I am with a group of people. We are in a kind of workshop and are presented with several conundrums in a spiritual context. I realize that my old approaches are not enough anymore. I need to find something more intimate to the situation and me, something that’s more organic and real.
The conundrums in the dream were life koans – situations without an obvious solution that life presents to us. These are the real koans. (The typical koans from Zen are standardized practice-versions of universal life koans.)
In the dream, I was faced with these life koans and it was clear that any standardized approach was not enough. I needed to become more intimate, find a more organic approach, and follow my own guidance.
I can, of course, draw on everything I have learned and all the different more formalized approaches I am familiar with. And yet, when it comes down to it, I need to find my own way. I am my own final authority. I need to find an approach in each case that feels deeply right and authentic to me and the situation.
Anything else will feel at least slightly off and out of alignment.
This is similar to clothes. We can find clothes in the store that fit more or less and may be sufficient for most purposes. But if we want clothes that fit even better, they need to be tailored and they need to change over time as we change.
I feel I have been in this process for a while, and it does require some intention to break out of old grooves of using standard approaches and find something more genuine and authentic.
After all, life is inherently free from any approaches or traditions. Most or all of the standardized approaches come from a real and authentic experience which are then standardized to fit more people and situations. And they are meant as training wheels until we find a more genuine and authentic approach.Read More