What does it take for peace to prevail?

2016 Feb

I haven’t been blogging for a few months as I was determined to get out a book to share an idea that I think is important for every individual to recognize. That we all are part of creation and every individual contributes a piece of the puzzle that becomes our future.

Individuals who know this knowledge and own it are not just the billionaires but also the quiet simple people happily living their dreams. Being enlightened does not make you smart, nor does it exchange your inherited library of behaviors, nor your bucket list of desires for idealized beliefs or superpowers.

But it does increase synchronicity and creativity.

Sorry to say the world is mostly populated by people unaware of the creative powers that everyone has and continue to think of fears, wars, hatreds and disease thereby creating and maintaining those situations in their reality.

What does it take to get individuals to recognize how powerful they can be?

A peaceful happy person creates waves of peace in their environment, a hateful, angry person creates fear. Fear grows into violence, violence creates more fear and it goes like that until governments get into the act and create weapons of mass destruction to protect themselves in the name of peace makers.

It’s time for change, time for a lasting peace. We have to ask ourselves, “What is the best way for that to happen?”

Please read my book on why meditation is important:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01BJNJ3F4

Oh Yeah I almost forgot, “Happy New Year”

 

Rudy

 

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Blog    TM in Japan the 800 AD Spiritual regeneration movement by Kukai.

Having learned Transcendental Meditation [TM] from Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in the 1970’s I was surprised when reading the Shingon literature to find that Kukai argued back in 820 AD for a spiritual regeneration of the Japanese Buddhist beliefs and teachings as he realized that Samadhi by meditating was the beginning and most important technique of Buddhism, not the end achievement or goal. Many ancient masters said the same thing, that the experience of nothingness, Akasha, that which is beyond the senses, although seemingly empty like empty space is the essence that makes a Buddha a Buddha. The experience of nothingness, which is verbally confusing since nothingness is a non-experience, just spacing out or deep sleep while sitting upright, is the brains only opportunity to relax, drop off past stresses, and bathe in the pure potential opportunity of new creation. Pure awareness in the regular daily awareness is lost, bound in the senses.

Shingon meditations are short mantras/sounds, recited mentally [Manasika Japa]. Later after an understanding of Samadhi is achieved, visualization techniques are added for specific purposes and eventually the siddhis [supra normal abilities] develop over time. The problem is that after a period of time, just a few generations, the original teachings are forgotten and intellectual pursuits result in arguments over dogma and beliefs. Buddhism was never meant to be a religion but a science of recognizing the realities of existence and living a naturally powerful, happy and fulfilling life.

There are volumes of positive research on the benefits of meditation and I believe that it’s a daily activity as important as getting enough sleep.

My blog on this subject may be small potatoes with all the thousands of articles on meditation but hopefully sweet potatoes!

Rudy🙂      ps I’m now teaching English in Kyoto Japan

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A Mountain Home in Kyoto visited…

Tuesday, February 17, 2015…A lazy day for me as my only scheduled activity was to drive to Ohara, a small mountain community of Kyoto, high in the mountains and have a planning meeting about a dance and Shamisen performance in October.  So I meditated all morning till noon, had lunch and scheduled to meet my wife’s aunt at 2 pm at Jikkoin, a small traditional Japanese house used as a Tendai Buddhist monastery and once long past as a woman’s convent. I have visited the property once before and I remember the garden as one of those very special places on earth. Today the daughter of the owner took us on a tour of the gardens and showed us the formal tea house her grandfather built in 1921. Then we went inside for Matcha tea and sweets. The owner explained that the main garden we are looking at was originally designed and built for Emperor Gotoba’s Mausoleum in 1198 AD to represent the Pure Land the other side, and was moved here during the Edo-period.  As I sat there I kept asking myself, why am I here?  Hanging above was an old painting of a Flying-Apsaras “Hiten”and I chuckled inside as I thought of Sally Field as Sister Bertrille the flying Nun…

We will be renting this house in October 2015 to produce a performance of traditional Japanese music and dance.

Ps Life is fun and the back room has an amazing collection of ancient sacrificial artifacts and musical instruments, the Matcha tea is excellent and Ohara has many Shrines and Temples within a few minutes’ walk if you are ever in the area.

Mountain views

Mountain views

Rudy

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Real Magic doesn’t just happen, it’s well planned…

Real Magic Exists, not a rabbit from a hat,

but the manifestations of thoughts!      

Rudolph V Kolar MBA Author and Artist                                                                       
Temple

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Waste not want not

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Banana Bread

Waste not want not Blog    November 2014

My grandmother and my mother must have said “waste not want not” a thousand times when I was growing up in Illinois. Fall harvest season when the fruit was falling from the trees, apples, pears and plums were all over the ground. We picked the best with a picking basket at the end of a long pole and the rest would be left to over ripen and fall, smashing open on the ground and get covered with bees. When my Grandmother would visit, she would pick up the damaged fruit and cut away the bad parts. “Waste not want not” she would say. My mother would make dozens of apple pies, apple slices, pear pies and pumpkin pies every October/November. The two ovens, one in the kitchen and one in the basement were busy for many days.

And so this story comes to mind as I make a second loaf of banana bread here in Okinawa. When the bananas start to ripen here, within a short period of time I have dozens of bunches of bananas to give away and or use somehow. Having thirty or so bananas sitting in a basket on our kitchen table and starting to spot prompted me to search Google for banana recipes. I came up with a bread recipe and a pudding recipe both were easy to follow and both turned out amazingly tasty.  “Waste not want not” keeps popping in my mind, reminding me of my Grandmother’s autumn visits!

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone, may your harvest be fruitful and tasty!

Rudy

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An October of quintessential strangeness!

As a young boy growing up in Illinois, October was always my favorite month. The beautiful autumn colors, the temperate temperature and the harvest season followed by Halloween. No computers or cell phones to distract me from spending the day outside taking in all the beauty of the seasonal changes. No conspiracies and no protests, or if there were, we never heard about them. If anyone talked about the war, it was about world war two. The only world news we heard about was whatever was on the the TV, the 10 pm news broadcast, and that was mostly local and rarely anything about what was happening outside America. So everything was peaceful and my curiosity was totally directed at reading Scientific American, Rosicrucian literature, and National Geographic Magazines.

Life was simple and there were few limitations on what I couldn’t do. If my mother saw me walking out the door with my rifle, she would say, “be home for dinner!” I spent a little time each day shooting guns and bow and arrow to keep up my hunting skills, a little time working on my model airplanes in the basement workshop, and a little night-time reading in my bedroom which was also my menagerie of aquariums, terrariums and odd pets.

I was always looking forward to Halloween; the door to door “Trick or Treat” canvassing of my neighborhood always resulted in a huge stockpile of candy that usually lasted for three to four months! The culmination of my favorite month was always happy with a feeling of successfully completing the Fall ritual. Now it was time to think about Thanksgiving and the yearly family gathering of aunts, uncles and cousins at my Grandmother’s house.

So now I personally compare that to my experiences of 2014. I’m in my home in Okinawa, writing this blog as a Typhoon shakes and rattles this house. The temperature has cooled to below 80 F for the first time in many months. There were no fall colors as there is no change in the tropical foliage here ever. A computer and cell phone occupy about eight hours of my day. That is eight hours I’d rather spend meditating and that is the skill I’m working on improving these days. My projects are three new books in process and I’m translating, condensing and summarizing the Vairocana Sutra into simple English. I’m curious about practicing the Shingon Buddhist meditation as it is so similar to what I learned from Maharishi Mahesh Yogi back in the 1970’s but with greater “how to” and “Why for” explanations.

Upon reflection and in comparison my life is has become utterly strange and the community I’m living in doesn’t celebrate Halloween or Thanksgiving! The quintessential strangeness is the number of conspiracy theories that I’m bombarded with every day, the propaganda news, theories about the massive corruption in government, lies about historical facts, falsified scientific and medical disclosures, new theories about evolution and I’m not even going to mention Aliens or UFO’s, oops I just did!

It’s all very difficult to separate reality from fiction these days. I have to question my own set of beliefs occasionally and my outlook is far from the norm. My personal experiences seem to tell me that everything is just thoughts and beliefs accepted by the universal mind, but then what do I know?

Will we ever know what truth is?                                              Rudy IMAG8957

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September Blahs…

Its September already and I’m having a bit of difficulty writing or even keeping my mind on my “to-do” lists.

After two years in Okinawa, an interesting two years with pros and cons but mostly positive experiences, it’s time to move on.

I moved here in 2012 from Tacoma, Washington only because my wife was offered an internship at a local hospital and as of last week her contract as a counselor was up and we have no reason to be here except maybe to watch the next typhoon and experience the high humidity and very hot weather.

For me, living in a beautiful tropical paradise where no one speaks English was a most notable experience. I now can go shopping and travel about without concern. I have a Japanese driver’s license and can speak enough Japanese to order drinks and find the bathroom, just a few words, enough to get me in trouble as the locals then think I understand what they are saying!

Speaking is one thing, understanding is another! Being totally lacking in the ability to share stories keeps me a bit of a hermit. I am so looking forward to leaving here but what and where will I find myself living next year? Maybe some Ex-Pat community or maybe back in the USA? Kyoto is on the list of potential destinations but nothing yet is confirmed.

Uncertainty is something I tolerate for a few days at most, I like having a plan, a direction, and a schedule to follow and that is something that keeps my soul at ease.

So its mid-September and no plan yet except the house lease is up mid-November and I’ve started reading three new books: The Sound of Waves by Mishima, The Heike Story by Yoshikawa, and Kukai The Universal by Ryotaro Shiba. Learning a bit more about Japanese history and culture.

Time to meditate, its always time to meditate when there are unanswered questions!

Wishing all my friends a beautiful autumn “Que Sera, Sera”   [what will be, will be]

Rudy🙂

Dragon2

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Famous Japanese Mountains and August Pilgrimage 2014

Sometimes life is stranger than strange, especially if one is married to a Miko.

My dear wife had a calling that we can pilgrimage to visit Kobo Daishi Kukai at Koyasan and then on to Mount Kurama to visit Mao-son, Bishamon-ten, and Senju-kannon, the symbols of the universal soul, forming a Trinity known as “Sonten”.

So as usual I said, “OK!”

And it just happened that way! Away we went.

The pilgrimage would have taken a few months a hundred years ago but we just drove to the airport six am Friday morning, flew to Japan, ran to catch a fast train to another train junction and two trains later that day we arrived at the Cable car that services the top of Mt. Koyasan. Just nine hours of travel and we were there!

We grabbed a cab and by 3:30 pm we arrived at out Monastic Hermitage/retreat house where we checked in just to leave our luggage. We then walked out the beautiful and ancient main gate of that classic Shingon Buddhist school.

The hike up the mountain trail leads through an immense cemetery that is 1200 years old and has the graves of hundreds of the most notable Japanese Monks, leaders, poets and warriors. The grand Masoleum at the end is the Eternal meditation location of Kobo Daishi Kukai who started the construction of this Buddhist complex in 816 AD. We said “hello!”

The weather cleared, sun came out and we were amazed at the energy that this place exudes, the Shingon Buddhists seem to have mastered manifestation and organization! The order and harmony and natural beauty of this mountain area is enhanced by the many ancient Shrines and Temples.

The cemetery record rooms have the names and location of every famous body entombed there engraved on brass plates.

We returned to our room and had a great vegetarian meal, our Shingon host may be Vegetarian but they served Saki with the meal! After dinner we did a night hike through the main Temple area starting at Konpon Daito, the Great Pagoda which was just across the street from where we are staying.

Giant Pine trees and the ancient pilgrimage route is registered as a World Heritage Site. We had the place to our selves, which was the reality of our entire trip. A storm on the horizon kept everyone away except for the dedicated crazies like us! We stopped at the tombs of the famous and made our greetings then headed back for morning Service at our Hermitage. Afterward we packed up and headed to Mount Kurama as a storm formed on the horizon. Luckily we made it to the end of the train line before all trains were shut down due to the torrential rains. Temporarily stranded we did what ancient pilgrims probably did, we ran through the rain to a small pub, bought a bottle of Saki and two bowls of noodles. An hour later the trains were still not running so we hailed a cab. Sort of like borrowing a horse in ancient times, luckily we had enough yen on us to pay our way to Mount Kuruma. By now the rivers were all raging brown water making tremendous noise and we did a small detour since the main road had just washed out. We made it to a small riverside Inn where we changed into our Yukatas and sandals to climb the Mountain. The rain stopped as we headed out and it seemed too good to be true, and it was! As soon as we got about a half kilometer up the mountain the storm hit with torrential rain, thunder and lightning, what a greeting!

Close to the top we entered the Diamond Temple where we participated in a purification service. After that we continued up the mountain to find the very ancient site of the Sonten of Kuramaya. Through the heavy rain we found a protected covered shrine and entered. Out the back side we could see that we were right next to the Extremely Ancient ruins of Venus. [According to the local story more than six million years ago, Mao-son (the great king of the conquerors of evil and the spirit of the earth) descended upon Mt. Kurama from Venus, with the great mission of salvation of mankind. Since then, a powerful spirit governing the development and the evolution not only of mankind but of all living things on Earth has been emanating from this Mt. Kurama site, and a priest named Gantei received the spiritual transmission here.]

We stayed for quite a while, it was one of those moments where the clouds temporarily parted and we were right at the place we came to see! As we left the rains came and we were soaked, as we got farther down the mountain the trail became a flowing waterfall of mud and leaves.

Iori said it was just our Waterfall training. Hours later when we finally reached the road at the base of the mountain we saw a cab on the lonely road and hailed it. We apologized profusely for all the water we were dripping into his cab but we made it back to the Inn. Iori had a leach attached to her calf, a first for her but that is how wet our walk was.

The Innkeeper was happy to see us return alive and made a very beautiful meal and lots of Saki to end our day on a very Happy note.

My old body seems to creek and groan occasionally but I always just say, “Not me, just this body!”

RudyCIMG4935 CIMG4960 CIMG4975

Sign at Koyasan

Sign at Koyasan

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The Zen of Magic and the Magic of Zen and buttons

The Zen of Magic and the Magic of Zen or how to cover the spiritual and material rituals of life and keep it simple with magic buttons.

We humans seem to need a bit of magic in our lives, a belief in something outside ourselves to occasionally lean on or to blame when things don’t go according to our plans and expectations.

It’s too UNFAIR to be held completely responsible for the life we lead isn’t it?

Can it be that we somewhat like being a victim sometimes, blaming others for our feelings and situation?

Yet that nagging subconscious pokes us to remind us that “YES-we are completely responsible as to how we FEEL: that is FREE WILL.”

But what about the actual material situation we live in, should we judge our wealth against others?

If we do then at best almost everyone puts themself down. Does it really make a difference if you own a house or rent one? Are you happier driving in a Mercedes than a Volkswagen or Toyota?

Do people around you “Push your buttons” and make you angry?

Well, maybe you should stop letting others push you buttons and you will soon discover that you push your own buttons and it’s all in your head.

We all need a bit of ritual and a bit of introspection daily to keep a balance. The moments of introspection can be defined as ZEN moments, moments of pure awareness devoid of mental ideas. I define Magic as everything, the totality of experience and the stuff that dreams are made of!

So I’ve created my own magic buttons to press and a simple ritual I’d like to share with you.

https://rudykolar.wordpress.com/my-book-2/

Thank you and don’t worry-be happy!

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Summer time to smile!

Summertime has arrived here in Okinawa. Its hotter here than most places I’ve lived but not that much hotter than where I was born: Chicago, Illinois.

I’ve moved on average about every three years for the last fifty years.  I have owned over forty-seven properties and my hobby was remodeling and renovating houses. Once I had three homes, one completed and a place for my family, one to work on and one cabin on Herron Island for weekends and summers. Remodeling was just a way to stay busy and express my creativity with tools as my career as a commercial broker wasn’t emotionally fulfilling.

I also remodeled four Yachts during my thirty-five year career as a broker, something to work on and explore the ocean and islands with my friends and family.

I believe that the purpose of life is exploration and discovery. What are we and what are we capable of both as individuals and as a society? What do we become in the few decades we exist and experience individuality?

As a young child I saw myself as life itself, not the individual body but a continuum of life flowing. I was about five years old when I discovered my first bird nest in the back yard, I saw the baby birds hatch from the eggs and soon fly away to make new nests and lay eggs. I thought it’s just a continuation of an idea, an old idea repeating itself over and over again, the birds are just doing what they expect to do! Most people just take it for granted that the birds are there and they are not seeing the process of life.

We humans are not much different from birds, we hatch out, grow and repeat whatever life style we inherited from our parents. We live our expectations and beliefs. Yet we have the capacity to see and be much more, to realize that there is more to life than the material shell and that there are many unanswered questions about how we got here!

So what is the nature of discovery?

I do not believe in individual evolution, it is the universe that evolves and individual species are just a symptom of that growth in knowledge.

So what is the nature of life itself?

It’s easy to recognize that thoughts become things, that an invisible process of nature underlies all our successful projects and activities. Life manifests ideas. There is a magic to life that many overlook.

If you have recognized that your thoughts have manifested, then you know that a positive focus is one of the most important realization that you can achieve and realizing what you are is the most important experience in my point of view. The truth really does set you free.

After writing this in an attempt to share the important life issues I have learned over the last 68 years I realized that many people do not really understand what a positive outlook is!

If you are thinking that you don’t want war or you don’t want crime etc., you are not a positive thinking person, you are contributing to the feelings of war and crime and whatever. What you resist persists is not just some silly psychological statement. Thoughts all seem to manifests in some way.

If you are positive, you think about what causes peace, how do you spread peaceful, harmonious ideas? What does it take to keep the representatives honest? How can we make this world better? How can we help improve our educational system?

And how can we have fun while creating harmony and discovering our true selves?

Early on I had an opportunity to study Zen in college but I didn’t have time to sit around and do nothing!

Later in Graduate school I did Zazen for a few years but didn’t think anything about it!

I was a Monk for a few years but the robes just didn’t suite me!

Later in life I started to get serious about meditating but it just got me nowhere!

Sometimes just creating a smile can be the most positive statement made.

 

Rudy

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