Vector8 Journals

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Living in the Wonder; Expect the Unexpected

"All is magnificent. All is marvelous. All is mysterious.
We live in a world of impossibility, implausibility, and awe. We look, we see, we wonder. We experience the sudden opening to the inexplicable vastness, the weirdness, the overwhelming profundity, the utter miracle and magic of life, of
ourselves, and of all that is.

"These are the numinous moments when the monumental impossibility and spaciousness of existence opens up before and within us, granting us the rare and spectacular interruptions of our day-to-day consciousness. Call it what you will: wonder, awe, satori, samadhi, newness of mind, ignorance, innocence, original mind, or childlike perception- it is the hallmark of a mind which has come to know the incomprehensible magnitude of all and everything, and from which the individual is ‘opened up’ and therefore reunited with the Great Mystery which is our birthright." (The Way of Wonder, Jack Haas)
Life is Wonder. Wonder is Being. The moment we start wondering about Wonder, we lose our Wonder. It's like Peace. Peace is because Peace is. When you try to understand what it means to be peaceful you make Peace finite.

We have spent timeless time wondering. We have wondered about life and death and whether death is real. But one question our wondering has not been able to answer is this: Why is Life? One can only conclude, as one is apt to conclude, that life is. In other words, life is causeless. What do I mean by causeless? That there is no cause for something to happen, it just does. Life is because it is.

Just this morning while I waited for a bus a man approached me and engaged me in a conversation. He wanted to know my origin. I told him I was from Sierra Leone though I was born in London. He asked me whether I was a Creole. I told him my mother is part Nigerian and I have no idea what my father's tribe is, nor do I particularly care. I asked him what he considered his origin to be. He said Africa; he insisted that the black race originates in Africa. I could see where he was coming from. I told him my origin is Spirit. Later, I pondered whether my origin as Spirit is true. What and why is Spirit? Spirit is. Why and what am I? Being. Isness. Being has no origin. Being does not exist. Being simply is.

Life is causeless. It's a difficult concept to accept because one is always looking for reasons why such and such is such and such. The mind lets you believe you need answers or that you have answers. The moment you formulate a question you get an answer, even if the answer has no legs to stand on. Causelessness is returning to my true nature of Wonder. Wonder is like a young child's view of the world. He has no notion of causes. As far as he's concerned, the food his mother has given him simply appears. Let's say a child has never had a particular food before. He doesn't yet know whether he likes or dislikes it or whether he should. When he's acquired the taste, or accumulated memory of the taste, if he likes it he starts having desires for it. Causelessness is the moment before one has desires when all is. Causelessness is enjoying the wonder of the universe because it is.

It is written in the scriptures that Adam and Eve lived in the “Garden of Eden” and were kicked out because they disobeyed the rule about not eating from the “tree of knowledge of good and evil.” The “Garden of Eden” represents our true state of being where we lived in Wonder. There is no need to worry about a thing as everything is perfect and is. We are well provided for.

Wondering, needing to know why life is, keeps one outside of the "Garden of Eden." Wondering is like looking at yourself in the mirror. Imagine if we never had mirrors. You would never worry about what you looked like. In fact, it wouldn't even occur to you to want to know. You will simply be. The moment you stare into a mirror, you start worrying about whether you look normal, beautiful, fat, thin, etc.

Another way to describe wondering is like having a feeling that you shouldn't get on a plane but you don't listen to your intuition. The plane crashes but you survive to tell the story. You could easily have avoided the crash and be able to tell a different story. But you needed to be sure, didn't you?

Yesterday was a day of Wonder.

I went on one of my walks in a park. This park is not exactly a traditional park with flowers and nice benches, it's more like a forest where you can get lost for hours, days even. I found a bench overlooking a little watering hole. After a few moments I realised it wasn't an ideal spot as cyclists and joggers occasionally went by. Maybe I could find another bench around a similar pool. I walked for a while, enjoying the forest and grateful for its shade. I still couldn't find what I was looking for. Just as I was about to give up and rest on the bark of a tree, I was inspired to keep on walking a few more yards. I came across a lone bench overlooking a watering hole. I sat down and basked in the stillness and beauty of the forest. Then I heard footsteps behind me. A deer skipped by. Wow, I never expected to see a deer so close! After a while, a dog appeared and had a swim in the pool. Then he ran off to join his guardian. Another dog appeared and splashed about in the pool. He didn't want to leave. His guardian, a woman, pretended she was leaving without him. The dog bounded after her.

Another woman and a dog turned up. I said to her, "This spot is very popular with dogs then."
"Not this one, he is scared of water," she said. "He'll only go in when he's really hot."

The dog eyed the pool for a few minutes then ran off into the forest. I also have a healthy respect for water; I'm not much of a swimmer but I am a good doggie paddler, if you'll excuse the pun.

There I was thinking that just because two dogs had splashed around in the pool, all dogs are inclined to do the same. That’s the problem with taking things for granted, or interpreting the world through habit. One has to be open to the wonder of life where every moment is magical. In Wonder you expect the unexpected.

On my walk back I decided to take another path. I had a vague idea where I was headed. I eventually came to an intersection. I was going to use logic to determine which way but I decided it didn't matter as I had all the time in the world. I ended up back on the main road where I started.

Reminds me of another walk I went on the other day. I put out the intent where I wanted to end up. I had no idea where I was but I "followed my nose." I met a woman on the way who asked me if I knew how to get to a certain pond. I told her I don't take much notice of pond names and couldn't help her. I'm sure she met someone else who could help. I arrived at my destination, effortlessly. For me, getting lost is part of the walk. A walk is a walk is a walk.

Back to yesterday's day of Wonder. While I was still walking, I came across a man and a young woman and I heard her say "...Descarte's rational approach to philosophy." Hmmm! Wonder and the "rational approach" are so chalk and cheese!

At the bus stop I found a book on the seat. It was a vocabulary for children. There were only about 10 pages showing German names for different foods. Banana is banane; orange juice is orangensaft; and sandwich is sandwich in case I was wondering. Hahaha! I've kept it as a souvenir for wondering.

On my bus ride a man smiled at me. He asked me my name, where I was from etc. He was trying to chat me up. In the spirit of Wonder, I enjoyed the moment. He held on to my hand and said "lovely, lovely, lovely."

On my travels, I noticed a woman's top had the word "LOVE"; the back of a man's shirt had the picture of a falcon; a man's vest and shorts were the colours of the Jamaican flag; and the front of a man’s t-shirt with a huge Smilie. At Oxford Street, I saw a whole bunch of roller-skaters. The traffic stopped to let them skate by. I wondered whether it was some kind of demonstration then I remembered that life is.

On the bus I sat across a young woman. I thought she had a pretty face. She asked me whether we’d arrived at Oxford Street as she needed to catch a bus from there. I knew that bus route and where she could catch it. She said she was a secretary but was training as an accountant. I told her I temped for a while as a secretary and I used to work in accountancy. I trained in personal tax but didn't fancy becoming a tax accountant so I left. We exchanged stories about accountancy. She was a lot of fun and it was lovely to enjoy her company.

Finally, I noticed a billboard Advert for Nissan. The slogan read: "More Power. Bigger Space. Better Stories." This slogan describes Wonder perfectly. To be Wonder (more power) you have to let go of what you think you know and are (bigger space) so you can have wonderful experiences (better stories). Hmmm! There I go wondering again! Hehehe!

Life is a Wonder to behold. Nuff said.

Being the Wonder,