Some say it’s time for March Madness (college basketball). I say it’s time for March Gladness! Time for us to sit with Step 3 and a new koan. Of course, begin sitting with this now...continue doing this
for the entire month; what we are doing here is portable, accessible, and a good thing.
Step 3: Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
|Hint: In Zen koans, often the moon is a metaphor for "awakening"...|
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Also I’d like to share an email I received. It’s about what we are doing here together, this 12 & Zen project, and its affect (koans and the Steps) upon people.
“thank you bill for tugging at my sleeve....koans from last year visit me often. it is nice to be with them....and sometimes too, they are like a stone in my shoe.
i have not been meditating and don’t seem to care or worry about it. a seed has been planted in what seems right now a reluctant soil. "how’s that workin for ya an old sponser used to say of my perhaps poorly chosen behaviors" she knew i was not a quitter...but more, just habituated to the comfort of my bad habits.
so it goes. However, koans are tucked in some hidden place in me and/or emanate from seemingly random stimulus (usually the beauty of nature or art)....and then move with me and i with them....it is really consoling how much less lonely i feel when one of them arrives....i feel kinda like i did when i had imaginary friends for whom i would make tea, save a space in my bed or pray when they were having trouble.... a little "ahhhh" happens. nice.
my mom is still battling cancer. it has been three tumultuous years now living with a woman I don't like, yet somehow can find ways to admire......when teachers speak of the transitory and irrefutable beauty of life or the fact that a thing holds its opposites as well ..it helps me to see the bigger picture of her and me. i live so close to the intimate and constant hard requirements of advocating for a delusional stubborn and very angry 90-year-old woman that i forget we are part of something else…and even in our uglier moments (which happen frequently when our wills collide or our feelings get hurt and egos race forward to protect their interests) there is something tender sweet laughably human about our sad little treacheries. It feels living with her like we are both on a rollercoaster ride. I want to puke, refuse my ticket, grip the rail, hunker down on the floor as low as i can get, evacuate my seat. I did not design the ride but i did chose to get onto it...so... I am learning a lot. It is rich, but feels at times more demanding than I can meet. We forge ahead.
so. i write as i do to say how it is here. Koans do a lot to help me. Unlike other many other dialogues they allow me the fullness of time and space to build with them a new way of seeing and being or ignore them or fight with them or....there is great relief in having the possibility of relationship with something kind and open not agendized and very elastic and forgiving . i need courage and koans give me that. so there it is. i am not up for much more socially than helping my mom, taking care of what our days require and visiting with koans and other poetry i read. (check out mary oliver if you have not already...she is both zen and christian. and artist ...like that one zen monk whose name i cannot spell)…so, once again, ONE has sent what I need zen and poetry together to help me just be ok with it all. and sometimes to also remember the possibility of joy.
hope you are well.
see you on the second friday...thank you for patience warmth non-judgment and glee...
-wobbly zen student of what if and howsthatworkingforya?" N.C.