Introducing Heart Thoughts
Before I introduce this new dialogue, let me take a moment to introduce myself. My name is Bhima Breckenridge. I have the great joy to serve at East West Bookshop as the book buyer and co-manager, along with Rick Johnston. Two things have inspired me daily these last 4.5 years since I first joined the East West family:
The People: There is a strong community of truthseekers who believe in unity of all paths and faiths and seek to be the change they wish to see in the world.
The Place: East West is a real, living, breathing place where one can experience the good vibrations of books and gifts selected to uplift and inspire; where countless people have come to simply relax and recharge.
People and Place. These are the Heart Thoughts that created East West Bookshop in the spring of 1989 and which continue to sustain it. The intention of this blog is to reflect on the many heart thoughts which nurture and sustain us in our daily lives.
For those who may not know, East West was established by members of Ananda Sangha, a worldwide family of communities, retreat centers, churches and meditation groups founded by Swami Kriyananda (J. Donald Walters) and based on the teachings of Paramhansa Yogananda, author of Autobiography of a Yogi.
As a way to reach out and serve the world and to offer a place where people of like minds but diverse paths could come together, East West was born. Paramhansa Yogananda stated in 1949 that "simple living and high thinking" and communities that support those ideals would "spread like wildfire."
It is our hope that places like East West can multiply and serve as the tinderboxes of this wildfire of consciousness, that the whole world can awaken and come together as one family.
With these words from Gil Fronsdal's lucid translation of the Buddha's Dhammapada, we invite you to share your Heart Thoughts with us through this blog.
“All experience is preceded by mind, led by mind, made by mind. Speak or act with a peaceful mind, and happiness follows like a never-departing shadow."
What has inspired you today? Let's make a beautiful world together, one thought at a time!
Blessings, Bhima & East West
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Also in Journal
The days leading up to this New Moon have been full of change. And indeed, change seems to be the name of the game for the next 28 days.
We’re dealing with a lot of discomfort right now. It’s never helpful to blame the planets -- that’s a surrender of power we cannot afford. It is helpful, however, to understand the ways they reflect what’s going on, connecting us to the archetypal realms which offer insight and guidance.
At the collective level, there are some things that are in massive dying processes right now. Distortions of power. Manipulations and exploitations of bodies and hearts. The veil is so thin we’re no longer able to pretend it’s even there. It can be pretty difficult to know how to breathe, let alone act, in that level of chaos.
Scorpio knows the way through, though. Scorpio is ferocity all grown up and made wild and fierce with remembrance of constant evolution.
In October of 2017, Jupiter entered Scorpio for its 13 month tour through the depths. Jupiter teaches us about truth, belief, intuition and expansion. In the sign of Scorpio, it can magnify fears and emotional residues, especially when it comes to themes of sex, power, death and anything hidden. This New Moon sees Jupiter in the last degree of Scorpio, magnifying all we’ve learned in the past year.
The world’s collective wisdom about addressing life’s obstacles is tremendous. And yet, day to day, we seem unable to answer these deceptively simple questions: Am I on the right path? Am I doing the right thing?
Sometimes, it seems the world has conspired against us. Maybe on the way to that new job interview, every light we come to turns red, and every door seems to close, then we get in a fender bender. Or when we date someone new, our friends yell at us, our parents chastise us, we lose money, things break and fall apart. After a long day, it seems like the universe couldn’t have made it any more clear that we were heading in the wrong direction. Then we wake up the next morning, and our current job seems so boring and pays so little that there has to be a better alternative, and so-and-so’s “good morning” message to us was so sweet, how could we not go on another date with them?
"I wonder how it is that people's philosophies have come to spin faster than the changing seasons."
Masanobu Fukuoka, author, One Straw Revolution
Well, the season has officially shifted. The days, getting shorter. The big leaf maple trees, dropping their magnificent, big leaf maple leaves, all over the farm, and all over western Washington.
The mornings alternate between moderate and near frosty temperatures. Just ask momma goat and her morning milker in the lower field!
The Foghorns in the Saratoga pass often echo throughout the early hours, giving amplification to the magical mist which fills the air all around, before giving way to vast blue sky of the afternoon, and the blissful hue of golden hour in the early evening. A perfect time to visit the alpacas and bench on sunset hill.