The Duty is Integrity

Crossing Unmarked Snow by William Stafford

The things you do not have to say make you rich.

Saying the things you do not have to say weakens your talk.

Hearing the things you do not need to hear dulls your hearing.

The things you know before you hear them, those are you and this is reason that you are in the world.


Seeing the Illussion

There is a ‘painted veil’ before our eyes that contributes to an illusion about life. It has provided me with some sense of superficial and illusive security. From the silence I am able to realize the presence of the ” veil” that enables the realization that the life that I have perceived and the refuges that I have habitually sought are somehow unreal and contribute to lessen my integrity. It has all been a part of making what is boundaryless in life into a hard surface, partly to reduce feeling vulnerable and exposed. One can easily become so engaged in the pursuit of excess that moulds and forms that superficial surface to the point that one can no longer sense the true shape of oneself.

But beginning to glimpse beneath that hard surface I see that there lies a living, vital, magical world that the rigid and relatively impenetrable surface has hidden. The meditative, contemplative life has been transforming me and I think, not without grieving the loss of the illussion. Not depression,  but lots of grief , but with a clearer seeing. I can no longer engage in activities that contribute to the surface creation and sustenance. Part of this deeper realization involves understanding how living  a veiled life  has isolated and desensitized me, draining me of humanity and compassion. My exposure to Asia and to myself has contributed to opening to something else, bigger than myself, that is very difficult to resist; however much it involves an adjustment, there is an increased awareness that most of us in what we call the west are privileged and that there is a duty of privilege and that is absolute integrity.

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