Spirit Grooves Blogs

Published on August 2, 2014

We are getting some reasonable solar flare actions after weeks of almost nothing and some actual nothing. I equate solar flares and any solar activity stronger than sunlight as "change," or change inducing. When solar flares erupt, change is injected into the Earth system (that is a fact), and therefor into our systems and psyches, but not the gradual sunlight-level of change, but quantum change of varying strengths.

Talk about turning the wheel of the dharma, quantum change of any kind causes things to move, and the wheel of life begins to turn once more. After a long absence of change, in the last two days we have had three M-Class solar flares, so perhaps our insides are starting to move around once again – the churn. Check it out and see.

As I say to myself, when the Sun speaks, we listen, where by "listen" I mean more like we move to the tune of change, a dance on our best days, and a dirge on our worst.

You are free to ask yourself the same thing I do: what causes this change in us that comes in surges and lapses, like waves to a beach. Where do new ideas and changes in speed and direction come from? It may not be the sun, but there is no other single agent I am aware of that controls our life, warmth, and world, so it may also induce inner events that affect our psyche and spirit. It is a reasonable thought.

And are the Sun and dharma connected, and how? All I know, believe in it or not, is that the dharma works. It does not require my support. I can stick my head in the sand if I wish, and it is still there waiting for me when I look up. I once penned a line "Even I can't sneak up on a mirror." The dharma is like that; it is there when I am. It is nothing more than a method, so it is not whether you believe in or do not believe in the dharma, but only if you find it useful, because it is nothing but useful.

The dharma is not a god and Buddha was not a god. He was just an ordinary person who found a way to wake up and then shared his method (the dharma) with others. For most Americans, dharma is just something they have no knowledge of or experience with… yet. It is like that old saying "There are those who have experienced severe back pain, and those who have not experienced severe back pain… yet. It is the same with recognizing the value of the dharma. I can sympathize. Much of my life I was not aware of the dharma, but there is a catch.

Even though I had not formally encountered the dharma, much of what the dharma is about I was already familiar with. And the reason is that the dharma is (at least in my opinion) nothing more than the nitty-gritty, the ways things are, call it the truth or whatever. And the reason I took to the dharma so easily is because it was all so very familiar, like finding my home at last, where I belonged, where I lived. I always was somewhat aware of it. In fact I had my own whole philosophy, call it the "world according to Michael" partly worked out. The problem for me is that there were big gaping holes in how I saw things worked, entire landscapes I could not figure out..

What I found in the dharma was a better-organized version of what I already was working on, plus a method to help make it work for me. Or, to put it plainly, the dharma was simply the truth of this world as best as I had come to know it myself, only in a more complete form, and with a method. I always knew there was a path for me, but I could not find a way to walk that path. Dharma is that method to walk that path. The dharma is also the path itself.

So, I didn't have to be converted to anything. I already was part of the choir; I just didn't know how to sing properly. The dharma filled in my blanks.

All of the awkward things I found out about religions are not present in the dharma. My struggle with god and that whole concept became moot. Buddhism is non-theist. Whatever this life is, I am a whole and equal part. There is no "higher" something (or someone) that is not open to me as well or to any of us.

The dharma is entirely 'interdependency' personified. Buddhism has no first cause or end times (apocalypse), but tends to focus on the present as the place to create the best possible past and also where to lay the groundwork for a solid future. I have never had to hold my nose and accept the dharma. In my experience, the dharma is the very definition of authentic. I find that I can depend on it. It checks out.

I must admit that at first I did have to test the dharma, so that I wouldn't get another wooden nickel as I had with my original religious upbringing. But then I found out that was just what the Buddhists suggest. Try it out and be certain for yourself if it works for you or not.

[Queen Anne 's lace in its most fetching colors. Taken in my yard.]