Quotes and Pictures in Choosing to Be

The quotes are from teachers and authors who have contributed to my meditation practice.

The pictures are of Poohbear and Catzenbear, and were taken by me before I began working on the book. I was shooting with very fast black & white film (in the old fashioned way, before digital) so that I could catch them in action. When I started on the book, I looked through the hundreds of photos to find those that would provide a visual image that contributed to each chapter. I am including thumbnails of some of the pictures with the quotes to illustrate what I mean. Enjoy!

Chapter One. Deciding to Stay
So what exactly is this Buddha Nature?
It is the sky-like nature of our mind.
~Sogyal Rinpoche,  The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying

Chapter Two. Building the Team
All sentient beings have Buddha nature.
~The Buddha,  Mahaparinirvana Sutra

Chapter Three. Just Sitting
Just remain on your cushion without expecting anything.
Then eventually you will resume your own true nature.

~Shunryu Suzuki,   Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind

Chapter Four. Finding Joy
Joy isn’t something we have to find. Joy is
who we are if we’re not preoccupied with something else.

~ Charlotte Joko Beck, Nothing Special

Chapter Five. Walking on Our Toes
Walk as if you are kissing the earth with your feet.
~Thich Nhat Hanh,  Peace is Every Step

Chapter Six. Dealing with Dogs
As our mind becomes more lucid in meditation practice,
hindrances show themselves more noticeably.

~ Joseph Goldstein,  Insight Meditation

Chapter Seven. Letting Go of Tuna: The Hindrance of Clinging
When we look at wanting, we experience
the part of ourselves that is never content.

Jack Kornfield,  A Path with Heart

Chapter Eight. Lovingkindness: The Hindrance of Anger
Life is strictly an adult education class and this is the most
important lesson, namely to cultivate and make the heart grow.

~Ayya Khema,  Being Nobody, Going Nowhere

Chapter Nine. Watching the Water: The Hindrance of Sleepiness
Sometimes just bringing an interested awareness to sleepiness
itself will dispel it and bring clarity and understanding.

Jack Kornfield,  A Path with Heart

Chapter Ten. Catzenbear’s Tranquility: The Hindrance of Restlessness
When the mind is restless, it is the proper time for cultivating tranquility,
because an agitated mind can easily be quieted by it.

~Nyanaponika Thera,  The Five Mental Hindrances

Chapter Eleven. Poohbear’s Rapture: The Hindrance of Doubt
And when he sees himself free of these five hindrances,
joy arises; in him who is joyful, rapture arises.

~Nayanaponika Thera,  The Five Mental Hindrances

Chapter Twelve. Gaining Wisdom
Use your life to wake you up.
~Pema Chodron,  The Wisdom of No Escape

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