shake, loosen, and open


 

Someone

who does not know

the Tigris River exists brings

the caliph who lives near the river a jar

of fresh water. The caliph accepts,

thanks him, and gives in return

a jar filled with gold

coins.

 

“Since this

man has come through

the desert, he should return by water.”

Taken out by another door, the man steps into

a waiting boat and sees the wide freshwater

of the Tigris. He bows his head, “What

wonderful kindness that he

took my gift.”

 

Every object

and being in the universe

is a jar overfilled with wisdom and

beauty, a drop of the Tigris that cannot be

contained in any skin. Every jarful spills and makes

the earth more shining, as though covered in satin.

If the man had seen even a tributary of the

great river, he would not have brought

the innocence of his

gift.

 

Those that

stay and live by the

Tigris grow so ecstatic that

they throw rocks at the jugs, and 

the jugs become perfect. They shatter.

The pieces dance, and water…

Do you see? Neither jar nor

water nor stone,

nothing.

 

You knock

at the door of reality,

shake your thought-wings,

loosen your shoulders,

and open.

 

Jalal al-din Rumi

 

gift


 

A day

so happy. Fog lifted

early, I worked in the garden.

Hummingbirds were stopping over

honeysuckle flowers. There was no thing

on earth I wanted to possess. I knew no one

worth my envying him. Whatever evil I had

suffered, I forgot. To think that once I was

the same man did not embarrass me.

In my body I felt no pain. When

straightening up, I saw the

blue sea and

sails.

 

Czeslaw Milosz

 

proper enthusiasm opens every door


 

The I Ching

teaches that there are

two kinds of enthusiasm: one that

leads to misfortune, and one that leads to success.

This hexagram comes as a sign that you can

proceed with confidence now if your

enthusiasm is properly

founded.

 

Improper

enthusiasm is fueled

by the desires of the ego.

People often desire recognition,

wealth, power, or freedom from difficulty.

Such desires can become so great that we will do

anything to achieve them. Our energy rises as we wildly

pursue our goal, but this unruly and egotistical

enthusiasm inevitably leads us into incorrect

and imbalanced behavior and

into misfortune.

 

Proper enthusiasm,

on the other hand, is fueled by

a devotion to attaining and expressing

inner balance and inner truth. When your aim

is not to influence others or to satisfy your ego but to

follow the guidance of the Higher Power in all that you do,

you acquire another kind of energy: a balanced and

bottomless eagerness for living in step with

what is right and good. In this there

is true power and true

grace.

 

This hexagram

reminds you that striving out

of your ego now will only push you further

away from your goals. Seek instead to follow proper

principles: keep to what is innocent, correct, and

kind, and the Creative will come to your aid.

The path of truth is always the path

of least resistance.

 

from The I Ching, or Book of Changes

Hexagram 16, Yü / Enthusiasm

 

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