To Take the Time to Look

Taking the time to sit in silence reveals a deeper truth to me. I discover more that is true and worthy of consideration than when my mind is full of thoughts and a sense of  knowing. I ask myself what salvation is conventional  knowing and thinking bringing to humankind. There  seems to be so many promises about  what can occur in the future, advances in technology and  science that can  propel humans forward,  but at the same time it is beyond human means and human awareness to address the violence and insanity that occurs every day  on our planet.  And time seems to be running out to do so. We claim to know amazing things but what do we know about ourselves . Not everything can be known from  human thought and through the conventional human methods of looking and seeing as we sometimes assume. There may be limits to what we can correct and resolve through the use of rational thought and maybe there is more to our problems  that has to do with not knowing ourselves. Maybe we are not seeing what we must come to know and understand in ourselves. Ironically now more than ever  we are more drawn to a rational and scientific way of life and how we should  be and what we should know.  The mystery and wonder of life, that in the past  has been revealed in art, poetry and spiritual exploration is becoming lost   to a  more rational mechanical processing.

There is an experiential awareness that  I experience in taking the time to look in an inner way  that suggests that there is a knowing through unknowing. Krishnamurti states in his book in discussion with the physicist David Bohm ” The Limits of Thought” that  “when the mind is empty, when the mind  is nothing, not a thing, than there is perception”. Thinking can be a barrier to seeing the truth.

In my own experience the reliance on our  conventional ways including our ways of understanding are conditioned. In that conditioning something is lost. In sitting and taking the time to look in silence this reliance is relaxed and what emerges from beyond the veil of conditioning is a sense of what I  truly am, what I was born into life as. In Zen it is referred to as “My Original Face”. There is a wisdom that is acquired in turning to this  way of seeing that enables a differentiation between what my conditioned self is and what I authentically am. The limitations of the separate self are seen with greater clarity and there is a humility and acceptance of my own limitation and that of others  that develops in the naked, authentic and open entity that I have become. Compassion comes from this place. In letting go of striving, becoming and desire as I have known it to dominate me there is a seeing that the world that we have created is a reality, but that its realness is  a consequence of a collection of conditioned selves that inhabit it.

The world that is a creation of a conditioned reality may not be able to withstand the consequences of this fragmented consciousness that is the reality. We are inseparable from this earth but we act as if it is an object; an unlimited resource here for our self fixated indulgence. In the end the responsibility is with each of us to see beyond the reality that we have created to a place of deeper connection with the planet and all else that exists on it and quite possibly at this point in time it is too late to change our ways and it could be that  a positive  outcome  would have to occur as an act of grace.

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