Archive for the The Liberation Through Hearing Category

A Few Not-So-Funny Things that Kept Happening on My Way to the Word Processors

Posted in Bardo Thordol, Crazy Zen Wisdom, Observations of a Recovering Buddhist, That was Zen, and this is Tao, The Liberation Through Hearing on September 21, 2019 by dreamlanddancing

 

 

A few days ago, I received an anniversary notice from WordPress, congratulating me on my seventh anniversary of DreamlandDancing.

Most bloggers run out of steam in less than five years, which is curiously enough, also the make/break point for most small businesses.

Four years ago, my health went into what seemed to be a death spiral of numerous ailments, finally (hopefully) culminating in open heart surgery this last January.

Recuperation is not necessarily always as planned, and one thing just seems to lead to another…

Nervous breakdowns are inconvenient, embarrassing, and have a tendency to undermine one’s credibility, but I would be remiss not to admit that essentially all of the epiphanies, revelations, moments of clarity, and illuminations that I have experienced revealed themselves to me as the fabric of my Consciousness, Intellect, and Reason unraveled.

Suddenly faced with no A Priori assumptions, deconstructing what I perceived as Reality, allowed, if not encouraged me to let the most necessary components of my world align themselves according to their nature, rather than my previously preconceived notions.

“There are two ways to be fooled; one is to believe what is not true, the other is to refuse to believe what is.”  (Søren Kierkegaard)

I have often felt like I was playing “Chicken” with my own sanity in my search for the Truth, and eventually, I always lost because I kept playing until…so I have learned to consider myself blessed by these events.

It seems obvious to me that although I have what may well be the worst judgment in the world, the fact that I am not dead, in prison, or an asylum gives strong credence to the notion that I may also be the luckiest man in the world, or at least a strong contender for the title.

Meanwhile, I rebuilt the engine of my son’s 1987 Firebird while recuperating from a back injury in time for him to be able to drive it while on leave after returning from Afghanistan.

I fell down a very long, dangerous rabbit hole “researching” the production of moonshine for my current work Once in a Blue Agave Moon, but have done precious little writing.

In less than a week’s time, with no notice, I was forced to build a storage shed and workshop for my tools, or face losing them.

I’ve lost track of how many hurricanes have highjacked my energy, thoughts, and time these last several years.

The old adage about how when one door closes, another one opens has also proven true, and after several decades have once again begun researching, writing, playing, and recording a song cycle devoted to resonating our Chakras entitled “Ode to a Roomful of Tibetan Singing Bowls.”

Thordol Bardo, or The Enlightenment through Hearing has taken on new meaning and import for me.

I joined a drum circle, even though I have never considered myself a percussionist.

After months of intractable pain, thanks to Zen meditation and several Taoist exercises, I have learned how to successfully manage severe chronic pain, although it curiously inspired my occasional byline, Observations of a Recovering Buddhist.

(I am still an Atheist.)

Zen does not require me to invent a god in my, or anyone else’s image.

I have been a “gun-toting Pacifist” for several decades. I see no contradictions in that statement, considering that it has allowed me to save several lives other than just my own; nevertheless, ironically, the worst abuse I face on a regular basis comes from those who do not share my beliefs.

Are they or are they not also Pacifists?

I would ask them “How many people does it take to achieve World Peace?” The source of all conflict still lives within each of us, but until we learn to conquer it, there can be little hope for our mutual advancement.

That is why the Shaolin Monks devised Kung Fu.

I choose to stay alive out of love, so that I may share it with all who would appreciate it, until each of us realizes that the answer is just “One.”

Most of my life has followed trends or periods of time when a particular thought or principle seemed to predominate those events, and they have appeared to represent cycles that repeat themselves, allowing me the opportunity to correct, or anticipate events where or when my notoriously bad judgement taught me the error of my ways…hey look, regardless of judgement, I’m not STUPID!

The fact remains that so much remains undone and unwritten.

A few days ago, after meditating, I recognized a familiar state of mind that had come to me  several decades ago, a portent of what was unfolding, which involves change, and growth to face an uncertain future.

It was when I recognized my true self, my need for uncertainty and change, that I learned to embrace my fate, powered by my resolve, after understanding that I don’t have to only write the songs that make me cry.

“Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom.”

(Søren Kierkegaard)

Namasté

नमस्ते

Chazz Vincent

09/21/2019

The Ten-Thousand Things

Posted in Bardo Thordol, Crazy Zen Wisdom, Crossing the Abyss, Poetry, The Liberation Through Hearing on August 29, 2019 by dreamlanddancing

 

 

Each Day

As I face

The Ten Thousand Things,

that would either

impede or obviate

my pursuit

of The One,

it occurs to me

that

as I move in any single

aspect or angle

in the pursuit

of The One,

if I should

merely persevere long enough,

that eventually

I will become

one with

The One.

 

 

 

Wu!

Wu-Wei

Wu-Wei-Wu.

 

 

 

Matte Kudesai

Patience Please.

 

 

 

If I should

pursue

The One,

for the rest of

what is left of

my life,

I will never

Arrive.

 

 

The deer runs

not because the dog chases it;

the dog chases the deer,

because 

the deer runs.

 

 

 

 Wu!

Wu-Wei

Wu-wei-Wu.

 

 

 

Matte Kudesai

Patience Please.

 

 

 

The more passionate

the methods used

in the course of 

any pursuit,

the more surely

that

desire

will succumb

to

confusion.

 

 

 

Wu!

Wu-Wei

Wu-wei-Wu.

 

 

 

Matte Kudesai

Patience Please.

 

 

 

Each Day

As I face

The Ten Thousand Things,

I realize

that

No matter

which way I go,

all things return to The One.

 

Some directions

will be longer

or shorter

or faster

or more secure,

but the path we choose

will determine

both our Methods

as well as our intentions

and whether we know it or not,

instead of 

seeking

the attainment of anything

somewhere in the future,

if I embrace

my present circumstances

with joyous resolve,

compassion

and Grace,

fully engaged

in the ever-present

never-present

present moment,

there will be no time for

dreadful speculation,

the result of wallowing

in fearful rumination

instead of being completely

 in the Here and Now.

 

Acceptance, rather than Denial

allows us to focus on

what our life really is, 

rather than

what we wish it was.

 

If you are unhappy now,

what makes you think

you will be happy

sometime later

in a future

that will never come?

 

 

 

Wu!

Wu-Wei

Wu-wei-Wu.

 

 

 

Matte Kudesai

Patience Please.

 

 

Thanks.

Namasté

नमस्ते

Chazz Vincent

08/29/2019

 

Never Too Late…?

Posted in Bardo Thordol, Crazy Zen Wisdom, Observations of a Recovering Buddhist, Poetry, The Liberation Through Hearing on July 15, 2019 by dreamlanddancing

Six months dancing with Death in a dream within a dream

 

 

As finite Time hangs in the balance

All too conscious

that

as The One

returns to Zero,

just how precious

the ever-present

never-present

present moment

is

was

and will be.

Recuperation.

So many hours

for

necessary thoughts,

albeit dangerous or not

seducing me

into remembering

the regrets I could not rewrite

within my history.

Facing the shame of my wrongs

done unto others

to whom I can no longer

apologize,

yet totally eclipsed

by the magnitude

of my despair

for all that I will leave

undone.

 

Hesitation

preoccupation

self-consciousness

or cowardice

are indistinguishable

after the fact,

when

The Moment

was lost.

Sorry for the Inconvenience, Author under Deconstruction

Posted in Dancing in Dreamland, Letting Go, That was Zen, and this is Tao, The Liberation Through Hearing, This Thing we do with Words on January 9, 2019 by dreamlanddancing

Well, the good news is that I’m not dead….yet, or at least for now.

If you have, or used to follow my blog, you may have noticed my absence.

Or maybe not.

I don’t want to be too cryptic, but a little mystery can be good.

But no, I am not in jail, or fleeing prosecution (as far as I know), but it wouldn’t be too hard to find me if I was.

I also am not currently institutionalized in a psychiatric facility despite the fact that more than a few folks might be inclined to argue that it is there where I truly belong, (although the opinions of ex-wives should be taken with a very large amount of salt.)

And although right this minute, I am not at home, I am also not homeless.

But depending on the outcome, either I or my widow will make an announcement in the very near future.

See you in the funny papers.

Sayonara y’all…for now.

忍耐、お願い

Nintai shite kudasai

(Patience please.)

Chazz Vincent

01/09/2019

 

Retrospective or Requiem? Well, that just Depends.

Posted in Crazy Zen Wisdom, Post-Neo Dharma Bum, The Liberation Through Hearing on June 22, 2018 by dreamlanddancing

Some of you may have noticed my relative absence during the last two years, or perhaps not….

This started as an explanation of sorts, but now has become long enough to deserve being turned into something resembling a bi-line, much like “On Letting Go” a few years ago. 

There is an old Zen story about a man who discovers that a fine thoroughbred stallion had wandered onto his property.

His friends and neighbors remarked “How fortunate you are to have this happen.”

His reply to such matters was always the same. “Well, that just depends.”

No one seemed to really understand what he meant, until his son attempted to tame the wild stallion, and in the process broke his leg.

Everyone who came to visit remarked what a terrible calamity it was that his son had been injured, especially since the old man depended so much on his son to help him tend his farm.

Again, his only reply was, “Well that just depends.”

At this point, no one, including his son, understood the meaning behind his words. Some were even offended or angered by his seemingly callous reply. His humor was so wry that it was not unusual they did not divine many of his remarks. 

Several days later, a local warlord arrived at the village where they lived. As he went from house to house to seek able-bodied men to conscript into service for his army to prepare for a terrible war that was being waged, he came upon the old man’s injured son, who was determined to be unfit for battle.

When his neighbors came to congratulate them on his good fortune, when they again heard him say “Well, that just depends” one of the exasperated visitors shouted “On What?” 

“We’ll just have to see” was all he said.

The last two and a half years have been like a rabbit-hole down a rabbit-hole.

It has been my experience that the really valuable episodes of growth or epiphany were preceded by either significant injury or illness, or deep personal loss…and pain.

It seems that the worst brings out the best in us. It all just depends on how you look at it.

Suffice it to say that I have been blessed by a series of events that have provided me with numerous opportunities for personal growth and enlightenment. 

So I guess we’ll just have to see.

Sayonara Zetsubou Sensei…

Sayonara Y’all….

Namasté

नमस्ते

Chazz Vincent

06/21/2018

Once In a Blue Agave Moon: A Convergence of Many Things

Posted in Much Too Good For Children, Novel, Once in a Blue Agave Moon, The Knowledge of Good and Evil, The Liberation Through Hearing on August 4, 2017 by dreamlanddancing

 

True to form, Amy, Rebel, and Leigh-Ann all walked into the dining room in time to hear Chiana’s last question, as well as Jed’s answer, as he still held out his hand palm up, with the bright blue capsules containing The Knowledge.

Amy feigned a stage whisper from the side of her mouth: “I told you there was no hurry….”

Rebel just smiled and shook her head, winking at Chiana as she caught her glance.

Leigh-Ann, clearly amused, simply changed the subject. “This would probably be a good time to start showering and cleaning up. If that’s OK with you, where do we go?”

“Let me show you; it’s at the end of the hall. We’re very proud of what we have built in there. We did a lot of horse-trading and foraging to get what we wanted.” Chiana got up and walked over to the door and opened it. She made a sweeping gesture with her right hand as she did.

Amy and Rebel followed the two of them.

“Ta-da! Ladies, I hope this will help you forget that we are on the edge of the Post-Apocalyptic Everglades. The closet is filled with oils, emollients, soaps, bath salts, candles and incense. Much of it was gathered and prepared by me. The water is very hot, by the way, and we even have a steam jet over here.”

“The floor is unglazed tile, and there is a drain in the center. In addition to the commode, there is a bidet. Elliot couldn’t resist it…he really does everything he can to spoil me…I thought I could have done without it, but it was part of a deal we arranged when we got the tub, and all the marble, and I have to admit, I’m glad he did.”

“Holy shit! The Three Winds blurted simultaneously.

A redwood bench ran along one wall.

“What? No togas?” Rebel laughed. “Just kidding…I saw something like this in a mansion in LA once; one of the producers for Cal-Vista owned a house where we shot a film, and it wasn’t nearly as nice as this.”

“I gotta say, I am really impressed, but Amy and I better wait until after everybody else is finished before we go and use up all the hot water.” Rebel gave Chiana a knowing look as she gave Amy’s buttocks a soft squeeze.

“Y’all can draw straws to decide who goes first, but don’t worry about the hot water. We have a five-hundred gallon cistern that is initially solar heated, and stays quite warm year-round, which is then boosted up to one hundred twenty five degrees with an electric heater that also produces steam if you like.” Chiana looked like a proud parent on graduation day as she showed off the bathroom.

“I already turned on the generator before we started to eat, so it’s ready to go…and we have never run out of hot water, even if we were entertaining, so be our guests.”

“Elliott wasn’t joking when he said we have almost everything we need or want, and I can’t think of anyone with whom we would rather share our good fortune…besides, this is a big weekend to be enjoyed by all. Samhain, a full moon, and a blue moon….” Chiana’s voice trailed off as Rebel interjected:

“You know darlin’, we have a lot in common…more than I realized. We’ve been on the road so much lately than I haven’t paid much attention to the moon and the stars, but I think we have more than a few things to share this weekend…after we get clean and refreshed.” The Wiccan references did not go unnoticed by Rebel.

“I’m really looking forward to it, and thank you so much for your hospitality; it says a lot about your character, and I admire that.” Rebel, who was usually short on words and long on delivery, was clearly in no hurry as her rich drawl resonated off the marble. As she finished, she gently touched Chiana’s forearm.

(“So she has a soft spot after all.” thought Chiana, “Well good; maybe I can trust her. I could use an ally.”)

(“Of course you can. I only play tough when I think I have to, and I dare say, you are a pretty easy read…I mean that in a good way. Once you get to really know me, you’ll feel more comfortable with the intuition we share.”) Rebel looked deeply into Chiana’s eyes as she returned her gaze.

(“Well OK then…I hope you’re right.”) Chiana thought. She did not seem alarmed by the way their thoughts were so clearly conveyed between them.

(“If you can trust yourself to hear me, you will know I am right, and that this is as real as it gets.”) Rebel knew her words had hit their mark.

Both women stood there for just a moment longer. Sometimes it is hard to trust your heart to hear what words can only imply, if you have just the right chance with just the right person. To know….

(You know I have tried The Knowledge twice…but the fact that you can already hear me…read me if you will, means you’ve got a big headstart on this whole process. I’m really looking forward to the chance to share our knowledge.”) 

(“How do you know I will agree to take it?”)

(“Because I already know…and so do you. It’s in our future.”)

“Ladies if you don’t mind, then, I’ll go first.” If Leigh-Ann was privy to their intuitive dialogue, she gave no indication of it.

 

 

Namasté

नमस्ते

Chazz Vincent

08/03/2017

Change is not Hard. Change is not Easy. Change is not Slow. Change is not Fast.

Posted in Crazy Zen Wisdom, Observations of a Recovering Buddhist, Poetry, The Liberation Through Hearing, Zen on June 2, 2017 by dreamlanddancing

If you swim against the tide

you will drown.

So also,

if you try to force your will

in resisting what is,

you will fail.

You alone

are no match

for the entire universe.

It takes Wisdom to see

the ebb and flow of

what is and what

will be.

You cannot even slow

the force

of a single ocean wave

though your ego and pride

may be as large

as all the seas

combined,

but if you surf,

neither you nor the wave

are Master;

in surfing

you become one.

Change is not slow.

When your heart resists

what your thinking mind

convinces you

must be,

no change will come.

Put it down.

Put down all resistance.

Change

comes

with enlightenment,

like lightning…

Who can rush either?

Acceptance of what is

Here and Now

will show you

your Dharma action

from Nowhere

to Now Here

as we ride

the Three-Hundred

Mile-an Hour Train

that never leaves

and never arrives

because it is already

Here.

Inside the train

only your mind is moving.

If you stop fighting your mind,

in that one clear, thin moment

where all existence

dwells

in empty space

as thick as molasses,

Infinity

folds back upon itself

and all things

having returned

to the One

now

return

to

Zero.

Namasté

नमस्ते

Chazz Vincent

05/02/2017

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