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Message from Henry: Wound and Blessing

To take the path of healing is to take the path of the wound.

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Our English word blessing is related to the French word blessée, meaning wounded, or blessure, meaning wound.

The wound is a blessing; the blessing comes as a wound.
The wound wants to change us. We cannot heal and stay the same. To change we have to surrender to what we do not yet know. We are going into something unknown. That is why it can be hard to heal.

To take the path of healing is to take the path of the wound.

That is, to surrender to the wisdom of the wound, to receive the wound as a blessing, to trust that it knows what we do not, that it knows how to liberate us from the knowledge we cling to.

* * * * *

It is the greatest blessing and opportunity in the universe to have a human body and mind, Harada Roshi says, precisely because it allows us to discover the Dharma – in other words, the extraordinary truth of who we are. Yet please remember also that we don’t have that long. The clock is ticking for us all.

Dogen exhorts us not to dally: the person we walked past yesterday is here no more today.

If we are getting the sense that we might like to take a step along the spiritual path, maybe we don’t need to delay too long.

Likewise for those already on the path of training, if you have tasted the Dharma directly, had a glimpse of the Ox, redouble your efforts. It’s one thing to see it and a different thing to surrender ourselves to it fully. Why wouldn’t this be our highest priority? If you’ve yet to catch a glimpse of it, or have no particular interest in seeing it, then just resolve to sit with constancy, in trust that however it may seem, all is at the same time well.

After all, ripeness cannot be rushed. And everything is always perfectly ripe, just as it is, anyway. Therefore we can also be totally patient.

Message from Henry taken from our November 3, 2015 Newsletter.


Image: My Way of Life, by Hartwig HKD, CC BY-ND 2.0.

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