Those Who Serve & Risk Life & Limb for Others Are Heroes

So much talk in the US about soldiers these days…bashing them, calling them “names” – misunderstanding what and why someone volunteers to serve as a warrior. To willingly put themselves in harms way for the sake of freedom for others.

Here is a short reminder of what the mightiest warrior is…it includes all that serve.

The Mightiest of Warriors

But the mightiest warriors enemies are not common foes of flesh and bone.

Then what is the enemy?

The fight is with the inner delusions, the afflictions of self-cherishing and ego-grasping…those most terrible of demons that catch living beings in the snare of confusion and cause them forever to wander in pain and sorrow.

What is the mission of the mightiest warrior?

The mission is to harm ignorance and delusion…never living beings. Look upon living beings with kindness, patience and empathy…cherishing them like a mother cherishes her only child.

This is the karma of sacrifice.

The mightiest warrior is the real hero….calmly facing any hardship in order to bring peace, happiness and liberation to the world.

Humming Bird

Author: FaShi Lao Yue

ZATMA is not a blog.

 If for some reason you need elucidation on the teaching,

please contact editor at:

Art Pieces 1: On Death. A Painting, A Poem & A Scrap from A Letter

Death and the Maiden

By Egon Schiele

Egon Schiele died in 1918 of the Spanish flu at the age of 28.



By Sophia Meyers-Green

A poem written some 20 years after the death of a beloved husband.

I am hiding behind a chair.

No elaborate music,

Is playing.

There is that great stone over my heart not allowing me to feel

what is on the other side of the door.

I know it is love and I am hiding.

I loved and lost.

I am alive.

This is my birthday.

You smiled at me today.

Although I felt the warmth of that smile,

I turned away . . .  afraid you would touch me.

Tears would come to my eyes . . .

I would remember.

Then, I did hear the beginning of music,

sounds, soft, almost murmurs, like breathing,

like the running of water over blue stones.

Dare I dip my foot

ever so quickly just for one moment.


Death Can Cause People to Stop Living (50-53)

By Henri Nouwen 

Written Six Months after the Death of his mother.

We have both seen how some of our friends could not accept unforeseen changes in their lives and were unable to deal with an unknown future. When things went differently than they had expected or took a drastic turn, they did not know how to adjust to the new situation. Sometimes they became bitter and sour. Often they clung to familiar patterns of living that were no longer adequate and kept repeating what once made sense but no longer could speak to the real circumstances of the moment.

Death has often affected people in this way, as we know too well. The death of husband, wife, child, or friend can cause people to stop living toward the unknown future and make them withdraw into the familiar past. They keep holding on to a few precious memories and customs and see their lives as having come to a standstill. They start to live as if they were thinking, “For me it is all over. There is nothing more to expect from life.”

As you can see, here the opposite of detachment is taking place; here is a re-attachment that makes life stale and takes all vitality out of existence.


More on Death to follow.

Humming Bird

Death and the Maiden (Tod und Mädchen)  Painting by Egon Schiele

Death Can Cause People to Stop Living A Letter of Consolation by Henri Nouwen

Author: FaShi Lao Yue

ZATMA is not a blog.

 If for some reason you need elucidation on the teaching,

please contact editor at:


Killing by visiting writer Sophia Meyer-Greene

Imaginative. Evocative. Lingering.

Has Sophia Meyer-Greene tapped into our universal trait in her new flash fiction….




“It has to be done,” she writes. “It has to.” She asserts.



By Sophia Meyer-Greene


I guarantee you.  You won’t see another of those little devils for at least five years.”


When you call, Arthur Joseph Candicanosi, you call the top guy in town.

I use the strongest chemicals. I get the job done fast. One, Two, Three.

Bing, Bing, Bang.

Beautiful home.  Don’t give it another thought about right or wrong. C’mon what are we talking about here? It has to be done.  It has to.

My old man worked for a slaughterhouse. He slit throats . . . proficiently.  Zip. Zip. It had to be done.

After a few years, his employers told him: when a machine does it . . . it’s almost painless and faster. My dad said the owners decided which choice –- man or machine – based on which was cost-effective.

Cost-effectiveness became top priority . . . an absolute necessity, if a business was to survive. Automation. Robotics.  Everything evolves.

No, he didn’t lose his job. He became Director of Operations. When it didn’t go right, he had to Zip. Zip. Again. Machine errors occurred often. Specific procedures had to be followed. He was under the gun.

Yeah, my old man told me he was only allowed to work a limited number of hours a week.  (I think he said 17.)  Yes, 17 hours. The owners said: killing can have deleterious effects when you kill in excess of 17 hours.

            His bosses said: Killing too much can make the slaughterer mean. Even watching killing for extended periods can be extremely harmful.

Harmful? Wait until you hear this: The establishment’s view:  Killing can be a sensual experience. They pointed out, studies show, people can enjoy it.

Enjoy killing? Studies show? What a crock!

I kill eight to ten hours a day, five days a week.  I’m married, have two sons. On the weekends I coach football. Looking in the mirror, I see an ok guy looking back. Killing has to be done. It has to.”

  • ••

The woman paid Arthur Joseph Candicanosi with a check and an obligatory smile, hurrying him out the door so he could get started with the work.

She wondered, did his words have a perlocutionary effect? He smelled.  It was a dank, soggy, rotting odor, something she could not identify. She speculated perhaps it was from the substances he used or maybe the odor arose as a result of his work.  The woman reminded herself of what he said.

‘It has to be done.’



When the job was completed, he came from around the back of the house. He looked tired. The woman watched as he lumbered down the front footpath.

She thought of him touching his wife…having breakfast with his sons. Did a shower eradicate that smell? The stench lingered in the kitchen. When the woman opened the window, winter’s cold morning came rushing in.

Taking a deep breath, she sighed as she watched black smoke pour out of the tailpipe of his green truck as he pulled away.


  • •••
  • Humming Bird

    ZATMA is not a blog. If for some reason you need elucidation on the teaching, please contact the editor at:



Jake Mason

Yao Xiang Shakya is pleased to introduce Jake Mason, a New Singer/songwriter.

And her Nephew’s son! But seriously, check him out…His debut release comes out in September…


Jake Mason


15 y/o singer/songwriter, Jake Mason, was born in Long Island, NY

and started to sing, dance, and write his own songs at an early age.  

His influences are Michael Jackson, J. Moss, Smokie Norful, Stevie Wonder,

Justin Bieber, and Usher.  

Dharma sprouts

Dear friends,


We wanted to share with you some beautiful pics of Hermela and Yonah, Yin Shan Shakya’s adorable children… and congratule their father, for these lovely Dharma sprouts!





Queridos amigos,


Queríamos compartir con Ustedes algunas bellas fotografías de los hijos de Yin Shan Shakya: Hermela y Yonah… y felicitar a su padre por estos encantadores brotes del Dharma!


¡Que las disfruten!



Yonah and his father (Yin Shan Shakya)


Hermela and Yonah

From Lousiana, with love

Abbot Ken and Victoria, being guarded by their loyal friend, Begonia, while they are having some well-deserved rest.image3


The sunny couple under the beautiful Sun of Lousiana….



Thank you both for sharing these happy moments with us! We hope you continue being our correspondents from The Pelican State!