Image: Quetzalcoatl Rising From the Jaws of Death, Aztec.
“He not busy being born is busy dying.” Bob Dylan
One can run across Zen ideas anywhere it would seem. Maybe that is the whole point of Zen? Hmmm. Or, maybe it is that, as of late, I am obsessed with Zen, Taoism, and Buddhism philosophies – so perhaps I just see it everywhere.
I was minding my own business, thinking and reading about art because that is, after all, what I do, when out of the blue – BAM! (Think old time Batman noise here.)
In an art book about Goddesses by Lanier Graham, in the chapter regarding the “Destroyer Goddesses,” his opening paragraph reads (I have underlined the Zen-part):
“The Great Goddess is not only all-loving, all-giving, all-creating. She also is all-destroying. It is difficult for many to understand how the same goddess can be seen in such different ways, but the tribal mind is able to reconcile opposites more easily than the modern mind. What the modern analytical mind categorizes as a distinct duality, the tribal mind commonly perceives as an undivided unity of opposites. That way of thinking likens the Great Goddess to a boundless ocean of formless energy, which is always pregnant with the potential of becoming. Whatever exists pours out of this ocean of energy at the moment of creation and returns to this ocean of energy at the moment of death. Creation happens not once but continuously. So, too, does death. The cycle of nature never stops.”
That could have been right out of the Tao Te Ching! The part that really hit me in the gut was: “… a boundless ocean of formless energy, which is always pregnant with the potential of becoming.” When I meditate that is me – easily achieving the “becoming.” I easily become that which I behold and that which I don’t easily passes into the nether. However, in my daily life it seems so much harder to find that elusive potential.
If only people (we, I, etc.) could embrace the idea of change on a pendulum. The universe ebbs and flows, water ebbs and flows, why shouldn’t we? What stops us from becoming? Isn’t it perfectly natural to become, to evolve, to morph…? Why do we make it so hard?
Perhaps it is as John Bright-Fey writes: “The notion that all we do and encounter is merely a reflection of our mind and consciousness can radically alter the way we approach life. A Cultivator of the Zen Way examines each and every facet of his life from this perspective.”
I have no answers; these are just words to ponder. My path (way) is very bend-y, I suspect.
“… and from the dragon we learn to ride the wind.” Kung Fu
I want to be the Dragon. Love Moe