Monday, May 25, 2015

Walk on the Wild Side: Esalen, May 2015

Walking Wild in Big Creek

"I am well again, I came to life in the cool winds and crystal waters of the mountains..."
~ John Muir

What walks with us from the wilds of Big Sur to our other lives? This is the question I ask myself and almost all individuals and groups to hold gently as an open question in their lives. Patiently weave the threads of somatically felt moments that have heart and meaning into the fabric of our daily life. Even in the middle of the busiest city, as Mary Oliver suggests, "there is still somewhere deep within you a beast shouting that the earth is exactly what it wanted." Are we willing to hear the shouting at least as a whisper, and let the whispers inform our moment to moment choices along the path? May we listen deeply. May the wilds (inside and out) keep calling us into authentic aliveness.

Here are some links that were requested and some just for fun:
Kings of the Kelp: California Sea Otters by Steven
Elusive Wild Beauty: Mountain Lions by Steven
Meal Chant Stew by Steven published on Bro. David Steindl-Rast's site
Big Creek Reserve (if you are inclined to support some of the places we visited)
Jeff Myers Art
Ojai Foundation (where Adam is Executive Director and retreat leader)
New Leadership Adventure (Adam's new project, site to be launched soon)
Art of Pilgrimage at Ojai Foundation with Adam & Steven

About Muir
How Muir Are You?
John Muir: Wikipedia
John Muir: Nature's Visionary by Gretel Ehrlich (my favorite book about Muir)

"The mountain are calling and I must go"
~ John Muir

Walking Wildly,


Thursday, May 07, 2015

Nature of Zen: Tassajara, May 2015

Tassajara Jizo

Here is the story that Leslie used in one or our discussions:

As the Buddha was walking with the congregation, he pointed to the ground with his finger and said, "This spot is good to build a sanctuary." Indra, Emperor of the gods, took a blade of grass, stuck it in the ground and said, "The sanctuary is built." The Buddha smiled.
~ from the Book of Serenity

Walking with our group this last weekend at Tassajara for moments I could feel sanctuaries being built in every moment—each of us planting blades of grass, building santuary, and smiling. As I told the group, I mark time by my seasonal return to Tassajara. Coming over the road crossing Chew's Ridge and descending into Tassajara Creek is a threshold and the journey is a pilgrimage. Thank you for conspiring (from latin, meaning breathing together) to build sanctuary. May something of our time together journey with you into your other life.

Here are some links that may be of interest:
Tassajara Photos
Robin's Photos
Steven's Photos: form this retreat (I took the fewest ever!)
Mindful by Mary Oliver
Coulter Pines
Meal Chant Stew: this is an article I wrote about the Tassajara meal chant and how I changed the language to align with my own experience and use. It came up as a topic in our group discussion.

Thanks to the staff at Tassajara in supporting us at the very beginning of the guest season. Special thanks to Benson, Tjarn, and especially Leslie—and of course the wilds of the Santa Lucia Mountains.

Gassho (Deep Bow) to each of us...