Mountains and Rivers

 

There is the famous quote (paraphrased) of the Zen monk who said…

First mountains and rivers were mountains and rivers. Then I saw that mountains and rivers were not mountains and rivers. Finally, they again were mountains and rivers.

I am not sure if I understand this accurately according to the traditional way, but the saying does fit my own experiences.

First, everything was ordinary – in the sense of dualistic. I was me. Everything else was whatever they were. But something was off. Something was not quite right. I was not quite at ease or at home.

Then, I had an opening into a transdual – or Big Mind – view. Nothing was what it used to be. Now, everything – all inner/outer phenomena – was a manifestation of God, Spirit, the Absolute. Everything was magic, different, and yet deeply familiar and home.

Then, as the novelty wore off, it became more ordinary. I explored and found ways to integrate it more into my life (although that was and is a difficult process). Big Mind and small self became more aligned, and everything seemed more ordinary again – including myself as small self.

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