Awakening Self Newsletter – February 2013

Encounter Happiness!

As I am writing this, Chinese New Year approaches this weekend.  There are many customary greetings for this occasion.  One that caught my eye was Ying Chun Jie Fu, which translates as “Greet the New Year and Encounter Happiness!”

The word encounter implies an unexpected experience.  As we let go of expectations of how it should be, we can be pleasantly surprised with what shows up. On the new year, or every new day, we encounter happiness when we are open and receptive to our good arriving, and are able to be content with what is.  Look for the good in large and small ways, and you may be surprised with what you find!

You may also find some pleasant surprises on my new website! Some inspiration you might explore:

This Sunday, February 10th (on Chinese New Year), join me for Spiritual Family – a celebration of the Divine with spiritually-minded people of all ages!  This month we are planting the “Seeds of Love” – what seeds would you plant in the world and in yourself?

I’ll follow that up with Evening Meditation and Inspiration on the Awakening Self Radio show, this Tuesday, February 12th, 9-9:30pm PST.  We’ll be diving into “A Mystic’s Love” – love of God, the Divine, the Sacred everywhere.

Who knows what you may encounter this month, as you open your heart to the Divine and plant something you want to see grow in the spring.  What do you want to plant or begin?  Let it be an auspicious beginning – Kung Hei Fat Choi!




  • Announcements
  • Event Calendar
  • This Month’s Article – “Would the Buddha Eat an Ice Cream Cone?” by Rev. Connie L. Habash
  • Awakening Self Radio Show Schedule
  • Spiritual Quotes



Spiritual Family

Sunday, February 10th – Theme: Seeds of Love

Sunday, April 14th – Theme: The Sacred Dance of Creation

Sunday, June 9th – TBA

330 Melville, Palo Alto, CA
Join us for an all-ages celebration of the Divine through yoga (kids and adult classes!), meditation, singing, spiritual discussion and community.  For details see Spiritual Family.


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Teacher Training in Walnut Creek, CA

I am again teaching the Introduction to Sanskrit module of the Yoga and Movement Center’s 6th Advanced Studies/Teacher Training.  Led by Diane Valentine and Dennis Eagan, it begins in April.  Early bird discount ends this February 15th!

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Event Calendar

Click to see upcoming events!

Would the Buddha Eat an Ice Cream Cone?

The funniest thought arose in my meditation today, after I had been contemplating the Eightfold Noble Path – Buddha’s prescription for eradicating suffering and attaining liberation.  Apparently, my thoughts weren’t entirely still (big surprise) and thus this image of an ice cream cone being offered to the Buddha somehow sprang to my awareness.  Would he eat it?  What would the Buddha do?

I can’t claim to know what the Buddha would do, to be quite frank.  But, based on his teachings, I can certainly take a stab at it.  There’s one thing I do know – the Buddha would be aware that he has choices.  He can choose to eat it, he can choose not to eat it.  He would know that any desire or aversion that arose regarding the ice cream would be continuing the cycle of suffering in this life.  He also knows that judgment would be a slippery slope – it feeds the ego, the idea that we are right if we choose one way, and wrong if we choose another.  This would lead to either pride or shame, which again is back on the hamster wheel of suffering.   Continue Reading…

Awakening Self Radio Show Schedule

Tuesday, February 12th – Evening Meditation and Inspiration

Theme: A Mystic’s Love

Tonight, we share a quiet and sacred time together.  Some inspiration from a Mystic’s poetry will set the tone for focusing on Spiritual Love, and then we’ll have a semi-guided meditation practice.  There will be silent spaces to allow you to deepen in the meditation, and gentle reminders along the way.  Join me to support your meditation practice or to start a new one!  Let’s awaken the Divine Within.

Click the link above to listen, or you can always call in to listen or ask questions at (347) 843-4408

Check out the Awakening Self Radio Show archives to listen to over 25 inspiring shows!

Last Month’s Shows:

Monday, January 7th – Evening Meditation and Inspiration

Theme: Let Your Higher Self Lead You

Tonight’s meditation is a mini “life-visioning” session based on the work of Rev. Michael Bernard Beckwith.  Let this Life Vision inspire your direction for the new year!

Friday January 25th  – guest Edward Espe Brown

Soto Zen Priest and chef Edward Espe Brown, author of several books including The Tassajara Bread Book and Tomato Blessings and Radish Teachings, joins us for an exploration of meditation, cooking, and living our practice. Become inspired about food, mindfulness, and your everyday spirituality. Call in with questions or comments!

Spiritual Quotes

“You cannot prevent the birds of sorrow from flying over your head, but you can prevent them from building nests in your hair”  – Chinese Proverb

“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.”
– Robert Louis Stevenson

“If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow”  – Chinese Proverb




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