Saturday, March 2, 2013

The Unity of Is

Scott Bradley

When Jiao brought Zhouzi his afternoon tea, the master exclaimed, "Jiao, tell me what you have seen!"

Jiao replied, "Master, I have seen an ant!"

"Blessed are you, indeed!" exclaimed Zhouzi. "Tell me what you can!"

With face aglow and tears of joy Jiao said, "I met Wenzi this morning and he told me of your question, 'Have you ever seen an insect that failed to be an insect?', and immediately I sensed the gate. So I found a quiet spot in the garden where I might contemplate, but before I had begun I saw the ant and realized its perfection. Perfectly gap-less in being what it is! Utterly complete in its antness! Holy beyond all reckoning! My heart was filled with thankfulness, and then it became true for me. Master, I have realized the joyous unity of is!"

"My dear Jiao," exclaimed Zhouzi as he too began to weep, "your joy floods my own heart! How wonderful and complete all things are! What peace and joy when the heart settles into only this. All is well!"

Later, Tzulao and Tzulu who had been in attendance spoke of what had transpired. "Did not the Master tell us only last week that nothing is holy? Now, we hear that an ant is holy beyond reckoning. I am confused," said Tzulu.

"Because nothing is holy in contrast to anything else, nothing is holy," answered Tzulao. "When no one thing is holier than others, all things are holy."

"Yet is not the ant but a temporary phenomenon that has arisen only to return to as-if-it-had-never-been?" pondered Tzulao.

"Why should a particular transience be any less real when transience is all that is?" answered Tzulao. "The ant is holy in its is-ness because it is an expression of the unspeakable not-ness."

“Then if an ant is a gate to realization, all that is in the world is a gate; the world is a gate!” exclaimed Tzulu.

“Just so!” answered Tzulao. “We need only find our own!”

When Jiao heard of this discussion he exclaimed, "Now we will drown joy in a sea of words!"

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

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