Death don’t have no mercy in this land
Death don’t have no mercy in this land
He’ll come to your house and he won’t stay long
You look in bed the morning and somebody will be gone.
With all its eyes, the natural world looks out into the Open.
Only our eyes are turned backward, and surround plant, animal, child like traps, as they emerge into their freedom.
We know what is really out there only from the animal's gaze; for we take the very young child and force it around, so that it sees objects - not the Open, which is so deep in animals' faces. Free from death.
We, only, can see death; the free animal has its decline in back of it, forever, and God in front, and when it moves, it moves already in eternity, like a fountain.
Never, not for a single day, do we have before us that pure space into which flowers endlessly open. Always there is World and never Nowhere without the No: that pure unseparated element which one breathes without desire and endlessly knows.
A child may wander there for hours, through the timeless stillness, may get lost in it and be shaken back. Or someone dies and is it.For, nearing death, one doesn't see death; but stares beyond, perhaps with an animal's vast gaze.
Lovers, if the beloved were not there blocking the view, are close to it, and marvel...As if by some mistake, it opens for them behind each other... But neither can move past the other, and it changes back to World. Forever turned toward objects, we see in them the mere reflection of the realm of freedom, which we have dimmed.
Or when some animal mutely, serenely, looks us through and through. That is what fate means: to be opposite, to be opposite and nothing else, forever.
–Rainer Mara Rilke
As a caterpillar, having come to the end of
one blade of grass, draws itself together and
reaches out for the next,
so the Self, havingcome to the end of one life and dispelledall ignorance, gathers in his faculties andreaches out from the old body to a new.
–The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad
When the body and mind grow weak, the Self gathers in all the powers of life and descends with them into the heart. As prana leaves the eye, it ceases to see. "He is becoming one," say the wise; "he does not see. He is becoming one; he no longer hears. He is becoming one; he no longer speaks, or tastes, or smells, or thinks, or knows." By the light of the heart the Self leaves the body by one of its gates; and when he leaves, prana follows, and with it all the vital powers of the body. He who is dying merges in consciousness, and thus consciousness accompanies him when he departs, along with the impressions of all that he has done, experienced, and known.
In a mist of light
falling with the rain
I walk this ground
of which dead men
and women I have loved
are part, as they
are part of me.
in blood, in mind,
the dead and living
into each other pass,
as the living pass
in and out of loves
as stepping to a song.
The way I go is
marriage to this place,
grace beyond chance,
love's braided dance
covering the world.
You find a flower half-buried in leaves,
And in your eye its very fate resides.
Loving beauty, you caress the bloom;
Soon enough, you’ll sweep petals from the floor.
Terrible to love the lovely so,
To count your own years, to say “I’m old,”
To see a flower half-buried in leaves
And come face to face with what you are.
–寒山 Han Shan.
When we hear the sound of the bell, we should open ourselves up
to allow all the generations of ancestors in us to hear the bell
at the same time as we do.It means we shouldn’t imprison ourselves in a shell of self –
we should allow our ancestors to listen to the bell at the same time.That is our practice at that moment, because all the generations of ancestors,
including our father and our mother are in us in a very concrete way –
in every cell of our body.The body contains the mind – the soma contains the psyche,
and we could say that the mind also contains the body.That means that the psyche contains the soma and that psyche includes
feelings, perceptions, mental formations and consciousness
and we should learn to see our mental formations are made out of cells,
just as the body is made out of cells.The cells of the body contain the cells of the consciousness
and the cells of the consciousness contain the cells of the body.–Thich Nhat Hanh