Home | Bio | Articles | Passages

Creaking to the post office
 on my rusty bike
 I saw one purple iris
 wild in the wet green
 of the rice field.
 I wanted to send it to you.
 I can only tell you
 it was there.

From Pure Heart Enlightened Mind,
The Zen Journal and Letters of Maura "Soshin" O'Halloran,
Charles E. Tuttle Company, 1994

Make your ego porous. Will is of little importance, complaining is nothing, fame is nothing. Openness, patience, receptivity, solitude is everything.
                ~ Rainer Maria Rilke

The birds have vanished into the sky, and now the last cloud drains away. We sit together, the mountain and me, until only the mountain remains.
                ~ Li Po
We are looking at a mystery here. 
How do these things have such an obstinancy and yet are dependent on my consciousness?
               ~Doc Dachtler, friend of Gary Snyder

How wonderful that we have met with a paradox. Now we have some hope of making progress.
                ~ Niels Bohr

Science is the organized skepticism in the reliability of expert opinion.
                ~ Richard Feynman

I consider the ambition of overcoming opposites, including also a synthesis embracing both rational understanding and the mystical experience of unity, to be the mythos, spoken or unspoken, of our present day and age.
                ~ Werner Heisenberg, quoted in "Wolfgang Pauli's Philosophical Outlook," chapter 3.

If there is a sin against life, it consists perhaps not so much in
despairing of life as in hoping for another life and in eluding the
implacable grandeur of this life.
                ~ Albert Camus

"To love. To be loved. To never forget your own insignificance. To never get used to the unspeakable violence and the vulgar disparity of life around you. To seek joy in the saddest places. To pursue beauty to its lair. To never simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. To respect strength, never power. Above all, to watch. To try and understand. To never look away. And never, never, to forget."
               ~ Arundhati Roy

None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.
               ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Never, never, never believe any war will be smooth and easy, or that anyone who embarks on the strange voyage can measure the tides and hurricanes he will encounter. The statesman who yields to war fever must realize that once the signal is given, he is no longer the master of policy but the slave of unforeseeable and uncontrollable events.
               ~ Winston Churchill

I have a gloomy premonition...that we will soon look back on this troubled moment as a golden time of freedom and license to act and speculate. One feels the sinews of the tiger, an ascetic, "moral" and authoritarian reign of piety and iron.
               ~ written in 1966 by Robert Lowell

Men want to liberate themselves, but they do not want to be free. They are always looking to belong to something.
               ~ Jean Daniel

Actions are held to be good or bad, not on their own merits, but according to who does them. There is almost no kind of outrage -- torture, imprisonment without trial, assassination, the bombing of civilians -- which does not change its moral color when it is committed by 'our' side. . . . The nationalist not only does not disapprove of atrocities committed by his own side, he has a remarkable capacity for not even hearing about them.
             ~ George Orwell

Those are my principles. If you don't like them I have others.
         ~ Groucho Marx