Monday, June 27, 2011

Harmonious Notes

Harmonious notes always result from the sympathetic resonance of two or more chords. And what Zen does for us is to prepare our minds to be yielding and appreciative recipients of old masters. In other words, psychologically Zen releases whatever energies we may have in store, of which we are not conscious in ordinary circumstances.

D.T.Suzuki in his introduction to Essays in Zen Buddhism brings the silent notes of the unconscious to the main stage of reality and those internal sounds vibrate in truth. Suzuki calls the consciousness that exerts the energy that makes us aware of our unawareness Zen, but that term is just that. It’s a description of the indescribable, which has many names and terms that try to paint a visual picture of the part of us that chooses to be invisible.

Our invisible structure is rooted in this unconscious energy, and it is more conscious that we realize. We are hypnotized by our own beliefs, which is a one-level thought process. Anything that surfaces outside of that process seems impractical as well as unrealistic. We are so disconnected from our own root system that we convince ourselves that the events that happen to us are beyond our control. We are out of touch with our inner world so we never catch the seconds where these decisions are made.

Suzuki explains than fact using elements of Buddhism that relate to this unknown reality. The energy of consciousness or Zen is always waiting to become physical if only for a second once we allow this non-physical energy to manifest. When we allow that process to occur we move to new areas of the self that recognize the platform of probabilities that develop as other dimensions of selfhood are explored.

The psyche yearns for an ideal civilization and we compose one from past as well as future memories. We then live our experiences to create one, but in that process we forget the Zenness within us. Our Zenness harmoniously resonates with the notes in the stream of complete consciousness.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Tomorrow’s Wisdom

Life itself is a mixture of power and form, and will not bear the least excess of either. To finish the moment, to find the journey’s end in every step in the road, to live the greatest number of good hours, is wisdom.

It is not the part of men, but of fanatics or of mathematicians, if you will, to say, that, the shortness of life considered, it is not worth caring whether for short a duration we were sprawling in want, or sitting high. Since our office is with moments, let us husband them. Five minutes to-day are worth as much to me, as five minutes in the next millennium. Let us be poised, and wise, and our own, to-day. Let us treat the men and women well: treat them as I they were real: perhaps they are.

Men live in their fancy, like drunkards whose hands are too sot and tremulous for successful labor. It is a tempest of fancies, and the only ballast I know, is a respect to the present hour.

Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote those thoughts in his 1844 essay, Experience. Emerson had the ability and the sense to see today for what it is and tomorrow for what it can be. There is infinity in each moment and infinite versions of the self in a moment, but we only focus on one. Various scales of awareness contain their own infinities no matter how finite they appear.

The blueprint for reality is firmly set on a platform of probabilities and each probable system has its own set of blueprints. There are no inner images of perfection in these blueprints since in a sense the blueprints change. We all carry a set of blueprints that are designed to bring about the most favorable version of the focused self in the probable system we are aware of. Within the vast inner mind of the species is a set of these blue prints which can be considered working plans or probable actions.

The next millennium appeared invisible to Emerson but he wrote about it because he accepted his role in it in a probable self sort of way. Emerson had the ability to focus on more than one reality at a time and he created probabilities from his own set of blue prints. He moved through probabilities like we move through space. He didn’t calculate how to do it or for that matter he didn’t explain how he did it. Like walking from one end of the street to the other he just did it.

We are the recognized result of all the decisions we have made in this life up to this point. We are not affected or diminished because other official selves are experiencing the choices we did not make and then choosing, alternative versions of reality. Our species has many characteristics and abilities that go unnoticed because we don’t accept them as part of our spiritual or biological heritage. They become latent and invisible until we expand our awareness and recognize the blue print of probabilities that exist within us and begin to manipulate them.

Like Emerson we can experience far greater dimensions of this blue print of probabilities when we realize that we are denied tomorrow’s wisdom only because we believe time is a closed system.

Monday, June 20, 2011

There’s Infinity In Each Moment

Harmonious notes always result from the sympathetic resonance of two or more chords. Zen is an experience actual and personal, and not a knowledge to be gained by analysis or comparison. In other words psychologically Zen releases whatever energies we may have in store, of which we are not conscious in ordinary circumstances.

D.T. Suzuki wrote those thoughts in the introduction to his 1927 work, Essays in Zen Buddhism. At first glance his thoughts dabble in a world that is foreign; a world of ethnicity that is shrouded in Eastern religious beliefs. But, Suzuki was fluent in five languages so he had the ability to translate Chinese and Japanese thoughts about Zen into understandable English.

We really don’t spend a great deal of time worrying about the experience or the meaning of Zen. When we do experience it, we call it by another name; one that might drawn a better image of what happens when an innate light bulb turns on by itself, and we sense an inner aspect of the self living through the experience. Just like physical races our psyche races mix and produce energy that’s not definable.

We rely on religion to interpret these surreal thoughts since it is the only tangible belief that deals with non-physical energy in a sane, but distorted way. We physically live to experience manifested thoughts. When we make important decisions, we arouse all portions of the psyche and within those portions Zen thrives. Zen never rests on our platform of probabilities, which we call the reality of time.

The definition of Zen as Suzuki explains is ‘no-thing’ or ‘not a thing is.’ When we sense this force of consciousness explode within us, our reality expands and we touch a portion of the psyche that quietly sits in our multiplicity. We usually identify it with something outside of our physical self.

Our inner world has a psychological infinity that reaches into the past as well as the future. Our true identity reaches into all probabilities even the ones beyond the future and past. In that timeless pocket of the self Zenness speaks, and it tells us there’s infinity in each moment.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Wind Blows And The Grass Bends

If your desire is for good, the people will be good. The moral character of the ruler is the wind; the moral character of those beneath him is the grass. When the wind blows, the grass bends.

Confucius, the Chinese philosopher, wrote those thoughts over 2,300 years ago. He believed self-responsibility should rule people’s behavior. Most of us think we lost that connection through the years, and our government’s debacle demonstrates that fact. Our ego ignores the inner self, and we cling to the fear of separatism.

Plato, the Greek philosopher, lived about a hundred years after Confucius. He wrote about separatism in his work, The Republic. Plato’s theory of the Noble Lie is in that book. The Noble Lie was Plato’s way of bringing the behavior and the beliefs of the rulers to the surface of public opinion.

Plato described the concept of the Noble Lie this way: God filled everyone’s soul with gold, silver, and iron. But the working man and the farmer’s soul had less of those elements, so the ruler’s soul was the guardian. Rulers controlled the people using that perceived truth.

Our current religious and political leaders immerse themselves in a new version of the Noble Lie. These religious and political leaders consider themselves a special breed. They believe they must control the thoughts of their peers, not listen to them. This new version of the Noble Lie infiltrated our belief structure, and the message within it is now a perceived truth.

The thought of using moral character, self-responsibility, and a united consciousness in politics, as well as religion, might take us to a place where when the wind blows and the grass bends in informed agreement. That thought is a prime ingredient of change in this age of self-direction and self-transformation.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Raison d’etre

Zen has nothing particularly to offer as its own; for its raison d’etre consists in its being a spiritual experience and not in its being a special system of philosophy or of certain dogmas conceptually synthesized. We have Zen only when the Mahayana Buddhist speculation is reduced to actual things of life and becomes the direct expression of one’s inner life.

D.T. Suzuki in his 1927 essay, History of Zen explains a little about Zen as well as the differences between the Chinese beliefs about Buddhism and the Indian concept of the religion. As Suzuki points out Zen is not a religion or for that matter a thing; it is the expression of nothing as we untangle our thoughts about spiritual experiences and physical reality.

The expression of nothing or what the ancient monks call ‘no-thing’ is a burst of awareness that grabs the focused self and deposits it into a vat of emptiness where all things exist. That emptiness is not empty; it is filled with energy that changes the psyche so it vibrates with the silence that connects the music of being. The psyche we recognize as significant is scattered through the emptiness of Zen and when we allow a fragment of it to bleed through we automatically sense our multiplicity.

When we get to a point where we simply begin to allow this bleed through to occur amazing changes develop in this reality. Men of Letters who cared less about carpentry suddenly begin to do their own home repairs. Doctors become farmers, and politicians discover their spiritual presence. The creativity of the psyche allows us to connect worlds that we say are not real, and we sense the Zenness that swallows the ego.

The direct expression of one’s inner life is a menagerie of expressions that manifest as we awaken to the Zen in all of us. On the tip of every eyelash sits a cell waiting to express itself in order to experience the excitement of being physical. That is the true raison d’etre.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Inside Dimensions of Consciousness

The art of life has a pudency, and will not be exposed. Every man is an impossibility, until he is born; everything impossible until we see success. The ardors of piety agree at last with the coldest skepticism, that nothing is of us or our works, that all is God. Nature will not spare us the smallest leaf of laurel. All writings come by the grace of god, and all doing and having. I would gladly be moral, keep due metes and bounds, which I dearly love, and allow the most to the will of man, but I have set my heart on honestly in this chapter, and I can see nothing at last, in success or failure, than more or less of vital force supplied by the Eternal. The results of life are uncalculated and uncalculable. The years teach me much that the days never know.

Ralph Waldo Emerson in his essay, Experience is explaining the nature of this focused reality. Awareness comes in with lightning speed, but is absorbed in slow motion. The years are the result of days, which rely on hours, and hours are entangled in moments, which is where the spirit meets the flesh. The inside dimensions of consciousness can not be identified, but are obvious with each blink of an eyelash.

Each individual carries unlimited creativity, but that energy is compacted and contained in boxes of beliefs that are riddled with distortions and contrite senselessness. We play our beliefs over and over again using one melody and expect to hear different music. Different music is playing within the psyche that fires the vitality within us, but we choose to believe someone or something is responsible for our own responsibility.

We look for change when we create political tomfoolery and governmental hypocrisy. We dip ourselves in self appointed waters of redemption while the change and the confirmation we so actively seek is firmly embedded in the our will to be.

To some extent we can access the incalculable results of life if we focus on the families of consciousness that exist within us. Each latent portion of the self contains the essence of the whole so the vital force of the Eternal is the composition of the pauses and the silences that exist within the self. The whole self teaches what the focused self already knows, but we believe everything is impossible until we see our innate designs manifest physically.