Gathas, Kabbalah

June 3, 2008

Email to a friend:

I won't be able to write much the rest of the week, and then on Friday I head to the mountains for a week, so I wanted to send this while I was thinking about it (and while a neighbor's car alarm keeps me from sleeping).

Lately I've been using a few "mindfulness verses" that Thich Nhat Hanh calls "gathas". They are simple verses that you memorize, and then repeat silently at the appropriate time. For instance, when washing your hands his verse is:

Water flows over these hands.
May I use them skillfully
to preserve our precious planet.

His greeting for meeting another person is:

A lotus for you,
a Buddha to be.

I also like this verse for eating or preparing food:

In this food
I see clearly the presence
of the entire universe
supporting my existence.

I wasn't a very good Catholic back in the day, so I don't know if there is something similar in the Christian/Catholic world, but I've found these to be helpful in bringing my attention to the present moment. I think the Kabbalah guy mentioned something similar, but I need to listen to that part of the recording again. (I have a real hard time with their words.)

Have a namaste

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