Sharpen Your Nerves • 4 September 2007

Last Thursday morning, Isaac Brock appeared to me floating in a cartoon cloud and hissed: “Sharpen your nerves!”

Then he cackled and grinned at me with a mouthful of teeth filed down to points. Screamed: “Sharpen your nerves! Ahh haa haa haa!!”

Fine Isaac. I’ll stop being a lazy ass, sitting here on the cushion layering interpretations on my immediate experience.

But I wondered: what if you took notes on a meditation retreat, to snag some of the really good interpretive thoughts before they flew away? Would it make it easier to let thinking go?

Turns out that no. It would keep your brainwaves a little spiky, because you’d need to whip up some focused discursive thought in order to write. And yet what you did write would be stupid and empty later.

I know this because the next day I tried writing a few things down. Stupid things.

Here’s from the notebook:

“There are turkeys! Large!”

“Wanting to hug everyone. Must practice non-hugging. Do not molest.”

“Ghee. God we’re weird.”

Now I’m surprised I had to preserve these words, and others which are dumb enough I won’t even transcribe them.

It makes me wonder if the deeper moments of awareness and sensation I experienced during the week week, moments which seemed tinged with the ineffable, were actually vapid nonsense. Probably. But just in light of my present state of mind. Trying to interpret, and evaluate, that state of mind with this one is problematic.

What’s salient there is trivial here; and the contrary is even more true.