Saturday, November 10, 2018

Don't Resist

     I've ranted before about how resistance is futile in combating the social and political changes we see in our world these days (you can read about it here.)  Remember, resistance only breeds resistance.  We need a different way.

     I found a wonderful quote by the Zen teacher Normal Fischer who addresses this very issue:
As a spiritual practitioner you are more committed to caring for others than you are to a side or a cause.  Caring for others doesn't mean caring only for the ones you are sympathetic to; it means all others.  If it's only some, then you're gong to end up being aggressive toward the others who seem to behave unjustly toward the ones you care about.  And aggression breeds aggression.  You might win with aggression, but there is always backlash, and pretty soon you lose.  I have seen this many times.  I am convinced that only real, heartfelt nonaggression works in the long run.  And this isn't something you can just decide you are going to feel.  It is challenging to be genuinely caring and loving.  It takes spiritual work, psychological work, meditation, cultivation.  But there is no doubt that, for me, this is the only way.
     Wow, what a challenge.  But it really is the only way.  And it is the necessary foundation for the next step.  More on that next week.

(image courtesy of


Saturday, November 3, 2018

Let Your Voice Be Heard

     Here in the United States, we face an important election in the next few days.  I think far too many still have the attitude that we should let "others" make the decisions and then live with the results as best we can.

     May I offer a different point of view?

     Imagine if you were in a band, and as a flute player, you decided that you wouldn't play because you didn't feel like it.  Or maybe you felt that your little instrument wasn't as big and loud and impressive as a tuba or French horn.  Or maybe you felt that you didn't have as many years of lessons as the oboist and were an inferior musician.  Or maybe you were just feeling ornery or lazy.

     What would the band sound like without your flute?

     Probably not great.  Every voice matters.  Every point of view matters.  You matter.


(image courtesy of