Alia’s Comments: Thich Nhat Hanh is one of the world’s most beloved teachers and practitioners of Zen Buddhism. Tomas posts many of his teachings on New Earth Heartbeat. Recently, Tomas read me the passage below and I recognized it as the guiding principle of my 2015 blog focus.
Every moment we have a choice: Will I choose to seed the Kingdom of God? Will I choose to sow the seeds of “hell?” Both paradigms exist, because WE choose to energize them at any given moment. The choice seems simple but ingrained habits of energizing the world of illusion make it seem difficult. So often we habitually or unconsciously choose to plant the seeds that feed suffering, destruction, obstacles to our creativity, barriers to heart-full relationships with those we love. However, we equally have the choice to energize the Kingdom of God by sowing the seeds of peace, love, joy and compassion.
Never has the choice been more clear. Never has the opportunity been more available to us to reap nearly instant blessings, because we choose to sow the seeds of good (of God). Let us allow ourselves and our Humanity to receive these blessings by making the moment-to-moment choice to feed only the New Earth Timeline of 2015. We can do this by continually planting the seeds of God –“the Kingdom of Heaven within us” — and nurturing these seeds to grow and flourish. Here are Thay’s (Thich Nhat Hanh’s) words from “Be Free Where You Are – Seed of the Kingdom of God” excerpt and “Feeding the Wonderful Elements in Us.”
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Watering the Seed of the Kingdom of God
Dear friends, you are nothing less than a miracle. There may be times when you feel that you are worthless. But you are nothing less than a miracle. The fact that you are here—alive and capable of breathing in and out—is ample proof that you are a miracle. One string bean contains the whole cosmos in it: sunshine, rain, the whole Earth, time, space, and consciousness. You also contain the whole cosmos. We contain the Kingdom of God, the Pure Land of the Buddha, in every cell of our bodies. If we know how to live, the Kingdom of God will manifest for us in the here and now; with one step, we can penetrate it. We don’t have to die to enter the Kingdom of God; in fact, we have to be very much alive. Hell, too, is in every cell of our body. It is up to us to choose. If we keep watering the seed of Hell in us each day, then Hell will be the reality we live in twenty-four hours a day. But if we know how to water the seed of the Kingdom of God in us each day, then the Kingdom of God will become the reality we live in every moment of our daily lives. This is my experience. There is not a day I do not walk in the Kingdom of God. Whether I am in this place or somewhere else, I am always capable of walking mindfully, and the ground beneath my feet is always the Pure Land of the Buddha. No one can take that away from me. For me, the Kingdom of God is now or never. It is not situated in time or space; it is in our hearts. You have to develop mindful walking and touch the Earth as if it were a miracle. If you know how to go back to the here and now, if you know how to touch the Kingdom of God in every cell of your body, it will manifest to you right away in the here and now.
Feeding the Wonderful Elements in Us
The practice is to get in touch with elements inside ourselves that are wonderful, that refresh and heal us. Without mindfulness in our daily life, we tend to allow in many elements that are harmful to our bodies and our consciousnesses. The Buddha said that nothing can survive without food. Our joy cannot survive without food; neither can our sorrow or our despair. If we have despair, it is because we have fed our despair the kind of food it thrives on. If we are depressed, the Buddha advises that we look deeply into the nature of our depression to identify the source of food that we use to nourish it. Once the source of the nutriments has been identified, cut it off. The depression will fade away after a week or two. Without mindfulness in our daily lives, we feed our anger and despair by looking at or listening to things around us that are highly toxic. We consume many toxins each day; what we see on television or read in magazines can nourish our anger and despair. But if we breathe in and out mindfully and realize that these are not the kinds of things we want to consume, then we will stop consuming them. To live mindfully means to stop ingesting these kinds of poisons. Instead, choose to be in touch with what is wonderful, refreshing, and healing within yourself and around you.
If you would like to read more of Thay’s teachings, you can download a free ebook here.