Two and “Not Two”

Len Huber, Photographer

A winter’s day in Seattle produces snow-fog all around Puget Sound as the warmth of a cloudless sky bathes St. Mark’s Refuge on the Gulf of Mexico. We categorize them as here or there, as opposites even. What one location has, the other has not, for they are two. Yet, they are “not two” as they are one with the waters that cover the earth.

“Not two” was the constant response of Seng Ts’An–third patriarch of Chan in the seventh century–to all who sought his advice. Perhaps the patriarch’s response is best understood by what he did not say–oneness.

As one, we are both here and there, not completely in one place or the other. There is no separation between what we have and what we lack if we are one, not two. When we identify ourselves as this or that, we deprive ourselves of our joy, the “filling up and spilling over”* of  us.

In oneness, we are infused with the force of life and all of its mystery. Mark Nepo writes that “there are no wrong turns, only unexpected paths.”  If we believe that failure and success are one–not two–then we understand that every choice we make is complete in and of itself, a path of our own accord. Happy trails!

*Cris Williamson lyric in “The Changer and the Changed.”

Rhythm of ROW80 Sunday Scheduling:

  • Submitted bi-weekly Leashed as scheduled
  • Introducing short story revisions to writing schedule this week
    Plan this for afternoons/evenings but have to work in a nap
  • Novel revision consistent but not daily yet
  • Doing the Tao with Dyer on duality
  • Nepo morning meditation continues