White Robed Monks of St. Benedict

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Peace be with you.


Edited from Inner Chapters by 4th Century BCE Chuang Tsu (trans. Gia-Fu Feng and Jane English). New York: Vintage Books, 1974 in Chapter 2, The Equality of All Things, p. 29

Everything can be a "that;" everything can be a "this." One person cannot see things as another sees them. One can only know things through knowing oneself. Therefore it is said, "'That' comes from 'this,' and 'this' comes from 'that'" — which means "that" and "this" give birth to one another. Life arises from death and death from life. What is inappropriate is seen by virtute of what is appropriate. There is right because of wrong, and wrong because of right. Thus, a human being does not bother with these distinctions but seeks enlightenment from heaven. So the person sees "this," but "this" is also "that," and "that" is also "this." "That" has elements of right and wrong, and "this" has elements of right and wrong. Does the person still distinguish between "this" and "that," or not? When there is no more separation between "this" and "that," it is called the still point of Peace. At the still-point in the center of the circle one can see the infinite in all things. Right is infinite; wrong is also infinite. Therefore it is said, "Behold the light beyond right and wrong."

From the Christian scripture we note:

Hence, the circle is our logo. The Circle has long been a symbol of enlightenment, wholeness. What is essential to a circle is the empty space. In ancient Sanskrit the term sunyata, "emptiness," describes this essential attribute of all things. Similarly our contemporary understanding of our physical universe through Quantum Mechanics brings to the us to a similar insight into our own nature and the nature of the phenomenal realm.

The Latin word Ausculta is the first word of the Rule of St. Benedict. The word means "Listen." For us to actually sense, see, or hear God, we first must get out of our own way. We set up our own obstacles by believing that our delusions, illusions, and allusion about ourselves and life in general are true, absolute and form objective reality. Instead of knowing reality or God, we are caught up in the web of our own subjective experiences which we project as being The Truth. The Rule asks the monk (monos, meaning "one" as God is one. Mark 12:29) continually to learn how to listen rather than just hear. For further insight, please refer to the Prologue of the (Zen) Rule of St. Benedict.

We conclude with reading from the Book of the Essences:

Blessed is the child of light
who is pure in heart,
for that person shall see God.
For as the heavenly Father has given you
his Holy Spirit,
and your earthly mother has given you
her holy body,
so shall you give love
to all your brothers and sisters.
And your true brothers and sisters are those
who do the will of your heavenly Father
and your earthly mother.
Let your love be as the Sun
which shines on all the creatures of the earth,
and does not favor one blade of grass for another.
And this love shall flow as a fountain
from person to person,
and as it is spent
so shall it be replenished.
For love is eternal.
Love is stronger
than the currents of deep waters.
Love is stronger than death.
And if human beings have not love,
they build walls between themselves
And the creatures of the earth.

May you and yours enjoy Life with gratitude and compassion, merriment and glee! "Life is but a Merry Dance!" as has been often said.

Peace and Joy!

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