The life we actually have

“The path is the goal.” This quotation by Pema Chodron shared by Karl Duffy today communicates hope, no matter the apparently insurmountable obstacles or terror before us, threat or pain of death, threat or pain of annhilation, termination illness, incurable prognosis. As she says, “Everything is workable.”


What does it take to use the life we already have in order to make us wiser rather than more stuck?  

The answer to these questions seems to have to do with bringing everything that we encounter to the path. Everything naturally had a ground, path, and fruition. But it is also said that the path itself is both the ground and the fruition. The path is the goal. This path has one very distinct characteristic: it is not prefabricated. It doesn’t already exist. The path that we’re talking about is the moment-by-moment evolution of our experience, the moment-by-moment evolution of the world of phenomena, the moment-by-moment evolution of our thoughts and emotions. The path is uncharted. It comes into existence moment-by-moment and at the same time drops away behind us.

When we realize that the path is the goal, there’s a sense of workability. Everything that occurs…

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Haibun: Missing in Hamburg

A friend posted this about a young man who is missing in Hamburg Germany. His family is very worried. Please read and share.

two whippets in winter jackets sniffing seaweed near mouth of the river

It is twelve days ago today that a young man from these parts went missing. The timeless sky reflected in the water are part of the landscape he might still know as home. Concern is growing that he does not remember how to get back here. The small number of witness sightings since he disappeared speak of a man who seems confused and alone. It was meant to be a fun trip he had organised for his brother. With plans for meals, bars and drinks, a game of five-a-side football. He would not willingly abandon that. He would be in touch if he knew how to. If you are in Hamburg please look out for his face in the crowd.

a long way from home
snow is melting

© Xenia Tran

Missing in Hamburg Liam Colgan Poster

29 year old Inverness man Liam Colgan went missing in the early hours of 10th February 2018 during…

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Your Weekly Diversion, Week 52


Week 52 has arrived and I’m pretty late in getting to it. I’m not sure why my blogging year is up before January 20th, but so it is! It’s been a busy week for us, nothing worth noting here, but plenty nevertheless. The news continues to create stress and distress, especially the devastating mudslides in Southern California. It’s heartbreaking to see the damage and even worse to learn about the deaths of people and countless pets. Sometimes it feels as if Mother Nature is trying to shake us loose with earthquakes, tornados, hurricanes, fires and floods.



Hillary Brooke (1914-1999) (photo from Wikipedia)

My first diversion this week is a tribute to a woman I knew in childhood, actress Hillary Brooke. She was an actress, first noticed in “New Faces of 1937” and she appeared in Abbott and Costello sketches and even had a role in the ‘70s TV show “Soap” and My Little Margie” decades before that. Her name was Hillary Brooke. I met her as a friend of my godmother, a lovely Englishwoman who worked as a diction coach in the film industry and taught Hillary her distinctive, plummy British accent. She was born in Astoria, Queens, after all! Hillary gave me my set of Mary Poppins books, and took me hitchhiking when I was about 12 years old during a stay at my godmother’s mountain cabin, after walking back from the little town center tired us out. She had a dog, a black Scottie named Barney. Hillary was the most glamorous, fascinating woman I’d met at that time. Growing up in Southern California, I met quite a few people in the entertainment industry, most friends and clients of my father. Hillary was the first, and I remember her with love.


Photo by Peter Landers, Wall Street Journal

Okay, next I have a weird diversion for you. In Japan an unusual version of Coca Cola is grabbing attention. Called Coca Cola Plus, it contains a high fiber, laxative additive that fans believe allows them to eat unhealthy food and not digest the fat, thereby leading some to dub it “weight loss cola” as opposed to regular or “fat” cola. If you have trouble accessing the WSJ article here, since they have a paywall, TimeOut Beijing has the goods. And the text in the second link is funnier!


Now, remember Superstorm Sandy? So does the City of New York, and the City as an investment entity recognizes climate change as the result of fossil fuels raising the planet’s temperature. Therefore, the City is severing ties with their fossil fuel investments. This divestiture could be a huge deal in global economics and spur positive change.

And there’s no one like Bob Dylan to remind us that A Hard Rain’s Gonna Fall.

Cheers, all, and…




Your Weekly Diversion, Week 39


It’s week 39 and while chaos reigns around the globe, our hearts bleed for those suffering from the wildfires in California. The only things worse than losing all your material possessions of house and home are losing a loved one or pet, or dying in a fire yourself. Too awful to imagine.


Dr. John McDougall of Santa Rosa and his wife and family have loss everything but are all safe. Dr. McDougall has helped many unhealthy people lose weight and regain good health through a plant-based diet. He and his wife Mary have produced videos and published cookbooks as well as putting out free webinars to help people. Dr. McDougall’s Health and Medical Center offers brief residential programs in Santa Rosa. Dr. McDougall-brand soups and meals are on the shelves of most supermarkets and natural foods stores. We love their Garden Vegetable, even my omnivore husband. I consulted with him a few years ago when a very elderly patient of mine, knowing I was vegan, told me she wanted to switch to a vegan diet. He generously gave me of his time and made suggestions on how this might be safely accomplished, naturally with the cooperation of her primary physician. I received this email from him a couple of days ago:

Mary and I are well and with family. All our material possessions are lost. The same for Heather’s and Tiffany’s families.

Our years of struggle against the established thinking regarding nutrition and many medical treatments of patients will continue. The McDougall Program is alive and well and will run Programs (10-day and 3-day), conduct webinars, newsletters, etc., with as few interruptions as possible.

We are so fortunate that our lives were spared.

There are no authorized donation programs – Do not donate to any you may see.

We are humbled by the many offers of help. We may have many unexpected financial pressures, and if we decide to seek any monetary help from you, our friends, we will let you know.

John McDougall, MD

And now for some diversions!

Last week I shared about instructions for making a unicorn horn for Halloween. Here’s a link to directions for making a unicorn hat!


People sometimes ask me, knowing I call myself a Buddhist, what’s the difference between Buddhism and Hinduism? The Venn diagram above might a bit hard to read on your device, so this article may be of help in seeing the differences and similarities between these two ancient world religions.


Image from Pinterest

Do you have trouble decluttering your room, apartment or house? Lots of people do, especially those who struggle with obsessive-compulsive disorder of the messy variety. Apartment Therapy suggests it all starts with making your bed. Check it out!

For your musical diversion, and because I’m grateful for all those spared, and I feel that I too am lucky, here is Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillat with “Lucky”:





Grain of The Past

This poem and powerful image certainly speak to my feelings about these dangerous times. Thank to Na’ama Yehuda for taking the time to share them.

Na'ama Yehuda

Poland OAsifPhoto: O. Asif

May the grain of the past

Tell the story.

May history speak

Of the truth

That must

Never be buried

Like heads in the sand,

Or in hesitant voices

That won’t take a stand.

May the stain of the past

Be the guide to these times

So no alleged ‘fine men’

Torch-lit hate in the night

Once again propagate

Let return

Evil’s blight.

For The Daily Post

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