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VastmindVastmind Memphis, TN Veteran
edited August 2016 in Meditation

I'm on a Gatha kick right now.....so I thought I would share some......

From: 201 Little Buddhist Reminders -- Kipfer

Gathas focus on the small everyday things of life and express how all beings and things are interconnected. The Gatha form can become a very meaningful way for you to reconnect in any situation. We spend our lives individuating, separating-making me, you, separate and distinct. Our minds are constantly writing the story of "my life" with me as the star and everyone else as supporting players. But this creates suffering for us, this desire to be "somebody separate".
Gathas help us be present in the moment,stop writing the story, and reconnect to life and other people.

Gathas may be said at any time or in any place, because you say them silently to yourself. It is a practice to acknowledge what you are doing and bring a sense of the sacred to your life instead of mindlessly experiencing things as one task or errand after another.

-- I choose to do my job and live my life with integrity, compassion, mindful observance, and a healthy sense of humor. In both large and small matters, may I always be true to my deepest principles so that my integrity may be a gift to others.

-- The greatest mistake is to be continually fearful of making a mistake. A stumble may prevent a fall. I admit I have made a mistake. My eyes are open wide to the consequences. This is an experience I learn from. That is the ultimate correction.

-- I possess my money-it does not possess me. Money can be helpful or harmful, can further either good or evil, depending on whether I use it or abuse it. I use my money wisely.

-- I work to sustain effort and sincerity, discipline and self-control. I build from the practice of restraint, settling back and allowing desires to arise and pass without always feeling the need or compulsion to act on them. I work towards wisdom.

-- Zen is concentration on everyday routine. When I do something, I concentrate wholly on what I am doing. I put myself in a cocoon of concentration.




  • Lobster puts on Tantric dancing boots (please wait patiently that is a lot of boots)
    OK bring out the red necks, white skulls and burnt bodies ...

    Start walking boots ...

    oṃ vajrayoginī hūṃ phaṭ svāhā

    You keep lyin' when you oughta be truthin'
    You keep losing when you oughta not bet
    You keep samin' when you oughta be a'changin'
    What's right is right but you ain't been right yet
    These boots are made for walking, and that's just what they'll do
    One of these days these boots are gonna walk all over you


    oṃ vajrayoginī hūṃ phaṭ svāhā

    ... and now back to the kicking reboot ... o:)

  • DairyLamaDairyLama Veteran
    edited August 2016

    @Vastmind said: Gathas may be said at any time or in any place, because you say them silently to yourself. It is a practice to acknowledge what you are doing and bring a sense of the sacred to your life instead of mindlessly experiencing things as one task or errand after another.

    So how do you use these in practice? Would it be like foccussing on one a day, or different ones throughout the day?

    It sounds like a similar approach to the Lojong slogans.

  • VastmindVastmind Memphis, TN Veteran
    edited August 2016

    Umm...ok...I wasn't prepared for a Jessica Simpson reference, hahaha...Not sure where to go with that one.... Between all her sexual grinding I'll have to check to see if her shoe collection she sells includes boots.....I'll have to admit, as usual...I think I'm lost as to the relation. Sorry :3 ..... @lobster, my friend, I think you're too smart for me. :dizzy:

    @SpinyNorman The ones above are pretty general and cover the whole table, so I recite those in the morning to set an intention for the day. I have more specific ones I use during the day when I feel frustrations arise. Driving, doing housework, any daily chores. I have post it's with ones written on my desk in my cube and ones on my cork board in the house. Would this be like asking church people do they say one prayer a day or different ones throughout the day? Guess it depends on the person and their habits and efforts.

  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited August 2016

    I think I'm lost as to the relation.

    <3 Oops.

    ... In the Tantric songs of realisation, the super sangha models manifest in everyday life ...

    As role models, role reversals (mundane as sacred) and hill billy muppet wisdom. In other words samsara is nirvana.

    The important thing is recognising our song, how we are repulsed, attracted, unmoved by cultural icons, gender or other stereotypes and dharma/spirituality as having a type of barefoot simplicity ...

    We are trampled on by our ignorant affiliations, shoe collection or preferences ... however the wrathful dakinis sing to a higher frequency. They sing unfettered by samsara, suffering, hellish imagery or bread making sexploitation.

    They are in essence pure being ...

  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator

    @Vastmind does the reference you gave have a whole list of them? Like a "Little Book of Gathas" or something similar? I enjoy things like that myself (I do practice Lojong and they do remind me a bit of that in some ways) but I always have a resource of little things like that to read with the kids every morning before they go out the door. I thought it might be a good way to start the school year if such a book/reference/site exists :)

  • VastmindVastmind Memphis, TN Veteran

    @karasti ....yes! That's exactly what it is. A little book of daily gathas broke up into categories....work, school, dealing with family, friends, etc. I've used mine for years.... I just purchased an additional one that I'm tearing out pages of each category and sending to Aleena for her to go over and reassemble. :)

    Here is the amazon link:


    "This book provides short (two-to-five-sentence) Buddhist perspectives and advice on ordinary daily activities. Although traditional gathas are usually in "verse" form, Kipfer has written informal gathas using normal declarative sentences. Each entry begins with an activity, action, feeling, or experience. Then each suggests an example of a Buddhist interpretation of those activities, feelings, etc. For example, one entry deals with laundry: "doing laundry - As I sort clothes for a laundry load, I am mindful of the effort it took to make the clothes and the machines that will care for them. As I do my part, my mind is still. I rejoice in having fresh, clean clothes." Another entry addresses an activity or experience: "restraint - Practicing conscious restraint with small desires gives me strength of mind when there are powerful desires. Restraint is seeing that wise activities bring greater happiness and understanding - and that unwise activities lead to further suffering and conflict."

  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator

    @Vastmind Perfect! Thanks for the link! I have read to them from random quote books, but it was hard for them to identify with daily life. I think this might be more helpful :) Every morning they ask what the quote is, so I try to make sure they are worth hearing, :awesome:

  • RuddyDuck9RuddyDuck9 MD, USA Veteran

    These really are perfect. I'm ashamed to admit my 21st century mind loves these little shortcuts. Like the OLD HHDL quote calendar I still keep on the shelf for reminders, or the journal with a quote/ reading per day to keep you pondering on things. Is it still learning if we always use shortcuts?? :confused: I hope so. Thank you so much for the insight, OP. I'm sure there's all kinds of literature on this.

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