THE SWIFT FLIGHT OF A SMILE

 

 

 

.北 (Shijing )

Chinese literature begins with Shi jing , a book of Odes written during the Zou Dynasty (1027- 771  BCE) to the Spring and Autumn period (770 – 476 BCE)

I go out at the north gate,
With my heart full of sorrow.
Straitened am I and poor,
And no one takes knowledge of my distress.

When reading anything of deeper value one must never caress it with the intellect.  The words simply open the door, particularly in the old chinese language of characters, to transmitted experiences.

Here the task is eay, because  we are over three thousnd years on from when this poem was written and it seems that we have learned nothing.

I walk in the west, happy in my silence as close to being one with the dusty world as I can get, teaching as best I can …

Yet in the last twenty years how many modern civilized people on trains, buses and in the streets have stopped just for a second to say ..good morning … or sent a smile, returning mine, declaring a secret wish that I have  good day. Perhaps a dozen no more if I have not spoken first.

There were times in some cultures when the old told stories to the young, but gameboys do not tell stories. There are many old ones walking the world in sorrow. How much does a ten second smile or an understanding non condescending glance cost you.

Spend your wealth of heart and mind now.

You are dead a long time.


Shan jian dashi

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