Vastness

I have a certain faith in our ability to find the wisdom we need to co-create necessary change, if we are willing to sit with what is hard and the vastness of what we do not know.

Sometimes the darkness is a place of rest. And sometimes it is a place where we gather wisdom and strength to deepen our participation in the world.

Oriah Mountain Dreamer

A moment

This morning
the beautiful white heron
was floating along above the water

and then into the sky of this
the one world
we all belong to

where everything
sooner or later
is a part of everything else

which thought made me feel
for a little while
quite beautiful myself.

Mary Oliver, Poem of the One World

Underneath all

Coming empty-handed, going empty-handed – that is human. When you are born, where do you come from? When you die, where do you go? Life is like a floating cloud which appears. Death is like a floating cloud which disappears. The floating cloud itself originally does not exist. Life and death, coming and going, are also like that.

But there is one thing which always remains clear. It is pure and clear, not depending on life and death.

Seungsahn Haengwon, 1927 – 2004, Korean Zen Master

When we identify

The important thing is not to know who “I” is or what “I” is.  You’ll never succeed.  There are no words for it.  The important thing is to drop the labels. As the Japanese Zen masters say, “Don’t seek the truth; just drop your opinions.” If you drop your labels, you would know. What do I mean by labels? Every label you can conceive of except perhaps that of  human being. I am a human being. Fair enough; doesn’t say very much.

But when you say, “I am successful,” that’s crazy. Success is not part of the “I”. Success is something that comes and goes; it could be here today and gone tomorrow. That’s not “I”.  When you said, “I was a success,” you were in error; you were plunged into darkness. You identified yourself with success. The same thing when you said, “I am a failure, a lawyer, a businessman.” You know what’s going to happen to you if you identify yourself with these things. You’re going to cling to them, you’re going to be worried that they may fall apart, and that’s where your suffering comes in.

 Suffering is given to you that you might open your eyes to the truth, that you might understand that there’s falsehood somewhere, just as physical pain is given to you so you will understand that there is disease or illness somewhere.

Anthony de Mello sj, Awareness: The Perils and Opportunities of Reality