“The satori plane can never be reached by the rationalistic plane, however ingeniously it may be handled.”— D.T. Suzuki, Living By Zen
That’s part of what I like to call The Great Convergence. Suzuki in the above quote calls it ‘satori’, while Bergson in the last two posts referred to it as ‘the current of life’ and I’ve repeatedly used the phrase ‘The Great Passing Through.’ West is meeting East and finally trying to learn that in reality the two are one.
You see, it’s all the same folks. If and when we realize that we ARE the current of Life, that we ARE the Great Passing Through from one generation to the next, that is Suzuki’s satori plane. Then, to put it yet another way, we will have become as awakened as the Buddha.
But why all the talk and teaching about satori and Buddhist enlightenment? Why all the hand wringing and hair pulling, all the distress and despair and expense of yoga, self-help gurus and psycho-spiritual therapists?
Because having developed the capacity for retaining images in our brains some seventy thousand years ago, and in the almost infinite ramifications since that have resulted in nothing less than the conquest of the world, we have largely lost contact with the very ‘current of Life’ or ‘Great Passing Through’ which we are.
We’ve lost ourselves in thought and learning, Suzuki’s ‘rationalistic plane’. And sadly, having almost completely thrown in our lot with this ‘rationalistic plane,’ as Suzuki says, we’ve been cut off from the satori plane, cut off from ourselves! We no longer use the tool or drive the machine; the tool and machine uses and drives us!
Oh well. The sun is shining bright outside my window and an unseasonably warm wind is roaring past. It’s great, if sometimes challenging, conditions for a walk.
Life is and should be a challenge….