Thursday, February 14, 2019

Wondrous to consider

Wondrous to consider                                                                             

It’s wondrous to consider
I might consciously be God right now

if I didn’t take so much delight in being
my vain, silly scoundrel of a self.

All the evidence is now in
indicating that to reach Paradise

I will have to leave my front porch.
Routinely, I sift through my verifications

calling it prayer, meditation, study and praise.
It’s much safer and easier

than to risk the task of true effacement.
Easier to forsake the Promised Land

for this familiar old rocking chair hovel.
Easier than trekking out

into that lonely, austere, uncomfortable terrain.
Repeatedly, I lament my predicament

and yet time and again – still –
I choose myself over God.

O child, impossibly difficult, Meher Baba said,
to become what you already are.



If my virtue requires a villain
I can be sure that I’m duping myself,

dabbling in duality with a quality
that belongs to another realm.

True virtue is God-sent, borne
of benevolence, humility and equanimity. 

It breaks us down – nearer to dust and ashes.
Virtue that lifts us above others

is a subtle self promotion, an empty grand gesture
that for whatever good it does,

adds to the darkness, the ignorance
and hypocrisy of ourselves and the world.

O child of God, in the depths of a ruse
nothing is ever completely what it seems.

Friday, February 8, 2019

The great keys

The great keys                                                                                          

Late in the fight, I have stepped back
a few paces, employing the ropes

and corners, the quiet areas of the ring.
I have retreated from the immediate fray

(let my opponent bring the fight to me)
but not from the contest,

adjusting my efforts toward
the whispered strategies of the one

who remains ever in my corner,
grooming me for an eventual triumph.

O child of God, in the battle of the spirit
attentiveness is one of the great keys to victory.

Bark and bite

Bark and bite                                                                                           

The doorbell rings and in a pavlovian reaction
the sleeping dog leaps to the threshold

barking, snarling, poised for combat,
warily assessing the danger of the intrusion. 

The ego is an indefatigable usurper
who considers its proper (God-given) role

to be the judge and protector of every approach,
threatening or benevolent.

Whenever the householder’s particular sanctuary
is even mildly challenged, a button is pushed,

the alarm sounds, the watchdog leaps into action,
protecting its home and master. 

Few, if any, can train their faithful dog
to ignore and betray its natural instincts.

The best that might be negotiated
is the point at which the command

is firmly assumed and established
by the master of both house and dog.

O child of God, humility is the eventual
quelling of the watchdog’s bark and bite.