That’s how I have been feeling lately. I went from a life style of a “kanjozoku” with an addiction for speed, turns and law breaking highway driving
To a practicing monk of the Enryaku-ji temple on Mt. Hiei.
I can’t say I am completely changed but from what I have experienced, I wonder if I’ve had some type of preliminary satori (or at least I hope). It was like any other feeling you get when you experience something new, except about a foot off the ground… And I will add this, the moment I experienced that feeling, it went out the door within seconds. There’s a saying that the student who has obtained satori can still go to hell as straight and as fast as an arrow. Because anybody who has a spiritual experience; if you try to make it a living thing, it’s like catching a handful of water, the harder you clutch, the faster it squirts through your fingers. There’s nothing to get hold of, because you don’t NEED to get hold of anything. You had it from the beginning.
I am a student, and I will always be one. High understanding comes from not understanding at all. You know it best when you say “I don’t know it.” When it comes to Eastern views of a monk, they are referred to as a student because they’re more like a student in a theological seminary. They may stay much longer than the usual three years; they may stay thirty years or so, but it’s always possible for them to leave with dignity, to graduate, go into lay life, or get married and have a family. And that’s the beauty of it, I can leave my temple at any time to enjoy outside regular life. But as of lately I have been taking care of my family and focusing on spiritual awakening. For that, to raise my child right, I have to be righteous, I have to be good, I have to be what I want my child to be. Spiritual awakening is not a religion, it is just simply AWAKENING. It is the art of understanding this universe. My only “religion” is turning anxiety into laughter.
At the end of last year I Resurrected my temple (remember the body is a temple). I walked into the 36 Chambers and looked at my car, where it’s been locked up for quite some time now… I started having these crazy thoughts of what to do with it next, but then I remember an old Zen phrase “don’t draw legs on a snake” because it moves just fine without them. Keep it simple.
I got into my car and I felt like… Well, like this:
Talk about art imitating life (more like based on real life events). I laughed so hard when I saw this scene, because it’s like a prediction of the future lol
You see, all of these stories resemble jokes in this sense, or at least in my point of view, whether it’s my stories or Zen stories, etc. When you get the point of a joke, you laugh spontaneously. But if the point has to be explained to you, you don’t laugh so well; you force a laugh. There is some kind of sudden impact between the punchline and the laugh, and so in exactly the same way with these stories, there is expected to be something else than laughter, which is sudden insight into the nature of being. Don’t take life seriously. Life will come to an end eventually. But we don’t listen to a song to hear the end. We listen to enjoy the experience.
– Run The Monk