Monday, July 29, 2013

rope-a-dope spiritual life?

In boxing, rope-a-dope is a technique in which a fighter allows himself to be trapped along the ropes, where his opponent proceeds to pound him. The force of the blows transmits itself to the ropes and the one being pummeled suffers relatively less than what it looks like. When the opponent starts to run out of energy, the fighter counter-attacks and, with luck, wins.

With some whimsy and some seriousness, I wonder today if the serious spiritual aspirant isn't basically availing himself of a rope-a-dope technique ... allowing himself to be trapped, cornered and pummeled by theologies and rituals and intellectual convolutions and emotional confusions ... vast, intricate, convincing, consuming ... sitting still as salt along the ropes of the meditation cushion ... biff-bam-boom for years and years and years until ... until ... until....

The time for a winning attack presents itself -- it's time to knock off the rope-a-dope religious stuff -- and the dope reveals himself.

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