Thursday

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by Shitao

Tao Te Ching

#48

In the pursuit of knowledge,

every day something is added.

In the practice of the Tao,

every day something is dropped.

Less and less do you need to force things,

until finally you arrive at non-action.

When nothing is done,

nothing is left undone.

 

True mastery can be gained

by letting things go their own way.

It can’t be gained by interfering.

Where Are Your Demons?

Abyss
Abyss

*Note…after I wrote this, my son woke up. With blankies and his juice, he curled up at my side and we sat together in the silence of the house. Lying his head on my shoulder, he said “love you, mom,” and in that moment, there was not a single black ooze in sight. He reminds me almost every day that amidst the darkness is a light so pure as to burn the rest away…and it doesn’t even matter if it is only for a little while.

Something to be pondered for later. For now… the demons:

This is the Way the Morning Arrived

What is your capacity for kindness?

Are you kind to strangers? To people that you know? Coworkers? Family?

Are you kind to yourself?

I have lost my capacity for kindness. I am not sure where it went or when it went, but the soul-kind has left the building. I’m not saying I am a terrible person to people (though I do have that ability), but rather that the underlying kind is gone.

I used to be nice.

Maybe.

Was there a time I did not see the dark in everything that goes on around me?

Perhaps there was a time that not everything was met with a snarky thought or an awareness of banality. I am not talking about truth, in all of its variable and changing versions, but a kind of permeation that saturates everything with insincerity and surface application.

I have done so much to tackle and try to tame the beast that is my personality and depression. I have books and books on spiritual Christain, Jew and Muslin thought. On yoga. On meditation. Mindfulness. I have worked with people on how to be nicer. I have stood in a Tree Pose. I have prayed. I have meditated.

I have worked on how to see the world with a glow rather than with a black that drips from everything in a slow ooze.

I sound like an angsty teenager.

Have I never grown up?

Lost.

Somewhere.

I am not sure where.

Why do I bring this up today?

A couple of things.

First. I was a complete and terrible human being to my husband this morning. I had dreams all night about him and his mum going off on me ala what happened this summer when we visited her for two weeks. I won’t go into the details, but suffice to say that those masks I talked about, well mine was forced onto my face whilst kicking and screaming. It took me months after we returned to even be somewhat okay, and apparently I am not okay if last night’s dreams are any indication.

Second. I went on and did my usual peruse of wordpress, twitter, facebook etc. and there were so many quotes from Buddha, Thich Nhat Hanh, and Jesus that I shut my computer with a slam. Quotes about the way we think is the way we are. Quotes about filling every step with peace, love, and joy.

All of those things that sound wonderful, that people subscribe to, that I have subscribed to on numerous occasions… but yet have not done a damn thing to disappear the darkness that I see every damn day.

I know, and I have worked, and I have meditated on my way of thinking. I have worked to change the negative to positive. I have tried, so very, very hard to create a positive outlook.

And I can’t do it.

I would like to think that once upon a time I was kind.

The way we think is the way we are.

I would like to think that once upon a time I had ability to see pureness in people.

The way we are.

Demons. Dark. Deep.

They can’t be pulled out with a tweezer of thought.

They are embedded.

They have taken life times to create chasms.

They are not eradicated by a thought.

Where do we go from here?