The linear mind thinks one thing after another. Our eyes, when relaxed, allow all things to appear in vision. A crane waits with a soft gaze until a yang element of water movement appears and then the crane acts spontaneously, catching the surfacing fish. If the crane strained to see, one after another, each place where a fish might appear and then think how to catch it, the crane would starve to death. Only when relaxed and allowing an involuntary reaction does the crane thrive. The crane is in a state of Zen.
We’ve been straining to use the linear mind to solve a non-linear problem. How to save the environment. We’ve defined our outer body (the world) as something separate from us by agreeing to use the word “environment” - that which surrounds. Then we run with a mistaken idea and don’t feel ourselves as a feature of a larger pattern of life. We strain our gaze on one thing after another in an attempt to solve non-linear problems with a linear approach.
I wonder what might happen if we gave up. If each of us at some point just dropped trying to save the world, ourselves, or anything. If we didn’t get on a plane or in a car to attend a rally on how to reduce carbon emissions.
I think at first there would be an overwhelming sense that we have utterly failed. There’s no point in trying to achieve anything then, if in our trying we lose the ability to see the big picture - to only focus on a tiny patch water where there is no fish. This depression might last for a while, and then we’d get fidgety. We’d want to do something. But when there is no point in writing a blog or updating a social media page to tell other people what they should be doing or feeling, our hands would drop to our laps. We’d be sitting with nothing to do and no motivation to try to do it. Our gaze would then soften, and with no-where to go, we’d rest, perhaps allow spontaneity to move us. Like the crane, we would become again a feature of life, and being entirely ourselves, as pleasant to be around as the other animals.