We each need to make peace with our own memories. We have all done things that make us flinch.— Surya Das
The most fantastic Surya Das quotes to discover and learn by heart
Learning how to love is the goal and the purpose of spiritual life - not learning how to develop psychic powers, not learning how to bow, chant, do yoga, or even meditate, but learning to love. Love is the truth. Love is the light.
Everything passes, nothing remains. Understand this, loosen your grip and fine serenity.
Breath by breath, let go of fear, expectation, anger, regret, cravings, frustration, fatigue. Let go of the need for approval. Let go of old judgments and opinions. Die to all that, and fly free. Soar in the freedom of desirelessness. Let go. Let Be. See through everything and be free, complete, luminous, at home -- at ease.
Also not being afraid to stand up for what you believe in while taking into account that you could very well be wrong, or maybe there's another way to look at it- that things are not what they seem to be, and that everything is subjective.
We all have spiritual DNA; wisdom and truth are part of our genetic structure even if we don't always access it.
Other people can’t cause us to be impatient unless we let them do so.
In other words, others don’t make us impatient. We make ourselves impatient, through our expectations and demands, fixated attachments and stuckness.
You have to go through the darkness to truly know the light.
This may sound like a cliche, but it's true nonetheless. Often the greatest doubts occur just before a breakthrough.
May all beings everywhere with whom we are inseparably connected, be fulfilled, awakened, liberated and free. May there be peace in this world and throughout the entire universe, and may we all together complete the spiritual journey.
If we accept and internalize the fact of our own mortality, then, by definition, we have to deal with the essential questions of how we live and spend our allotted time. We have to stop procrastinating, pretending that we have forever to do what we want to do and be what we long to be.
Don't wait to find solid ground. Dance in emptiness.
The secret, or innermost, level of wisdom is pure intuition, clarity, lucidity, innate wakefulness, presence, and recognition of reality. This transcendental wisdom is within all of us—it just needs to be discovered and developed, unfolded and actualized.
Enlightenment is not about becoming divine.
Instead it's about becoming more fully human. . . . It is the end of ignorance.
I think it's very important to really find the wheat amidst the chafe and not give into superficialities, to not get caught up the commercialism or the fads, you know, the "over-popularization" of some things that we might see today. That doesn't mean we have to throw out the Buddha with the bath water, it's not all bad.
Mother Teresa- cream. Exemplars, exemplary models we can learn from and become more like, but we don't have to imitate them. We can become more authentically ourselves, impeccable and unselfish, and beneficial to many like a wish fulfilling jewel.
The Pearl Principle - no inner irritation, no pearl.
We're human beings trying to understand and cultivate what it means to feel divine love. We have to start with small, realistic goals.
On the other side, is a substantial, more materialism, everything is real long to the extent we can see or measure it, and things are as real as I think they. That's way too materialistic or substantialist, because things are not really what they seem to be.
But you know the difference between sex and love.
And sex can be part of love, but what moves your heart, what's really intimate, that's the real spirit. And that's very personal, it's also transpersonal. It's not impersonal, it's beyond any of us, it's transcendent of any of us, yet imminent in dwelling, imminent to each of us.
Our lack of compassion stems from our inability to see deeply into the nature of things.
I realize that was becoming a contradiction in terms, especially after my friend Alison Krauss was shot and killed in Kent State in 1970 on campus by the National Guard.
Who's willing to face the unknown- the difficulties, the disappointments, the surprises of the unfamiliar. If you're going to change, you have to face those things, and who's able? Who has the skillful means, the knowhow, the perseverance, the help, the fortitude to keep going?
Mahar-jji used to say 'wherever the Satsang gets together, I am there', kind of echoing Jesus' statement: wherever two or more of you get together in my name, I am there. So Maharaj-ji was a universal part of the spirit in that way. He's always with me, here. He's with whoever is with him. Not only just me.
Everyone has values, and values their family, values their health, their sanity, their safety and security, and their families, their parents, their children, their pets, their environments, well-being in general.
One-half plus one-half does not equal one; one whole plus one whole equals relational wholeness.
Well there were other Maharajis, so Neem Karoli Baba was his technical name, like there are a thousand Lamas called Rinpoche.
I always thought he gave me that name because I have a kind of outgoing or sunny disposition. And in those days I was kinda blonde and bearded and had an afro and was bushy like a sun. So I don't know, he named me Surya Das but who knows.
I never really wanted to have a Guru, I was more interested in Buddhist philosophy and meditation, and had a psychological background in college, but he had so much love. To be with him, there was nowhere else to be and nothing else to do. Nothing he taught, philosophy or meditation, are the things I went to India to look for, or was interested in, but he sort of jumped into my heart and then pulled, he pried it open.
Contributing to others, not converting others, but for those who are interested, going where invited, speaking when asked, teaching when asked and so on, not proselytizing and missionary-izing. Not shoving the truth down people's throats, as if we know what's good for them. But being open when asked, when appropriate, and being very inclusive and open minded.
There's plenty going on that's substantial and transformative, beneficial and authentic. Just because somebody is in the media, it doesn't mean they're bad. It may mean they're the best, and occasionally you know the cream rises to the surface, but not always everything on the surface is cream.
It almost seems as though this roiling world is conspiring to test our patience at every turn. In fact, it is. With this in mind, we would be wise to look on our imperfect environment as a teacher rather than an antagonist. It constantly shows us that we need to be patient on an ongoing basis, not just every now and then, if we´re going to realize true inner peace, happiness, and fulfillment.
When the sunset of life arrives, and its twilight shadows fade away;
while dreams of the next begin to appear more vividly; may the inner-light essence of the Buddha, and all the radiant awakened ones, continuously guide us onwards and upwards, on the path of spiritual enlightment.
Embracing our environment is a good direction, a very spiritual direction.
It's too Aristotelian to separate man from the animals and man; humans from the environment.
However, we need to participate and manage skillfully, helpfully, and harmoniously, for a better world, family and society to be possible. So everybody's spiritual by nature I believe, not that they necessarily have to be religious. Everybody wants, or cares about, and has values even if they don't talk about them all the time explicitly, like some noisy preachers do with their foghorn voices and dogmatic views.
before speaking, notice what motivates your words.
Well Buddhism, 'shmoodism', I didn't go to India looking for Buddhism.
I was looking for truth, or God, or a better way of life or happiness, fulfillment, meaning, purpose. And a way to become peace in the world and not just fight for peace, as we had in the 60's.
I think that's what's important, to see how we ourselves can become all that we are and can be. Everybody says they want to change, but it's not that simple, it's not that easy. Who's ready to change and give up? Who's ready to get out of their rut and leave it behind, not just pour honey or syrup over their heads and over the rut? Who's ready to change and give up that rut, who's ready willing and able?
There is false of Aristotelian logic, which is so much the basis of Christianity, and to some extent, Judaism in the west. Too rational, too logical, too masculine, chauvinistic, male dominated, head over heart, mind over body, heaven different than earth and so on, rather than yin/yang, inter-being, interwoven, inseparably.
Spirit is love, spirit is connection, inclusive, and that's what I'm interested in, and that's what moved me. That's what I got more and more into as I grew up and as I was in college in the 60's with consciousness raising and other kind of things, gestalt psychology etc.
Spiritual joy is devotion, it's like a virus you know? It's a benevolent virus, but it spreads. It's infectious. Ram Dass was like a mentor in those days.
I've also learned that you don't always get to pick the people with whom you travel the journey. You sometimes may think you do, but don't be deceived. And the corollary of that - and this was my real lesson - is that you start to realize that you can love even the people you don't like and must love and help everyone.
Why'd he name Ram Dass that? And Krishna Das that, instead of vice versa? Is Krishna Das more Krishna like and Ram Dass more Ram-like? Maybe... why not? We grow into our names. But why did my parents named me Jeffrey and my brother Michael? Who knows?
There's many lanes on the highway of enlightenment, they don't have to be on the razor's edge like the yellow line dotted in the middle. Balance is appropriate, not too tight, not too loose, the Middle Way as we call it in Buddhist dharma teachings.
The religions are the buildings or the institutions, the groups, but inside of that is what moves, is what's alive, is the beating heart of spirituality, and really, the heart's blood is the mystical experience. Not airy fairy vague mystical experience, but transformative, intimate experience that really touches your heart with love, and not just sex.
Really, whatever I was seeking and looking into in those days like creative arts, chant, the muse being in touch with the muse for poetry and writing and music. It's all part of the spirit and if we look particularly at Hinduism and Buddhism, the tantric stream of those traditions totally embraces all aspects of human life and life on this world.
So we have to be ready, willing, and able to really transform ourselves, and each other in the world, not just say it and affirm it, "Oh, I want to change". Intention is important, but so is action.
Unlike some of my other dharma brothers who got names that were very long and obscure, and nobody could remember or pronounce, that they didn't like. They wanted to give their names back, but it wasn't like that, it wasn't transactional. He would name some people and say 'you're married', and then they were married, but you know it wasn't really transactional.
I think that today, integration is the name of the game and not separating these things out, and not trying to find the razor's edge, the narrow path. There's a lot of lanes in the highway, the trick is not fall into the ditches on either side, like a one sided nihilism, nothing matters life.
Like many others, I sometimes find that cooking can be naturally grounding.