Thursday, January 27, 2011

Enough Is Not Enough

            Schools are closed again today.  Even long-time New Englander’s are beginning to complain about the white stuff.  A headline in the Boston Globe reports ‘city officials’ as saying ‘Enough is Enough.’  Apparently this is not true.  Enough is not enough.
            Here at the Temple, our parking lot is growing smaller with each successive snowfall – the snow banks higher and thicker.  Soon we’ll have a walled parking lot – maybe it will become a secret garden – we’ll keep it a private place that only certain people can find their way into.  And perhaps inside, the season will change – the falling snow will become a soft mist that the morning sun will burn off.  And we’ll all take our jackets off – though we won’t let anyone know.  We’ll take off our jackets and maybe even our shirts – to dance slowly in the warm sun.  We’ll dance with the sweet currents of energy.  Sometimes we’ll even fly – become birds and fly though the sky with a wild freedom.  Ahhhhh – that’s better.
            But this morning, there is freedom and grace of snow shoveling and snow blowing to be done.  Bundle up, start the engine, make a lot of noise and do some real work.  As I head out, I hear the voice of a friend’s father – now confined to bed and near death.  He was sorry to be lying in bed, was sad to not be out shoveling.   So I remember to be grateful for this body that still has the energy and strength to rise out of bed and to go play outside, I’ll get my morning exercise clearing moving the white stuff from here to there.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Year's Vow

 This year, I am determined to be more unproductive.  My goal is to do less and less – to move slower and slower until everything stops.  I and the whole world will come to a sweet and silent stillness.  And in this stillness, a great shout of joy will arise.  We will all be free – free from the advice of ancient ages, free from the whining voices, free from the incessant objections of the responsible ones.

            In this new world, it will be abundantly clear that the bare branches of the winter trees are our teachers.  In their daily dance of moving here and there, we will see once again the true meaning of our life.  In the wind song of their being, we will hear God’s unmistakable voice.  We will follow what appears before us - what had once been difficult will now unfold with ease.

*Ox and Window by Zen Master Hakuin Ekaku, 1685-1768