Sunday, August 7, 2011

New Vista

There is no real separation of the qualities and their subject; for fire cannot be conceived apart from its form and heat. Before the body there will be nothing embodied, so the qualities there will be no subject; how, if it was originally free, could the soul ever become bound?

The body-knower (the soul), which is unembodied, must be either knowing or unknowing; if it is knowing there must be some object to be known, and if there is this object it is not liberated. Or if the soul be declared to be unknowing, then what use to you is this imagined soul? I maintain that the absolute attainment of our end can only be found by transcending the dualism of soul and body of subject and object of that which knows and which is known. There must be a certain turning away in one’s ordinary course of life; there must be an opening up of a new vista in one’s spiritual outlook.

D.T.Suzuki wrote those thoughts in his 1927 essay, Enlightenment and Ignorance. Suzuki was a Professor of Buddhist Philosophy and the 20th century’s leading authority on Zen thought. He was not a monk or priest; he was a scholar, and was honored in every temple in Japan. Suzuki lectured on consciousness more that he lectured on Buddhism. Consciousness, which can be called Zen, engulfs all religions. Suzuki understood that. Zen and consciousness are one just like the body and soul are one in knowing the spiritual multiplicity that exists within all of us.

We are wave formations and within the waves there are several identities that function freely, just like water molecules that form ocean waves. We are all religions and all cultures in our wave of multiple realities, but we focus on one in order to fulfill our desire for value fulfillment. Our souls are also fulfilling value using our other identities that have different beliefs. The force of our wave is the combined force of all identities that function in several realities. When we turn our focus away from this reality we are able to sense the new vista Suzuki talks about.

Within this structure, our entity organizes these personalities and at times directs their activities, but each one never relinquishes its free will. Each identity has its own self-conscious part that knows its origin. We actually attain our end before we pursue it. There is no separation between the qualities that exist within our inner world and the ‘me’ that is the physical subject, but our dualistic reality expresses separation in order to expand the wave.

We can experience more of the wave, but in order to sense the more we must see the self as an independent structure that gives the wave its foaming energy and the desire to be part of the overall action of this energy instead of perceiving only portions of it that seem reasonable and limited.

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