Down the center, I have raked five adjacent furrows in a curvilinear wave pattern. Then, along either side, I have raked five straight furrows. The right grouping is segmented in half, and the left, in thirds. It's simple, elegant, and very beautiful. Getting the sand smooth is very hard work, but in my absorption, my mind is calm, cleared and oddly 'centered.' I will not feel bad when I erase the traces for my next form, because the point is that nothing lasts forever, not even your mental state.
And by committing all this to electronic memory, I have just destroyed the purpose of the exercise in transient beauty. Doggone it.
But anyhow, I'm no master, but maybe my explanation can explain it to just one person, whether it help them understand Zen or me, or both. When I say I am clear-headed, I mean to to say that things are reduced to lower levels. I don't only hear what's said, but how it's said, and what is truly meant. I can feel the motives behind my actions. It's like analyzing the code and understanding fundamentally the input-output structure as opposed to normally just viewing what happens on the screen in response to a button pressed at random. Make sense? If not, ask questions. Like I said, I'm not a master, but your questions increase my understanding as they do yours.
From ICQ with Rebecca:
I really am odd. But whatever works.
I say odd because I am not a Zen buddhist, nor do I have a pretension to being one. Of course, it's quite possible from what I've read that that makes me all the MORE a Zen buddhist. But then, from what I've read, what I just said is an expression of that pretension I just said I don't have, which makes me NOT a good Zen buddhist.
It's very circular, this Zen thing.