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Post Remembrance of a old winter, five years past. Read an old post here about beauty in winter
Series: :The Awakening of Silence


"Little Boxes" is a song written by Malvina Reynolds in 1962, which became a hit for her friend Pete Seeger in 1963.

The song is a political satire about the development of suburbia and associated conformist middle-class attitudes. It refers to suburban tract housing as "little boxes" of different colors "all made out of ticky-tacky", and which "all look just the same." "Ticky-tacky" is a reference to the shoddy material used in the construction of housing of that time

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malvina

The song came back to peoples attention when a new wave of artists released covers of it since 2000. And is most familiar as the intro theme to the TV Series “Weeds”.

weeds

I went through many cover versions of it , and the best one i found was by a relatively new band  called “As the Crow Flies”. You can freely download this cover version by Saving this mp3 file.

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You can listen to the original version below.

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I tried running around the city a couple to days ago to find a fairly common book, and to my misfortune i was unable to find the edition i wanted.

So i decided to try flipkart.com the online book store service of India. And i have to say i am terribly impressed by their service. :)

I ordered two books Yesterday (midnight) Morning at 1:30AM
I received a Shipment confirmation of one of my books by 8:30PM yesterday.
And i received my first book today at 11:30AM.
Within 36 hours!. Even though the website said it will take 8-10 days at first, and consequently 2-3 days.
And at 8:30PM Today i received my shipment confirmation for my second book. It says i will receive it with in the next 2-3 days.

May be the fact that i resided in a Bangalore speed up the delivery process. I am not sure how fast they will be able to serve remote locations. They might use Indian Speed Post for it. That might take like 3-6 days for a delivery. But since a lot of out of print versions are available here i am sure it will be worth the wait if you want a scarce book.

all this and that too no online transactions were required , i could pay by “Cash on Delivery”.

Flipcart 0 flipcart 1

flipcart 2

Flipcart 3

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Great things about Flipkart.com
1.Free Shipment above 100.Rs order.
2.Great Packaging
3.I could see up to 30 % discounts on a few books!
4.Prompt delivery if book is available within India.
5.Cash on Delivery option, even online payment is available if you need it.
6. Free Book Mark

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Hildegard of Bingen's sequence, 'Columba aspexit', is an interesting work both as music and as poetry. It is a Plainchant but Hildegard's musical genius did bring into it a almost heavenly melody. It is a personal favourite of mine.
I tried searching for many versions on the web. and the best one i found was performed by Emma Kirkby on a for Christopher Page’s Gothic Voices production.

gothic-voices-emma-kirkby-356-l

The albums name is :”Gothic Voices : A feather on the breath of God



The Album was cited by this website , as a recording you must hear before you die, under the classical section.

Not to mention Emma kirkby’s performance is excellent, i couldn't imagine a better rendition possible anyone i know.

Blessed Hildegard of Bingen (German: Hildegard von Bingen; Latin: Hildegardis Bingensis) (1098 – 17 September 1179), also known as Saint Hildegard, and Sibyl of the Rhine, was a Christian mystic, German Benedictine abbess, visionary, and polymath.[2] Elected a magistra by her fellow nuns in 1136, she founded the monasteries of Rupertsberg in 1150 and Eibingen in 1165. One of her works as a composer, the Ordo Virtutum, is an early example of liturgical drama.

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She wrote theological, botanical and medicinal texts, as well as letters, liturgical songs, poems, and the first surviving morality play, while supervising brilliant miniature Illuminations.

source of text : Wikipedia

hildegard

After a long search i was able to find the text and translation of Columba Aspexit.

Columba aspexit
per cancellos fenestrae
ubi ante faciem eius
sudando sudavit balsamum
de lucido Maximino.

The dove peered in
through the lattices of the windows
where, before its face,
a balm exuded
from incandescent Maximilian.

hildegard_von_bingen8

Iste turris excelsa,
de ligno Libani et cipresso facta,
iacincto et sardio ornata est,
urbs precellens artes
aliorum artificum.

The heat of the sun burned
dazzling into the gloom:
whence a jewel sprang forth
in the building of the temple
of the purest loving heart.

Calor solis exarsit
et in tenebras resplenduit
unde gemma surrexit
in edificatione templi
purissimi cor dis benivoli.

He, the high tower,
constructed of Lebanon wood and cypress,
has been adorned with jacinth and diamonds,
a city excelling the crafts
of other builders.

For the remaining part of the text and translation see this webpage.

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Hymn: A derivative of the Latin hymnus, which comes from the Greek hymnos, derived from hydein, to sing. A Hymn is usually a Praise/Prayer to God which is sung.

This is my favourite hymn.  Its a very moving to experience to hear a choir sing it.

Since there isn't any proper choir version i could download on the net, I found a few choir videos on YouTube. I was going through one of them and i found the following comment.

comment  holy god we praise thy name

This hymn is also features in the movie ‘Doubt’ , as the background music for the first few minutes into the movie. 




1.	Holy God, we praise thy name; 
Lord of all, we bow before thee;
all on earth thy scepter claim;
all in heaven above adore thee.
Infinite thy vast domain;
everlasting is thy reign.

2. Hark the glad celestial hymn
angel choirs above are raising;
cherubim and seraphim,
in unceasing chorus praising,
fill the heavens with sweet accord:
Holy, holy, holy Lord.

3. Lo! the apostolic train
joins thy sacred name to hallow;
prophets swell the glad refrain,
and the white-robed martyrs follow.
And from morn to set of sun,
through the church the song goes on.

4. Holy Father, Holy Son,
Holy Spirit: three we name thee,
though in essence only one;
undivided God we claim thee,
and adoring bend the knee
while we own the mystery.
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THUBTEN LEKSHEY LING

An Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Meditation & Study Centre

Founded by His Holiness Penor Rinpoche

www.lekshey.org

                                                                     

Study Group Session on

Bodhicarya-avatara (The Way of Bodhisattvas)

&

"The Practice of 21-Tara"

 

(One may choose to attend either one or both of the programs)

 

Date & Time:  7th August 2010, Saturday

                         3:00pm - 6:30pm

Venue:            Arrupe Hall, ASHIRVAD,

                         #30, St Marks Road Cross,

                         Opposite SBI, St Marks Road, Bangalore

 

Program Details:

3:00pm to 5:15pm:  The Way of the Bodhisattvas

5:30pm to 6:30pm:  The Practice of 21-Tara called "The Essence of Two-fold Accumulation"

 

Description of Study Group Session

We will continue the study group session on the classic text of Bodhicarya-avatara (The Way of the Bodhisattvas). We will possibly complete Chapter 2 and start Chapter 3 in this session.

 

Description of the Practice of 21-Tara

This would be a group practice of 21-Tara Puja and Meditation according to Chokyur Lingpa's "The Essence of Two-Fold Accumulations"

 

(NOTE: If you wish to be removed from the mailing list, please reply to this mail with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject header)

 


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THUBTEN LEKSHEY LING

An Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Meditation & Study Centre

Founded by His Holiness Penor Rinpoche

www.lekshey.org

 

 

"How the Buddha Became an Authentic Teacher"

- A Teaching by Dolpo Tulku Rinpoche

 

Date & Time:  24th July 2010, Saturday

                         3:00pm - 6:00pm

Venue:            Arrupe Hall, ASHIRVAD,

                         #30, St Marks Road Cross,                    

                         Opposite SBI, St Marks Road, Bangalore

 



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CodePoet at flickr.com

Love is not a result, it is the very ground of being.
~ Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj ~


The following was a comment i posted on a friend's
Facebook status.

Dear Friend,
I may be completely wrong, please dont take anything i say too seriously.


Also i am finding it extremely difficult to put it in words, the fact that you are reading this itself means ... what I wanted to convey has been distorted.

I think Nisarga was referring to 'love' in its most basic essence. And the not the kind that is associated with feeling, infatuation, or in the 'possessive' sense. ...

I think Nisarga was referring to the very essence that exists in us when we strip away any kind of momentum within us, any kind of expectation from something . For example, when we wake up in the morning by ourselves, for the first couple of minutes, do we actually have a sense of feeling for something, we have neither hatred nor 'love' in the contemporary sense. But we can feel a acceptance within ourselves... A sense that we are OK with whats around us, not trying to change anything, and that is the very acceptance of our existence, and i think that is Love.

When we have no expectation from something, we totally accept it, and in that natural state we are in 'Love'(the was Nisarga puts it), that is the state of 'being'.

P.S: Look at the Picture above , Do you feel like changing anything in that scene?

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Once the Buddha, in his old age, was resting beneath a banyan tree. It was summer , and after the evening discourse, the Buddha was approached by a traveling disciple, who appeared to be very troubled. The disciple was Ayraputra. Ayraputra approached the Buddha and said:

"I salute The blessed one.
I bring news that saddens me.

I have traveled far, to spread the Dhamma.

I met many people in my journey.


I talked at lengths about the Tathagatha, his qualities.

I talked at lengths about the four noble truths.
I talked at lengths about the eight fold path.
I talked at lengths about the way of out of suffering, about he Dhamma
.

But no one respects my message and the deliverance of the Dhamma.
I was humiliated by a king's court.

I was mocked at by a fisherman.
I was beaten by a woodcutter.

I was chased by disciples of another teacher.
I was laughed at by monks."


The Buddha was silent all the while ayraputra described his experience. The Tathagatha then replied....

"Well Ayraputra, what did you expect?"

-
It a nice exercise to ask this question every time we find ourselves threading upon Life's banana skins. Some times we work toward a goal and expect things to go as planned. But life being a child with a mind of its own, things often never seem to work out. Instead of watering resistance to the way things are, its nice to ask "well, What did I expect?" and it always brings a smile to my face.

You may be very enthusiastically explaining our beliefs and philosophy to a loved one, and they would call it rubbish and you mad.
You may have invested heavily in a stock , and it tumbles down
You wanted to have a pleasant day, but the very start seems shaky

"Well, what did you expect?"


The Buddha himself couldn't convince the very fist person he met after his enlightenment that he indeed was the Tathagatha.



At Mount Gaya he met a monk named Upaka. At the sight of the Blessed One, Upaka uttered a cry of admiration. My Lord, may I ask who your master was?"

"I had no master," answered the Blessed One. "There is no one like me. I alone am wise, calm, incorruptible."

"What a great master you must be!" said Upaka. "Yes, I am the only master in this world; my equal can not be found on earth or in the sky." "Where are you going?" asked Upaka.

"I am going to Benares," said the Blessed One, "and there I shall light the lamp that will bring light into the world, a light that will dazzle even the eyes of the blind. I am going to Benares, and there I shall beat the drums that will awaken mankind, the drums that will sound even in the ears of the deaf. I am going to Benares, and there I shall teach the law."

Upaka left in disbelief , so Lord Buddha continued on his way.

-
Notes:
  • Story of Ayraputra and the Buddha , was inspired by a lesson on Expectations and the Suffering caused by them as taught by Padmavajra in a talk, which i downloaded from freebuddhistaudio.com [i cant recall the title of the talk]
References:
  • Photo and Text of Upaka and Buddha: http://buddhaimages.webs.com/3144postures.htm
Suggested reading:
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THUBTEN LEKSHEY LING

An Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Meditation & Study Centre

Founded by His Holiness Penor Rinpoche

www.lekshey.org

 

Talk & Discussion by Ajith Prasad on

"Skilful Methods"

&

Meditation on

Shamata (Calm-abiding)

 

Date & Time:  9th January 2010, Saturday

                         3:00pm - 6:00pm

Venue:            Outside Hall, ASHIRVAD,

                         #30, St Marks Road Cross,

                         Opposite SBI, St Marks Road, Bangalore

 

Program Details:

3:00pm to 4:30pm: Talk on Skilful Methods

4:45pm to 5:00pm:  Shamata Meditation

 

Description of the Talk

This talk will explore how skilful methods (upāya) are utilized in the path. We would also look at some of the skilful methods from the path to see how they help in bridging the divide between our ordinary experience and the wisdom of enlightenment.

 

Description of Meditation

During the second part of this Saturday's session, we will meditate together on certain ways of developing calm abiding.

 

 


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After a long search i finally found a few Zen Centers in India. Turns out Zen is extremely rare in India, I don't understand why that is the case. I think Some International Schools must take initiatives to set up centers here.

2692738300_2796519025_o 

1.Bodhi Zendo,
is located in South India. (please visit their website for knowing more)
http://www.bodhizendo.org/
Bodhi Zendo is situated in Tamil Nadu, South India, in the upper Palani Hills at an altitude of about 1700 m, about 100km north-west of Madurai (National Airport). The nearest village is Perumalmalai and the nearest town, the hill resort of Kodaikanal. The closest International Airports are Chennai/Madras, Bangalore or Trivandrum.

2.Open Dharma
Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India
Contact: Jaya Ashmore
Email: towardsliberation@yahoo.com
Web site: http://www.opendharma.org
Tradition: Buddhist vipassana (insight),
Zen and metta meditation traditions.
Teachers: Jaya Ashmore and Ajay Singh

To know about other Buddhist Centers in India visit this link
http://www.dharmaweb.org/index.php/India




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Today I came across a video on YouTube that i want to share with you. The video speaks for it self , the intensity in the environment is intense, yet there was a person trying to be peace. yes that's what i said ‘trying to be peace’. Lets see what that means.

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‘What is the purpose of Life?’ that's a great question… Osho(i know not many agree or like him, but at times he has something valuable to say) , Rajneesh (Osho) says that ‘you’ never ask that question, your mind asks that… and no matter what answer you provide, its not enough, in fact its never enough. and that's because that is the function of your mind .. ‘to ask’ … to be in the state of ‘needing to know’.

osho photo

Bô Yin Râ (Joseph Anton Schneiderfranken), a German Philosopher and author says something very profound. He says instead of asking ‘What is the purpose of Life?’ ,we must ask ‘What is Our Purpose to Life?’. To paraphrase it, instead of asking ‘of what use is life to us?’ we must ask ‘What use are we to Life?'’

Bo Yin Ra

Eckhart Tolle further ,adds to this and ,says in a talk he gave at a retreat, It is more useful to raise the question “what is my purpose to life?” , and your purpose in any Life situation is to bring peace into that situation. You are here ,as a portal to bring ‘presence’ into this world. (Of course to fully follow what this simple line means ,you may have to be familiar with Tolle’s works)

budaj

It may seem The Buddha would often never answer this question. But his silence is the very message of Eckhart in action.

If you are walking to get a cup of water, then your purpose is to walk and walk alone. to walk fully , and not absently, to be there fully. when you pick up your glass of water that is your purpose in life, be there totally and notice what you are doing,and do it fully. when you drinking it, drinking is your purpose in life. when you are sitting , sitting is your purpose in life… to do it fully to bring presence into this world by bringing presence into your Life.

In any (so-called) life situation your purpose is to be peace, by bringing presence into it.

Lets have a look at the video that brought out this post through me.
I want you to know that some times a form of teaching which you might consider is not very clear or advanced does help bring peace into life. and therefore we must genuinely appreciate and have respect for all teachings

P.S: Looks like my writing stream is becoming active, may be its because i changed rooms :D , be ready to see more posts this January

do leave a comment and let me know what you feel about this post and the theme i tried to address here.




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Well Feynman was my childhood hero. This guy was absolutely great. For any Science Student, Getting that Feynman spirit in their studies is the best way to enjoy it. I recently came across a set of images of his blackboards in his office at the time of his death. I noticed one particular note he made on his blackboard, which if i remember well was the Epigraph i wrote on my copy of CLRS . Every bit of Feynman still influences me and the way i approach any subject. even though i no longer study anything related to physics, but his enthusiasm and curiosity are still very valuable .

So here is the note i am talking about, the second one on the Left side of the photo (in fact both of them are interesting).

1.10-29 Photo Courtesy: Caltech Archives




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