Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Shantivanam | MySpace Video
Shantivanam | MySpace Video
Shantivanam | MySpace Video
Fr. Bede Griffiths was a man who saw to the heart of all the major world religions. As a young man he began his journey of faith in the Church of England, then became a Catholic Benedictine Monk. From there he was invited to India where he studied Hinduism and Buddhism. He saw to the core of all these points of view and saw the commonalities in all. In the above video series from Shantivanam Fr. Bede does an excellent job of showing the commonalities between the teachings of Jesus and the teachings of Buddha, and how Christians and Buddhists can learn from one another.
Friday, October 23, 2009
Bede Griffiths was a monk, a man in whom there was no guile, and was last to see the guile that may have been in any other. This monk with a universal heart was an icon of integrity and guilelessness. As John Henry Cardinal Newman once described them, Bede was one of those: who live in a way least thought of by others, the way chosen by our Savior, to make headway against all the power and wisdom of the world. It is a difficult and rare virtue, to mean what we say, to love without deceit, to think no evil, to bear no grudge, to be free from selfishness, to be innocent and straightforward... simple-hearted. They take everything in good part which happens to them, and make the best of everyone. (homily, Feast of St. Bartholomew)Such was Father Bede Griffiths, Swami Dayananda, who died May 13, 1993, barefooted and clothed in the color of the sun, in his thatched hut at Shantivanam in South India.
Monday, October 12, 2009
From a statement made by Mahatma Gandhi to the Hunter Committee in 1920.
For the past 30 years I have been preaching and practicing Satyagraha. The principles of Satyagraha, as I know it today, constitute a gradual evolution.
Satyagraha differs from Passive Resistance as the North Pole from the South. The later has been conceived as a weapon of the weak and does not exclude the use of force or physical violence for the purpose of gaining one's end, whereas the former has been conceived as a weapon of the strongest and excludes the use of violence in any shape or form.
The term Satyagraha was coined by me in South Africa to express the force that the Indians used there for a full eight years and it was coined in order to distinguish it from the movement then going on in the U.K. and South Africa under the name of Passive Resistance.
It's root meaning is holding on to Truth, hence Truth-Force. I have also called it Love-Force or Soul-Force. In the application of Satyagraha I discovered in the earliest stages that pursuit of Truth did not admit of violence being inflicted on one's opponent but that he must be weaned from error by patience and sympathy. For what appears to be truth to the one may appear to be error to the other. And patience means self-suffering. So the doctrine came to mean the vindication of truth not by infliction of suffering on the opponent, but on one's self (self-sacrifice rather than sacrificing one's opponent).
But on the political field the struggle on behalf of the people consists in opposing error in the shape of unjust laws. When you have failed to bring the error home to the lawgiver by way of petitions and the like, the only remedy open to you, if you do not wish to submitt to error, is to compel him by physical force to yield to you or by suffering in your own person by inviting the penalty for the breach of the law. Hence Satyagraha largely appears to the public as Civil Disobedience or Civil Resistance.
Saturday, October 10, 2009
By M.K. Gandhi from Harijan, March 25, 1939. (Additional comments in parenthesis are mine.)
The four days' fast set me thinking of the qualifications required in a Satyagrahi (one who practices non-violence). Though they were carefully considered and reduced to writing in 1921 they seem to have been forgotten.
In Satyagraha,(literally 'clinging to truth'. Also Truth Force or Love Force. Most commonly rendered in English as non-violence) it is never the numbers that count; it is always the quality, more so when the forces of violence are uppermost.
Then it is often forgotten that it is never the intention of a Satyagrahi to embarrass the wrong-doer. The appeal is never to his fear; it is, must be, always to his heart. The Satyagrahi's object is to convert, not to coerce, the wrong-doer. He should avoid artificiality in all his doings. He acts naturally and from inward conviction.
Keeping these observations before his mind's eye, the reader will perhaps appreciate the following qualifications which, I hold, are essential for every Satyagrahi in India:
1. He must have a living faith in God, for He is his only Rock.
2. He must believe in truth and non-violence as his creed and therefore have faith in the inherent goodness of human nature which he expects to evoke by his truth and love expressed through his suffering.
3. He must be leading a chaste life and be ready and willing for the sake of his cause to give up his life and his possessions.
4. He must be a habitual khadi-wearer (home made clothing) and spinner (maker of home spun cloth). This is essential for India.
(At the time of this writing India was impoverished by the importation of British made cloth and clothing. Gandhi urged the boycott of these British products).
5. He must be a teetotaller (non-drinker) and be free from the use of other intoxicants in order that his reason may be always unclouded and his mind constant.
6. He must carry out with a willing heart all the rules of discipline as may be laid out from time to time.
7. He should carry out the jail rules unless they are specially devised to hurt his self-respect (Most of Gandhi's followers where subject to arrest for their non-violent activities and protests).
The qualifications are not to be regarded as exhaustive. They are illustrative only.
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
Mark Whitwell workshop with theme: Yoga is intimacy with body, breath, and relationship. This video is a companion to the book Yoga of Heart -- The Healing Power of Intimate Connection Lecture, Demonstraion, Question and Answer. Sacred music. heartofyoga.com yogaofheart.com