For this new year I'm sharing my favorite quote, by Wu-Chun, and a new favorite I found today. "The path is in daily activities, but if you linger in daily activities, then you are taking a thief for your son. If you seek some special life outside of daily activities, that is like brushing aside waves to look for water." - Wu Chun "If you want to see the subtle mind of Zen, that is very easy. Just step back and pick it up with intense strength during all of your activities, whatever you are doing, even as you eat, drink, and talk, even as you experience the stress of attending to the world." -Unknown Life is full of paradoxes, and the nature of the non-dual spiritual path existing in paradox comes as no surprise. On a spiritual path we learn two very important things; to live fully and uninhibited, but "without pushing aside the waves to look for water". We can live nourishingly, expressively, and uniquely even without the need for continual excitement and stimulation. We should be able to find the careful balance between expressive living, and responsible living. Between freedom and structure. Between excitement and sustainability. To shift the balance too far in one direction is to skew the whole thing, and that is why we are reminded to be present. There is no reference but that in each moment. We can not just plan to live fully, be exciting, spontaneously exciting; we must instead meet excitement and fulfillment where it greets us, by meeting life head on. When we plan to be be unique, expressive, authentic, we defeat the purpose. We must shape life and our own style of living through finding the natural inclination in each moment, free of the influence of a conditoned mind. The mind is always conditioned, it has many innate perspectives. Only the heart is definite in its answers. Only in the heart, where the soul rests, can we know truly what needs and actions are required to thrive. Only there do we hear the inarguable voice of the spirit, directing the mind and body to peacefulness. With that, Happy New Year!