Thursday, July 12, 2007

Zen and back again...

What follows are some "modern" haiku (interspersed with images *to come*) which are based partially on my notes over the past few months, and also, to a degree upon, some of my experiences in this wonderfully calm and quaint Rinzai Zen Temple outside of Kyoto.

Traditional or formal haiku should not only have a 5-7-5 syllable count, but should be composed during a pure moment of Zen which reflects and invokes an empathic experience in the reader. Also present should be a characteristic of, or reflection on, a season by virtue of an appropriate subject or action. Due to the pace and disconnectedness from nature of today's society I have dispensed with some of the more traditional aspects, in the hope of evoking in the reader a similar experience to mine. There are perhaps more messages than moments in the below, and of course some information technology!


Many distractions,
information overload.
Where is the wisdom?


Internal battles.
Elephant for dinner.
Morsel at a time.


Physical struggle,
gateway to inside, not out,
receiver go deep.


Faith in science,
No moral compass found here.
Perhaps in Zen?


Arrogant mind.
Our attachments and desires.
Wake up time.

So many "sheeple",
asleep at the wheel.
How to de-program?

Input and output,
constantly processing them.
Who does the work?

Watching the watcher.
One of us is a tool.
Wield with respect.

Bits in, bits out.
Quality information,
computer mind?

Symbiotic "we".
Both need constant attention,
unplug the machine.

All is nature,
what can we not control?
Begin with yourself.

Symmetry desired.
Where is the fun in that?
Let's remain human.

Dirty fingernails.
Ground is moist and warm.
Food from the womb.

Dappled sunlight,
much potential energy,
free-wheeling downhill.

Sooner or later,
worry grips the mind, draining.
How much is enough?

Half full, half empty.
Begin again. A new cup.
Paradigm shifting.

Summer decisions.
Experience of last year.
Life's moving goal posts.

Mind management,
herding cats, bees and mice,
welcome to the zoo.

Energy in thought,
our most prized possesions,
content and intent?

True nobility,
Improve upon former self,

Criticise, gossip,
matter not when others speak,

No unhappiness,
curious, energetic,
spirited, joyful.

All basic questions,
unanswered, never stupid.
Reluctant probing.

Form expectations,
plain as the nose on your face,
perceptions altered.

Too young, too old.
Deceive oneself, just do it.
Too rich, too poor.

Control your thoughts,
failure, no courage to try.
Nothing more, nothing less.

Future shock, peak oil,
adaptational breakdown.
Disease of change.

Ogburn culture lag.
Rate of human response,
obsolete people?

Premature future,
incompetent neurosis.
Avalanching change.

Death and permanence,
Suffocating complexity.
Impermanent rise.

Bleeding edge I.T.
Security, assurance,
nowhere to be found.

Always hurry forward,
Moulded mass education,
de-school society.

Early adopter,
enumerate the pitfalls.
Risk or reward?

Guaranteed future.
Where is the fun in that?
Step to the unknown.

Neural feedback loops,
"Thin slicing" situations,
partial involvement.

Avoid human ties,
flow through of people slowing down.
Nomadic children.

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