Lent begins today. I will perform no acts of penance; not because I have not sinned, but because I have no fear of knowing divine wrath after death. I have, in fact, no fear, or hope, of knowing anything at all after death.
I am much older now: winging heavenward, even with help, is beyond me; on mere feet I falter. Retiring from full time work, I stumble into an uncertain but certainly briefer future as I struggle daily with frailties of body and soul.
When I go deeply into myself, I don’t find anyone or anything – which is why I sometimes resist going deep. But the depths are always there, always in the heart of my heart. I may try to repress it, but I can never completely cover the trace of untouchable nothing at the center.
Enlightenment eludes me, but endarkenment: that I know. It is my spiritual condition, a kind of seeing in and by the dark.
Increasingly, I live in emptiness. To live in emptiness, I find, is not a deprivation, nor is it an attainment, nor is it salvation. It is simply to be surrendered to reality. To live in emptiness is not deprivation, although it is disillusionment. As my friend Gary G. has pointed out, to be dis-illusioned should…
a meditation developed from a little verse, titled “Dōgen’s Miracle” because it had been inspired by a reading of Zen master Dōgen (13th century C.E.), that I wrote more than fifteen years ago
As compulsion yields to compassion, I see the end of law; I know more fully the peace of freedom in the face of nonexistence; I feel the blessedness of a heart of flesh.