Void

“We join spokes together in a wheel,
but it is the center hole
that makes the wagon move.

We shape clay into a pot,
but it is the emptiness inside
that holds whatever we want.

We hammer wood for a house,
but it is the inner space
that makes it liveable.

We work with being,
but non-being is what we use.”

Lao Tzu

Lao-Tzu recognised the eminent usefulness of that which is not there. That which is hidden from us intrigues, fascinates and it need not actually contain any useful information at all because its purpose and rationale as a tittilation and seduction of human curiosity functions at a base psychological level. That which is not there, undefined, unconfined – a secret or a nothing-at-all are of depth and artistic resonance because something which is nothing can in fact be absolutely anything, it remains pregnant with possibility.

Detachment from nothingness remains a core enigma of the Zen experience.  How do we not seek that which we do seek ?  If our core goal is to seek catharsis through the release of anxiety and attachment, then we are inextricably bound to our core goal and detachment becomes impossible.  There is so much discussion of mindfulness; what of mind-emptiness or no-mind ?  Does a rudimentary experience of consciousness experienced through mindfulness and the gently cultivated awareness of mental activity allow this activity to calm down, to quiet the chattering monkey-mind ?

Some monks sought enlightenment through beer.  Other monks sought enlightenment through the contemplation of death.  I wonder if it even matters how you seek this state of freedom.  I remain pleasantly puzzled by the conundrum generated by the fact that seeking requires a seeker and if in seeking I limit my ability to find what I seek, my journey stops before it starts.  Mu !

2017-1
Satori, message in a bottle.

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