Everyone knows what it is to be hit.
The hit precipitates us into the world. Every world is a gift – but we have to find our way in it. Worlds are dimensional – which means we move on up but we can also get lost. Colour, sounds, danger, pain: it just gets out of hand.
There are only two responses: ‘That’s it!’ and ‘What is it, really?’ Diving in and pulling away.
Worlds are ambiguous. Well, you’d expect as much: they’re sensational and a good deal of trouble. When they come upon us – those short, bright visitations, those long, turning circles – then we’re touched by a kind of love, a departure from ourselves. The air is still and we know that created things can be other than they are. This pendant world, in bigness as a star of smallest magnitude, hangs on a golden chain close by the moon.
Of course, we’re stretching things a bit far – but you’ve always got to do that. On one side, the angel of life, whose care is lest we see too much at once; on the other, the Buddha laughing with his whole body. The two nod at each other across the arcs of space. We’re in between. What to do? The moment arises, we set ourselves, we pull the world in closer, see its colours running out, hear the great chasms calling. Then we leap. We’re exalted – but it’s a bad eminence, grace and derangement both.
With the hit, everything is a bonus; without it, everything is a substitute. Everyone is equal before it.
When we’re caught up, the world changes. Things are neither as near nor as far as they seem, neither this colour nor that. We’ve found something with its own life. What does that make us? Improbable, giddy and brave. The hit opens us up – but it also offers us up.
Out of this comes our life. Except that life, you can’t get hold of; death, you can’t escape. Between the ungraspable and the inescapable there’s as much drama as you could ask for and it’s coming our way right now, the tumbling destiny of all those that are born.
I just wanted to see if I could capture all this, to say ‘Here it is’.
- For Laughing Buddha, see page 136
- For grace and derangement, see page 63
- For worlds, see pages 64 and 68
- As for life, try pages 27 and 44
(click on any of these pages to download and print; or any other page in the book)