3 Oct
Posted in: Poems, Talks
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Mysterious, But Not Magical

I listened to a talk by Phillip Moffitt last night, given at the opening of a retreat being held right now at Spirit Rock. The talk is primarily an overview of the practice, with particular emphasis on the “non-doing” aspect of what we’re “doing” when we practice. We practice with intention. But what happens as a result of our practice, is beyond our control.

It’s so mysterious,” he says, “but it’s not magical.”

By which I take him to mean that the practice unfolds in an orderly fashion, but not of an order that is easy to discern.

We sit in stillness, without expectation,” he says. “And all eventually opens of its own accord.

At the end of the talk, Phillip reads a passage from the Four Quartets, by T.S. Eliot. He says that these are the lines that during a very difficult time of his life — which lasted for a couple of years — gave him the presence to continue:

“I said to my soul, be still, and wait without hope
For hope would be hope for the wrong thing; wait without love
For love would be love of the wrong thing; there is yet faith
But the faith and the love and the hope are all in the waiting.
Wait without thought, for you are not ready for thought:
So the darkness shall be the light, and the stillness the dancing.” 


Click here to listen to the talk.


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