Facets of the Sangha, continued
A note on blog protocol. As I’ve seen on other blogs participants have a blog pen name. A blog for dharma addicts anonymous, or unanimous. You don’t have to but it seems like a good protocol.
I didn’t realize that I would get to moderate the blog accepting or not the further comments that get posted. What I’ll do with this is accept comments that are philosophical or dharmic. I’ve received some comments of support which I appreciate but for the sake of keeping it streamline I won’t post those comments. But I do really appreciate them.
To my ‘virtual sangha’.
Does the idea that we are a sangha, sisters and brothers in heart, body and spirit, get filed away into the same category as ‘God is Love’, ‘We are all One’, ‘It’s all good’ etc? That is to say, adages that we agree with but then put on a mental shelf as nice but impractical, or for the more advanced, or however we view that mental shelf?
I consider this idea of how we understand us, as sangha, an important question, more than a question, real necessity of our work and the Work. Remmenber in my blog intro we’re on our way to Buddhahood so lets not kill him yet.
A friend told me a story. When he was a young and inspired seeker, told a story that his teacher said “the important thing is to know where things go”. He thought “This is the key to wisdom? My teacher must be an idiot.”
The way that I ‘know’ (even within the bigger understanding that I can’t know anything conclusively’.) is to have an experiential reference, from an ah ha, to an epiphany, and stronger. Some people seem to come pre-loaded with some of these innate fact I believe we all come pre-loaded, so to say, with Truth and all of its correlates, maxims adages on so on. I’ve met some people for whom truth and wisdom seemed less covered over, on or near the surface. Not I.
For any of these maxims, self evident truths such as “all men are created equal”, or even “do on to others as we would have them do on to you”, these wisdom sayings we’ve all heard, for any idea we want to label ‘truth’ for me to really begin to get it needs to pop up in me like I’d just discovered it as a new idea, otherwise for me it’s someone else’s idea not really my own yet, no matter how obviously true it may seem to me like “love thy neighbor as thyself”. Maybe the real issue is recognizing the difference between what I’ve heard and can talk about, versus what I “know” as how I live.
This puts us in a tricky situation regarding Lee’s words, recommendations, injunctions and so on. As one sangha mate said of us “we are found of quoting from ‘the book of Lee’, chapter and verse”.
So what’s to be done, the only thing possible, acknowledge and accept the situation, properly* that we don’t really know much for certain. No, that’s not the only thing, ignore it and continue with business as usual.
A caveat here is that it is no small matter to really know that you don’t know and can’t do”(non-mechanically), as they say in the forth way. Landmark Ed. makes no small effort at getting us to see this with “Nothing has any meaning and it doesn’t mean anything that it doesn’t have any meaning.” And from what I’ve seen afterwards this is quickly forgotten.
*Properly. With the remembrance that we have to speak as if we know what we are talking about, otherwise would be insincere or irrational, we do need to believe what we are saying, but with the additional program running in the background; that it is all an unknowable mystery. This affords a certain lightness of speech and being. I don’t need to convince anyone that I’m right about whatever even in the face of my believing that I am right.
“I’ve given you different definitions of sorcery, but I have always maintained that definitions change as knowledge increases. Now you are in a position to appreciate a clearer definition.” – Carlos Castaneda
To be continued somehow.