The Zoo Fence

Here's A Thought!

Year 2015 Archive

Can I go home, please!
The Way Home

Here we archive “Here’s A Thought” items from the year 2015.
To return to the current year, click here.
Addional years’ archives are also accessible from the same page.

December 25, 2015

It’s a wonderful day; alive with hope.
And yet I sense there’s something more.
I can only reach it when I’m still,
and Silence is my floor.
That’s when I feel the living beauty
issuing from your heart;
And that’s when Christmas mutates
from a playday into Art.

Elsa Joy Bailey

December 20, 2015

Silence is not the absence of sound,
but the absence of self.

Anthony de Mello

December 13, 2015

Be moderate in your walking and your talking.
The most unpleasant sound is the braying of donkeys.

Qur’an (31:19)

December 6, 2015

Questioner: When will it happen?

Maharaj: It will happen as soon as you remove the obstacles.

Q: Which obstacles?

M: Desire for the false and fear of the true. You, as the person, imagine that the Guru is interested in you as a person. Not at all. To him you are a nuisance and a hindrance to be done away with. He actually aims at your elimination as a factor in consciousness.

Q: If I am eliminated, what will remain?

M: Nothing will remain, all will remain. … Liberation is never of the person, it is always from the person.

Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
in I Am That

November 29, 2015

The people who burned witches at the stake never for one moment thought of their act as violence; rather they thought of it as an act of divinely mandated righteousness. The same can be said of most of the violence we humans have ever committed.

Gil Bailie
in Violence Unveiled: Humanity at the Crossroads

November 22, 2015

You have eaten of the fruit; that cannot be undone. Your mistake is this: that you wish to exist; what’s more, that you want to have done so from the very beginning and forevermore. You concern yourself much too intensely with that. Your will to be is inexhaustible.

The voice of God to Adam
in The Wall by H. G. Adler
quoted in New York Times Sunday Book Review

November 15, 2015

We have just enough religion to make us hate but not enough to make us love one another.

Jonathan Swift

November 8, 2015

Decades ago, a woman,
bless her well-intentioned heart,
gave birth to me.

At the selfsame instant,
she gave death to me …
for delivery on some future date unspecified.

I thank her for the effort expended on my behalf,
but after careful consideration,
I choose to accept neither as mine.

Stefan Nadzo

November 1, 2015

There is Buddha
for those who don’t know what he is really.
There is no Buddha,
for those who know what he is really.

Zen Wisdom Saying

October 25, 2015

Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge?
Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?

T.S. Eliot

October 18, 2015

There is nothing I can give you that you do not have.
But there is much, very much, which, while I cannot give it, you can take.
No heaven can come to us unless our hearts find rest in it today. Take heaven!

Fra Giovanni Giocondo

October 11, 2015

False teachers of the way of life use flowery words

And start nonsense.

Lao Tzu
in The Way of Life According to Lao Tzu

October 4, 2015

Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind; and the third is to be kind.

Henry James

September 27, 2015

“I have a dogmatic certainty: God is in every person’s life.” In an early-morning homily in the Vatican hostel where [Pope Francis] lives, he anticipated traditionalists’ objections, saying, “Not just Catholics. Everyone! ‘Father, the atheists?’ Even the atheists. Everyone!” For Francis, the Church’s purpose is not to bring God to the world but simply to emphasize God’s presence — already there.

New Yorker article “Who Am I To Judge
about Pope Francis

September 20, 2015

It’s our choice whether to hate something in our lives or to love every moment of them, even the parts that bring us pain

Stephen Colbert
at Crux

September 13, 2015

Quippe res dei ratio quia deus omnium conditor nihil non ratione providit disposuit ordinavit, nihil [enim] non ratione tractari intellegique voluit.

Reason, in fact, is a thing of God, inasmuch as there is nothing which God the Maker of all has not provided, disposed, ordained by reason — nothing which He has not willed should be handled and understood by reason.

De paenitentia (on repentance) byTertullian
Translated by Reverend S. Thelwall

September 6, 2015

There is no man so good, who, were he to submit all his thoughts and actions to the laws, would not deserve hanging ten times in his life.

Michel de Montaigne

August 30, 2015

Before God we are all equally wise — and equally foolish.

Albert Einstein

August 23, 2015

Every time a thought is born, you are born. When the thought is gone, you are gone. But the ‘you’ does not let the thought go, and what gives continuity to this ‘you’ is the thinking. Actually, there is no permanent entity in you, no totality of all your thoughts and experiences. You think that there is ‘somebody’ who is thinking your thoughts, ‘somebody’ who is feeling your feelings — that’s the illusion. I can say it is an illusion; but it is not an illusion to you.

U. G. Krishnamurti
in The Mystique of Enlightenment

August 16, 2015

Non Impediti Ratione Cogitationis — Unencumbered by the thought process.

Self-proclaimed motto of
the late Tom Magliozzi of Car Talk
on National Public Radio

August 9, 2015

The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of them already; but the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of a doubt, what is laid before him.

Leo Tolstoy

August 2, 2015

We can’t run away from who we are. Our destiny chooses us.

Movie Rounders

July 26, 2015

The best teachers are those who show you where to look,
but don’t tell you what to see.

Alexandra K. Trenfor
about whom apparently no information exists

July 19, 2015

What has he found who has lost God?
And what has he lost who has found God?

Ata’illah as-Sakandari

July 12, 2015

The secret of living without frustration and worry is to avoid becoming personally involved in your life.

in Stumbling Toward Enlightenment by Geri Larkin

July 5, 2015

I’m perfectly capable of holding two, or more, contradictory things in my mind. If I say, on the one hand, ‘Death is an awfully big adventure’ (thank you Peter Pan for that quote) and swig morphine, and tell jokes with Ian, that doesn’t also mean that I’m not terrified at the prospect of my own nonexistence.

Jenny Diski, diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer,
in The New York Times Magazine
June 14, 2015

June 28, 2015

Love is love.

Barack Obama

June 21, 2015

Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God;
our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence.

St. John of Kronstadt

June 14, 2015

Must we hold that because one religion is true, all others must be false?

Lost Horizon by James Hilton

June 7, 2015

It is the mind that tells you that the mind is there. Don’t be deceived. All the endless arguments about the mind are produced by the mind itself, for its own protection, continuation, and expansion. It is the blank refusal to consider the convolutions and convulsions of the mind that can take you beyond it.

Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
in I Am That

May 31, 2015

And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by men. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you pray, go into your room, and shut the door, and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.

Matthew 6:5-6 RSV

May 24, 2015

Fire and water do not mix, neither can you mix judgment of others with the desire to repent. If a man commits a sin before you at the very moment of his death, pass no judgment, because the judgment of God is hidden from men. It has happened that men have sinned greatly in the open but have done greater deeds in secret, so that those who would disparage them have been fooled, with smoke instead of sunlight in their eyes.

St. John Climacus

May17, 2015

To be sure, God exists in all beings. … God can be realized through all paths. All religions are true. The important thing is to reach the roof. You can reach it by stone stairs or by wooden stairs or by bamboo steps or by a rope. You can also climb up by a bamboo pole.

Sri Ramakrishna
in The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna

May10, 2015

If life was found to be agreeable, then so should death, for it comes from the hand of the same Creator.

attributed on a PBS broadcast about the Sistine Chapel

May 3, 2015

You cannot evaluate an insane belief system from within it.

A Course in Miralces
Text, Chapter 9

April 26, 2015

Those who remember always that they know nothing, and who have become willing to learn everything, will learn it. But whenever they trust themselves, they will not learn. They have destroyed their motivation for learning by thinking they already know.

A Course in Miracles
Volume One (Text), Chapter 14

April 19, 2015

The worldly person’s sense of honor rests shakily on the good opinion of others, most of whom are as deluded as himself.

Paramhansa Yogananda
Commentary at Quatrain Sixty-Nine of The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam

April 12, 2015

If my beliefs

color all

my world,

and I don’t like

the world I see,

then wouldn’t the one

who must see anew

be me?

Elsa Joy Bailey
in “Questions”

April 5, 2015

Yeshua said:

If those who guide you say: Look,

the Kingdom is in the sky,

then the birds are closer than you.

If they say: Look,

it is in the sea,

then the fish already know it.

The Kingdom is inside you,

and it is outside you.

When you know yourself, then you will be known,

and you will know that you are the child of the Living Father;

but if you do not know yourself,

you will live in vain

and you will be vanity.

The Gospel of Thomas, Logion 3
trans. Jean-Yves Leloup
and into English by Joseph Rowe.

March 29, 2015

Seek, and you will be found.

Matthew 7:7 & TZF

March 22, 2015

… Father Baddeley had always used these books for his diary, one book for each quarter of the year. …

“It’s just an ordinary diary, then, Father? It isn’t about your spiritual life?”

“This is the spiritual life; the ordinary things one does from hour to hour.”

P. D. James
in The Black Tower - An Adam Dalgliesh Mystery

March 15, 2015

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

Rainer Maria Rilke

March 8, 2015

Human kindness has never weakened the stamina, or softened the fiber, of a free people.
A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt

March 1, 2015

The prophet Isa [Jesus], peace be unto him, said this:

The world is a bridge.

Pass over it,

but do not make your home there.

Inscribed by Akbar The Great
at Faterpuh Sikri, India
in The Gospel of Thomas, trans. Jean-Yves Leloup

February 22, 2015

“Of what religion are you?”

“I am of the religion of all sensible men.”

“And what is that?”

“All sensible men keep that to themselves.”

Attributed to Benjamin Disraeli (and others)

February 15, 2015

I have to make room for the legitimacy of your point of view, and not let my righteousness make me think my perception is more meaningful than yours.

Lois Braverman
CEO of Ackerman Institute for the Family
in “Corner Office” New York Times February 8, 2015

February 8, 2015

Closing my eyes and holding still. It’s the end if I get mad or scream. It’s close to a prayer. Hate is not for humans. Judgment lies with God. That’s what I learned from my Arabic brothers and sisters.

Kenji Goto
Japanese journalist murdered by ISIS

February 1, 2015

Abbot Joseph asked Abbot Pastor: Tell me how I can become a monk.

The elder replied: If you want to have rest here in this life and also in the next, in every conflict with another say: Who am I? And judge no one.

The Wisdom of The Desert cv
by Thomas Merton

January 25, 2015

Questioner: I do see and admit that the outer chaos is merely a reflection of my own inner disharmony. But what is the remedy?

Nisargadatta: Don’t seek remedies.

Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
in I Am That

January 18, 2015

The birth of a man is the birth of his sorrow. The longer he lives, the more stupid he becomes, because his anxiety to avoid unavoidable death becomes more and more acute. What bitterness! He lives for what is always out of reach!

His thirst for survival in the future makes him incapable of living in the present.

Chuang Tzu
quoted in The Grace in Dying
by Kathleen Dowling Singh
see also here

January 11, 2015

The issue is why … That’s what we’re after. … In the beginning was not the word, not the deed, not the silly serpent. In the beginning was why? Why did she pluck the apple? Was she bored? Was she inquisitive? Was she paid? Did Adam put her up to it? If not, who did?

The Russia House
by John le Carré

January 4, 2015

The desire to put an end to all desires is a most peculiar desire, just like the fear of being afraid is a most peculiar fear. One stops you from grabbing, and the other from running. You may use the same words, but the states are not the same. The man who seeks realization is not addicted to desires; he is a seeker who goes against desire, not with it. A general longing for liberation is only the beginning; to find the proper means and use them is the next step. The seeker has only one goal in view: to find his own true being. Of all desires, it is the most ambitious, for nothing and nobody can satisfy it; the seeker and the sought are one, and the search alone matters.

Sri Nisgardatta Maharaj
in I Am That


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