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Chuang Tzu, Franz Kafka, Zen Master Fenyang, enlightenment, self control, and mysticism

excerpted from THE WAY OF WONDER: a return to the mystery of ourselves, by Jack Haas




“The greatest art is like stupidity.”

Chuang Tzu



Organic mysticism is not about rites, mantras, dogmas, or spiritual exercises (all of which, though perhaps valid in their own context, eventually become limiting factors to absolute unknowing, specifically because they do require context in order to be valid), it is about looking honestly at ourselves and everything, about de-identifying ourselves with the ‘I’ which participates in the play of being; it is about looking upon the self as if for the very first time, and letting it go, over and over again, so that It might continue to be and become more Itself, never again to be bound by the limiting mind.

Regarding the non-necessity of disciplines and directives, Franz Kafka stated, in unabashed reflection:  “Self control is something for which I do not strive. Self control means: wanting to work effectively at some random point in the infinite radiations of my spiritual existence. But if I must draw such circles round me, then it will be better for me to do it passively, merely gaping in wonder at the immense complex, and just take home with me the strength which this spectacle, e contrario, provides.”

To attain this ‘passivity’ we must live without thought of reward, goal, or attainment. We must exist in the world without knowing what it is to exist in the world. We must detach from our petty needs and understandings; we must effortlessly watch ourselves with complete, objective detachment, as if we were watching someone else watching someone else.

Zen Master Fenyang relates this finding, suggesting: “When you're settled...your mind is serene, unaffected by worldly distractions. You enter the realm of enlightenment, and transcend the ordinary world, leaving the world while in the midst of society.”

          He is pointing to the ‘no mind’, spoken of in Zen training, which implies absolute, unadulterated, innocent, novel, effortless attention.

            Seeing is not a function only of the eyes, it is a mind-set; whether we look through given interpretations and filters, or instead take them off and see clearly with nothing in between us and life; whether we choose to polish the lenses or continue to see ‘through a glass darkly’; or whether we choose to smash the windows, and let the breeze of brilliance blow through.


excerpted from:


way of wonder, sacred geometry, sri yantra



THE WAY OF WONDER: a return to the mystery of ourselves

by Jack Haas

author Jack Haas, Canadian, American writer, artist, photographer














Mystical books, visionary art, and fine art photography by Jack Haas




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