Here’s another installment in a series of emails that took place between Michael and one of his senior students beginning the Summer of 2009. May you find the exchange interesting and enriching.


February 23, 2011

Student: Can it be said that as long as something is changing, a story is involved?

Michael: Yes. As long as there is any kind of movement, then there is no stillness. As long as there is no stillness, then temporary truths show up as the chatter of stories that the ego tells us. As long as this is our psychological and spiritual center of gravity there can be no awakening.

Student: So stillness is prior to movement.

Michael: It’s also what is after movement. Every single thing is born from, and dies back into, stillness.

Student: And this stillness is the same thing as what we might call, Emptiness?

Michael: Sure.

Student: And Emptiness is the beginning and the end of every single thing?

Michael: It’s also inseparable from every point in between each beginning and end. This is why in Zen’s Heart Sutra we say, “Emptiness is form, form is emptiness.”

Student: It’s all-encompassing. Never starts never finishes; never moves, never evolves. It just is.

Michael: It’s just this.

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