Sunday, August 21, 2011

The Way Out

The Way Out
by Scott Bradley

Zhouzi once asked a novice monk, "Open your heart, and what do you get?" The monk immediately replied, "Everything and nothing!" Zhouzi was pleased enough with the answer — it was both spontaneous and deeply insightful — but he reserved full affirmation. This led the monk to ask Zhouzi what answer he would give. "An open heart!" exclaimed Zhouzi.

Fundamental to his way is the understanding that there are no outside forces at work in his own work of transformation. 'Tao' does not get involved, except to the degree that he himself is 'Tao'. Transcendence does not come from without, but from within. It requires no miracles beyond the incredible miracle of this Reality manifest. "The way out is in."

An open heart is its own reward. If prayer is answered, it is because the praying itself effects a change. If meditation helps to effect a ‘turning about’ in the deepest seat of consciousness, then that experience is an expression of human potential. No heavenly lightening bolts are required.

This is an approach to reality, not a truthful statement about it. It is a working paradigm, and only because some paradigm seems to be required. There are other approaches. Some require that they be 'truthful' and that the Ultimate somehow be known, whether as a personal God, Universal Mind, or whatever one may choose. Since Zhouzi does not claim to know, how could he argue? Why would he want to? In opening his heart, he includes "everything and nothing."

Openness is 'infinite' trust, a resounding Yes to the Totality. This includes every paradigm. There remains no need for debate.

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

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