Wednesday, December 20, 2006
What does it mean to believe in our lives? I remember a child that was me. There were experiences then that I can dimly remember something of but not so much and less that's reliable.
We believe passionately in the preciousness of ‘our lives.’ We believe it's the only life we have, the only life we'll get. We speak of and are encouraged to speak of our ambitions, our fears, the demons we've faced, our cherished moral path in achieving those ambitions and striking down or succumbing to our fears and demons. In what we speak of, we imagine a life well lived and try to live it well and ever better.
But what is real in this? From where does love spring?
The past is a dream, demonized, idealized, just a dream. The future has not yet happened, our imaginings just like the past, a dream. What is happening? What is happening is no longer held fast. What is happening is 'giving away.' The present is eternally giving itself away into change. How can we open to experience, let anchor and give ourselves to the ebb tide, flowing away from us into the darkness?
We are terrified to imagine for a moment that there is nothing but this instant; that the immensity of true responsibility for this instant descends upon our shoulders. But there is no need for this concern. Giving ourselves is at once more frightening then not as frightening in activity as it might seem. Like parachuting, it's terrifying to move towards the lip of the plane, scarier to take the plunge then the benign winds buoy you up and you float down to earth.
It takes great strength to move out beyond experience, that of our parents, peers and teachers. But it is imperative that we do, no matter how great our teacher.
Giving our selves away completely on our zafus, intending to do this, transcending that intention, transcending 'giving ourselves away.' To give our selves, our cherished 'lives' away completely is the same as our inheritance of all of existence. What use is ‘me’ or ‘mine’ in the world as it is?
'Listening is a function of the whole self.' In the experience of listening is contained this and also the wholly listening self is whole with what is listened to. What is listened to is also listening. Listening listens to listening. In this act, listening, all of experience is 'listening.'
Great love springing effortlessly from the universe makes a universe of 'great love' if we can stop making the effort to prevent it from doing so.
How can we really give everything, allow our hands to be empty? Just when we've exhausted attempts to think non-thinking, to do non-doing, just when we think, it is not, there it is, shining quietly all along throughout our effort, our intentions.
Something becomes zazen, the state of zazen asserts itself as we assert it, spreading as we spread into it. Recognising it in diverse things, we comprehend zazen as the fundamental element of which consciousness is composed, the deep eternal note that is listening to us, sustaining us as we listen and sustain it.