Monday, November 01, 2004

Letting things be

A friend said an interesting thing to me. "Raking leaves is pointless," he said, "because why should we judge the leaves as bad, and decide we must move them." I think its an interesting point, but I think its a self defeating one, that none the less leads to good insight.

If picking up leaves is judged to be pointless, isn't that judgment itself pointless? Is there really any distinction? But then I am judging his judgment to be pointless, so obviously that judgment is pointless as well. So what can one do? You try to let things be, but then you realize that your attempt to let things be, is in actuality an attempt to control your own mind, and thus not letting things be. So then you decide not to control things at all, but of course that too is an attempt to keep your mind from trying not to control things. There is no escape. But as William Blake wrote in The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, "If the fool would persist in his folly he would become wise." After someone tries to let things be for a while, they realize how futile it is, and are finally able to just give up, and realize that there is no ME separate from everything else, so there is nothing that can control anything else. At this point they give up, and become enlightened.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

You talk too much. Go and rake the leaves.

2:32 AM  
Anonymous Jo-Ann Langseth said...

Persisting in folly can be fun.

For some, raking can be fun, too.

I prefer not to rake, and so does my husband, but our neighbors see folly in nonraking. In any case, I'm glad that the host author talks a lot and leaves the leaves to the wind.

11:31 PM  

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