I look at myself and those I am close to and I see how we are drawn to actions, feelings, thoughts that are crazy making. Habitual patterns that drive us from motivations arising before consciousness, where the groves are so deep we can’t even see that we are lost in the canyons of our own making. Our view so limited by the walls we erect that we have no idea of unimpeded space being right where we are. When I was in the Zen community we chanted ‘You are not near, you are not far. If you do not see it, you are oceans and rivers away’. I am like that. True freedom is right here, yet I chose again and again to not see it. In the bardo of this life I go for confusion.
There is some comfort in seeing the folly of my actions. Perhaps it is knowing I could in any moment chose something else, swim against the tide of my own making. I think that as soon as I calm down from this latest craziness I will. This sounds like my thought that I will change my habits next Wednesday. Next Wednesday I will stop eating when I’m not hungry, be consistent in my yoga practice, not be obsessed with my new love, do my Buddhist practice everyday which is so nourishing. I am not near, I am not far. I am oceans and rivers away.
Now I should pull out the wisdom that makes me seem like I have it all together. The words that smooth the edges and tidy up the messiness, cover over the insanity that lies in waiting like the panther so patient for its prey. So fun and triumphant to tell the story when I have emerged as the heroin in my tale, stepping over the ashes of my craziness, waving the banner of victory. Fuck that paper-thin veil. Fuck the sigh that escapes as I have once again skirted the pit of disaster, pulled back from certain ruin. Fuck, fuck fuck!
I want to look my craziness in the eye. Stare down the tunnel of my insanity. Pull back the curtain of samsaric illusion. This dance I do is like dipping a toe in the ocean. Touch in, pull back, run away. Why not dive into the wave and go into the underworld where there is no orientation, no self.
I’m afraid, that’s why not. I hold to a sense of self like a life raft in the middle of the ocean. The waves rise and fall. I know they are not different from the ocean even though they hold form for a brief moment. I am the wave. I like how Leonard Cohen says, “A brief elaboration of a tune.”
So for now I’m singing this song of Linda, riding the waves of my own crazy making, and wishing to one day open my breast and pull my heart out whole.