The Way of Transformation

Blessings to you on this beautiful day, friends,

I feel moved this morning to offer to the sangha the topic we explored in group last night. As you will see from the explanation below, this is something that is near and dear to my heart, and something that has been a part of my life and practice for a many years now. I hope you will enjoy and profit from the reading, as I have.

If you would like to participate in the Thursday and Sunday evening meditation and discussion groups, where we practice together, inspire and support each other, and where we examine topics such as the one below, you would be most welcome. Simply follow the link below to a page where you can put yourself on the list to receive the reminders that go out each Thursday and Sunday, which include the zoom information you’ll need in order to participate, and the topic for the evening if there is one:

Be well, good people, and have a beautiful day out there!

In peace,

Here is the announcement that went out yesterday about the evening’s topic:

I’d like to share something with you that has been an important influence on my life and practice these past many years. The following is a passage from a book called The Way of Transformation, by Karlfried Graf Durckheim. This passage was one of three quotes that were hung in frames and glass in the monastery dining hall all the years I trained there. I’ve been waiting for what seemed an opportune moment to offer this to you for discussion, and for some reason I can’t explain that moment arrived today. If you’re willing, I’d like to discuss the following with you this evening. Bring along pen and paper so I can workshop it with you a bit as well. Have a beautiful day, beautiful people, and I’ll look forward to seeing you tonight!


“Those who, being really on the Way, fall upon hard times in the world will not, as a consequence, turn to that friend who offers refuge and comfort and encourages the old self to survive. Rather they will seek out someone who will faithfully and inexorably help them to risk themselves, so that they may endure the suffering and pass courageously through it, thus making of it a “raft that leads to the far shore.” Only to the extent that we expose ourselves over and over again to annihilation can that which is indestructible arise within us. In this lies the dignity of daring. Thus, the aim of practice is not to develop an attitude which allows us to acquire a state of harmony and peace wherein nothing can ever trouble us. On the contrary, practice should teach us to let ourselves be assaulted, perturbed, moved, insulted, broken, and battered– that is to say, it should enable us to dare to let go our futile hankering after harmony, surcease from pain, and a comfortable life in order that we may discover, in doing battle with the forces that oppose us, that which awaits us beyond the world of opposites. The first necessity is that we should have the courage to face life, and to encounter all that is most perilous in the world. When this is possible, meditation itself becomes the means by which we accept and welcome the demons which arise from the unconscious — a process very different from the practice of concentration on some object as a protection against such forces. Only if we venture repeatedly through zones of annihilation can our contact with Divine Being, which is beyond annihilation, become firm and stable. The more we learn whole-heartedly to confront the world that threatens us with isolation, the more are the depths of the Ground of Being revealed and the possibilities of new life and Becoming opened.”