Meditation, more than anything, takes you beyond words or, rather, before, words.


We find ourselves in the midst of a sudden mass extinction event, the speed of which the planet has never seen, all caused by human overpopulation and profligacy. But, don't worry, I'm sure that science will find a solution, and that bourgeois values will prevail.

When the great master immerses himself, day by day, in the weak sycophantic energy of needy students, he has little choice but to become corrupt and abusive. That's when he needs someone – a spouse, a dear friend, a teacher – to remind him that he's not a god, he's just a human being who happens to shine in one tiny area of human endeavour.
Not thinking doesn't mean sleep; it means thought that is fresh.
If the work, and by that I mean devoted personal practice, not going to class and nodding knowingly at your teacher's words, does not come natural – if you don't find yourself aching to dig in when you wake up in the morning – then the chances are that you are not karmically ready for the work. Such students, in the old days, would have been set to work in the monastery garden or kitchens, or, if Christian, would have been directed to spend a few years working at a hospice or almshouse. Nowadays however most students aren't even ready for that.
Silence is really hard to describe because it has this ability to change its shape and its form, and what's fascinating for me is that silence makes silence, you don't need to push, it can just come out naturally and beautifully.

For those of us driven and seemingly destined to work hard, the main problem, and it's a big deadly one, is to continually ensure that the work is not being used to avoid the real issue. This is why we all need a teacher.
The elastic tension we endeavour to develop – what in Taiji we call sticking energy – glues the small conscious mind to the ever elusive present but passing moment, enabling the big unconscious mind – what my teacher called the guardian – to come out of its lair and prowl. This big mind slips stealthily into your timeline – ancestors and destiny – working, fixing, clearing, setting things up in a way unimaginable. This is why faith is so important, and why the Buddhists stress meditation to work out karma.
What is easy does not lead to happiness.
Most of us refuse to face the fact that our own glamorous squeaky-clean designer lifestyle, though maybe not overexcessive compared to some, relies on lots of little brown people on the other side of the tracks doing our dirty work for us.


Spiritual freedom means free of ego not free to do what you want.

The shortest energy we call spirit. The longest we call soul. The work shortens the short and lengthens the long: makes spirit finer and soul deeper.
The authentic thing is always unconscious.
Mind in dantien is, basically, just a strong survival instinct – the ability to gather yourself into a centred effective whole and rise to unexpected occassion. This is the obvious meaning of suffering, real suffering, not the petty selfish anxiety Buddhists call suffering: it makes you strong, or dead, in a real way, that nothing else, no amount of training, can. Mind in dantien saves your life.
We are all petty little Neros, selfishly fiddling whilst the planet burns.
Freedom does not mean doing whatever you like.