Monday, January 29, 2007

Viva Voce

(Un)Intentional Haikus

by Thanissaro Bhikkhu
as written down by Peter Clothier
January 28, 2007




the fear:
more dangerous
than the tiger

*

learn
to perceive your anger
as dangerous

*

be aggressive
not out of anger
but out of strategy

*

what made me angry
today? why? what
was the issue?

*

your anger starts
speaking; its reasons
not so good

*

in case of possession, spread
lots of metta
to the spirit

*

give these things
space; think of it
as possession

*
we all
have multiple
personalities

*

"as excited
as a Chinese person
during a fire"

*

the Buddhist approach:
dealing with anger
spread lots of goodwill

*

next time you get
angry, remember: you look
really ugly

*

remind yourself:
I'm not seeing straight
right now: be quiet

*

let loose, or
bottle it up: neither
of these is healthy

*

forty years
of bottled-up anger? Put it
in little bottles and sell it

*

use the energy of anger
without the blindness
to work it out

*

what could I have said
differently, so that person
would not have blown up?

*

think: often
the opening words
are the important ones

*

how to deal with peole
that you hate? analogies
change your perception

*

when we're angry
we think we're in a position
of total power

*

seeing goodness
in other people
nourishes ourselves

*

when you're thirsty
and trembling, you need
what water you can get

*

this person does have
some good; let's
forcus on that first

*

if you spend your time
hating that person
you consume yourself

*

acknowledge their power;
let's see
if we can work together

*

standing here
I haven't seen
anybody

*

that's us; we need
the goodness of other people
to nourish our own goodness

*

when you're in the human
realm, there are going to be
injustices

*

if we take injustices
personally, we've got
a problem

*

why is this
happening to us? We're
human beings

*

shame and compunction;
when they're gone
you're left without defense

*

with anger, there's
a surge of power; but it's
a false power

*

if he keeps acting
in that way, he causes
trouble for himself

*

the sword
coming out of the pillar of fire:
what was that about?

*

may you learn
to do those things
that lead to true happiness

*

am I speaking
out of kindness, or
vindictiveness?

*

who made you
the National Bureau
of Standards?

*

you're getting upset
about the normal course
of human events

*

equal to the great earth;
try to make your goodwill
that big

*

the Buddha is not
teaching us to be
doormats

*

you can defend yourself
but without hatred
for that person

*

if you have an attitude
of goodwill, more of your mind
is available

*

there are times when fear
is skillful:
it helps you

*

when your fear gets tied
with anger and delusion,
that's when it's dangerous

*

your big fear: to do something
unskillful. I'd rather
go down honorably

*

we tend
to spot fear easily
in each other

*

the state of your mind:
more valuable
than your body

*

you've got
something nobody
can touch

*

it takes an act
of will to maintain
that attitude

*

when we grow up
as a country
we have to live with danger

*

a stingy person
cannot attain nirvana; you've got
to be generous

*

if you're talking about
our basic nature, well,
we need food

*

the Buddha
never mentioned
Buddha nature

*

when people asked
certain questions, the Buddha said
don't ask

*

it takes time
to become a Buddha:
it's your choice

*

a false assumption:
that you can go out
and save somebody

*

at some point in their life
people will want
to find a way out of their suffering

*

even this wonderful state
is not
the ultimate freedom

*

is the mountain
heavy? Not
if you don't try to lift it

1 comment:

Carly said...

Peter: I follow with interest your new path. Everything is as it should be. Or, as I caught it in your parables the quote

"you're getting upset
about the normal course
of human events".

There are many parallels between Buddhism and Taoism. Particularly Zen. In fact they are quite close. The Book of Changes makes this basic distinction, "Buddhism strives for rest through the ebbing away of all movement in nirvana. The Changes holds that rest is merely a state of polarity that always posits movement as its compliment". This of course allows for the turbulence of change, makes it understandable, and therefore not unsettling. For me this leads to calmness. But even more, it makes possible movement to counter adverse changes.

Have you tried doing something to facilitate meditation? I understand it is a purgation, but is writing a meditation for you? Of course, for me, painting is extremely contemplative. Puts me in a very abstract place. The mind is always working and cannot stop. I think, best to work with it. I completely forget all other things when I paint and become completely absorbed in the idea and the act. Of late the idea is a vision I have fixed upon that is beyond reality, yet connected to it in the most illuminating way. This is extremely positive.

Much of my life, I was a dark person. That darkness was my unhappiness with the unbearable existential mode of other men, the Bushes or the asshole next door. I too, read Sarte and Camus. But I could not go on painting portraits of Bush. For many years I escaped existential existence by drowning myself in the beautiful spirits of women. But that was a learning period. I was forming the foundation of a great idea. Once I turned my talents to the buoyancy of a great idea, I was free to 'ebb away all movement" in the act of painting the idea. Now, I basically do something to occupy time, but I don't existentially dwell in the void of time. I dwell instead in my idea. There is nothing like a great idea around which all things can gather.

The idea came naturally, partly due to circumstances and partly due to a seed from long ago in the mind, things planted in childhood.

It amounts to this: the dedicated man embodies enduring meaning in his way of life. In that which gives things their duration we can come to understand the nature of all things. Thus he stands firm and doesn't change his direction and remorse disappears. Restlessness prevents thoroughness. He who gives duration to his character is not at the mercy of his moods or the outside world.

You can see how this intersects with Buddha. I am active with my hands as well as mind, so making things has had value since childhood. It's my main connection to the working man, manual dexterity. But the mind is what shapes the world, the hand concretizes it. Anyway, I was thinking, since writing can do what painting can do, if emerson into a great idea could be of help to you. It could get your mind off yourself, and off others, like Bush, or the dog, or whatever, and into a better place. I won't say nirvana, because, I can't subscribe to that. Exaltation might be the word. Art.

Have you ever practiced, pure stream of consciousness? Or automatic writing?