In 1991 in Beijing, one of my Chinese colleagues at the Beijing Airbase English Academy asked me: “do you know what teacher, laoshi, 老师, means?” I knew that yes was the wrong answer. I said no. He said it means father. From this ancient word, morphed in meaning as roshi in Japan, I began to understand the nature of my connection to Kobun.
The world smells worse in some places than others but everyone’s going to get at least a little bit of stank while living here. We also get exposed to vast reservoirs of knowledge and kindness, but that’s not the subject of this page or two. The subject at hand is the other side of that coin, the lower aspect of humanity that everyone runs into.
Many people are too tired, misinformed, lazy, or heavily stressed to access their own psychospiritual experience. Others are convinced that their personal spiritual maintenance and growth is a job beyond their ability.
Basic freedom from psychic dry rot isn’t basic for everyone. Some folks get warped and stay bent, ignoring great opportunities to reinvent themselves. Choosing wiser ways up can prevent a fall down, keeping head in the sky, but feet on the ground. It is always our choice to wear horns or the crown.
A brotherhood of gulls rises from the shore, pushing off from the wet sand; their footprint hieroglyphs tell me everything, then not, as a sliding pool of clear seawater gently washes over them, dissolving their messages. They travel east on the last of the breeze, just above the breaking waves, paralleling the shoreline, silhouetting themselves against the last glimmers of sun.
The Japanese themselves – despite the fact that most of them “feel” wabi-sabi and can indicate examples of it – find it hard to provide an exact definition.
Song rose in his heart as from a distant mountain spring. He joined his hands in prayer. He sang, and his song was like a life-giving river. He sang, and the sky shone with his melodious voice. Shine in the sky, O pearl pure Ganges. O pearl pure Ganges, O river of milk, O life of all, O river of blood, O love.
For those who search blindfolded and find nothing, and for those who are given a chance to find an answer without searching. For those who look for a new place because they cannot fulfill their energy, and for those who look for a place where life would be more pleasant. For those who build houses and feel living in them is like living in a waiting-room in a bus stop.
It was a hot day coinciding with passion. Walking with an eager step like feet that have wings. Walking flying. Walking anticipating. Walking to the moment, soon to meet the guide.
“Timing is only everything”, A professor whose name has been washed away by the sands of time, recalling the words of his professor when he and his fiancé were never happy with one another and ready to get married at the same time.
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