you look up at the moon tonight, like you always used to do. not the same pale arizona moon, though. the douglas fir points with tri-tips, bent like a phoenix, toward it. clouds pass by swirling and melting. the moon shines with a rainbow halo surrounding it, which changes shape and intensity as the clouds pass. some kind of animal screeches in the tree behind you, you think maybe a baby. from a few blocks away, maybe half a mile, you hear a crash, a thud, and it doesn’t occur to you until moments later, while the car horn continues to blare that its an accident. minutes pass; police sirens. the clouds still pass by, the moon still shines, the branches of the doug-fir still shake in the breeze. a couple more minutes; ambulence sirens wail. that’s when it occurs to you that hope is the same feeling as despair.
Have you ever had a word, perhaps foreign, perhaps just some gibberish made up in your head, come to mind? Has that ever happened? because it happened to me recently. The word? Doshā, sometimes Dosā, apparently in Japanese, dôsha. A word I’m pretty sure I’ve never heard before, and though it’s entirely possible, even probable that I read it somewhere and stored it away in the ol’ subconscious, still it feels surreal, meaningful, even spiritual. So a quick Google search to find its meaning, because for it to have any connection, any real meaning it has to be defined. Buddhadôsha, not sure why but, no results on Google. I figured well dôsha is the actual word, so what, if anything, does dôsha mean? Is it even a word or a complete fiction?
Dosha, in sanskrit, according to Google, literally translates as fault/disease. Since this unknown word with unknown origin appeared in my mind, it must clearly mean something in particular about me, thus the reason for trying to ascribe meaning to it, so I can also ascribe meaning to myself. And to think the word that represents me means Afflicted. That won’t do. Though it does sort of ring true to some extent and, well has sort of defined the way I’ve thought about myself for a while, but still not the meaning I was hoping for.
I also saw a lot of Japanese results come up, apparently the Japanese word means earth, sediment, sand. There’s even a kanji to go with it, I could be one of those people that get the tattoo! (Tongue firmly in cheek) Anyway, I like that result better. The ground, the base, the support. Different throughout the world’s regions, though always the same, always providing, sustaining. Like the earth’s people in a way.
After some further research I came to find the Wikipedia for dosha. Apparently there are three doshas that are the base for a person’s body and are the makeup for the physiological functions. So again the ideas of base, support, and sustaining qualities come up (although these doshas seem to have a negative connotation, perhaps someone who knows better can help me out here.) Further research thanks to this site which was awesome and extremely helpful, found that within Buddhism dosha is the pali word for aversion; or anger, within the three poisions of the mind.
Now things seem to be getting more personal. I have struggled with anger in particular for a long time. Only recently have I become strong enough to try to do something about it.
Dosa has destructive nature. It is very ugly. It hurts anyone anything. Dosa destroys its home and its environment. In the presence of dosa everything wicked and unhumanly things can be committed.
Dosa is aggressive, just like a snake which has been hit. The function of dosa is spreading of itself or writhing as
when poison takes effect. Dosa is harmful for mind and body. Because of dosa our appearance becomes ugly: we may become red in the face, our features become unpleasant and the comers of our mouth droop.
Dosa can also appear as fear. When there is fear one dislikes the object which is experienced. Fear is harmful for mind and body.
-from the above mentioned site
As you learn in Buddhism there is no fight, no good vs. evil, because within one thing there is everything else; enlightenment lies within your afflictions; on one side is hatred or anger on the other side of that hatred or anger is transformed into love, and compassion. So our afflictions are not something to run away from, or to do battle with, or to be shoved away and forgotten about. This is in a lot of respects a goal for me, I have, I believe, a high capacity for love and compassion, because of my struggles with anger. I see anger in a different way, I see the way I transmit it to my wife and kids, I see the way others use anger, I hear the news that is fueled with anger, and I want for nothing more than to be a support, a base, a sustaining soil for the qualities of love and compassion.
So welcome to the world Buddhadoshā. Buddha, because it is the source, the source of all the psychology, philosophy, and spirituality that wisdom springs from. And doshā because it, apparently, has some meaning to me.
crags of coral
the diaphragm contracts and pushes,
room for further expansion. weightless.
the entire world melts away into pleasant joy.
the belly, like a tide
lapping on the shore
if we can be aware of our insides
what else can we be aware of?
loosen the grip. is there a beginning?
where does it begin?
i try to draw the line
between out and in,
but if i were wise,
that there is no difference.
once you start to breath out, you’ve already started to breath in.
who am i?
loosen the grip
no one here controlling
it just flows like a river, it watches.
what makes me so special?
why is it
that i look for
a single narrative to make the difference,
as if that narrative doesn’t hold all others.
in a single moment of expansion,
the whole universe breathes in.
an explosion of conditions
a flowers bloom
is made possible by the death
of last seasons fruit.
what kind of flower did you just picture?
the earth opens
there is no one experiencing
and nothing to
the universe opens up,
there is no heroes journey,
it’s all here in this moment
all of history
all right now.
i breathe and the universe breathes with me
not right now anyway
we manifest new each moment and everything and everyone in history
is with us, again and again
and again and
again and again
The Guardian summarizes the conflicted, straining mind by way of an interesting allegory.
When I finally got to the top of the mountain I asked the Guardian, “how is it that you see everything, but it is so hard to see you?” The Guardian said to me, “it’s much like trying to take a shit while distracted; you know it has to come, but because you have no focus you sit, and you sit and finally you get tired of waiting, and so you push and strain, push and pinch trying harder and harder, but still nothing, no shit. So you start to get frustrated and think, ‘no shit will ever come.’ So you push some more until finally now your stomach is upset and it’s hurting and now you sit in pain because of all the strain. Writhing back and forth you struggle, until after some time, finally, shit. But it is not a quality shit, it is a bad kind of shit and so you finally finish and now your stomach remains hurting. There has been no relief. It is in this way that it is hard to see me; too much strain, not enough patience and focus.”
Live without thoughts,
that’s an interesting notion (the thought says almost simultaneously)
arresting me in another galaxy.
The karma on that shit arrives instantly,
i know cause i watch it taking place;
the future is forming all around me.
There’s no subtext here; i mean what i say.
How’s that for a moment of clarity.
They glare at me, i’m a rarity
in the presence of the mind’s eye
i sit in the womb of awareness
but only for a moment
Until layers of Opinions
and memories are turned
Too caught up in this one
we’re lost within a stain of time
falling way behind
too late to hit rewind
and i just
trying to hit that benchmark
once blessed to perceive.
Remember just as we must let go of every breath
So too must we let go of everysight, sound, taste, touch, smell, and thought.
sight, sound, taste, touch, smell, and thought.
Walking through the fog
Focusing on the whole
Body of actions.
At times its clear where the path is,
and other times where the path is not.
That’s OK though,
as long as its clear.
Picture: “Rainy Day” by Dan Flosi,