July 12th, 2010

"Sermon" Meditation VII Nature's Creator

..."For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good;
He sends his rain on the just and on the unjust"... Q1

In reconstructed Q1 this is one of the sayings connected to the theme "Love your enemies," and it precedes admonitions  to be merciful and not to judge.  It expresses the creator's natural benevolence and generosity,  We are to imitate the creator in this respect to the extent we can, which is usually more than we do.

divine justice and mercy are mysteries, as are all things about the divine.  When we are told that the kingdom of god belongs to the poor and that "the rich have their reward."  we can only guess at what those things mean in the divine calculus--assuming that the divine calculates.  We work out our own calculations about mercy and justice here on earth, with moral principles getting in the way of such calculations as often they aid them.

There is a little piece of doggerel that jumps into my monkey mind whenever i see this passage:

God pours his gentle rain
  on the just and unjust fella;
Chances are pretty good
  that the unjust has the just's umbrella.

This does serve to remind me, that however mysterious divine justice is, its got to be simpler than human justice, at least in large complex societies.  But divine mercy and justice seem very flawed to our limited imaginations.  The evil and the good not only get sunshine, they get days so hot they kill and drought that can kill children and families and whole societies.  The just and the unjust not only get rain, they get deluges, hurricanes.  In addition there are earthquakes, tsunamis, fires, and plagues.  Many of these "natural; disasters' are at least as much the work of man as of nature.  Still, nature does remind us from time to time who is really in charge here.

Taoism holds that nature is the great teacher of the Way.  Nature follows Tao, and if we will follow nature wel too will be on the great way.  But, as Vico reminded us, society has become "second nature" to man; and we hardly know what our "true nature." (if such a thing exists anymore,) is.

This, in itself, is an excellent reason for following the via negativa, the Tao, the eightfold path, and the sermon on the mount.  This is the reason we meditate.   We have flooded our true selves with the demands of our egos and we have nearly lost ourselves by trying to find ourselves.  Meditation is a way of peeling away the roles and rules and ego demands and ideologies with which we have encumbered ourselves so that we can see what it was the creator made in its image.

When i press reason to the limit, i become confused.
When i press quiescence to the limit, i become awakened.

Nature reveals secrets to the poet she will not reveal to the biologist, and tells secrets to the biologist she will not tell the poet.

Let me live in and with nature as aborigines did, loving it like a brother and sister as St. Francis did, and learning from it as the poets do.

- Horarium: first draft, Thanks to Solitary Bird

Just a gentle reminder to myself that i need some discipline, some structure in my life.  What structure i have revolves around Dianne's needs, which are not burdensome but seemingly an almost constant source of demands.  (Please note that this is strictly an autists perspective and i probably should not have shared it!--but i did anyway.

The Conditions of a Solitary Bird - Horarium: first draft