It’s a tricky thing, ask
for one thing, get another,
just what is needed.


Shake hands with fate,
agree to the veiling
not an ending,
rather the beginnings
of a new life,
tabula rasa.

Oh, the beauty! Tastes
and smells and five,
maybe six senses
all vibrating at once,
luring us into nooks
and alleys and pleasure
and pain and lord,
are we hungry, the earth
is our pasture, her treasures
our plunder, perfecting ways
in which to exert dominion
over what the eyes survey;

Hungry ghosts.


Sikkim - Land of Discovery
image: Sikkim – Land of Discovery

fmi on the definition of hungry ghosts:
The Hungry Ghost

17 thoughts on “Samsara

      1. The second of Buddha’s Four Noble Truths of course.

        “Now this, bhikkhus, is the noble truth of the origin of suffering: it is this craving which leads to re-becoming, accompanied by delight and lust, seeking delight here and there; that is, craving for sensual pleasures, craving for becoming, craving for disbecoming.”

        Liked by 1 person

  1. “The mind is burning, ideas are burning, mind-consciousness is burning, mind-contact is burning, also whatever is felt as pleasant or painful or neither-painful-nor-pleasant that arises with mind-contact for its indispensable condition, that too is burning. Burning with what? Burning with the fire of lust, with the fire of hate, with the fire of delusion. I say it is burning with birth, aging and death, with sorrows, with lamentations, with pains, with griefs, with despairs.”

    – The Fire Sermon


    1. “Disenchanted, s/he becomes dispassionate. Through dispassion, s/he is fully released. With full release, there is the knowledge, ‘Fully released.’ S/he discerns that ‘Birth is ended, the holy life fulfilled, the task done. There is nothing further for this world.'”


      1. A great teaching, if one can grasp it (no pun intended!). “Wtih full release, there is the knowledge.” Yes. “There is nothing further for the world” seems open-ended to me; I would have to read the entire discourse, and at least one would hope the monks that translated the sermon were more altruistically minded than those who (kept on translating) the Biblical texts. Sigh.

        When I say ‘open-ended.’ it has to do with the heart of the Bodhisattva. If we are all One, it seems imperative that we persist in engaging life, if only to the degree that we remain examples of how it is possible to release the burdens of desire and suffering. Or however we feel called to serve.

        Thank you! Aloha, Hariod. ❤

        Liked by 1 person

      2. “There is nothing further for the world” – meaning, I believe, no further kammic generations of a self-centric mind. Vipāka (resultants of past kamma) continue to work through just so long as the aggregates (body-life) persist.


  2. Oh my, Bela … You’ve hit the nail on the head in such a way that needs to be taught in theology class. When I learned the correct definition of the word ‘dominion’ as used in the Bible – especially in the Genesis creation story that most of us are familiar with – it changed my life. The original use of ‘dominion’ in Genesis doesn’t mean ‘taking over’ or ‘all for our own use.’ Rather it means ‘stewardship.’ We are, in fact, meant to be stewards of all that God has given us, all of creation is a gift, and we are to take care of it *as God would*.

    Of course there are always going to be those who prefer the hierarchical, powerful, selfish definition. If more people understood the true definition, though, they’d read the Bible differently — and if people can read your poem, I think the world would be a little different.

    Thank you for your stewardship of all of creation and words. You’re a vital example and model for the rest of us.


    1. Genie, many mahalos for your kind and thoughtful reply. And yes, thanks to the amazing advisors at VC, I, too became fully aware of the isidiousness of the Patriarchy. It hurts us all, female and male, alike. In fact just yesterday I was listening to this, which no doubt (if you’ve not heard it already), you will also find engaging:

      Stewardship, indeed. How far humanity has strayed from that very concept.
      Namaste, dear woman. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Mahalo, Sue. I once wrote a long-ish article for a statewide paper on Hungry Ghosts. So the idea has ever been with me: boundless appetite, throat the size of a pin. A perfect metaphor for the consumerist mess the collective has created. Be at peace, my friend ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Your including the 5 senses made me happy. I like the expression, “Be careful for what you wish for,” which goes well with this! We may find the gift we are given may be different from what we expected but it may turn out perfectly. Such a great post to ponder about, Bela.


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