“The bifurcation of reality is the work of the intellect; indeed it is the way in which we try to understand it in order make use of it in our practical life.”— D.T. Suzuki, Living By Zen
The italics in the above quote are mine.
“In order to make use of it in our practical life?” What is it to “make use” of something? To stand above it as humankind the toolmaker, to utilize it for our own personal ways and means, to satisfy our own personal wants, hungers and desires?
Is “making use of” the aim of all learning? Is that the goal of our educational system, to understand life in order to “make use of it?” To exploit it?
Or is it that very education, intellectual and spiritual, which ultimately hinders our full and unalloyed PARTICIPATION in life?
“At the beginning of the intellectual awakening we thought we achieved a grand feat in arranging reality within the frame of time and space. We never thought this was really preparing for a spiritual tragedy.”
There is only NOW!
All learning, all nows past, lead up to and can enrich our NOW right this instant, unless they clutter and impede it.
There is no magic, no grand mysteries, in spite of what the ‘learned’ might aver. All teachings point to the NOW, some belonging to the past and some to the eternal present.
Libraries are filled with books and words leading us away from that simple Truth. Only a few cut through the clutter and point directly back to … NOW!
Somewhere I wrote, as so many others have, “the Truth is within you.” But that wasn’t entirely accurate. Because actually the Truth IS you, as you approach and re-integrate your life into the NOW.
Outside my back door Max the cat is on the prowl. The birds and squirrels chirp and squeak in protest. Insects buzz, the grass, flowers, weeds and trees drink in the light of the sun. All are midstream in the flow of life that is NOW. I too am, beneath the kitchen ceiling fan blowing cool air down upon my balding pate, in the measure that I can leave all thought and ideas behind and exist purely in the beauty of this instant.