Sunday, November 7, 2010

spiritual desperation

How desperate spiritual persuasions can be.

How desperate spiritual persuasions need to be.

Desperation -- a realm of intimate intensity and fear and woe and longing.

Is it something other than desperation that leads Christianity to threaten its constituents with hell? Is it something other than desperation that leads Zen Buddhists to practice as if "your hair were on fire?"

Without desperation, spiritual persuasions become a thin and manipulative gruel, dressed in pink tutus, waving wands, and rife with hugs. Consenting to be desperate seems to be the only cure for superficiality: Once anyone steps off the desperation diving board, there is no alternative but to dive deep and diving deep is the only way that spiritual persuasions make any real or useful sense.

Maybe it's so -- desperation is the only cure for desperation.

Desperation is serious and wracking and in-your-face. It has nothing to do with molding or convincing others. It is like standing in a room without walls ... being walled in by no walls.

People are desperate not to be desperate. They are willing to work hard not to be desperate. And this hard work pays off.

As Suzuki Roshi once said of Zen Buddhist practice: "It's serious, but it's not that serious."


  1. Bismillah

    Yes! Deperation either way. You can't escape anywhere from Allah for if you might sucseed for a limited time, then that time will be in fear. He will get you and ... kick your ass royally.


  2. ....if i can recall correctly Jack Kornfield said (or he was quoting someone) " true spiritual endevour there is NO compulsion"...

  3. Well Allah is great and greatness itself.
    His (nick)names nr, 8-10 / 10-8 are: The greateste, the compeller, the victorious.

    Praise be to him.

    Name nr 11 is the guardian. Take him for a guardian or he will take your for an enemy and puruse you even after your death.

    Such is it and you can't escape from desperation as genkaku my friend said. If you can't accept Allah as a guardian then it is because of your ignorance.

    Your ass is going to get kicked anyway in this life. Just accept it and live through it with the doubts it entail and the courage it takes to overcome them.

    For you is what you have won, and against you is what you have lost. Win Allah as a guardian/friend/protector. I don't mean to prostelize people. It is your victory or your loss.