AUTUMN

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Hello dear Buddha moms and dads. Here, in California, we are raking leaves, picking figs and apples and grapes, and pruning off dead roses. There is a whisper of autumn in the air, the sun seems closer, the days shorter. Even with the dry parched earth, California’s portion of the the Earth’s warming, there are bird’s songs and bees to be grateful for.

Autumn evening:
Has its limits,
But its moments of leisure as well.
Issa

It’s amazing that 2015 is winding down. It feels like just yesterday the summer was in full swing.

 After the dancing,
The wind in the pine trees,
The voices of insects.
Sogetsu-ni

Autumn is the time of graceful dying. The leaves turn bright red and orange and yellow before releasing their hold on the trees that have been their homes. The ancestors presence can be felt as the day of the dead, all soul’s day, draws our departed loved ones closer to us then they are during the freshness of spring or the fullness of summer.

Vividly present,
As though here before us,
The Feast of all souls.
Kigin

There is an electricity of change in the air. I’m drawn to clean out dusty corners. Life is conspiring to have us let go of things, either willingly or from tightly clenched fists.

A monastic asked Yunmen,
“When the tree withers and the leaves fall,
what’s happening?”
Yunmen replied,
“The golden wind is revealing itself.”

This is a good time to sit. To feel the changes without clinging to what is known.

The autumn mountains;
Here and there,
Smoke rising.
Gyodai

 What is it like to wake up on an autumn morning?

The puppy that doesn’t know,
That autumn has come,
Is Buddha.
Issa

During this sacred time I wish you the comfort of drawing closer to home, warm smells from the kitchen, and a delicious cleansing of all that no longer serves.

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