|Click HERE to enlarge . . . that's what she said.|
Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Monday, October 17, 2016
Wednesday, October 12, 2016
Cough, cough hack, hack; who needs to breathe anyway? The rain falls down in the breezeless October morning, drab, gray, smoky in its texture, the taste of acrid volcanic sulfur.
Talking about processes, process, processes. Essence is Process. Self, other, love, hate, life death, all appearings of the Process. Ah, the joys of philosophy that is gleamed from experience and that also informs it. The interactions of expectation disappointment, and hope, and madness. Sully not the name of the philosopher for they have made everything we know.
Pause to take a drag. a black and white cat sits perched in the window sill watching the drops plummet toward the ground, curious, inquisitive, never pausing to reflect, perpetually nowness. Another plays with a toy, a jingle ball, fun, entertainment, so similar are we. So many jingles and baubles I enjoy.
Do they weigh me down? They definitely can. It's been a life's work untying myself from lead weights. Sinking, sinking, I will not! God damn it! I will not sink! To float and swim and glide and soar, that is the desire. To sink? Fuck no! Fuck that! Shove it up your ass! But maybe, just maybe sinking is "where it's at?" The ultimate insight, the profound unraveling. To let go and sink down, down, down into the depths of mind and reality. Fear. Such fear of losing these harmful habits that I've collected. "I am" is a habit, a collection of habits bundled and labeled, copyrighted under my name. Default settings.
Anon wakes and gets coffee, his negative presence immediately filling the room, his aggressive motions, and sounds, an utter lack of delicacy and finesse. Such sorrow I have for him. Waking and always complaining, ah the urge to leave here is strong but the obstacles nearly insurmountable. Dozens and dozens of job applications but no call backs. His constant nagging secretly driving me mad, but that's down, down, down. Deep down there in the drowning zone. He's unaware that my constant hypochondria, the constant feeling that I am dying, makes all his complaints hollow to these ears. Someday he and I will have an earnest discussion. I love him dearly for all that he's done, and I feel his sorrow, but someday I will let my secret world be known.
In that world, he is both a character of love and scorn. He is samsara, the Anti-Buddha. He is another reason for me to let go, to sink, to understand. I think it's a lie, that practice is solely practical, that we can carry on as we always have. It doesn't feel that way to me.
It feels that if I dive in, I will transform; I won't be able to carry on as I currently do. That's what both charms me and scares the shit out of me at the same time. Because I want to change, to transform into the Path - but at the same time, I want to continue on this road of self-destruction.
|Blue Buddha in my Backyard|
The grass whispered across his aching legs. So many miles without an answer! Hours sitting in rock-like equipoise; enduring monsoons, gales, and blistering heat. He’d handed over his mind and body to so many different teachers, but each path just led to disappointment. Why do we suffer? That’s his only question. That question ripped him away from luxury, power, and family. It tore him away from his wife and infant son. Why do we suffer?
He never lost hope, never lost the drive to understand. Each failing was a success, a process of elimination bringing him closer and closer to the answer. The trees parted and revealed an intimate grove. A clear stream giggled next to a geriatric tree. Traceless birds and bluing sky, his aching bones drug across the green toward the sanctuary tree.
Sid folded himself against the trunk; his eyes sighed across the grove. So many miles without an answer. Ah, Sujata. Her beauty is that of the grove’s, and her kindness the autumn yield. She saved Sid from himself. He was practicing with five other ascetics, starving himself in the name of spiritual purification. Sid was a skeleton, his ribs like prison bars beneath a thin, dry hide.
Near death, Sujata begged him to eat and drink. Sid looked up and saw a rainbow, her loving smile the warm, welcoming sun; her tearful eyes compassion’s rain. Sid ate and drank, returning from stasis thanks to Sujata’s inherent Buddhahood.
Sid’s five ascetic friends took their leave. Look at how disgusting Sid is! He’s eating, drinking, and speaking with a beautiful woman! Such a disgrace, such a disgrace. Sid, in Sujata’s care, found his health again. She didn’t want him to leave, she loved him, but he was a seeker. There could be no happiness, no reality until he found what he sought.
These images and more flash before him as he sits beneath the Bodhi tree. He lets them flow, like sun-glimmers on water-crests. The birds come to roost, night falls, and moon roses. The glimmers sleep in cerebral silence.
A single raindrop plops into the dark water. The moon sets and Sid lifts his eyes. Venus, the Morning Star, a brilliant flickering ember racing toward the horizon. Speechless, the mystery de-cloaks and stands naked in the mirror; his question has been answered. Sid wasn’t Sid anymore.
The night birds give way to mourning doves, the ghost of dawn flirting with the Nepali sky. The sun emerges from the nocturnal womb. The Buddha unfolds like a morning glory, limbs popping and creaking, but to him, there is only luminous space. He smiles with the terrain. This could be home, why not stay? A life of alms rounds in Uruvela, the neighboring town; the giggling stream and Bodhi tree. Why leave?
Sujata’s love whispers through the swaying grass. The world is suffering. Sickness, old age, death, loss, and hatred reign outside this quaint panacea. He closes his eyes, an imperceptible nod. Each ending is a beginning.
Buddha begins his trek to the Deer Park, where the five ascetics are in retreat. Sujata’s love is what the world needs, the Unbinding he found should be given to all.
Just as she had fed him, he must now feed the masses.
Starvation is not merely a curse of the flesh, the heart and mind can starve as well. The body hungers for food, the mind and heart hunger for truth. Buddha left Uruvela to feed the world.
Tuesday, October 11, 2016
|Cemetery near my house|