The Drunk as the Bodhisattva

Michael McAlister Blog Leave a Comment

Over at Tricycle, Alexandra Kolyanides posts a wonderful bit on Faulkner’s advice to writers back when he won the Nobel Prize.

I was struck by how his words sounded like the Path.

The young man or woman writing today has forgotten the problems of the human heart in conflict with itself which alone can make good writing because only that is worth writing about, worth the agony and the sweat

Are we willing to meet all the agony and the sweat in order to uncover what is always True?

He continues, sounding more and more like Dogen Zenji:

He must teach himself that the basest of all things is to be afraid; and, teaching himself that, forget it forever, leaving no room in his workshop for anything but the old verities and truths of the heart

In the Genjo Koan we hear:

To study the Way is to study the self. To study the self is to forget the self. To forget the self is to be enlightened by all things of the universe. To be enlightened by all things of the universe is to cast off the body and mind of the self as well as those of others. Even the traces of enlightenment are wiped out, and life with traceless enlightenment goes on forever and ever.

(Bows, Alexandra)

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