What is the ego?
The ego is the ego. It’s zazen … as in “Know thyself.” I am always saying, You must understand the ego . . …. and in the end, there is no ego, the ego has no substance. Where are you going to locate this substance? In the nose? The brain? The navel? The head? Hard to say. In the mind? But what is the mind? It has become a problem, the biggest problem of psychology, philosophy, and religion.
I have explained that we have no noumenon, no permanent substance. The ego changes with every second that goes by; yesterday’s ego, today’s ego … they’re not the same. Our body changes, our cells change too. When you take a bath, for example, all the dead cells of your skin are washed away. Our brain, our mind changes; that of the adult is not the same as it was in the child. So where does the ego exist? It is one with the cosmos. It is not only the body, the mind, but it is God, Buddha, the fundamental cosmic force.
To find eternity is not egotism; it is truth, true noumenon. That is the true religion we must create. Our life is connected to the cosmic power and stands in a relation of interdependence with all other existences. We cannot live by ourselves, we are dependent upon nature, air, water. So we must not become selfish… That is the great satori. It is useless to be egotistical because every ego is in a relationship of interdependence with the world and with all things.
So there is no need to keep things for oneself. That is very important. In his Essays, Montaigne wrote that everybody else was always looking outward, but he wanted to look within. It is necessary to turn your eyes inward, even though most people only look outside. Today more than ever before we must look into ourselves. To look at an object is easy, to look at the subject is not so easy.
SOURCE – http://www.purifymind.com/WhatEgoZen.htm
Rootedness in Being
The sapling doesn’t want anything because it is at one with the totality, and the totality acts through it. “Look the lilies of the field, how they grow” said Jesus, “they toil not, neither do they spin. Yet even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.”
We could say that the totality — Life — wants the sapling to become a tree, but the sapling doesn’t see itself as separate from life and so wants nothing for itself. It is one with what Life wants.
That’s why it isn’t worried or stressed. And if it has to die prematurely, it dies with ease. It is as surrendered in death as it is in life.
It senses, no matter how obscurely, its rootedness in Being, the formless and eternal one Life.
~ From: A New Earth, by Eckhart Tolle
The heart is like a box, and language is the key. Only by using the key can we open the box and observe the gems it contains.
SOURCE – http://info.bahai.org/article-1-3-4-8.html
‘There is one thing the photograph must contain, the humanity of the moment.’ – Robert Frank
“Every imperfect soul is self-centred and thinketh only of his own good. But as his thoughts expand a little he will begin to think of the welfare and comfort of his family. If his ideas still more widen, his concern will be the felicity of his fellow citizens; and if still they widen, he will be thinking of the glory of his land and of his race. But when ideas and views reach the utmost degree of expansion and attain the stage of perfection, then will he be interested in the exaltation of humankind. He will then be the well-wisher of all men and the seeker of the weal and prosperity of all lands. This is indicative of perfection.” – ‘Abdu’l-Bahá
Theology starts with dogmas, philosophy begins with problems. Philosophy sees the problem first, theology has the answer in advance. We must not, however, disregard another important difference. Not only are the problems of philosophy not identical with the problems of religion; their status is not the same. Philosophy is, in a sense, a kind of thinking that has a beginning but no end. In it, the awareness of the problem outlives all solutions. Its answers are questions in disguise; every new answer giving rise to new questions. In religion, on the other hand, the mystery of the answer hovers over all questions.
- Abraham Joshua Heschel, God in Search of Man: A Philosophy of Judaism (1955)
20 Once, on being asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, “The coming of the kingdom of God is not something that can be observed,
21 nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is in your midst.”
22 Then he said to his disciples, “The time is coming when you will long to see one of the days of the Son of Man, but you will not see it.
23 People will tell you, ‘There he is!’ or ‘Here he is!’ Do not go running off after them.
24 For the Son of Man in his day will be like the lightning, which flashes and lights up the sky from one end to the other.
25 But first he must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation.
“Both light and shadow are the dance of Love.
Love has no cause, it is the astrolabe of God’s secrets.
Lover and loving are inseparable and timeless.
Although I may try to describe love,
when I experience it, I am speechless.
Although I may try to write about love, I am rendered helpless.
My pen breaks, and the paper slips away
at the ineffable place where lover loving and loved are one.
Every moment is made glorious by the light of Love.”
Progress is of two kinds, material and spiritual.
The former is attained through observation of the surrounding existence and constitutes the foundation of civilization.
Spiritual progress is through the breaths of the Holy Spirit and is the awakening of the conscious soul of man to perceive the reality of divinity.
Material progress insures the happiness of the human world.
Spiritual progress insures the happiness and eternal continuance of the soul.
The search for reason ends at the shore of the known; on the immense expanse beyond it only the sense of the ineffable can glide.
It alone knows the route to that which is remote from experience and understanding.
Neither is amphibious: reason cannot go beyond the shore,
and the sense of the ineffable is out of place where we measure, where we weigh…….
Citizens of two realms, we must all sustain dual allegiance:
we sense the ineffable in one realm; we name and exploit reality in another.
Between the two we set up a system of references, but can never fill the gap.
They are as far and as close to each other as time and calendar, as violin and melody,as life and what lies beyond the last breath.
The tangible phenomena we scrutinize with our reason, the sacred and indemonstrable we overhear with the sense of the ineffable.
Heschel A. J. (1971), Man is Not Alone, New York: Octagon Books p.8