Saturday, February 11, 2012

You're An Ass

Scott Bradley


"There are only two diseases (of the mind), one riding an ass in search of it, the other riding an ass and being unwilling to dismount....I tell you, do not search for the ass....What I say to you is, do not ride: you yourself are the ass, and everything is the ass....If you do not ride, the worlds in all directions are as a great space open to view." Shu Chou (Record of Sayings of Ancient Worthies, Chuan 32)

Seeking is a distraction; what you seek you already are. There is nothing you need do.

That's easy enough to say, incredibly hard to realize. "Why don't you pass through?" Good question.

Having passed through, if one believes something has been gained, one continues to ride an ass. "We speak of enlightenment as contrasting with delusion. Since delusion is unreal, enlightenment also cannot stand." Ma Tsu (RSAW, Chuan 1) 'Enlightenment' is a myth. If 'enlightenment' is the realization of no-distinctions, then we cannot distinguish it.

Nor does it change the facts of the case: "If at the present moment you comprehend this, where was that which you could not comprehend before?" asks Shu Chou. Reality has not changed.

I have not "passed through"; it is doubtful that I ever shall. It does not matter. Nothing is lost. It's like leaving a pick-up bar alone; it would have been nice, but life goes on, and god-knows what problems were avoided.

My response to 'knowing', yet not knowing, these things is to simply say Yes. Yes, to my life, just as it is. Yes, to going home alone. Yes, to delusion. Yes, to being human. And Yes leads to thankfulness. And thankfulness is its own reward.

You can check out Scott's other miscellaneous writings here.

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