As I have nothing to say this week, I shall say nothing. Actually, I’m always saying nothing, it’s just that usually it’s well disguised.
But this week, it really is nothing – other than 19 Zen-like koans for your edification, and possibly for your illumination.
As you probably know, the koan is a clever construct to defeat the conceptual mind; mine are nowhere near as clever, but I’ve loaded a tiny “ah-ha” bomb in each one that might detonate on reading. Stand back!
1. Time is an expression of motion. Motion exists because we see only in chunks, or as a procession, and not everything at once. If we could see everything at once, there would be no motion – and no time.
2. If you don’t exist (and you don’t), why are you so selfish?
3. Ninety per cent of our thoughts concern themselves with things that don’t exist.
4. “Our mind is only a collection of reflections or echoes, preserved by memory, of the reality that we have missed.” (Thank you, Wei Wu Wei for saying in 20 words one of the essential messages of Time-Light, although it’s not quite right (!) – memory is not different from the reflections or echoes. That’s what memory is.)
5. Any effort to rid yourself of your ego merely strengthens it.
6. Any thought or effort towards enlightenment takes you further away.
7. You’re always doing something. Not so. There’s just the doing and then a ‘you’ pops up and thinks it’s doing it.
8. You can never be enlightened. When there is no ‘you’, there’s enlightenment! A divine joke.
9. What is the truly spiritual life? The one that is lived in the street, the home, the store – not in the temple or the church.
10. Was Jesus mad? If he wasn’t, you have some serious work to do.
11. Talk about God is a distraction because you don’t know what you’re talking about. Instead, look at the flower, the way you talk to your children, your wife or husband, their infinite beauty. Observe your thinking as if it was a venomous snake in your room. Then see if you need to talk about God.
12. Karma is a law that applies especially to the unconscious.
13. Hate is not the opposite of love. Hell is.
14. Now, are you going to cling to your beliefs – or are you ready for some serious work?
15. A most intelligent question: where do I end and the world begin?
16. Addictions are needs extended in time.
17. “I hate you”. If you see the “I” is a concept made up of thought patterns, then its corollary, “you”, must also fall. Without either I or you, hate loses energy and collapses under its own illogical position. World peace! Ah-so!
18. Evidence of eternal consciousness: I look in the mirror – God! So old! But the pure essence of seeing is the same as it was when I was a small boy. If the pure essence of seeing – as one manifestation of consciousness – doesn’t change, then it’s not subject to time, and so must be outside of it.
19. “Hell is other people” – Jean-Paul Sartre. “Hell is thinking there are other people” – Bryan Hubbard. (I know, I know, it’s a quotation that starts the Time-Light book. God, somebody help me. Actually, I was thinking of having it turned into a T-shirt. What do you think?)