Sunday, October 25, 2009

Free Speech?

Surah 49 Al-Hujurat verses 10-13

10. The Believers are but a single Brotherhood
So make peace and reconciliation between your two (contending) brothers;
and have awe of God that you may have mercy

11. O you who believe! let not some men among you laugh at others: It may be that the (latter) are better than the (former): Nor let some women laugh at others: It may be that the (latter) are better than the (former): Nor defame nor be sarcastic to each other, Nor call each other by offensive nicknames: Ill-seeming is a name connoting wickedness, after he has believed: And those who do not desist are doing wrong.

12. O you who believe! Avoid suspicion as much (as possible): for suspicion in some cases is a sin: And spy not on each other, Nor speak ill of each other behind their backs. Would any of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? No, you would abhor it...but have awe of God. For God is oft-returning, Most merciful

13 O Mankind! We created you from a pair of male and female, and made you into Nations and Tribes that you may know each other (not that you despise each other). Surely the most honored of you in the sight of God is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And God is full of Knowledge and is well aquainted (with all things)

Words express our thoughts, confirm our attitudes, and define our character. In our human interactions, those of noble thoughts, attitudes and character refrain from speech that causes harm to another.
When speech is used to degrade, harm, or cause hurt to someone, it is as if we are eating their flesh for we reduce our own pain by causing pain to another.
The Quran reminds us, we are all one family, all brothers and sisters to one another...and we will all return to God. Can we not leave labels of seperation behind and define ourselves by our oneness?

Sutra Nipata writes....
As the flower blown out by the wind
goes to rest and cannot be defined
so the wise man, freed from individuality
goes to rest and cannot be defined
goes beyond all images
goes beyind the power of words.

What is your identity?

Friday, October 9, 2009


Surah Ad-Duha--93
In the name of God, the Compassionate and the Merciful.
1. By the glorious morning light
2. And by the night when it is still
3.Your Guardian Lord has not abandoned you
nor is he displeased
4. Surely the hereafter will be better for you than the present
5. Your Guardian Lord will be giving to you,
you shall be content
6. He found you wandering and he gave you guidance
7. He found you in need and made you independent
8.Therefore, treat not the orphan with harshness
9.Nor repulse him who asks
10.But the bounty of your Lord rehearse and proclaim.

Loving someone can be a cause for anxious moments when we do not know if they love us back. Lady Horikawa expressed in her Haiku
Will he always love me?
I cannot read his heart
My thoughts this morning
are disordered as my black hair.
When we love, we need to know we are loved in return. If we cannot fathom the human heart, can we presume to have any inkling of the love God has for his creation, for us? How can we hope to ever gain his love? What could be the nature of such immense Love?
Tsurayuki answers in another Haiku
No, the human heart
is unknowable
But in my birthplace
the flowers still smell
the same as always
When we look to nature, we can see God's love. The flowers bloom every spring, they bring nectar to the bees who make honey. When we look at our lives, we see God's love. He provides sustenance and guidance so that we too can grow in spirituality and understanding. Like the glorious morning light and the night when it is still, his love is constant and ever present in many forms in our lives. So look to nature and remember ........
The monk Ryozen gives this advice
When I am lonely
and go for a walk, I see
everywhere the same
Autumnal dusk.

How big is your love?


Surah Al Waqia (56) verses 63-74

63. Do you see the seed you sow in the ground?
64. Is it you that cause it to grow or are We the cause?
65. Were it our will, we could make it broken orts. and you would be left amazed.
66. (saying), "We are indeed left with debts"
67. "Indeed we are deprived"
68. See you the water which you drink?
69. Do you rain it down from the clouds or do We?
70. Were it our will, we could make it saltish (unpalatable). Then why do you not give thanks?
71. See you the fire which you kindle?
72. Is it you who grow the tree which feeds the fire, or do We grow it?
73. We have made it an article of comfort and convenience for the denizns of the deserts
74. Then glorify the name of your Lord, the supreme!

It is often the little things in life that bring us the greatest, most sincere joy. Yet, in savoring the happiness of the moment, we overlook to thank God. Often, we are so focused on ourselves, that we overlook the big things too. It is a priveledge to live on this planet, to enjoy the wonders of nature, to eat of the foods from the earth, the sea, and the soil, to have the company of those we love......yet, we forget to thank God.

In this age of abundance and luxury, our attention sometimes wanders to the things we do not have but would like to have. In our pursuit of achievements or success, we forget that our stay here is transitory, that our final destination is to God..... Our God, who is compassionate and merciful and has given us so much.

Instead of looking at all the inconveniences and trails of the day, it is time to strive for an attitude of gratitude for the blessings we have been given. To remember to take the time to thank God, the compassionate and the merciful.

For each new morning with its light

For rest and shelter of the night

For health and food

For love and freinds

For everything your goodness sends

---Thanksgiving by Ralph Waldo Emerson

We are what we think.
All that we are arises with our thoughts
With our thoughts We make our world


Try to fill your thoughts and your hearts with gratitude today......