Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Say Yes (Or No)

Scott Bradley


On occasion I remember what has become my primary mantra: It is true of me now. And sometimes when I do, I feel compelled to inflict it once again upon you.

What is true of me now? I have no idea. I do not need to know. I need only affirm that this life experience is not a race, not an endurance course, not a field upon which I must prove or justify myself. All is affirmed just as it is. I am affirmed just as I am. There is absolutely nothing I need do or become. There are no conditions which have to be met. The affirmability of all things is unconditional, non-negotiable. I am perfect by virtue of my being perfectly who I am. This is true of me now, in this moment, just as I am. It is always and only now, not tomorrow, not at the end of some program of self-cultivation.

The same is true of you, and I should treat you accordingly.

This is not something that we can know, but only realize. We know we have realized it, if only for a moment, when we experience its joy.

I'm not sure where I 'got' this; it has probably somehow arisen out of Zhuangzi, but I can't offer chapter and verse; nor have I any desire to do so. It became explicit in Zhouzi, but then I made him up. In any case, were I to render down my philosophy to its barest bones, it would be this: Yes.

Yes is the reciprocal response of the heart to its realization of the affirmability of all things. Yes. Thankfulness arises.

Or one could say No. One could raise one's fist to the sky and say, No! It really doesn't matter, except for the part about the joy and thankfulness, and their value is no more fixed than our fleeting existence.

Seen from the point of view of their differences, all things are infinitely separated; seen from the point of view of their sameness, all things are one. Take your pick. Personally, I would recommend choosing that from which you derive the greatest happiness.

You can check out Scott's writings on Zhuangzi here.

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