Nothing New

Behind the common use of the mindfulness word, quite recent, after all, under our latitudes,
are hidden further-rooted words of ‘depth and authenticity’.

Depth and authenticity are the most precious things we can offer people in front of us, wherever we are. They are the ingredients to real presence.
This presence is what the world needs without necessarily knowing it.

They are the tonality of the disciple along the Way.
They are also a marker for ongoing realization.

Thinking about Dogen, though he may not have phrased it that way :
Depth and authenticity are practice and realization.
Thinking about Thich Nhat Hanh :
Whenever we live a life of Mindfulness, we are in the Kingdom of God.

©FJ April 2022
Groupe de Pratique
Merci à tous…

10 commentaires

  1. I’ll transfer our authenticity discussion here, if I may.

    To some, authentic means « traditional ». Yet every tradition was new once. Long use of the inauthentic seems an inadequate transformative process.

    To others, maybe, it means « sincere ». Yet one can be sincerely mistaken, even shallow.

    I find no satisfactory synonym.

    If it means « being myself », I am not what I was yesterday, nor what I will be tomorrow.

    I have had a similar discussion with another, to the conclusion « authenticity » either is indefinable or meaningless.

    That is not, necessarily, a bad thing. Perhaps it « means nothing ».

    Aimé par 1 personne

    1. I mean ‘authentic’ as in ‘not fabricated so as to appear as…’ which in itself tends to cancel out most terms in the equation.
      If there’s nothing left, as you suggested (what does ‘being myself’ means ? ), maybe that was the point.
      I don’t believe in ever solving the equation, really,
      I believe in leaving the equation and the self proclaimed mathematicians where they are and go for a walk.

      Authenticity, as in : a resonance to a frequency known for ever but forgotten for ages.
      I know this frequency word sounds new age-y, but as a musician myself, I should not be denied the right to use it whenever I deem it appropriate.

      I don’t think authenticity is meaningless or undefinable.
      I think it is meaningless to ever try to define it as, again, it is way beyond words.
      the parallel with music can be drawn a bit further :
      Think about MIles Davis, when you hear the sound of his trumpet playing, you know this is him. You do not start considering parameters to which you should compare this bit of sound before knowing whence it comes. (where it comes from ?)

      Aimé par 1 personne

  2. Hmm. Not meaningless, but without expressible meaning. Not indefinable, but no definition is possible…

    Definitions sound silly but you know it when you see it – a bit like an elephant?

    If only that which is beyond words is « authentic » (and, certainly, I know of nothing that can be expressed with any confidence as « authentic », then I am left with « nothing is, and nothing is authentic ».

    Are not the musical parameters you suggest self-compared rather than compared with what they are not?

    « Whence it comes » is perfectly good English for the meaning you indicate (I assume that was the point of the question within the parentheses), but a little old fashioned. More likely to see it written than hear it spoken.

    Aimé par 1 personne

    1. Hi Simon…(thanks for you confirmation… I wasn’t sure.
      ‘Whence is typically the kind of lexical tool I’d come across may times but never dared to use in real life.
      Gave it a daring try.
      We, adventurers, love leading a dangerous life.

      I’ve been away these last day and unable to read last comments… Sorry.
      I’ll read give them a thorough read no layer than tomorrow.
      Still, this is no guarantee for inspiration.
      Have a nice evening

      Aimé par 1 personne

      1. Absolutely not…
        Just like those articles may seriously vary in terms of quality and interest,
        I may suffer from sloppy inspiration when writing comments.
        (also, when I’m sitting in front of the PC writing articles, background noise (KIDS!) isn’t too much of a problem, for I’m mostly copying content from a notepad)
        Answering comments, and trying to be relevant is quite another challenge in such conditions.

        (HEre Above, a strategy of side kicking responsibility on a context — children always provide a wonderful excuse for failing to to things.)


  3. not so sure about the self defining feature of the elephant.
    Are you familiar with the story often attributed to the Buddha, though present in other traditions.
    The truth is like an elephant…Four blind men who have never com in contact with an elephant want to know what the animal is like.
    When they approach it and start to feel whatever comes within their reach, each of them is going to define the elephant differently (tail : long, thin with hairs at the end / Trump : thick, noisy, raspy / PAw : large, powerful / Body….)
    each of them is right while none of them has really gotten what an elephant is like.
    Well, famous story.

    I referred to music for its instinctive, non discursive characteristics…Couldn’t we say there are archetypal places whence (!) music is listened to ?
    Places where the sound heard from the external world directly hit and activate the ‘genuine’/’authentic’ stamp to instinctively validate the experience ?
    Thus, it would be both self compared AND compared to what they are not. (fake, artificial)

    This may not be a skilled way to put it.
    Still, I’m quite convinced the parallel with music is relevant to express what happens when authenticity hits.

    Aimé par 1 personne

  4. Can inspiration be sloppy? If so, how is the inspired responsible?

    I may now depress you. Children do not get less distracting as they grow. As I discovered when my 24 year old son crept up behind me and proceeded to tickle me, yesterday.

    Maybe this will actually hearten you. The excuse does not diminish over time.

    Yes, I have heard that elephant story.

    I am not a musician – though learning, perhaps, a mandolin or bouzouki may become a retirement objective eventually. However I recognise its emotional impact. Whether that is to do with some inner or innate archetype, I am unsure. Certainly, it seems instinctive – but, maybe, we are Pavlov’s dogs, reacting according to conditioning. Perhaps that is why generations tend to prefer their own music.

    Aimé par 1 personne

    1. I agree with you…it seems that conditioning can program pretty much anyone to like what they are supposed to…
      But there is a deeper layer of reality.

      timelessness of musical truth (I mean it as authenticity)

      The same occurs with literature.
      I remember, as a student, reading Hamlet and being so vividly caught in the plot that the hundreds of years keeping me apart from the author vanished instantly.
      There are constant, universal realities in the soul of men.
      When touched all contextual characteristics disappear.
      OUr work is to maintain accessibility to this part of our soul.
      (While society’s work seems to be to block the access, to clutter the path with comsumable products.
      CLuttering our mind is a contemporary obsession.
      Identity questions have, in this regard, a very high cluttering potential.
      People were lost. now, they’re way beyond lost.
      (and claim to be found, to finally know who they are. Saddest irony of all.

      Aimé par 1 personne

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