I’m trying to make sense of every little thing. Every book on the shelf, every spoon in the drawer, and every must-do on my to-do list. I’ve been using new software at work to sort through the information I share with students, and for the tasks I need to do. I’ve done the same thing with my writing projects.
It’s (probably deceptively) satisfying to get everything organised this way. Having an overview only gives me an illusion of control, I suppose. But it does stop my muppet mind from fretting. I can tease apart every concern and spread it over the computer screen as separate entities. With a space between each. Nothing in its own shape seems worth fretting over. Nothing in-and-of-itself seems vital.
What I’m still searching for is a way to do this kind of thing with all of the thoughts in my head. I want to – lovingly – sedate every little moth-like idea and pin it to a kind of bulletin board.
I suppose in some ways that is exactly what it is to write in the mornings.
This dawning space: where the contents of my time
spreads thinly, shallow as the sea
flowing over the sand – where
every gasp for breath becomes visible –
this moment of pause before
the day’s rush and the slower ebb
into the dark and the deep
chaos of dreams.
It is exactly what it is to sit on the cushion and let every thought wash up, and pass by.
Without drowning in the process.
The first of the four seals of Buddhist thought is that all compound entities are impermanent. Everything falls apart. And when they do: when they scatter as fragments, as potentials, over the nothingness.
I envision it as a depth of black felt, not cold space. And though this nothingness isn’t really nothingness, since it can itself still be teased apart, it is as far as my mind can see.
It’s here, against this incomprehensible nothingness that every temporary constellation might be perceived and admired, seen and heard. Maybe synesthesia is the beginning of understanding? Maybe it is the universe recognizing itself at play?
In the Christian tradition, God created the world in his own image. This morning I’m thinking that every coming-together, every illusion of form is just the universes’ joyful shadow play for itself. I’m some bit player: both insignificant and indispensable. My presence is vital, my role is not.
But it is so easy to get caught up in the drama. We forget we are looking at our own mind from inside our own mind: just fragments- just potentials.