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Loving the Path ~ Tangible & Intangible

Reflections from Solitude and Silence No. 27

Jun 23, 2018

Saying For Today: Yet, the path was present long before you, so you honor that and hold in high esteem the path.


Path

This is the twenty-seventh of the series of reflections arising from a month in silence and solitude; the musings invite the reader to explore the Truth for himself or herself. May the writer's reflections be windows to look in, or out, onto the vista of our one Beloved, our deepest, truest Self. Peace! Brian K

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So there is a state of reality as well as consciousness, even in this very moment, in the nowness, in which we actually are nobody and we donít have anything. This sounds very bad. It sounds like total failure, but it is the most beautiful truth that we can ever witness. It is, once again, eternal time or primordial purity. The goal, as well as the purpose of all spiritual practices and endeavors, is not to go somewhere. The goal is not even to go back to some notion of a divine source. The goal is to come here. To come to the very core essence of our being, and to recognize this amazing reality, this supreme truth in which we are nobody and we have nothing.

*Thubten, Anam. The Magic of Awareness. P. 5. Shambala. Kindle Edition.

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I was told after coming out of the month solitude, "I don't know how you do it." Persons have lived years in solitude. Yet, that is a legitimate statement, since rarely do persons enjoy five minutes of quiet and aloneness, not to speak of a month, or more. And my solitude was not with a group, but with only myself. Pema Chodron writes, in Comfortable with Uncertainty, of joyous exertion. To me, being in solitude and silence is just that, and I could say, "That is how I do it, that joyous exertion is what makes it possible." Or, a different, but connected, way, "Love makes it possible. Love gives the energy to engage aloneness and quietness to connect with that Something making my every breath possible."

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When we speak of spiritual devotion, we speak of love. We often think of one loving God, or Buddha, or Krishna, or another being.

Right after entering the month of solitude, I stood silent and still in the meditation room. A new realization arose. I had never seen this before. I loved the path; I had fallen in love with the path. I felt that love, right there, alive viscerally, bodily.

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Falling in love with the path, or way of Wisdom one practices, is not the same as falling in love with the practice. Practice is a way we live the path; better, we surrender to the path, and the path moves through us. The practice is made up of varied practices, or skillful means. The path is the Wisdom, all we do becomes part of the path but is not the path.

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We need not see the path as something set, unchanging. In life the changeless and changing interface in oneness. To love life well is to recognize that something never changes and everything is in constant change. Different paths each entail a different understanding of this truth.

We are not to see this enduring, intangible Quality as separate, however, from ourselves. The intangible we are is the nobody having nothing referred to by Anam Thubten. The intangible Quality of the path, being likewise nobody having nothing is of one Substance with us. This Grace forms us to express Itself through us and heighten our effectiveness in doing so through our return into the Union prior to the path. The path, then, through the Intangible, leads us to the Intangible and Ourselves-in-Grace.

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So, the path is unchanging and changing. If one says, "My path is Contemplative Christian," or, "My path is Rinzai Zen Buddhist," or, "My path is Tibetan Mahayana Buddhist," ... there is definite tradition and practices. And there are sects within many paths, these sects are a path. Regardless, there is something intangible there that keeps that tradition alive and is not the details of that path. Otherwise, the path would die out or become a lifeless artifact from the past. In the latter, persons may still observe the details, while the intangible is absent.

And some persons claim more than one path of Wisdom, so the same thing applies. And some persons 'transcend' all paths, and that becomes the path, or pathless path. Still, the same applies ~ in a pathless Wisdom concrete details will be involved and something intangible that endures. This intangible made possible the birth of the specific path in time and space.

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So, to love the path means to love it all. Love the details. Love the intangible quality of the Intangible. Love how the path changes. Love how there is something there really solid and undergirding the change. So, regardless of how we have devotion to God, Life, Love, or whatever, we cannot separate the details off apart, or we will lose the path. And loving the intangible and not being devoted to the path, again, we lose the path.

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This love for the path grows through engaging the path, it entails respect and surrender. Whatever the path, you respect it in love, in love you realize you serve the path, even as it serves you. Yet, the path was present long before you, so you honor that and hold in high esteem the path.

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So, we seem unable to get away from devotion, for that loving relationship is essential to our wellness, the need for love is built into us. And Love is able to embrace and express toward both personal and impersonal, as Grace Itself, or Presence, transcends such distinction.

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*All material, unless another source is cited, is authored by the presenter of Lotus of Heart, Brian Kenneth Wilcox, Florida USA. Use of the material is permitted; Brian only requests that credit be given and to be notified at 77ahavah77@gmail.com .

*Brian's book, An Ache for Union, is available through major booksellers.

*Move cursor over pictures for photographer and title.j

 

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©Brian Wilcox 2018