Mar 29, 2010

The door-to-door evangelist

Without doubt, the motivation for the door-to-door evangelist is, paradoxically, a deep fear of men. It is this that drives the lonely evangelist to face death in one-on-one verbal battling. He (or she) is driven by the egotistical fear of death and decomposition, seeing only a collision with the encroaching outer environment. God is for them an invisible abstract power against the miscellany of real things to be found in everyday life.

For this reason, the evangelist will be unable to listen: they can only hear what can be used to repeat the mantras that help support their system of social security. They will pretend to listen only so as to manipulate their audience emotionally into befriending them (the sign of which is, repeating their views, taking their brochures, etc.)

Don't be frustrated with their irrationality and refusal to listen. They only want someone to love them; that is what God means to them. Above all, what they regard as Satanic is the view of God not loving them as they are, a God that makes everything difficult, a God that inspires conflict, a God that slays men. In other words: God is to them: their own comfort and wellbeing. Everything they say will come from this perspective.

One of the best ways to counter these frightened mice is to show them that Nature has always been about conflict and war and causality, but to do so with images of the ocean, of weather-storms, of galaxies colliding.

Kelly Jones

Mar 25, 2010

Worldly wisdom

With worldly wisdom one says, things will get better soon. One's consolation is shrinking from going out into the current — one tries to wade as long as possible. As long as this is not definitely decided, there always remains a doubt about the importance of actuality in one's whole train of thought.

So worldly wisdom is passing by on actuality: its actuality is the actuality of worldly wisdom, where no change is willed, so no change is perceived. One refuses to see how time passes one by. Thus, there is no change to see. This is the way most people live, although they fill their lives with spectacle and entertainment to hide the reality of their actual stagnancy.

But there is danger also in positioning oneself in relation to the actuality of "most people", for that too is shrinking from going out into the current, into the wholeness of "myself".

— Kelly Jones, developed from Kierkegaard (1843).

Mar 20, 2010

10 Bulls, by Kakuan

1. The Search for the Bull

The bull has been lost. What need is there to search? Only because of separation from my true nature, I fail to find him. In the confusion of the sense I lose even his tracks. Far from home, I see many crossroads, but which way is the right one I know not. Greed and fear, good and bad, entangle me.

In the pasture of this world, I endlessly push aside the tall grasses in search of the bull.
Following unnamed rivers, lost upon the interpenetrating paths of distant mountains,
My strength failing and my vitality exhausted, I cannot find the bull.
I only hear the locusts chirring through the forest at night.

2. Discovering the Footprints

Understanding the teaching, I see the footprints of the bull. Then I learn that, just as many utensils are made from one metal, so too are myriad entities made of the fabric of self. Unless I discriminate, how will I perceive the true from the untrue? Not yet having entered the gate, nevertheless I have discerned the path.

Along the riverbank under the trees, I discover footprints!
Even under the fragrant grasses I see his prints.
Deep in remote mountains they are found.
These traces no more can be hidden than one's nose, looking heavenward.

3. Perceiving the Bull

When one hears the voice, one can sense its source. As soon as the six senses merge, the gate is entered. Wherever one enters one sees the head of the bull! This unity is like salt in water, like colour in dyestuff. The slightest thing is not apart from self.

I hear the song of the nightingale.
The sun is warm, the wind is mild, willows are green along the shore,
Here no bull can hide!
What artist can draw that massive head, those majestic horns?

4. Catching the Bull

He dwelt in the forest a long time, but I caught him today! Infatuation for scenery interferes with his direction. Longing for sweeter grass, he wanders away. His mind still is stubborn and unbridled. If I wish him to submit, I must raise my whip.

I seize him with a terrific struggle.
His great will and power are inexhaustible.
He charges to the high plateau far above the cloud-mists,
Or in an impenetrable ravine he stands.

5. Taming the Bull

When one thought arises, another thought follows. When the first thought springs from enlightenment, all subsequent thoughts are true. Through delusion, one makes everything untrue. Delusion is not caused by objectivity; it is the result of subjectivity. Hold the nose-ring tight and do not allow even a doubt.

The whip and rope are necessary,
Else he might stray off down some dusty road.
Being well trained, he becomes naturally gentle.
Then, unfettered, he obeys his master.

6. Riding the Bull Home

This struggle is over; gain and loss are assimilated. I sing the song of the village woodsman, and play the tunes of the children. Astride the bull, I observe the clouds above. Onward I go, no matter who may wish to call me back.

Mounting the bull, slowly I return homeward.
The voice of my flute intones through the evening.
Measuring with hand-beats the pulsating harmony, I direct the endless rhythm.
Whoever hears this melody will join me.

7. The Bull Transcended

All is one law, not two. We only make the bull a temporary subject. It is as the relation of rabbit and trap, of fish and net. It is as gold and dross, or the moon emerging from a cloud. One path of clear light travels on throughout endless time.

Astride the bull, I reach home.
I am serene. The bull too can rest.
The dawn has come. In blissful repose,
Within my thatched dwelling I have abandoned the whip and rope.

8. Both Bull and Self Transcended

Mediocrity is gone. Mind is clear of limitations. I seek no state of enlightenment. Neither do I remain where no enlightenment exists. Since I linger in neither condition, eyes cannot see me. If hundreds of birds strew my path with flowers, such praise would be meaningless.

Whip, rope, person, and bull — all merge in No-thing.
This heaven is so vast no message can stain it.
How may a snowflake exist in a raging fire?
Here are the footprints of the patriarchs.

9. Reaching the Source

From the beginning, truth is clear. Poised in silence, I observe the forms of integration and disintegration. One who is not attached to 'form' need not be 'reformed'. The water is emerald, the mountain is indigo, and I see that which is creating and that which is destroying.

Too many steps have been taken returning to the root and the source.
Better to have been blind and deaf from the beginning!
Dwelling in one's true abode, unconcerned with that without —
The river flows tranquilly on and the flowers are red.

10. In the World

Inside my gate, a thousand sages do not know me. The beauty of my garden is invisible. Why should one search for the footprints of the patriarchs? I go to the market place with my wine bottle and return home with my staf. I visit the wineshop and the market, and everyone I look upon becomes enlightened.

Barefooted and naked of breast, I mingle with the people of the world.
My clothes are ragged and dust-laden and I am ever blissful.
I use no magic to extend my life;
Now, before me, the trees become alive.