This body is not me, I am not caught in this body.
I am life without boundaries. I have never been born,
and I shall never die.
Look at the ocean and the sky filled with stars,
manifestations of my wondrous true mind.
Since before time, I have been free.
Birth and death are only doors through which we
pass, sacred thresholds on the journey.
Birth and death are just a game of hide and seek.
So laugh with me,
hold my hand,
let us say goodbye,
say goodbye, to meet again soon.
We meet today.
We will meet tomorrow
We will meet at the source at every moment.
We meet each other in all forms of of life.
(p.124, in You Are Here, by Thich Nhat Hanh)In an editorial published Saturday 3 September 2011 on http://www.nationofchange.org/years-911-lost-decade-1315059429 entitled "The Years Since 9/11: The Lost Decade," I contemplate posting a comment, but don't. This is what I write but don't post:
And, dare we forget, the terrible victory of those who perpetrated the attacks. There was a large-scale undermining of the confidence of Americans in their government, and a huge destruction of trust in the people by the government. Just because some leaders of Al Qaeda were assassinated does not diminish their shocking revelation of our irrational response of violence and ineffectual vision of diplomatic or heartfelt resolution by peaceful skills as witnessed in mercenary warfare and mindless spending on armaments, killing, and security. That revelation, short-circuiting our eroded compassion and care for the plight of the less-fortunate, has pointed out the raw aggression of military ambition and political take-no-prisoners mentality. Our leaders are afraid to be unafraid and thus prey on the fears of the citizenry to perpetually think, act, and vote with fear and cynicism. I would prefer not to suspect that the so-called enemy has become our constant self-identity.Why say something, I reason, just because you think you have something to say?
Ask the dog:
Fetch? Balls and sticks capture my attention
seconds at a time. Catch? I don’t think so.
Bunny, tumbling leaf, a squirrel who’s—oh
joy—actually scared. Sniff the wind, then
I’m off again: muck, pond, ditch, residue
of any thrillingly dead thing. And you?
Either you’re sunk in the past, half our walk,
thinking of what you never can bring back,
or else you’re off in some fog concerning
—tomorrow, is that what you call it? My work:
to unsnare time’s warp (and woof!), retrieving,
my haze-headed friend, you. This shining bark,
a Zen master’s bronzy gong, calls you here,
entirely, now: bow-wow, bow-wow, bow-wow.
Who is unafraid? Not sunk in the past, or in some fog of...tomorrow?
(Poem by Mark Doty, “Golden Retrievals” from Sweet Machine: Poems. 1998 )
I'm torn between simple acceptance of the absurdity of this existence as experienced in the world, and the possibility that some other world, perhaps one not 'in' the world -- but the world itself no longer determined, conditioned, or puppeteered by external forces, a world no longer dualized by interior fear, perhaps this possibility is what those who speak of 'spiritual life' mean.
Sometimes not-to-move is the best place to go.
Thirty years ago this week Maine moved me into it.
And there he remained.