Friday, August 17, 2007

Heart in Seoul

Once again, a post from the business class lounge in Incheon/Seoul, on my way home from Shanghai. By now it's becoming a tradition. Airplanes lined at gates, and in the distance, shimmering in the afternoon sun of the Korean peninsula, beckoning in the distance--

As I sit here at my laptop, I smell them, and everything they are before me: the faint scent of flowers from across the room.

Impressions of the day: rising late: coffee: sitting:

a delicate perfume from some mysterious place within the body permeates the elements of morning.

What is this thing called life? Who can tell? Surely more than we assign to it, when sense like this can bloom.

On my way to the airport--later, 35,000 feet above the planet, traveling at hundreds of miles an hour, where nonetheless tranquility prevails, I found myself pondering where the satisfaction in life lies.

Pondering the immense satisfaction of every small thing.

In each impression, if I investigate, if I take the time to discover the relationship, there is a quite extraordinary quality- a fineness of vibration that resides within the experience of the relationship itself.

It's easy to outsource the origin of this fine quality to the object being encountered, or to my experience of it: that is, to assign its value, the beauty of its finely grained, virgin-smooth-skinned arrival, and its ever-beginning yet ever-ending existence, to either subject or object.

But it is not in subject or object, because within this experience I speak of, the distinction between subject and object is invalid; the experience begins before object and ends before subject. If we seek within subject, we miss the point; if we seek within object, we miss the point.

Within this condition there is only one thing.

For example, the fine creme brulee (a object this subject has developed a sinfully inordinate fondness for) I ate last night. It was not in the creme brulee itself, or in my experience of it... the fineness of that experience was whole, it was integrated, it was not about me or about the stuff. And it is still here right now as I type.


Time has passed it by, but it cannot swallow it. Time is no closed door-- it's merely an aperture
between countless successive universes.

This same fineness is within the air we breathe. It is within the emotion we experience. It is water, pebbles, stones and sand.

From a discovered relationship to it arises immeasurable gratitude.

If we become more specific in our attention, if we become more specific in our breathing, we can attune ourselves to a finer quality within all that is experienced. This fineness is of the universe; everything is composed of it, everything resonates within it, everything expresses it. It is the light that Dogen discusses, a light that is not red or green or yellow or white. It is a light that is not light, but nonetheless illuminates, clarifies, renders transparent.

I think of each of you, friends and strangers alike, as you read, and my wish for each of you is to discover this miraculous quality, this fineness of vibration, within your own life.

May you turn the light of your attention inwards, towards your personal spark of our collective divinity-

discover that every arising, every moment, is a flower blossom filled with nectar, and we are the bees that drink it-

may you seek, may you find, may you drink deep of this inestimable joy that sustains.

And of course-

as ever--

may your trees bear fruit, and your wells yield water.

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