“That is what allows the joy of its harmony to open into all things without losing its fullness, what keeps it flowing on day and night without cease, taking part everywhere as the springtime of each being. Connecting up with This, your mind becomes the site of the life-giving time. This is what it means to keep the innate powers whole” (5:16-17; Ziporyn).

“That is . . . .” What is? Not allowing the vicissitudes of life to enter your Numinous Reservoir (mind-experience) in such a way as to disturb your peace. All that happens is embraceable, because the Totality is ultimately affirmable. (All is well in the Great Mess.) In this way, one is in harmony with oneself and the world, and this makes for joy.  Joy is something worth having. And this joy in utterly non-contingent—it depends of nothing. It is life allowed to be itself. It is not happiness as mutually arising with its opposite unhappiness, but a kind of non-happy happiness.

Not discriminating between events as affirmable or unaffirmable carries over into a sense of unity with “all things”, an experience of the loss of one’s “me” as the transcendence of the I/other dichotomy.  It allows one to “open into all things”. Guo Xiang calls it “vanishing into things”.

Yet this vanishing into unity does not mean the loss of one’s own special self-so-ness, one’s “fullness”. This suggests Ziporyn’s “omnicentrism”, a difficult concept, yet a potentially mind-expanding one. The Totality is not the center, an exclusive center that would negate differences. Things do not have their value by virtue of their being (solely) part of the “One”, but the “One” (also) has its value by virtue of the many. Every individual thing is the center, a non-exclusive center. Every individual thing is and explains Everything. It’s infinite worm-holes into Unity.

This has practical implications in that one realizes the greatest unity with the world through the cultivation of one’s own uniqueness as the gate into that unity. And this holds true for everyone else, as well. Differences are respected and honored.

These are a few brief personal reflections on this passage. I’ll conclude in the next post.

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