When he says he thinks that it is rather queer, you wonder if he uses queer as a non-gendered pronoun, and if so you think he might just be right.
But what if he is a verbal luddite, locked in an archaic lexicon, unable to deal with an ever more complex social and sexual world where what was is, and what never was is, and who is what is what is in flux.
Our problem is one of blindness. We are constantly seeking for that which we have, that which have no need of, that which we think we need but cannot be certain.
If we limited our blindness to things life would be simpler, but our blindness carries over to our search for enlightenment, for redemption, for absolution, and we fail to realize that we have all of that already, if only we would stop looking for them.
There will, I am certain, come a day when I will need to do nothing. My computer and my apps will know what I want, will obtain it without asking, will expect my thanks when it arrives, even if they are incapable of understanding what thank you means in a human world. They already plague me with offers and suggestions, if I liked that or even looked at it, I must like this. And they do it with a certainty that only an algorithm can possess. They know me, or so they are programmed, for they cannot think, and they cannot begin to imagine how fickle I can be, or what that term even means. But I know Jeff Bezos won’t give up without a fight. At least if there are a few more billion dollars to be made.
Our cat has become a conversationalist. Her vocabulary grows larger each day. She seemingly shares her every thought with us, and admittedly we talk to and through her with some regularity as well. She does grow frustrated when we don’t immediately understand what she is saying, what she wants in a given moment. That is our assigned task, she will tell us. We ask for a cat dictionary and she scoffs. I may speak in cat, she says, but I certainly think in human, so figure it out, I am not that much smarter than you humans.
I think therefore I am. I think therefore you are. You think therefore I am. If either of us stops thinking, does the other cease to be? If I see you as Buddha you are Buddha. If you see me as Buddha I can be Buddha, but if I see myself as Buddha Buddha and I are mountains and rivers apart.
A reflection on Case 86 of the Shobogenzo (Dogen’s True Dharma Eye)
When you assume the mat and gaze at the wall, what is it you see? If you see nothing, what do you think? If you are certain that you see nothing, that is what you think. Do not see, do not think, and let the cushion fall away until the moment you no longer exist, but let the moment fall away as well and there is only the emptiness of peace.
A reflection on case 17 of the Entangling Vines Koans
The oddest thing about being Buddhist is what I once was, and not just in a prior life. Born, it turns out, and adopted into a secular Jewish family, I must still be Jewish even if I might have lapsed back to secularity, they say, because my Jewishness is a mark, Cain-like it seems, though I always lacked the nose for the role. Some a bit more knowing remind me that I can be both, though they can’t imagine why anyone would. I tell them I’m simply, only Buddhist and not-think what that really means.