Thursday, December 29, 2005

Common Ground Grows Up

File under: Reference Library

When we hit the San Francisco bay area in the late 80s, we were surprised by the prevalence of spiritual culture there. Right next to the real estate rags at the supermarket was Common Ground, a kind of upscale services classified for the spiritual/psychological/bodywork market. This included just about any New Age™ vocation in existence along with every alternative therapy alive at the time.

We haven't seen the print pub in a while, but today we landed on the online version, and we were very pleased with what Common Ground has turned out to be. It reminded us more of a mini Utne Reader or Mother Jones than the shill sheet for past life regression therapists and crystal chakra balancers we remember it as.

Flipping through the archive, we happened upon this bit by Thich Nhat Hanh:
I am convinced that each of us has a bell in our pockets. We can be students of music. We can help bring harmony and peace and joy into our bodies and our minds. And we have not just one, but many musical instruments. Our in-breath and out-breath is a kind of violin that we can play all day. Our steps, our lungs, our noses—everything can become a musical instrument. We can play music while sitting, while walking, or while eating—and that music will bring joy, calm, and peace into our lives. And as I am a student of that class, I invite all of you to be my co-students, and you will learn how to play music in such a way that will bring peace to our society, our communities, and ourselves.
Remember that bell in your pockets, folks. No matter what din you're dealing with on the outer, the inner always rings with the clear, cool tone of existence itself.

2 Comments:

At 1/03/2006 9:59 AM, Blogger facedog said...

Hi Jody,

As you say, this guy must be desperate to maintain the illusion of youth or else he has the emotional development of a 17 year old.

On the other hand, I remember you reccomending psychedelics as a sadhana tool. How can psychedelics do anything but generate more "experiences" which people treasure and worship for decades. How do they help anyone see through the mind?

 
At 1/03/2006 7:33 PM, Blogger jody said...

How can psychedelics do anything but generate more "experiences" which people treasure and worship for decades. How do they help anyone see through the mind?

It blows the cobwebs out. But not everyone stops there. There are great risks. But there's a lot to be learned and enjoyment too, so many take those risks and end up just fine.

 

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