Know thin’ zen

Spring

Yellow flowers, Rape blossoms ,
You meet the spring once a year,
You paint the land by yellow.
When the wind visits, you flow.
During you are dancing,
I have a view of sea waving in yellow!

Poem and brush by Janney

Alameda Creek

Since Covid I have been walking along Alameda Creek almost daily.

An AlanWatts broadcast about 1973 mentioned the universe was happening in the same moment, perhaps the moment of no moment—a muMoment—everything happening in the same moment in infinity and time happens only inside the Universe, not outside of it, there is no outside. If its all happening at once why do we know the past but not the future?

The universe is estimated to be 6 billion years old—6,000,000,000; Homo Sapiens at 300,000 years. about 0.0005% of that time.

Time is one of the tools people created for survival, it seems real to us because as individuals we have “duration,” a life time, which has a beginning and an end. We live in societies where the “durations” of people overlap which, through communication extends individual experiences beyond those unique to a single life—we have a history.


.Around us the universe moves and we differentiate and define its patterns, some hourly, some daily, monthly yearly, all human created periods of time based on sensual experiences and reason..

Yet for the universe there are no years, no days, one second and 6 billion years are the same, there is only The Universe, no time outside of it. That is what makes the title of the book “A Brief History of Time”so interesting.

There is not anything which is not the universe, so how can it be aware of itself when it is itself? I am therefore I am.

To suggest the universe is not aware of itself implies that we know this, which implies there is a subject and an object, something outside the universe—us— which knows the universe,—but we are part of the universe, not separate. The more we know about the universe the greater is the distance between the universe and us, and the greater is our alienation. It is being human that alienates ourselves from our true self.

Sometimes I feel lke a motherless child a long way from home..
This is where we get the concept of alienation, the idea that human individuals are separated from their original self, their “true self.” and that separation is why we , as individuals, suffer. The Genesis Story, Freud, Hegel, Nietzsche, Marx, psychology’s “divided self.” the Buddhist notion of awakening the Buddha “naturally”inside each of us, and more.

Most of these “alienation theories” suggest alienation is the result of human social adaption which denies individual wants and needs for the needs of society for survival. Humans are social but alienation, like birth and death, is experienced individually. The notion that we are separated from our “ true natural self, “ real or not, through history seems to find meaning for many people..

Humans are a part of the universe—if there were no universe there would be no humans? and the universe appears to humans as being older than the history of humans, and perhaps of life itself.

My feeling is if the universe evolved (created) people to look at itself, then to get an objective assessment it had to separate itself from people —it created subject and object. Perhaps in a vain attempt to admire itself the universe created its own mirror—people—or perhaps more accurate, the process of seeing itself also created “alienated people. The Universe created perfect people and then in a vanity to see self turned them into alienated people.
Or just as likely, humans created the universe to have something which they could never full understand, a perpetual challenge so they would never get bored.

Japanese Pottery

Seto is a famous pottery area outside Nagoya—pottery in general may be referred when using the term seto-yaki, a fired-thing from Seto. Ki-seto, yellow seto, popular during the Momoyama period , usually has an overall yellow color with green spots and darker brown “scorch marks.”

Guro (or kuro) means black, Seto-guro is a black Seto fired thing. Oribe comes from the same area of Seto and Mino. Oribe is often a warm biege with green, often in drippings, and some dark brown brush drawing..

Bizen guinomi by Nakamura Mokoto, the Nakamura lip has a certain charm to it. Inside is often a unique alteration of the form, the edge may get thinner and a ridge forms—in the 9-12 quadrant below see the shadow of the ridge on the inside lip which you can feel with your tongue when drinking. the sake as it flows out of the guinomi over the ridge into the mouth.

I saw this E-karatsu guinomi in a Japanese online pottery store, it cost about $150 and the store only took US mail money orders, i.e. no credit cards, checks or Paypal, so I went to the Post Office, stood in line, bought the money order, sent it, and then . . . . the dealer never received it.
Some kind of an investigation took place and they figured it got delivered to the dealer in the next door store, no one knew where it was, but it was canceled and I had to send a new one but I had to wait 6-8 weeks to get a refund. The Japanese dealer just sent the guinomi to me with a note to send the money when the Post Office made the refund.. The clay is dark orange and the glaze is thicker and thinner, so in the thinly glazed areas the influence of the clay on the color varies.

I found this Hagi yunomi in a store out towards the end of Grant Street selling “Japanese stuff” —mostly not new and back when it was in style. It had a crack in it and he did not understand why I wanted it, I paid $5 , brought it home, filled it with leftover rice and a little water, let it sit for five days, cleaned it out and when you ping it with a finger it sounds solid and true— and holds hot tea as well.

Shigaraki pottery often has a charming roughness to it, small stones may be embed in the clay. When using this guinomi its feels like one moment when I felt thirsty I naturally reached over, grabbed a hunk of clay, formed it into a cup and now I am using it to drink—it feels immediate as if I am at the beginning of what pottery means in the evolution of human beings.

Chinese, not Japanese, rooster bowls are commonly seen in Chinese restaurants. Usually they are larger for soups, this one was smaller, and the curves gave it a softer more nuanced feel, and beside,s my zodiac animal is Rooster.

End Papers

I like the places my feet can take me, along Alameda Creek, the streets of San Francisco or Tokyo. Besides if you start at the top, my head, and work your way down my feet are at the end . . .and,

with my head on top , I usually see my feet against the background of the ground while the ground experiences me walking all over it, often with little or no regard for any damage I might be doing to it.

Indoor, outdoor, feet are reflected outside on the rubber sandals.

The last few lines of The Heart Sutra in old script brushed by Janney

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