I ask this when misery seems what I cultivate.
As a mean, grasping person I remain enclosed in small notion of self.
Conditioning, without benefit of awareness, isolates and clings.
Patch-robed monks makeWhen conditioned, be aware of conditioning. Then, perhaps, conditioning no longer rules from hiding.
Their thinking dry and cool
And rest from the remnants of
Persistently brush up and sharpen
This bit of the field.
Spiritual and bright,
Vast and lustrous,
Illuminating fully what is
Before you, directly attain
The shining light and clarity
That cannot attach to a single defilement.
- Hongzhi Zhengjue (1091-1157)
Curtis Island keeps to itself in outer harbor. From outside edge, there is no harbor, but open bay. Swells lengthen. Depth plummets. There's a sense of basic trust called for, humbly relied upon. Seal and loon eye and vigil the stranger passing. Bell buoy tolls uncounted lifts, alteration, and sway of clappers clanging tide and wind in cathedral sea.
How many ashes of deceased have taken final entry here? Sacred sound invokes stirring solitude. This is why we row alone. This also why even on land the monastic church is home and sanctuary.
But when the kindness and love of God our saviour for mankind were revealed, it was not because he was concerned with any righteous actions we might have done ourselves: it was for no reason except his own compassion that he saved us, by means of the cleansing water of rebirth and by renewing us with the Holy Spirit...In a poem recalled at Saturday afternoon's Poetry, Tea, and Literature, a line once written: "We are orphans and children of orphans."
Tonight, John 14:18 is recalled: "I will not leave you orphans."
It's not that we're not alone, not that we're not orphans, but it's the appearance or non-appearance of a comma.
We might be alone. We might be orphans.
(Here insert comma.)
"I will not leave you, alone." "I will not leave you, orphans."
Like nearing bell buoy in vast openness of water, we are surrounded by Presence-Itself too profound for our ability to grasp.
No meaning. No grasping.