Friday, January 25, 2013

Virginia Woolf 
born today, January 25, 1881 

"Women have served all these centuries as looking glasses possessing the power of reflecting the figure of man at twice its natural size."

Thursday, January 24, 2013

I generally don't post aphorisms, but this one struck me as appropriate as I continue further into middle age. The accompanying story is a classic. 


Once there were two monks who went on a pilgrimage across the country. One day, they came to muddy road and saw a noblewoman who was unable to cross for fear of getting mud on her clothes.Seeing her difficulty, the elder monk volunteered to carry the woman on his back while the younger one looked on in consternation. Once across, the noblewoman walked away without a word of thanks, while the old monk was covered in mud.

When the sun went down, the monks came upon a dilapidated shack and decided to stay there for the night. The elder monk quickly fell asleep while the younger one was unable to calm his mind and twisted around so much that the elder monk awoke and asked what was wrong. 

"That woman," said the young monk, "you carried her across the road on your back and didn't even get a word of thanks!" 

"Oh, that," said the elder. "Brother, I left that woman by the side of the road. Why are you still carrying her around?"

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Palm Stones

New palm stones at Sleepy Buddha

Sometimes all you need is a single stone to bring you to mindfulness. Here's an amazing druzy (agate and quartz crystal) palm stone that fairly glows with calm energy. Expertly crafted, this stone sits in your palm like water. Small enough to carry everywhere, but large enough to make its presence known.

I carefully select all the palm stones at Sleepy Buddha for beauty, quality of cut, and color. I make no claims about healing properties or other mental benefits of the stones. Enjoy them as you would any other beautiful object that focuses your mind.

Namaste, Matt

Haiku Mind

Here's a book I first bought several years ago, and find myself still buying for friends and relatives. Haiku Mind: 108 Poems to Cultivate Awareness and Open Your Heart is a great addition to any library, but is particularly useful to people who are interested in the connections between the written word and "real life." 

You can find it on

Here's my original review in 2009: "Each of these 108 haiku is accompanied by a brief commentary that creates a context for the poem and explains how it works. The commentaries are insightful, although the titles for them (Pausing, Honesty, Sky-Mind) feel like editorial add-ons. I'm not quite as enthusiastic as the other reviewers, mainly because there's not enough about the language and structure of haiku here. But maybe my expectations are too literary. This is really a general audience book, which is in itself a laudable achievement. Give Haiku Mind book to everybody who doesn't understand why you spend all that time writing three-line poems that barely make sense: if they don't get it after reading the book, they never will."

Namaste, Matt

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Some brass bells about to be listed: a preview.

I love the detail in the etching. 

It's getting harder to find elephant bells with stands.

Lovely blue paint work.

A very unsual shape.

Find them soon at

I'm always looking for new pendants, and these Buddha-in-the-hand-of-Buddha charms are great. Perfect for malas, bracelets, necklaces and even earrings.

Also, updated colors on the hollow wood column pendants inscribed with the sacred syllables.

Looking for these kinds of small but fun pieces takes lots of time, but it's worth it. I buy many so you can buy one.

Namaste, Matt

This is Sleepy Buddha

Sleepy Buddha is a shop at Etsy that specializes in Buddhist prayer malas of all lengths; mala-inspired jewelry; dzi beads; vintage brass bells, boxes and censers; and supplies for your own mala-making, including wood and gemstone strands, guru beads and string. We also carry an exclusive line of hand-knotted Chinese-style bracelets made by Nicole Wong.

Find the shop at

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Here are three examples of 108 malas: