Showing posts from September, 2016

Cultivating A Practice Through the Art of Drowning

We've all had that day, the day we feel too tired, or too busy, or too scattered, or too…name a thousand things. I go through that. I go through that with Yoga, with music, with meditating, with writing, with all the things I do. But when we're too tired, or busy, or scattered, that's the time we need our practice the most. The practice is enough in itself. I resist. I make excuses. I procrastinate. I tell myself lies. Yet when I finally say yes , I am grateful. I am grateful because I am doing it for myself. Too often our modern society makes us feel guilty if we take time for ourselves. Other people tell us, “You really need to do this for me right now.”  Right now.  Well, right now is for me. Right now is my time. If you were drowning, I would stop to save you. But have you ever stopped to think that I may be drowning inside? That maybe I need to save myself?  I drown a little bit everyday. I drown little bit everyday and no one sees it but me, becau

The Art of the Tea Way

“The art of the Tea Way consists simply of  boiling  water, preparing tea and drinking it.”  Sen no Rikyū (1522-1591), Way of Tea  Simple  advice—boil water, prepare tea, drink it—but not always easy to do. The world has become such a fast paced place. Our modern existence owes much to being connected, being scheduled, and, being busy. Sometimes part of that is making things more complicated than they need be. We've become so used to things being busy, being complicated, that we forget how to let go and let things just be . In his time, Riky ū  took what what had become an elaborate and ostentatious tea ceremony, discarding everything he felt was not needed and detracted from the essence of drinking the tea itself.  This new tea style owed a lot to the simplicity of Zen thought, as well as the Japanese idea of  wabi-sabi. The idea of  wabi-sabi is to make things simple, natural, and serene. For Rikyū, this meant ridding the tea ceremony of all unneeded trappings, includi

The Gong Has No Religion

First off: this is blog post number 101 of The Way of the Gong ™! Little did I know some 2  ½  years ago, that I would even reach 100 blog posts, let alone still be writing this. Thanks for all your questions, comments, and most of all, for reading these past 100 posts. Here's to the next 100! The Gong Has No Religion While Gongs, Bowls, and Bells have been around for hundreds, even thousands of years, to label any of them as belonging to a religion/spirituality, or exclusively to any one tradition, is a dangerous claim. The instruments themselves are made of metals dug out of the earth, and forged into form by fire and hammering. They have no built in meaning or value, as they are merely objects. Any sort of meaning we find attached to them is assigned to them by man.  This is an inanimate metal object For example, the Singing Bowl. It is often associated with Tibet, monks, monastaries, and secret rituals that are unknown to the Western world. While there is evidence