The poppy breaking through the asphalt is a symbol of resilience

Mystical Poetry - Poesía mística


Capitulo 6 : Ecstasy

Get Ready, the Drunkards Are Coming

Little by little the bands of drunkards are coming,
little by little the wine adorers are coming.

The heart-healing ones are on the way, skipping and dancing.
The rosy-cheeked are coming down from the rose gardens.

Little by little from this world of being and nonbeing 
the nonbeings are being gone and the true beings are coming.

Ancient Wine
With his thousand-year-old wine
He brought the old love back to life in us.

Drunk on this moment of mine,
Wine became my religion and faith.
There’s nothing I want to buy
And no one I’m indebted to.

Hide my Secret
That heartbreaking Beloved tell me,
“A lover should be nothing.”
O Beloved! How pushy you are !
Don’t you see where I’m headed?

Like the clouds of early spring, 
how I’m both sobbing and laughing!
And from these potent wines,
how joyfully I’m drunken and sober!

Madness Run from Me

This time I’m totally 
engulfed in love.
This time I’m entirely 
cut off from well- being.

I’ve torn myself away from my self;
I’m living on something else.
Intellect, mind, and thinking itself,
I’ve burned to their roots.
Today my intellect 
gave up on me altogether,
a feeble attempt to intimidate me.
How simple does it think I am!

Why should I worry about its leaving?
I just frowned at it!
I’m not bewildered at all !
But I can pretend to be!


I am so, so drunk today;
I’ve escaped my bonds today.

I’m that “something” that doesn’t occur to the mind;
I’m that; yes, I’m that, today.
I pulled on the intellect’s ear and said : “Intellect! 
Be gone! Because of you I got free today!

God has created me from love’s wine;
even if death takes me, I am the same love.
I am intoxication and my origin is the wine of love;
tell me what comes from wine but intoxication?

Capitulo 7 : Love

Expanding Friendship

Money and real estate occupy the body,
but all the heart wants is expanding friendship.

A rose garden without a friend is indeed a prison;
a prison with a friend becomes a rose garden.

If the pleasure of friendship did not exist,
neither men nor women would be here.

A thorn from a friend’s garden is worth more
than a thousand cypresses and lilies.

Love sewed us securely together.
We owe nothing to the needle and thread.

If the house of the world is dark,
Love will find a way to create windows.

If the world is full of arrows and swords,
the Armorer of Love has made us coats of mail.

Love itself describes its own perfection.
Be speechless and listen.

What Am I?
My only joy is to be with You,
close to Your sweet lips and delicate chin, Beloved.

Everything depends on You. Who am I?
Just a mirror in Your hand.
Whatever You reveal, that’s what I am;
I’m just a polished mirror.

Love Ends All Arguments

Dear soul, Love alone cuts arguments short,
for it alone comes to the rescue
when you cry for help against disputes.
Eloquence is dumbfounded by Love:
it dares not wrangle,
for the lover fears that if he answers back,
the pearl of inner experience
might fall out of his mouth.
His lips are sealed.

You Are Joy and We Are Laughter
You are intelligence; we are Your voice.
Your intelligence causes this tongue to speak.
You are joy and we are laughter,
for we are the result of the blessing of Your joy.

All of our movement is really
a continual profession of faith,
bearing witness to Your eternal power,
just as the powerful turning of the millstone
professes faith in the river’s existence.

Dust settles upon my head and upon my metaphors,
for You are beyond anything we can ever think or say.
And yet, this servant cannot stop trying
to express Your Beauty;
in every moment,
let my soul be Your carpet.


(Above taken from LOVE’S RIPENING, Rumi on the heart’s Journey. 2008 by Kabir Helminski and Ahmad Rezwani. Shambala Publications. Pages 101, 106, 108, 111, 116, 125, 127, 144, 150, 157)

Who Says Words With My Mouth? 

All day I think about it, then at night I say it.
Where did I come from, and what am I supposed to be doing?
I have no idea.
My soul is from elsewhere, I'm sure of that,
and I intend to end up there.

This drunkenness began in some other tavern.
When I get back around to that place,
I'll be completely sober. Meanwhile,
I'm like a bird from another continent, sitting in this aviary.
The day is coming when I fly off,
but who is it now in my ear who hears my voice?
Who says words with my mouth?

Who looks out with my eyes? What is the soul?
I cannot stop asking.
If I could taste one sip of an answer,
I could break out of this prison for drunks.
I didn't come here of my own accord, and I can't leave that way.
Whoever brought me here will have to take me home.

This poetry, I never know what I'm going to say.
I don't plan it.
When I'm outside the saying of it,
I get very quiet and rarely speak at all.

¿Quién habla por mi boca?

Me paso el día pensando en ello, y  por la noche lo digo.
¿De dónde vengo, y qué es lo que se supone que debo hacer?
No tengo ni idea.
Mi alma es de otro lugar, de eso estoy seguro,
Y es allí donde pienso terminar.

Esta embriaguez empezó en alguna otra taberna.
Cuando vuelva a pasar por ese lugar,
estaré completamente sobrio. 
Mientras tanto, soy como un ave de otro continente,
Sentado en esta pajarera.
Se acerca el día en que saldré volando,
Pero ¿quién es el que escucha mi voz desde mi oído?
¿quién habla por mi boca?

¿Quién mira con mis ojos? ¿Qué es el alma?
No puedo dejar de preguntármelo.
Un solo sorbo de respuesta,
Me bastaría para escapar de esta prisión de embriagados.
No vine aquí por voluntad propia,
Y no me puedo ir así.
Quienquiera que me haya traído aquí tendrá que llevarme a casa.
Esta poesía: Nunca sé lo que voy a decir.
No la planeo.
Cuando estoy apartado de las palabras,
Me pongo muy callado y raramente digo una palabra.

In the tavern are many wines-the wine of delight in color and form and taste, the wine of the intellect's agility, the fine port of stories, and the cabernet of soul singing. Being human means entering this place where entrancing varieties of desire are served. The grapeskin of ego breaks and a pouring begins. Fermentation is one of the oldest sym-bols for human transformation. When grapes combine their juice and are closed up together for a time in a dark place, the results are spec-tacular. This is what lets two drunks meet so that they don't know who is who. Pronouns no longer apply in the tavern's mud-world of excited confusion and half-articulated wantings.
   But after some time in the tavern, a point comes, a memory of else-where, a longing for the source, and the drunks must set off from the tavern and begin the return. The Qur'an says, "We are all returning." The tavern is a kind of glorious hell that human beings enjoy and suf-fer and then push off from in their search for truth. The tavern is a dangerous region where sometimes disguises are necessary, but never hide your heart, Rumi urges. Keep open there. A breaking apart, a crying out into the street, begins in the tavern, and the human soul turns to find its way home.

It's 4 A.M. Nasruddin leaves the tavern and walks the town aimlessly. A policeman stops him. "'Why are you out wandering the streets in the middle of the night?" "Sir," replies Nasruddin, "if I knew the answer to that question, I would have been home hours ago!" 

(Above taken from : The Essential Rumi - reissue New Expanded Edition Coleman Barks)

¿Quién habla por mi boca? La leí en público en el funeral de mi madre.

Looking For Your Face

From the begining of my life
I have been looking for your face
but today I have seen it

Today I have seen
the charm, the beauty,
the unfathomable grace
of the face
that I was looking for

Today I have found you
and those who laughed
and scorned me yesterday
are sorry that they were not looking
as I did

I am bewildered by the magnificence
of your beauty
and wish to see you
with a hundred eyes

My heart has burned with passion
and has searched forever
for this wondrous beauty
that I now behold

I am ashamed
to call this love human
and afraid of God
to call it divine

Your fragant breath
like the morning breeze
has come to the stillness of the garden

You have breathed new life into me
I have become your sunshine
and also your shadow

My soul is screaming in ecstasy
Every fiber of my being
is in love with you

Your effulgence
has lit a fire in my heart
and you have made radiant
for me
the earth and sky

My arrow of love
has arrived at the target
I am in the house of mercy
and my heart
is a place of prayer

The Meaning Of Love

Sri Babuji 'The Meaning Of Love' (HD video)

Both light and shadow
are the dance of Love.
Love has no cause;
it is the astrolabe of God's secrets.
Lover and Loving are inseparable
and timeless.

Although I may try to describe Love
when I experience it I am speechless.
Although I may try to write about Love
I am rendered helpless;
my pen breaks and the paper slips away
at the ineffable place
where Lover, Loving and Loved are one.

Every moment is made glorious
by the light of Love.

The Hunt

'Sri Babuji at Vijayadasami 2004' video 'The Hunt' (50 aniversary)

 The Lover comes, the Lover comes!
 Open the way for Him!
 He's looking for a heart,
 let's show Him one.
 I scream,
 "What you came to hunt is me!"
 He says laughingly,
I'm here not to hunt you but to 
save you."

Aroused Passion

'Rumi's poem, dedicated to Babuji', video

Oh God
Let all lovers be content
Give them happy endings
Let their lives be celebrations
Let their hearts dance in the fire of your love

My sweetheart
You have aroused my passion
Your touch has filled me with desire
I am no longer separate from you

These are precious moments
I beseech you
Don't let me wait
Let me merge with you.

The Lover's Passion

A lover knows only humility
He has no choice

He steals into your alley at night
He has no choice

He longs to kiss every lock of your hair
Don't fret
He has no choice

In his frenzied love for you,
he longs to break 

the chains of his imprisonment,
He has no choice

Above taken from A Gift Of Love: Deepak and Friends Present Music Inspired By The Love Poems Of Rumi. (1998)

About Adnan Sarhan

Adnan Sarhan

I met Adnan Sarhan in Barcelona, Spain on 1984 in a Sufi workshop that he was leading beautifully immerse playing the drums endless like a trance while we were dancing... 


2) 'I call on you' video

I call on you with my mind
I call on you with my heart
I call on you when asleep
I call on you when awake
Your name on my lips
Your name in my heart
Your name in my thought
all day, all night
all the time.
To think of you is all I do
I do, I do, I do, I do
The more I think
The more I drift
in the mist of your love.
I think and think and think
of you, you, you
So shine, shine shine
Your love in my heart.
Tell me, tell me,
Where is my love?
Tell me you love me.
At night I dream
At day I dream
The dream is you.
I asked the moon to call on you
My love
I asked the stars to call on you
My love
Love, love, love, love.
Please come to me
At night or day
I wait for you
in a garden of romance
in the land of our loves
in the land of our hearts
I call on you
I want you all the time
I call on you
I need you all the time
I call on you
I miss you all the time
I call on you
I love you all the time
Come to me, come to me
Come to my loving heart
Come to me, come to me
Come to my desert sand.
See the sea of sand
See the sea of stars.
The stars shining sailing
in the dark of night
Sailing in the sea of night
Come to me, come to me
You and me alone
Sailing the sea of sand
on white Arabian horse.
Let your heart shine
in the dark of night
I will dance in your heart
I will dance in the heart
of your heart
With joy and delight
All night with the stars
In your heart forever.

'La noche oscura' video
San Juan de la Cruz

La noche oscura

Canciones del alma que se goza de haber llegado al alto estado de la perfección, que es la unión con Dios por el camino de la negación espiritual.

En una noche oscura,
con ansias en amores inflamada,
(¡oh dichosa ventura!)
salí sin ser notada,
estando ya mi casa sosegada.

  A oscuras y segura,
por la secreta escala disfrazada,
(¡oh dichosa ventura!)
a oscuras y en celada,
estando ya mi casa sosegada.

En la noche dichosa,
en secreto, que nadie me veía,
ni yo miraba cosa,
sin otra luz ni guía
sino la que en el corazón ardía.
Aquésta me guïaba
más cierta que la luz del mediodía,
adonde me esperaba
quien yo bien me sabía,
en parte donde nadie parecía.

  ¡Oh noche que me guiaste!,
¡oh noche amable más que el alborada!,
¡oh noche que juntaste
amado con amada,
amada en el amado transformada!

  En mi pecho florido,
que entero para él solo se guardaba,
allí quedó dormido,
y yo le regalaba,
y el ventalle de cedros aire daba.

  El aire de la almena,
cuando yo sus cabellos esparcía,
con su mano serena
en mi cuello hería,
y todos mis sentidos suspendía.

  Quedéme y olvidéme,
el rostro recliné sobre el amado,
cesó todo, y dejéme,
dejando mi cuidado
entre las azucenas olvidado. 

De: Floresta de rimas antiguas castellanas, por Juan Nicholas Böhl de Faber. Hamburgo: Perthes y Besser, 1821. Fecha:  C. 1577

  sosegada - tranquil, at peace
  a oscuras - in the dark
  escala - stairs, ladder
  disfrazada - disguised
  alborada - dawn
  regalaba - caressed
  ventalle de cedros - cedar(-branch) fan
  esparcía - spread out
  hería - touched (lit. wounded)
  almena - ramparts, battlements
  dejéme - I let myself go
  cuidado - cares, concerns
  azucenas - (white) lilies


The Obscure Night of the Soul

Upon an obscure night
Fevered with love in love's anxiety
(O hapless-happy plight!),
I went, none seeing me,
Forth from my house where all things be.
By night, secure from sight,
And by the secret stair, disguisedly,
(O hapless-happy plight!)
By night, and privily,
Forth from my house where all things quiet be.
Blest night of wandering,
In secret, where by none might I be spied
Nor I see anything;
Without a light or guide,
Save that which in my heart burnt in my side.
That light did lead me on,
More surely than the shining of noontide,
Where well I knew that one
Did for my coming bide;
Where He abode, might none but He abide.
O night that didst lead thus,
O night more lovely than the dawn o light,
O night that broughtest us,
Lover to lover's sight,
Lover with loved in marriage of delight!
Upon my flowery breast
Wholly for Him, and save Himself for none,
There did I give sweet rest
To my beloved one;
The fanning of the cedars breathed thereon.
When the first moving air
Blew from the tower and waved His looks aside,
His hand, with gentle care,
Did wound me in the side,
And in my body all my senses died.
All things I then forgot,
My cheek on Him who for my coming came;
All ceased, and I was not,
Leaving my cares and shame
Among the lilies, and forgetting them.


Arthur Symons (translator).From: Hispanic Anthology: Poems Translated from the Spanish by English and North American Poets, collected and arranged by Thomas Walsh. G. P. Putnam's Sons, New York, 1920.

Nirvanashatkam video


manobuddhyahaṅkāra cittāni nāhaṃ
na ca śrotrajihve na ca ghrāṇanetre
na ca vyoma bhūmir na tejo na vāyuḥ
cidānandarūpaḥ śivo'ham śivo'ham

na ca prāṇasaṅjño na vai pañcavāyuḥ
na vā saptadhātur na vā pañcakośaḥ
na vākpāṇipādau na copasthapāyu
cidānandarūpaḥ śivo'ham śivo'ham

na me dveşarāgau na me lobhamohau
mado naiva me naiva mātsaryabhāvaḥ
na dharmo na cārtho na kāmo na mokşaḥ
cidānandarūpaḥ śivo'ham śivo'ham

na puṇyaṃ na pāpaṃ na saukhyaṃ na duhkhaṃ
na mantro na tīrthaṃ na vedā na yajña
ahaṃ bhojanaṃ naiva bhojyaṃ na bhoktā
cidānandarūpaḥ śivo'ham śivo'ham

na me mṛtyuśaṅkā na me jātibhedaḥ
pitā naiva me naiva mātā na janmaḥ
na bandhur na mitraṃ gurunaiva śişyaḥ
cidānandarūpaḥ śivo'ham śivo'ham

ahaṃ nirvikalpo nirākāra rūpo
vibhutvā ca sarvatra sarvendriyāṇaṃ
na cāsangata naiva muktir na meyaḥ
cidānandarūpaḥ śivo'ham śivo'ham

1) I am not mind, nor intellect, nor ego, nor the reflections of inner self (citta). I am not the five senses. I am beyond that. I am not the ether, nor the earth, nor the fire, nor the wind (the five elements). I am indeed, That eternal knowing and bliss, the auspicious (Śivam), love and pure consciousness.

2) Neither can I be termed as energy (prāṇa), nor five types of breath (vāyus), nor the seven material essences, nor the five sheaths(pañca-kośa). Neither am I the five instruments of elimination, procreation, motion, grasping, or speaking. I am indeed, That eternal knowing and bliss, the auspicious (Śivam), love and pure consciousness.

3) I have no hatred or dislike, nor affiliation or liking, nor greed, nor delusion, nor pride or haughtiness, nor feelings of envy or jealousy. I have no duty (dharma), nor any money, nor any desire (kāma), nor even liberation (mokṣa). I am indeed, That eternal knowing and bliss, the auspicious (Śivam), love and pure consciousness.

4) I have neither merit (virtue), nor demerit (vice). I do not commit sins or good deeds, nor have happiness or sorrow, pain or pleasure. I do not need mantras, holy places, scriptures (Vedas), rituals or sacrifices (yajñas). I am none of the triad of the observer or one who experiences, the process of observing or experiencing, or any object being observed or experienced. I am indeed, That eternal knowing and bliss, the auspicious (Śivam), love and pure consciousness.

5) I do not have fear of death, as I do not have death. I have no separation from my true self, no doubt about my existence, nor have I discrimination on the basis of birth. I have no father or mother, nor did I have a birth. I am not the relative, nor the friend, nor the guru, nor the disciple. I am indeed, That eternal knowing and bliss, the auspicious (Śivam), love and pure consciousness.

6) I am all pervasive. I am without any attributes, and without any form. I have neither attachment to the world, nor to liberation (mukti). I have no wishes for anything because I am everything, everywhere, every time, always in equilibrium. I am indeed, That eternal knowing and bliss, the auspicious (Śivam), love and pure consciousness.

PDF link
A. H. Almaas

The Guest Arrives Only at Night

Annihilate mind in heart,
Divorce heart from all relationships,
And then love,
Love passionately,
Consume yourself with passion
for the secret one.

When you are absolutely poor,
When you are no more,
Then the Guest will appear
And occupy his place,
In the secret chamber,
His abode,
The heart he gave you.

He is the Inner of the Inner,
He is the Secret,
He is the Guest,
And he arrives
Only at night.

Heart Sutra Youtube playlist (corean, spanish, sanskrit, english)

Heart Sutra

The Insight that Brings Us to the Other Shore

while practicing deeply with
the Insight that Brings Us to the Other Shore,
suddenly discovered that
all of the five Skandhas are equally empty,
and with this realisation
he overcame all Ill-being.
“Listen Sariputra,
this Body itself is Emptiness
and Emptiness itself is this Body.
This Body is not other than Emptiness
and Emptiness is not other than this Body.
The same is true of Feelings,
Perceptions, Mental Formations,
and Consciousness.
“Listen Sariputra,
all phenomena bear the mark of Emptiness;
their true nature is the nature of
no Birth no Death,
no Being no Non-being,
no Defilement no Purity,
no Increasing no Decreasing.
“That is why in Emptiness,
Body, Feelings, Perceptions,
Mental Formations and Consciousness
are not separate self entities.
The Eighteen Realms of Phenomena
which are the six Sense Organs,
the six Sense Objects,
and the six Consciousnesses
are also not separate self entities.
The Twelve Links of Interdependent Arising
and their Extinction
are also not separate self entities.
Ill-being, the Causes of Ill-being,
the End of Ill-being, the Path,
insight and attainment,
are also not separate self entities.
Whoever can see this
no longer needs anything to attain.
Bodhisattvas who practice
the Insight that Brings Us to the Other Shore
see no more obstacles in their mind,
and because there
are no more obstacles in their mind,
they can overcome all fear,
destroy all wrong perceptions
and realize Perfect Nirvana.
“All Buddhas in the past, present and future
by practicing
the Insight that Brings Us to the Other Shore
are all capable of attaining
Authentic and Perfect Enlightenment.
“Therefore Sariputra,
it should be known that
the Insight that Brings Us to the Other Shore
is a Great Mantra,
the most illuminating mantra,
the highest mantra,
a mantra beyond compare,
the True Wisdom that has the power
to put an end to all kinds of suffering.
Therefore let us proclaim
a mantra to praise
the Insight that Brings Us to the Other Shore.

Gate, Gate, Paragate, Parasamgate, Bodhi Svaha!
Gate, Gate, Paragate, Parasamgate, Bodhi Svaha!
Gate, Gate, Paragate, Parasamgate, Bodhi Svaha!”

The reasons for a new translation

New Heart Sutra translation by Thich Nhat Hanh

Thay’s message of explanation to his students, translated from the Vietnamese. Thay wrote this text on the 22nd August 2014, after completing his very first translation draft in Vietnamese.
Dear Family,
Thay needs to make this new translation of the Heart Sutra because the patriarch who originally compiled the Heart Sutra was not sufficiently skilful enough with his use of language. This has resulted in much misunderstanding for almost 2,000 years.
Thay would like to share with you two stories: the story of a novice monk who paid a visit to a Zen master, and the story of a Bhikkhu who came with a question to the Eminent Master Tue Trung.


In the first story, the Zen master asked the novice monk:

“Tell me about your understanding of the Heart sutra.”

The novice monk joined his palms and replied:

“I have understood that the five skandhas are empty. There are no eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body or mind; there are no forms, sounds, smells, tastes, feelings, or objects of mind; the six consciousnesses do not exist, the eighteen realms of phenomena do not exist, the twelve links of dependent arising do not exist, and even wisdom and attainment do not exist.”

“Do you believe what it says?”

“Yes, I truly believe what it says.”

“Come closer to me,” the Zen master instructed the novice monk. When the novice monk drew near, the Zen master immediately used his thumb and index finger to pinch and twist the novice’s nose.

In great agony, the novice cried out “Teacher! You’re hurting me!” The Zen master looked at the novice. “Just now you said that the nose doesn’t exist. But if the nose doesn’t exist then what’s hurting?”

The Eminent Master Tue Trung was a lay Zen master who had once served as the mentor for the young King Tran Nhan Tong, in 13th Century Vietnam. One day, a Bhikkhu paid him a visit to ask him about the Heart Sutra.

“Respected Eminent Master, what does the phrase ‘form is emptiness, emptiness is form,’ really mean?”

At first the Eminent Master remained silent. And then, after a while, he asked:

“Bhikkhu, do you have a body?”

“Yes, I do.”

“Then, why do you say that the body does not exist?”

The Eminent Master then continued, “Do you think that in empty space there is form?”

“No, I do not see that there is form.”

“Then why do you say that emptiness is form?”
The Bhikkhu stood up, bowed, and went on his way. But the Master summoned him back in order to recite to him the following gatha:

Form is emptiness, emptiness is form,
is a skillful means created temporarily by the Buddhas of the three times.
Emptiness is not form, form is not emptiness
Their nature is always pure and illuminating, neither caught in being nor in non-being.

In this story the Eminent Master Tue Trung seems to contradict the Heart Sutra and challenge the sacred formula ‘form is emptiness and emptiness is form,’ considered inviolable in the Prajñāpāramitā literature.
Thay believes that the Eminent Master went too far. The Master was not able to see that the mistake doesn’t rest in the formula, ‘form is emptiness’ rather, it resides in the unskillfulness of the line, ‘Therefore in emptiness there is no form.’ According to Thay, the way in which words are used in the Heart Sutra, right from the beginning up to the line: ‘no birth, no death, not defiled, not immaculate, not increasing, nor decreasing,’ is already perfect. Thay’s only regret is that the patriarch who recorded the Heart Sutra did not add the four words ‘no being, no non-being’ immediately after the four words ‘no birth, no death,’ because these four words would help us transcend the notion of being and non-being, and we would no longer get caught in such ideas as ‘no eyes, no ears, no nose, no tongue…’ The nose of the novice monk is still sore, even today. Do you understand?
The problem begins with the line: ‘Listen Shariputra, because in emptiness, there is no form, feelings, perceptions, mental formations, and consciousness’ (in Sanskrit: TasmācŚāriputraśūnyatayāmnarūpamnavedanānasamjñānasamskārānavijñānam). How funny! It was previously stated that emptiness is form, and form is emptiness, but now you say the opposite: there is only emptiness, there is no body. This line of the sutra can lead to many damaging misunderstandings. It removes all phenomena from the category ‘being’ and places them into the category of ‘non-being’ (no form, feelings, perceptions, mental formations or consciousness…). Yet the true nature of all phenomena is the nature of no being nor non-being, no birth and no death. The view of ‘being’ is one extreme view and the view of ‘non-being’ is another extreme view. It is because of this unskillfulness that the novice monk’s nose is still sore.
The famous gatha ascribed to the sixth patriarch Hue Nang (Hui-neng), in which he presented his insight to the fifth patriarch Hoang Nhan (Hung-jen), also expresses this notion and is also caught in the same wrong view:

Originally, there is no Bodhi tree
The bright mirror does not exist either
From the non-beginning of time nothing has ever existed
So where can the dust settle?
We can say:

“A white cloud passes by and hides the mouth of the cave
Causing so many birds to lose their way home.”

The insight of prajñāpāramitā is the most liberating insight that helps us overcome all pairs of opposites such as birth and death, being and non-being, defilement and immaculacy, increasing and decreasing, subject and object, and so on, and helps us to get in touch with the true nature of no birth/no death, no being/no non-being etc… which is the true nature of all phenomena. This is a state of coolness, peace, and non-fear that can be experienced in this very life, in your own body and in your own five skandhas. It is nirvana. Just as the birds enjoy the sky, and the deer enjoy the meadow, so do the wise enjoy dwelling in nirvana. This is a very beautiful sentence in the Nirvana Chapter of the Chinese Dharmapada.
The insight of prajñāpāramitā is the ultimate truth, transcending of all conventional truths. It is the highest vision of the Buddha. Whatever paragraph in the Tripitaka, even in the most impressive of the Prajñāpāramitā collections, if it so contradicts this, it is still caught in conventional truth. Unfortunately, in the Heart Sutra we find such a paragraph, and it is quite long.
That is why in this new translation Thay has changed the way of using words in both the original Sanskrit and the Chinese translation by Huyen Trang (Xuan-Zang). Thay translates as follows: ‘That is why in emptiness, body, feelings, perceptions, mental formations, and consciousness are not separate self entities.’ All phenomena are products of dependent arising: that is the main point of the prajñāpāramitā teaching. ‘Even insight and attainment do not exist as separate self entities.’ This sentence is as important as the sentence ‘form is emptiness.’ Thay also has added ‘no being, no non-being’ into the text. No being, no non-being is the deep vision of the Buddha stated in the Kātyāyana sutra, when he offered a definition on right view. These four words, no being, no non-being, will help future generations not to suffer from a twisted nose.
The Heart Sutra was intended to help the Sarvāstivādins relinquish the view of no self and no dharma. The deepest teaching of Prājñāpāramitā is the emptiness of self (ātmaśūnyatā) and the emptiness of dharma (dharmanairātmya) and not the non-being of self and dharma. The Buddha has taught in the Kātyāyana sutra that most people in the world are caught either in the view of being and non-being. Therefore, the sentence ‘in emptiness there is no form, feelings…’ is obviously still caught in the view of non-being. That is why this sentence does not correspond to the Ultimate Truth. Emptiness of self only means the emptiness of self, not the non-being of self, just as a balloon that is empty inside does not mean that the balloon does not exist. The same is true with the emptiness of dharma: it only means the emptiness of all phenomena and not the non-existence of phenomena. It is like a flower that is made only of non-flower elements. The flower is empty of a separate existence, but that doesn’t mean that the flower is not there.
The Heart Sutra made a late appearance at a time when Tantric Buddhism had begun to flourish. The patriarch who compiled the Heart Sutra wanted to encourage followers of Tantric Buddhism to practice and recite the Heart Sutra, so that’s why he presented the Heart Sutra as a kind of mantra. This was also a skillful means. Thay has used the phrase, ‘The Insight that Brings Us to the Other Shore,’ because in the mantra there is the expression pāragate which means ‘gone over to the other shore, the shore of wisdom’. Pārāyana and pāramitā have both been translated as ‘crossing over to the other shore.’ In the Sutta Nipāta there is a chapter called Pārāyana which has also been translated as ‘crossing over to the other shore.’
Dear Family, I hope you enjoy practicing the new version of the Heart Sutra in English. We have an English translation and Br. Phap Linh is in the process of composing the music for the new chant. The next edition of the Chanting Book will include this new translation. Yesterday, on the 21st of August, after finishing the translation at around 3a.m., a moon ray penetrated Thay’s room.

With love and trust,

Your Teacher
Aśoka Institute, EIAB, Waldbröl

Everything is a fairy tale

Jesus said:

The foxes have their holes
and the birds have their nests,
but the son of man has no place
to lay his head and rest.

"There is nowhere you can rest. Otherwise you would create a place, but for what you are there is no home, not a single concept or place, not a single idea or imagination where you can find some rest. By seeing that there will never be any rest, strangely, there is a total rest. You cannot explain this paradox.”

Ecstatic Storytelling
"Welcome to The Ecstatics, my personal journey into the higher consciousness of the human heart.
All throughout history, the most enduring and uplifting theme to possess humanity is the theme of love. All our trials, longings and issues can be reduced to this basic question – how do I find love?
In this series I will be diving deeply into the thriving heart-field of some of the greatest of the Ecstatics. I will show how their spirit still lives and breathes inside our own hearts, and once this same love inside your own heart is truly touched, it can never leave you. In this modern time of uncertainty and deep change, these are the people we should be listening to most intently – for their message is the clearest and most vital that has ever been." - Richard Rudd

The Ecstatics - Intro
The Ecstasy of Revelation - Julian of Norwich
The Ecstasy of Aloneness - Ranier Maria Rilke
The Ecstasy of Evanescence - Ananda Mayi Ma
The Ecstasy of The Bard - Taliesin
The Ecstasy of Silence - Cold Mountain 



Nada te turbe (Santa Teresa de Jesus)

Nada te turbe
Nada te espante
Quien a Dios tiene
Nada le falta

Nada te turbe
Nada te falta
Solo Dios basta
Nothing can trouble, Nothing can frighten. Those who have God shall never go wanting. Nothing can trouble, Nothing can frighten. God alone fills us.

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