A Zen Fit is a fresh step, a fresh way of looking at the world from the center instead of on the periphery, from the axis instead of the rim. When we suddenly (and the center view is always a sudden shift) know what to do. There is no more weighing, calculating and guilt from making the wrong choice or fear. There is no choice. When you know what to do, there is no choice, you just do it. The knowing and the doing are the same act.
This is art, isn’t it? In the moment of art, the art does you. Or sports, in the Zen moment of sports, the sports does you. They call it being in the zone. That’s why we love to watch sports. And now we have YouTubes where we watch people having Zen moments, you know, doing extraordinary actions where we know that are in some other zone.
We all want to have a Zen Fit, a Zen moment, but you cannot get there by effort. You cannot get saved by good works. So we project our Zen Fit into the future and try to get there, or pray to get there, or hope to get there, or gamble and bribe or cheat or kill to get there. But basically, we are just trying to get to our lost center. But we are trying to get there from the rim, from the outside, and no matter what we do, we remain on the outside of our own center.
Our culture places us and keep us there because the view from the outside is the dominant viewpoint of our materialistic culture. Materialism means focusing on, observing, and operating on the material. We are good at it. But in order to operate on some stuff, you need to be outside of it, otherwise, you cut yourself.
Today is ThanksGoing…that last family left town. It was a great Thanksgiving, and I always discover myself anew at Thanksgiving for this is when the family and my old self gather to eat the dismembered Turkey that we eat as if it were the broken body of Christ. Remember I see metaphors.
We are all broken, drawn and quartered by the world, and it is when we return home to the family that we have the opportunity to heal the wounds, wash away the regrets, and erase the guilt. Or we can just add more grief. That’s the way the turkey gobbles.
When the family gathers I always find myself wearing the old clothes that I have worn since childhood, a costume of thorns. I feel outside as if looking in on the family good time. This is my family persona. I realize now that it a basic feeling of being unworthy, that no one wants to hear what I have to say, so to protect myself I remain aloof. The irony is, obviously, that these old clothes create the wound; my armor creates the pain that that armor protects me from.
So every Thanksgiving when the larger family gathers, I take off a little more armor and have a little less pain. This Thanksgiving’s as if the armor became transparent. You cannot take off the armor within which we are fitted in childhood to protect us from the pain of self-loathing. But we can make it transparent, a cellophane outfit. When you can see through it, smile through it, the armor no longer exist. But if you have one thought of self-doubt, the old feeling of not measuring up, SNAP, the armor comes back on. But then you notice the pain and its real cause.
What I call a Zen Fit, is when the armor, when our persona becomes transparent to the real. The truth is that our armor, the personality in which we live with all its history and baggage is not real.
So happy Thanksgiving…and happy Thanksgoing.