Monday, December 17, 2012

40-year chip shot

Tonight, speaking on the phone with a pretty good news reporter who was doing a Zen-Buddhism-related article, I felt a little like a golf ball that had been lofted out of a sand trap.

At first surrounded by a whizzing cloud of excited sand particles, eventually the ball settled on the green and either stopped or rolled lazily ... perhaps to end up in the cup, perhaps not ... no matter: the effort had been expended and the shot made; it was just one possible shot and I was content now to loll on the close-cropped green.

I was happy the reporter was doing the article and glad to hear some of the details, but the whizzing, fiery particulars that had once captured and inspired me had simply settled and I came away from the conversation with what seemed a strange flashing glimpse of 40 years of interest in spiritual adventure. Boiled down, summed up, short-and-sweet, the place where this golf ball landed might have read....

Any spiritual practice is only as good as its willingness to lead its adherents to the door marked "exit." Give it a rest; give it up; sell it at a tag sale if you have to. Mediocrity may be most commonplace, but the spiritual practice that will not release its children is sunk (and sinks others) in a never-ending sand trap of its own devising.

Fuck that!

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