Jasper National Park
Taken during travels, 2017
~ Saicho, 9th Century Buddhist monk
Founder of the Tendai sect in Japan
This kind of thinking really requires some enlightened insight to even begin to grasp. I mean, everything? Everything is wonderful?! How can that be?
It really turns Theravada Buddhism on its head. Life is suffering, Buddhism 101, right? But only until you understand that everything is wonderful. Yes ~ Everything.
The only person I’ve ever thought might fully embody this experience of reality is Byron Katie. She has famously and often said, “If you argue with reality, you lose,” meaning, if you want reality to be different than it is, you will always be unhappy. Her epiphany was not merely to accept reality as it is, but to love reality as it is.
My spiritual mentor says it differently, but with a similar underlying meaning. It’s something she learned from someone else (can’t remember who) and passes on. It goes like this:
Everything is God.
Not the Christian God, of course, or Yahweh, or Allah; not Shiva, Zeus, Apollo nor any other particular god, although it can be one of those if it helps you understand. She means it as “everything is as perfectly divine as God because existence itself is that kind of divine.”
I titled this “Called Home” because that’s the phrase which came to mind while working on the photo. You can see a building in the distance beyond the descending hikers. That’s the top station of the Jasper Sky Tram. I was among the last stragglers returning to it. We’d all been warned that when the alarm began sounding we’d have about 20 minutes to catch the last tram back to the valley. The alarm had begun to intermittently sound about 5 minutes before I took this photo. So, I was kinda pushing it. In the end, we had plenty of time, and there was still some twilight when the tram started descending.
Originally, “Called Home” was the poem’s first line. The alternative first line seems to work better with the poem. But it did start me thinking along the line of “all glories are ephemeral” — I couldn’t wait for the final glorious moments of sunset because I had to get back to the tram — and that eventually lead to the second stanza turn around.
Day Thirty (Yay!); Poem One
Fifty Nine poems total
#stayhome #washyourhands #wearamask #writepoetry