It is hard to find better guidance than this. Knowing it deep down would be so nice: to be without anxiety about my imperfections or messy reality or about what is not fully achieved in my life:
One thing, all things, they move and intermingle without distinction.
To live in this realization
is to be without anxiety about imperfection.
The mind of absolute trust is beyond all thought, all striving,
is perfectly at peace, for in it there is no yesterday, no today, no tomorrow.
Seng T’san, 7th Century Zen Patriarch, Hsin Hsin Ming
Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes.
Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow.
Let reality be reality.
Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like
attributed to Lao Tzu
In Tibetan Buddhism there’s a set of teachings for cultivating compassion called mind training, or lojong. One of the lojong teachings is, “Whichever of the two occurs, be patient.” This means if a painful situation occurs, be patient, and if a pleasant situation occurs, be patient. This is an interesting point. Usually, we jump all the time; whether it’s pain or pleasure, we want resolution. So if we’re happy and something is great, we could also be patient then, and not fill up the space, going a million miles an hour — impulse shopping, impulse talking, impulse acting out.
Pema Chodron, Practicing Peace
The physical universe is basically playful. There is no necessity for it whatsoever. It isn’t going anywhere. That is to say, it doesn’t have some destination that it ought to arrive at. It is best understood by the analogy with music. Because music, as an art form is essentially playful. We say, “You play the piano” You don’t work the piano.
Why? Music differs from say, travel. When you travel you are trying to get somewhere. In music, though, one doesn’t make the end of the composition. The point of the composition. If that were so, the best conductors would be those who played fastest. And there would be composers who only wrote finales.… Same way with dancing. You don’t aim at a particular spot in the room because that’s where you will arrive. The whole point of the dancing is the dance.
If we thought of life by analogy with a journey, with a pilgrimage, which had a serious purpose at that end, and the thing was to get to that thing at that end. Success, or whatever it is, or maybe heaven after you’re dead.
But we missed the point the whole way along.
It was a musical thing, and you were supposed to sing or to dance while the music was being played.
If you know that – fundamentally –
there is nothing to seek,
you have settled your affairs.
Rinzai Gigen, died 866
When we do not expect anything we can be ourselves.
That is our way, to live fully in each moment of time.
Shunryū Suzuki, 1904 – 1971, Shikantaza: Living Fully In Each Moment