THE WAY OF ZEN

“To the logician it will of course seem that the point at which we have arrived is pure nonsense-as, in a way, it is.  From the Buddhist point of view, reality itself has no meaning since it is not a sign, pointing to something beyond itself.  To arrive at reality–at “suchness” – is to go beyond karma, beyond consequential action, and to enter a life which is completely aimless.  Yet to Zen and Taoism alike this is the very life of the universe, which is complete at every moment and does not need to justify itself by aiming at something beyond…

…to the Taoist mentality, the aimless, empty life does not suggest anything depressing.  On the contrary, it suggests the freedom of clouds and mountain streams, wandering nowhere, of flowers in impenetrable canyons, beautiful for no one to see, and of the ocean surf forever washing the sand, to no end.

Furthermore, the Zen experience is more of a conclusion than a premise.  It is never to be used as the first step in a line of ethical or metaphysical reasoning, since conclusions draw to it rather than from it.”

Alan Watts, The Way of Zen.

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