Even today, I can be consumed by gratitude. True, I don't cry as much as once for the gifts I can imagine came from my teacher or from the Buddhist teachers of the past, but sometimes it can still be pretty overwhelming.
And the fact is that I delight in being overwhelmed. I am convinced by my tears. Tears and a swelling of the heart ... it is very convincing. No way would I set such things aside! Raw emotion ... this is true, true, true! Everything else can just piss up a rope! This swelling, tear-stained, grateful moment ... yes! I am dissolved in gratitude and then ....
I find no place to turn.
How can I possibly express my gratitude? Money? Incense? Building a temple? Wearing robes? Offering some full-throated bow? Having sensed this wide-open, luscious gratitude, what course can I take? What thanks can I offer that could possibly be adequate? What could be adequate when nothing is adequate?
Like some love-struck teenager confiding in a friend, I am reduced to heart-felt gibberish: "I love Susie! No, you don't understand -- I really love Susie! No! Listen! I really, really, really love Susie!"
The only course I can see is this: Give up the notion of teachers and teachings. Give up the notion of no-teachers and no-teachings. Set aside notions of giver and receiver. Set aside all thought of some gift.
Don't be tricked.