It is often difficult to discern the figure on the cross. What is the import of this symbol of cruel torture and death?
Is the material cosmos itself disgraced when we supplant grace it’s wholeness by injecting shattering egoistic craving and selfish ambition?
But why dig up all this old scenery and reconstruct the stews of my own mental Pompeii after enough years have covered them up? Is it even worth the obvious comment that in all this I was stamping the last remains of spiritual vitality out of my own soul, and trying with all my might to crush and obliterate the image of the divine liberty that had been implanted in me by God? With every nerve and fibre of my being I was laboring to enslave myself in the bonds of my own intolerable disgust. There is nothing new or strange about the process. But what people do not realize is that this is the crucifixion of Christ: in which He dies again and again in the individuals who were made to share the joy and the freedom of His grace, and who deny Him.
(—Excerpt from: "The Seven Storey Mountain" by Thomas Merton. Scribd.
I hold the Irish string of green beads opposited by empty circle at one end and Celtic cross at other. Zero zen itself wholeness at one end. Whole Christ stretched suffering on shorn tree in full sight of unlooking inner conscience on the other end.
I’ve been there. And carry the obliviousness of truncated time and fractured space against a disappearing integrity I’ve refused to acknowledge.
In christian metaphor, I’ve sinned.
In zen metaphor, I’ve seen nothing and not cared.
Now I hold the empty circle and circle the empty cross wondering where the Christ of that Jesus has been resurrected and made manifest in the ongoing realization of our nascent and latent holiness wandering in the footsteps of our step by step ordinary day by day passage through this moment and this moment and, yes, again and always new, this moment.