[We must produce better dwellings] “…without making them more costly; and the cost of a thing is the amount of what I will call life which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run.” Thoreau
“To seek utility everywhere is most unsuitable to lofty and free natures,” Aristotle
The following from The Little Zen Calendar 2001
Your own road
You shall follow it
Your own truth
You shall learn it
Your own death
You shall endure it
How I love the dying words of St. Thomas Aquinas: “All that I have written now seems so much straw!” Finally he saw. At the very last minute. He knew – and he was wordless. If it takes ninety-nine years to attain such a moment, fine!
Truth has no special time of its own. Its hour is now – always.
I’ll tell you a big secret, my friend: Don’t wait for the Last Judgment. It happens every day.
The most dangerous thing in the world is to think you understand something.
From naive simplicity we arrive at more profound simplicity.
Man is the only animal for whom its own existence is a problem which he has to solve.
Dying’s part of the wheel, right there next to being born…. Being part of the whole thing, that’s the blessing.
Every moment is a golden one for him who has the vision to recognize it as such.
“You’ve got to be able to make those daring leaps or you’re nowhere,” said Muskrat.
It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.
All questioning is a way of avoiding the real answer which, as Zen tells us, is really known already.
Don’t change the world, change worlds.
St. Francis of Assisi
The higher the truth, the simpler it is.
Abraham Isaac Kook
Words are the fog one has to see through.
God is in the details.
The beginning is in the end and the end is in the beginning.
“An you ain’t gonna preach?” Tom asked.
“I ain’t gonna preach.”
“And you ain’t gonna baptize?” Ma asked.
“I ain’t gonna baptize. I’m gonna be near to folks. I ain’t gonna try to teach ’em nothin’. I’m gonna try to learn. Gonna learn why the folks walks in the grass, gonna hear ’em talk, gonna hear ’em sing. Gonna listen to kids eatin’ mush. Gonna hear husban’ an’ wife a-poundin’ the mattress in the night….Gonna curs an’ swear an’ hear the poetry of folks talkin’. All that’s holy, all that’s what I didn’ understan’….”
Knowledge will not always take the place of simple observation.
In the womb, it is called a spirit; in the world, it is called a person. In the eyes it sees, in the ears it hears, in the nose it smells, in the mouth it talks, in the hands it grips, in the feet it walks. It appears everywhere, encompassing the universe, yet it is concentrated in a single atom.
Ancient Zen Master
Teach me to live, that I may dread the grave as little as my bed.
Bishop Thomas Ken
After all, when you come right down to it, how many people speak the same language even when they speak the same language?
To generalize is to be an idiot.
Carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero.
Sieze today, and put as little trust as you can in the morrow.
Those who seek the easy way to not seek the true way.
We can easily forgive the child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.
To know that you know, and to know that you don’t know – that is the real wisdom.
In the last analysis, it is our conception of death which decides our answers to all the questions that life puts to us.
Stand still. The trees ahead and the bush beside you are not lost.
Perfect does not mean perfect actions in a perfect world, but appropriate actions in an imperfect one.
When we really let go, we become everything. At that point we are identified with all things: the flower, the oak tree, the morning star.
Dennis Genpo Merzel
Man always dies before he is fully born.
If everything you encounter is your life, you have to ask yourself, what kinds of “life food” am I eating, digesting, making into my marrow and bones? It’s not a matter of using fewer things in order to simplify, or more things in order to elaborate, but paying attention to the circumstances of life. How can we respond to our world with respect?
All that we are is the product of what we have thought.
I neglect God and his Angels, for the noise of a fly, for the rattling of a coach, for the whining of a door.
The beginning of wisdom is calling things by their right name.
The first problem for all of us, men and women, is not to learn, but to unlearn.
All that is gold does not glitter; not all those that wander are lost.
Many eyes go through the meadow, but few see the flowers in it.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
If I own a cow, the cow owns me.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
The wise man said, “It can’t be done.” The fool came and did it.
Is it so small a thing
To have enjoyed the sun,
To have lived light in the spring,
To have loved, to have thought,
to have done?
The ten thousand questions are one question. If you cut through the one question, then the ten thousand questions disappear.
The Road has two rules only: Begin and Continue, and the Buddha left us a detailed guidebook for the Way.
We don’t receive wisdom; me must discover it for ourselves after a journey that no one can take for us or spare us.
The sound of the water says what I think.
As evening draws near, you regret that you did not practice early in the morning. The worldly pleasure which you enjoy now becomes the suffering in the future. Why then are you attached to this pleasure? One moment of practice becomes lasting pleasure. Why then do you not practice?