.


Mantra

I tried to be a saint once; it didn’t
work. So now I carry
a pocketful of zippers
when I walk into town.

I lay them on the sidewalk
and pull on their sliders, separating
the concrete to reveal

the sweet mystery of light and sound
that bounces between bamboo
stalks when played upon
by the wind.


Fragility

Let me touch my
lips to your cheek, so
I may swallow your tears.
Then, maybe
they will enter my bloodstream,
and I can finally feel
your preciousness
with my entire
body.


Addiction

What I most want to do tonight
is wrestle the sky, grab a hold
of a good-sized
chunk
and wring it like a
wet rag
for a single drop
of light.


Yes

 
Can we be bonded by a faith like this?
where our own existence
is enough? and our faults
seem to vanish
in it's ocean of magnificence
the way a mosquito
seems to vanish
as it dances
across the sun?
 
This here we are
     is the gateway
into a Love
     so abundant
that ripe plums
     weigh their branches
to hover above
     our cupped hands.

I may have reasons for doubt,
but those plums... so deliciously full, so ready
to burst! ...they seem to say
yes.


Music

No true poet
claims to create beauty;
he discovers it
the way a tambura player
discovers
that perfect place on the string
to stroke.

Deep within your soul
there is an antique table
where the two Buddhas, Sorrow and Joy,
sit to have tea.

Their arms rest on the table’s edges
as they lean close to each other’s eyes.

Within their intensity
lies four golden strings
waiting
to be played.


Starlight

I am in one of those moods again
where I just want to kiss
anything that moves.

I would even kiss the Sun
if he would let me, but instead
he has climbed down his own
sunbeam and nestled in my heart.

Now when I kiss the plants,
the insects, or the Moon,
they burn
into stars.

This is what you
are yearning for, dear lover.
Just lean closer, and let me
kiss you
into who

you really are.


True Conversion

True conversion
is not the swapping of words,
the trading of dogma
or the switching of casings
that harden the heart.

It is when the shells shatter
from a swelled heart blossoming
that we are truly born again.


what It is

Sometimes at night,
or in the early morning when
dim-orange streetlamps
reflect off wet pavement,
and silent breeze
becomes truly silent,
I finally see a tree
as a tree,
and my footsteps sound real.