The universe in it’s infinity is so unfathomably gigantic that we as humans have insisted on taking it apart, naming it, categorizing it and in this way stealing it’s magic from ourselves. For the universe does not pay heed to our names for it. It does not know or care to know of how we have compartmentalized it.
This small epiphany came to me today as I had the thought “This is going to be a big day for me.” Haha! What an absurd mental sentence. I immediately realized as I heard myself say this in my head how ridiculous it sounds. How small. As if today only consists of what happens to me. As if today even exists. I have been viewing the world through “my little human prism”.
To take this moment and stretch it out into the future we have to make up a story.
It is the Lunar New Year today so I am going to go to Chinatown with my brother.
Even though that is likely to happen, at this point in time it is a fiction. These types of stories are written by humans that are missing the pulsating aliveness of the present moment. To think “This is going to be a big day for me.” has so many things wrong with it that I will talk about them each separately.
“going to be” Is erroneous because it is referring to the future which does not exist. It never has and it never will. When it does exist it will be the present.
“a big day” as if the petty experience of my ego is in any way big. The ego, the tiny window through which I have been viewing the world completely obscures what is truly big.
“for me” Me, that is a word that is almost exclusively used by the ego to make up stories. To place possession upon things. To separate our selves from our world.
It is the lunar new year today, the year of the sheep. In honour of this celebration I decided to finally begin reading the Tao Te Ching (or Dao as my brother informs me it is now spelled) that my boyfriend uploaded onto my computer many weeks ago. I was only about 2 pages in when the wisdom of this text hit me and caused the shift in my perspective that I have outlined above. I am very much looking forward to reading the rest of it but I simply had to stop and share with you my experience. Here are some of the words that moved me.
The Tao that can be described is not the enduring and unchanging Tao.
The name that can be named is not the enduring and unchanging
Always without desire we must be found,
If its deep mystery we would sound;
But if desire always within us be,
Its outer fringe is all that we shall see.
The outer fringe is all we see. Brilliant. The outer fringe is all that I could see when I thought “This is going to be a big day for me.”
This next one is just beautiful.
May not the space between heaven and earth be compared to a
‘Tis emptied, yet it loses not its power;
‘Tis moved again, and sends forth air the more.
Much speech to swift exhaustion lead we see;
Your inner being guard, and keep it free.
Tao Qian Admiring Chrysanthemums (陶潛賞菊圖)
Attributed to Zhao Lingrang (趙令穰, fl. ca.1070- after 1100), Song Dynasty (960-1279)
Handscroll, ink and colour on silk, 29.8 x 76.7 cm, National Palace Museum, Taipei