We Share One Life, We Are One Life
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Smaragd - Meditation, Angela Marie Henriette, Flickr
Nirvana, Heaven, is present in all states of body and mind, for all life takes place in Grace, the Grace that makes all experience, pleasurable and painful, possible and transforms them by means of and into Love.
An odd place to be, maybe, but restful and gladsome. Sitting alone, not feeling lonely anymore, but not needing not to feel lonely anymore. Rejecting nothing, free of all things among all things.
One could say, "He is meditating." Or, "He is just sitting quietly." Or, "He is doing something." Or, "He is doing nothing." All that could apply, and not.
Possibly, this bliss, quiet and more deeply felt than in a long time, was nurtured by readings of Thomas Merton on Zen. Zen, like this odd something that is nothing happening while I am alone in my hermitage, is filled with contradictions. Indeed, without contradictions, Zen would not be Zen, even as Christian Contemplation would not be what it is. Truth will always be known in and through contradictions, for that which is called mind arises within and will contradict itself at the level of thought - which mind is; so, mind only exists in its own impermanent, derivative aspect of Being.
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What I have seen more clearly this week, is that Heaven and Nirvana can be seen as alike. They - or It - can. They - the words - are both something pointing to nothing, or nothing pointing to something, or neither. Yet, this nothing is no-thing, and to be free of all-things, while not rejecting any-thing, is Peace.
Nirvana and Heaven will remain logical concepts of space and time, until one becomes "seeing" Itself. Then, seeing or not-seeing does not matter. And, certainly, Nirvana-Now and Heaven-Now refer, one sees, to nothing inside or outside anywhere or anything or anyone.
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Therefore, we speak not of an experience, but what also does not deny experience. Is that not enjoyment of Peace - neither to try to be this nor that, to make life anything, at all? Can there be this Peace, if spiritual practice is a continual wrestling to create an ideal life other than life - whether the life be this-life or after this life? This, indeed, veils Nirvana, Heaven. We do not get to Nirvana, we do not reach Heaven, at any time or place, now or later.
Prayerfulness could be spoken of as abiding in Nirvana, abiding in Heaven. Prayerfulness, then, is certainly not about understanding anything. At most, understanding can clear away that which veils realization of Nirvana, of Heaven, but itself becomes a hindrance to both and must itself be released into the Love that is Self-Subsisting, is Nirvana, is Heaven - some might wish to say "God is Heaven" or "Life is Nirvana."
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Finally, is this a state of pleasure? No. Nirvana is Nirvana, Heaven is Heaven - not annihilation of self in a state of happiness or comfort, as often misrepresented. Nirvana, Heaven, is present in all states of body and mind, for all life takes place in Grace, the Grace that makes all experience, pleasurable and painful, possible and transforms them by means of and into Love.
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*Tian Tan Buddha, fredMin, Flickr
*You can contact Brian at email@example.com. Please keep in mind, when reading from this site, that teachings cover an extended period of years and, therefore, reflect changes over that time.