If you ask when is the best time to seek wisdom I will tell you at the stroke of midnight and I will walk on a lighter left foot. If you ask the next day when is the best time to seek wisdom I will tell you at highest noon and I will walk on a lighter right foot.
A reflection on Case 39 of Dogen’s Shoboganzo Koans (True Dharma Eye)
We now live in a strange world where nothing is as it was mere weeks ago. I am blessed to live on a small nature preserve and have been spending my afternoons with camera in hand. So if you want something other than words (which follow) you are welcome to visit https://www.flickr.com/photos/98342503@N00/, my Flickr site, which is updated daily. A sample of what you will find:
It seems odd how often our fathers depart suddenly, our mothers make a slower retreat, slipping away while always still present, a death by 1000 days, the cuts inflicted on our psyche, small wounds that never fully heal, but fade, so the scars are only seen and felt from the inside. My parents never did things as expected, so my mother complained bitterly of the small difficulties of life, until the morning she suddenly departed, at the stroke of 6:15 while my father lingers, still happy in ever shortening increments, both of us knowing he is fading away and I may never know he has departed after he is gone.
He says, “it’s like learning to walk again after you’ve had a stroke, you know you can but nothing seems to work quite right when you try.”
She says, “you just upgrading from one model iPhone to the newer model, so don’t overplay it, it isn’t a matter of life itself you know. And if you didn’t need the newest and latest you wouldn’t have this problem would you?”
He says, “You’re right to that extent, but think if I didn’t need the newest and latest I’d hardly be a male of my species, so be thankful i’m having these problems. Anyway, i think i have it now, finally.”
She says, “why didn’t you answer when I called? You said you had the phone figure out, so turn around and go get the milk and butter, Sorry about the rain, it was sunny when I called as you are leaving the office for here.”
Day gives way to night. Life gives way to death. Truth gives way to truth and falsity to falsity. Nothing moves, nothing cedes, all is constant. This is enso, one stroke, complete and incomplete and this is mu. You may enter freely, but will never leave, and once captured you have never been here and cannot enter. If this seems confusing, it is precisely what it should be and you have seen clearly. Welcome! Now leave.
In many ways thoughts are very much like cats. By that I mean that they are known to wander in and stay as long as they like and never a moment longer. If you feed or stroke them they may linger, but please rest assured that if you really want them to stay, try though you might, they will find an open window or door and be gone the next time you look.