a life of nonviolence, of nonaggression and non-harming is not just a reflection of how we act and what we say, but also how we may provoke/cause others to act because of our words and actions towards others.

our fear not transformed may turn into greed and aggression. our greed and our aggression causes harm. our greed and our oppression of others pushes others into desperation and violence. our greed and our oppression of others are violence. our violence begets violence. not just towards others, but also towards ourselves, because in our greed and in our aggression we have abandoned who we are.

a life of nonviolence, non-harming, nonaggression is an expansive view that includes both the intimacy of our interdependence and our wider relationship with the world.

a life of nonviolence, non-harming, nonaggression is all encompassing and a reflection of our embodiment of love and valuing of life and an awareness of how our actions and words affect others.


#nonviolence #nonharming #nonaggression #interdependence #life #love #path #practice #EngagedBuddhism #JinpaLhaga

it’s not all bad news…

Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it.

~ Helen Keller

it’s not all bad news.

and we have the choice to not contribute to the bad news, to not contribute to the suffering.

rather, we can choose to contribute to the overcoming of it.


#suffering #DoGood #healers #lovers #bodhisattvas #path #practice #EngagedBuddhism #JinpaLhaga

our work is love…

when so many seem hellbent on destroying the world, our job is to love it. destruction is an outcome of not seeing clearly, of being moved by fear not addressed whose outcome can be aggression and hate.

on the other hand when we do see clearly, we can touch in to who we really are, to the underlying reality and our interdependence with others, and we can be moved by love.

we see so many moved by fear and aggression. democracy being undermined through lies and aggression, state and civilian gun violence, racist violence and hate crimes, hundreds of thousands allowed to suffer in many cases preventable death, generational families forcibly removed from their homes and land by an overreaching and aggressive government, and we see it in terrorist ideology. these are not examples of alignment with love, this is not how love moves.

love isn’t easy. love is hard work. love needs our attention, our presence, our humility, our spaciousness, our intention and dedication.

our work is not destroying the world or each other. our work is loving the world and each other.


#love #life #path #practice #EngagedBuddhism #JMWart #JinpaLhaga


As a mother would risk her own life

To protect her child, her only child,

So toward all beings should one

Cultivate a boundless heart.

With loving-kindness for the whole world should one

Cultivate a boundless heart,

Above, below, and all around

Without obstruction, without hate and without ill-will.


The Buddha

*this quote is from the Karaniya Metta Sutta. there are many translations and they vary in color. this translation is by Gil Fronsdal and is one of my favorites.

what an expansive, inclusive and resilient image of love! for many of us, our first experience of unconditional love came from our mother. however, this isn’t the case for everyone. some have others who fill the role of mother, who fill the role of unconditional love. i truly hope someone somewhere, perhaps your mom, fills this role for you. may you be held in such love wherever it comes from. thank you to all of the moms out there who do love in such a way, teaching us to love in such a way.

i have been deeply fortunate to receive such love from my mom.

with a heart full of gratitude, i wish her, and my sister (who is a wonderful mom in her own right!), and all moms and all variations of mom, a very Happy Mother’s Day!! πŸ€—

may we all love with a mother’s love! β€οΈπŸ™πŸ»


#MothersDay #moms #UnconditionalLove #MettaSutta #OpenHeart #path #practice #EngagedBuddhism #JinpaLhaga


it is said that happiness is always available and is a choice. however, if happiness is dependent on outside circumstances going our way, the way we have planned it in our heads, then we are often disappointment and we suffer. how can we choose happiness if we are residing in a space of disappointment?

one practice i find helpful in finding happiness in the moment, is by finding appreciation OF the moment – of whatever i’m doing. for instance, when we eat, we rarely eat mindfully. we usually shovel food quickly and in large bites into the hole in our face as we work, watch a tv show, etc. however, we can approach our eating (or whatever we are doing) with a quality of appreciation instead of something to just get through or do while we are doing something else.

take this fruit for example. i took a look at the fruit prior to eating, just looking at the texture, the color, the moisture gathered. i was captivated and grateful for this fruit prior to even placing it in my mouth and tasting it. i found that i was quite happy with this simple pleasure, this basic function of eating and consuming nutrients. it became something quite sacred and precious.

now, i could have thought while i was eating about all the things not going my way – and there are quite a few (aren’t there always?!), but instead i just gave my attention to what i was doing, staying present with what was happening and enjoying this aspect of life, which i won’t always get to enjoy, and one day will not get to do or enjoy any longer…at least here in this life. what if this was the last grape, rasberry, blackberry or blueberry i get to eat? did i enjoy it? did i relish in its beauty and its taste?

time moves quite quickly and each moment is its own in a way. enjoy this moment, enjoy the simple pleasures that are available, and embrace happiness.

ps – i took these photos of my fruit so you can enjoy their beauty as well, but you’ll have to get your own to taste! πŸ˜‚πŸ™πŸ»


#happiness #appreciation #gratitude #life #path #practice #EngagedBuddhism #JMWart #JinpaLhaga #fruit #photography

go within…

ultimately, no one can live our lives for us and we cannot live our lives through others.

each step of this journey, of this precious life, is ours to take.

we can listen to all of life speaking around us, there is much wisdom there.

but we must not neglect listening to life speaking within us, where wisdom also speaks deeply to us.

we, each of us, are a unique manifestation of this life with so much to share, so much to offer.

life expressed, love embodied, with each word, with each step.


#life #love #path #practice #OpenHeart #meditation #EngagedBuddhism #RilkeQuotes #JinpaLhaga

patience as practice and response…

in a time when so much harm and oppression is taking place and our attention and sometimes urgent action is needed, i think a quote like this can be misunderstood.

it helps me to think of patience as a practice of spaciousness, or equanimity. the patience we are speaking about isn’t inaction and it isn’t procrastination. the patience we are speaking about is an act of generosity and a practice of non-harming.

so often, if we are even really paying attention to life around us, we are pulled by our grasping or our aggression, by our attachment or aversion. and in jumping right in, in reacting without any space to see clearly or to choose our next step wisely, we contribute to harm.

we aren’t sitting, detached to what is happening ignoring pain and suffering or ignoring the need around us, and we are also not jumping in blinded by our patterns of reaction and impatience.

what is being proposed here is allowing enough space in relationship to what is happening so that we can see and hear life clearly, keeping our heart open long enough to allow our empathy to arise, so that we can act wisely and respond with authentic compassion.

that spaciousness will allow us to act from the heart and mind together, to do what is really needed, to do what is really beneficial in the moment.


#patience #allowance #generosity #RightAction #nonharming #OpenHeart #path #practice #EngagedBuddhism #JinpaLhaga


it’s hard to imagine that seeing Star Wars so early as a kid, the Force, the Jedi, and especially this guy, Yoda, didn’t influence my life and the contemplative path and practice i’m on today.

Yoda’s speech to Luke on interdependence as the ground and connective tissue of life, rang true even at such an early age before i read the Christian and Sufi mystics, prior to entering the Buddhist path. When he told Anakin that “Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering” he laid out how harmful aversion and attachment can be, how harmful it can be to transmit, rather than transform and heal, to abide in equanimity.

here is my latest photographic art, created for this #StarWarsDay 😊

#MayTheFourthBeWithYou and #MayTheForceBeWithYou πŸ™πŸ»

#StarWars #Yoda #Jedi #TheForce #LucasFilm #DisneyPlus #JMWart #JinpaLhaga #photography

this magic moment…

learn, grow.

and then let go of the past.


breathe in and as you breathe out

let it all go.

every moment is new,

every breath a rebirth.


#ThisMagicMoment #breathe #LetGo #life #meditation #path #practice #EngagedBuddhsim #Zen #enso #JMWart #JinpaLhaga