silence is hOMe

Beach Sitting. Fairhope AL, January 2013. Photo: MBuffett

The practice of mindfulness is very simple. 

You stop, you breathe, and you still your mind. 

You come home to yourself so that you can enjoy the here and now in every moment. 

All the wonders of life are already here. They’re calling you. If you can listen to them you will be able to stop running. What you need, what we all need, is silence. Stop the noise in your mind in order for the wondrous sounds of life to be heard.  Then you can begin to live your life authentically and deeply.

-from Silence by Thich Nhat Hanh

Warrior Status. Time To Grow Up.

Tibetan Prayer Wheel, McLeod Ganj, Dharamsala India, March 2012. Photo: MBuffett

Those who train wholeheartedly in awakening … are called warriors – not warriors who kill but warriors of nonaggression … They are willing to cut through personal reactivity and self-deception. A warrior accepts that we can never know what will happen to us next. This not-knowing is part of the adventure. It’s also what makes us afraid.

Wherever we are, we can train as a warrior… Our tools are sitting meditation, tonglen, slogan practice, and cultivating limitless qualities of loving-kindness, compassion, joy, and equanimity.

The training offers no promise of happy endings. Rather this “I” who wants to find security – who wants something to hold onto – will finally learn to grow up. If we find ourselves in doubt that we are up to being a warrior-in-training, we can contemplate this question: “Do I prefer to grow up and relate to life directly, or do I choose to live and die in fear?”

-from Comfortable With Uncertainty By Pema Chodron 

Equanimity, Control, And Unconditional Love

‘TO THE VAST’ Perdido Pass FL, June 2015, Photo: MBuffett

“With equanimity comes an awareness of the limits of our illusions of control. We can love and care for others, we can assist them, we can pray for them, but we cannot control what will happen. Nor can we control the actions or feelings of our children, our lovers, our friends, or our family. Equanimity shows us a wiser way to relate to the people in our lives, which is to love them unconditionally. And acting from this feeling of unconditional love, we can experience deep feelings of care and concern for them but know that their happiness and suffering depend on their actions and not our wishes for them.”

From A Lamp in the Darkness: Illuminating the Path Through Difficult Times by Jack Kornfeld

I Can Not Save The World

‘DRISHTI’ Rishikesh, India, March 2012, Photo: MBuffett

“It is not within anyone’s power to save the whole world, but it is within your power to add whatever you can, with a loving and caring and peaceful heart. You can attend the portion of the world that you touch, you can add a bit of beauty and understanding to the world, you can become the one calm person standing in the boat in a great storm… And by doing so with peace and equanimity, you can show others that it is possible for them to do so as well. When you do, you will join with the forces of peace in the complex unfolding of life. And in that moment you will feel yourself to be one with the vastness from which you and all beings were born, returning to the silence that surrounds you in every moment of your life.”

-from A Lamp InThe Darkness: Illuminating The Path Through Difficult Times by Jack Kornfield

A Radical Act Of Love

“CALLING THE EARTH”, New Orleans,  June 2015, Photo: MBuffett

“As the pace of our lives continues to be accelerated by a host of forces seemingly beyond our control, more and more of us are finding ourselves drawn to engage in meditation, in this radical act of being, this radical act of love, astonishing as that may seem given the materialistic “can do” speed-obsessed, progress-obsessed, celebrity-and-other-peoples-lives obsessed orientation of our culture. We are moving in the direction of meditative awareness for many reasons, not the least of which may be “to maintain our sanity, or recover our perspective and sense of meaning, or simply to deal with the outrageous stress and insecurity of this age. By stopping and intentionally falling awake to how things are in this moment, purposefully, without succumbing to reaction or judgment and by working wisely with such occurrences, with a healthy dose of self-compassion when we do succumb, and by our willingness to take up residency for a time in the present moment in spite of all our plans and activities aimed at getting somewhere else, completing a project or pursuing desired objects or goals, we discover that such an act is both immensely, discouragingly, difficult and yet utterly simple, profound, hugely possible after all, and restorative of mind and body, soul and spirit.”

-from Coming To Our Senses by Jon Kabat-Zinn

My Path My Self


Destin FL, June 2015, Photo: MBuffett


“The self may not be something, but neither is it nothing. It is simply ungraspable, unfindable. I am who I am not because of an essential self hidden away in the core of my being, but because of the unprecedented and unrepeatable matrix of conditions that have formed me. ”

-Stephen Batchelor

Joy is A Choice and A Practice

“JOY THEATER” New Orleans, January 2015, Photo: MBuffett

May I know how to nourish the seeds of joy in myself every day.

May I be able to live fresh, solid, and free.

May I be free from attachment and aversion, but not be indifferent.

“These meditations help us water the seeds of joy and happiness in our consciousness store. How can we touch true joy in every moment of our lives? How can we live in a way that brings a smile, the eyes of love, and happiness to everyone we encounter? Use your talent to find ways to bring happiness to yourself and others… Meditative joy has the capacity to nourish our mindfulness, understanding, and love. Try to live in a way that encourages deep happiness in yourself and others. “I vow to bring joy to one person in the morning and to help relieve the suffering of one person in the afternoon.” Ask yourself, “Who can I make smile this morning?” This is the art of creating happiness.” ”

-from Nourishing Happiness by Thich Nhat Hanh


The Virtues of Lying-Down Meditation

“JATHARA PARIVARTANASANA”, Fairhope, AL, October 2011, Photo: MBuffett

“The most important thing to keep in mind when practicing meditation lying down is that it is about falling awake… There are many virtues to meditating lying down… We can surrender completely to the embrace of gravity, and let go into the floor or mat or bed and let it do the work… In practicing dropping into the embrace of gravity itself, we are more motivated and more willing to drop unconditionally into now, to bring a radical and open- hearted acceptance to whatever we find is going on in our minds and our bodies and our lives in any moment or on any given day, in a word,  to be and let go.”

-from ‘Coming To Our Senses’ by Jon Kabat-Zinn

Grounded In Wakefulness

“NATURE WINS” New Orleans, June 2014, Photo: MBuffett

“I find it useful to meet each moment freshly, as a new beginning, to keep returning to an awareness of NOW over and over again, and let a gentle but firm perseverance stemming from the discipline of the practice keep me at least somewhat open to whatever is arising and behold it, apprehend it, look deeply into it, and learn whatever it might be possible to learn as the nature of the situation is revealed in the attending.

When you come right down to it, what else is there to do? If we are not grounded in our being, if we are not grounded in wakefulness, are we not actually missing out on the gift of our very lives and the opportunity to be of any real benefit to others?”
-from Coming To Our Senses by Jon Kabat-Zinn

Meditation Is A Way Of Being

“THE MOTHER”, Perdido Pass FL, June 2015, Photo: MBuffett

“Meditation is a way of being, not a technique… Meditation is not relaxation spelled differently… We might say that meditation is really a way of being appropriate to the circumstances one finds oneself in, in any and every moment. It is the non-clinging, and therefore the clear perceiving, and the willingness to act appropriately within whatever circumstances are arising that constitute this way of being that we are calling meditation.”

-from ‘Coming To Our Senses’ by Jon Kabat-Zinn