Thursday, May 14, 2009
Traveling and pondering
A personal note I sent to friends this morning. It seems a good piece to wrap up this trip with.
On the train to Nanjing.
Following an experience while sitting this morning-one of those sittings that calls everything into question, until even the questions themselves cease to be, ceded to the Authority of a power greater than "how" or "why"-
-I ponder the following:
What does it mean to be held to a higher standard?
What would it mean if right now, within this immediate moment- and within all immediate moments- my effort is being measured against a standard set from a higher level- emphatically not my standard, not emanating at all from my will, but emanating directly from a higher will?
A standard I may even acknowledge intellectually, as a hypothesis, but cannot truly sense, and do not understand?
Perhaps I can then dispense with ordinary questions of morality and relativism. True, these principals exist and do not go away- and yes, I must even understand not only that I operate under them, but how to operate under them. Yet they are but a fraction of the larger question.
What is my responsibility? With what parts do I answer that call?
I see that I want to "do." Part of my wish-perhaps an essential part of my wish- is actually a wish to "do.". I am so engulfed by this paradox that only on rare occasions may I sense it, and then, only when a very fine material becomes available- a material which we can only define, if it is at all within our grasp to do so, as Grace.
It is within seeing the deep and urgent necessity of surrendering my wish to do, to act, to control, that I truly begin to discover my nothingness, and to begin to sense-not with my intellect, but with the finer parts of my attendance- my nothingness, and how utterly I must acknowledge the phrase:
"THY will be done."
My responsibility-my work- begins with, and rests on, a deeper understanding of what this means.
Within the privilege, and the bliss, of such an offering- the very same sacrifice required of Abraham, that is, a sacrifice of everything that is born of me- the flower of remorse opens for a moment, and the tears of my own inadequacy and iniquity arrive.
I'm not worthy of that blessing, but I suppose none of us are.
Within all of this, can I make an effort today to remember that my work-my effort-my Being itself-is forever measured, in an active, living, and intimate manner, against this awesome and unconditional love that births us and gives us life?
How do I meet my life in regard to this? In each moment, I am given the opportunity to explore that question.
The choice is mine.
May our hearts be opened, and our prayers be heard.