Nikolas Konstantin Blog

4th post

What's going on eh?

The moon sits on top of the tree. The darkness rises.

I contemplate its beauty. The sheer wonder of being dependent on a universe so vast to be able to exist. I can't believe that i never grasped how vulnerable and dependent I am. Without this moon, I wouldn't be here. Like a heart in the body - I stand here in the vast world. 

A mist rises. A sense of deep mistery envelops me. I have no more sense of what it means to be in the world. Where do I begin? I try to grasp to a sense of being, my body, my senses, an idea. Senseless. It is as i would be grasping with my hand in the mist. 

I think of the Japanese poet ryokan, who spend his life as a beggar living in a hat in the forrest. How rich and full of wonder his life was. What must his experience of the world have been? I long to drink sake in the morning hours with the dead fools who came before me. 

A fear of death keeps rising. As it keeps rising often this year. I widen my awareness to give it space to snuggle in. Together we sit and contemplate the beauty of the moon. The fear slowly vanishes, like all our lives will eventually. 

If we have lived at all. To vanish we have to exist in the first place. Dogen speaks of life being a moon in a dewdrop. The moon appears in my perception: just like a reflection in a small jewel-shaped drop of water. But I am not this reflection, and neither the awareness of it.  

I came to find answers. What i received was a reflection of the moon and the thick mist of unknowning. In two days I will leave this retreat. A month in silence will be over. 

They say, you don't come to the monastery to suffer less, but to suffer more effectively. True. Silence is my friend, my enemy, my lover, my punisher. Above all, silence is a tough mother. It has shown me how to nourish myself. How to heal and take care of the relationship with myself. 

I stand in front of a crossroads. I am as afraid of coming back to my normal life, as I would be staying one day longer here.

From my personal diary ...November retreat 2022