Monday, December 03, 2007
Consciousness of a seperate self doesn't really exist, its illusory, like cats, roads and clowns. You can touch something, smell something, watch something but what is it really, beyond our massively limiting conception? Can we free experience from our self-imposed perceptual limitations?
To notice that the 'self' is constructed is just like this. To experience a non-dual state forces the question of what our constructed life is and we discover that 'everything that we see or seem' to coin a phrase is constructed. That what remains is shunyata / emptiness or Dogen's 'One Bright Pearl.'
There is a clear undivided state which we are not really aware of, which excludes too much of the kind of 'thinking' that constructs an imaginary agent of the self and keeps us close to the middle where opposites disappear. This is a state maintained by zazen and the middle way between extremes. But the truth is we wobble between states all the time. Just as in zazen we are dynamic and 'consciousness' shifts between dual and non dual states. We wiggle along and that wiggling maintains the state of balance. But do we maintain it or not?
The analogy of the bell with zazen is good. We strike the bell in the morning and the sound is loud then diminishes slowly until the evening when we strike it again then it dimishes again overnight then bong! But taken over a lifetime this striking and diminishing doesn't sound like notes struck then their diminuendo, it sounds like one continuous note.
The only moment in which we can actualise the teaching of Buddhism is in this moment. A lifetime of moments in which Buddhism has been actualised is a Buddhist life.
Not doing wrong, right is allowed to do itself.