18 Sep
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Plant Good Seeds

To continue in the theme of the discussion at our last Sunday Sangha, I offer this excerpt from Our Crisis of Heartwritten by Jack Kornfield

“The crisis of our times requires individuals and our culture to engage in a growing ability and willingness to see, to speak out, and to feel our grief and regrets, our fears, longing, and confusion. As part of this, like South Africa, we need a national Truth and Reconciliation process to come to terms with our denial of the Native genocide and African American slavery, so we are not continuing to refight the Civil War. On the other side, some of us are so loyal to our suffering that we also need heart wisdom to honor and express our love, our creative hopes, our delight and joy…

We are not powerless. Modern public discourse is almost designed to leave us overwhelmed and disheartened and, frankly, resigned to the state of the world. Don’t fall for this.

“Neuroscience has shown that human beings are born with innate compassion and care for self and others. It also shows that human beings are born with survival circuits, which, when activated, operate from fear, aggression, selfishness, and hate. It’s up to us which one we let create our future….

“As Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh explains:
The quality of our life depends on the seeds we water. If you plant tomato seeds in your gardens, tomatoes will grow. Just so, if we water the seeds of fear and hate, they will grow. If we water the seeds of peace in your heart, peace will grow. When the seeds of love, respect, and peace are watered, we will become happy.

“Intention is the key. Like an inner compass, we can set the direction of our life with the deepest intentions of the heart. But the secret is to act without attachment to the results. We get to plant seeds based on our best intentions, but we do not control how or when they will sprout. They will, in their own time.

“So, plant good seeds. Trust in renewal.

“And you who read this: Let these words be a reminder, a call. Find your way to quiet yourself and tend your heart. Promote love and spread the power of compassion in your work, in your community. Have hope.

“I remain hopeful despite the many painful current events, because we know how to do this. It’s in us to help one another and create a better world.

“In Zen, they say there are only two things: You sit, and you tend the garden. You quiet your mind and open your heart. And then, naturally, you get up and tend the garden of the world.


Click here to read Jack’s article in full.

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