From the BlogMeet Ron


Honolulu folks –> Join a supportive group of like-minded folks tonight 5/5/16, for meditation and discussion at our place, 3241 Alani Drive, in Manoa, at the usual time: 6 to 7:30 PM. If you have a meditation cushion please bring; if not, no worries. The front door opens at 5:50. Note: please do not park in the driveway, as we share this rented house with another couple and we do not want them to be blocked in. Thanks!
One of my favorite poets once remarked that poetry is a “language against which we have no defense.”
For me, poetry can have the power to stun my distracted mind into a moment of wakefulness, to guide it into a place of vulnerability, where I have no defense.
William Stafford was a master stunner. His poems can sneak under enemy lines to interrogate the deep self.
This simple poem was written 26 days before he passed in 1993.
The Way It Is
There’s a thread you follow. It goes among
things that change. But it doesn’t change.
People wonder about what you are pursuing.
You have to explain about the thread.
But it is hard for others to see.
While you hold it you can’t get lost.
Tragedies happen; people get hurt
or die; and you suffer and get old.
Nothing you do can stop time’s unfolding.
You don’t ever let go of the thread. 
So I ask you: do you have such a thread? 
As we learn in meditation, holding on to things, such as the thread in this poem, tends to make things worse.
Rope burn as someone once remarked.
But maybe what’s being said is that holding on to our thread can keep us from getting lost in the darkness that can swallow us up from time to time. The darkness of sadness, grief, looking ahead to our old age, considering the poignant and swift passing of time.
Or whatever darkness or challenges come up for you.
Maybe we need this thread in these uncertain times to find our way back home.
Maybe this thread can give us the ground we need under our feet to explore the darkness and see what it may have to teach us.
I lose track of the thread of my life quite often.
When I feel powerless against my fears.
My worries about our kids’ futures in this rapidly disappearing world.
And of course in the crazy 24/7 electronic and media distractions of this so-called advanced civilization.
The fear of uncertainty is just my mind’s grip on itself.
Can I relax this fear grip, but still hold gently onto the thread of mindfulness, or loving-kindness?
Can we meet the freshness of the moment that offers us generous helpings of both sorrow and joy?
Mindfulness is a wonderful solvent, allowing us to loosen these grips and open to the amazing possibilities right here and now.
I will leave you this week with a poem by Rumi.
Zero Circle 
Be helpless, dumbfounded,
Unable to say yes or no.
Then a stretcher will come from grace
To gather us up. 
We are too dull-eyed to see that beauty.
If we say we can, we’re lying.
If we say No, we don’t see it,
That No will numb us,
And shut tight our window onto spirit. 
So let us rather not be sure of anything,
Beside ourselves, and only that, so
Miraculous beings come running to help.
Crazed, lying in a zero circle, mute,
We shall be saying finally,
With tremendous eloquence, Lead us.
When we have totally surrendered to that beauty,
We shall be a mighty kindness.
 Can you surrender to the beauty before you right now, before the judging mind has a go with it?
 Katina and I are here to support your meditation practice in any way we can. 
Tom, Katina, Uilalani and Kupaianaha 

Ron Richey
439 Nahua Street #2
Honolulu, Hi 96815

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