> jumping into life.

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My roommate and I were seatmates in the zendo all summer, and there is a sort of intimacy between us that I've never encountered before. We are also friends; we were in a writing group together and the group explored some deep territory, so that there are things we know about each other that very few other people know. But it isn't that. I know somehow the shape of her presence, the meter of her breathing, the way she fills space and moves and how very quietly she can cry. We move around each other easily in the container of our room. Brother David talked about sharing a hotel room with a Zen student he didn't know, that their common experience of monastic practice allowed them to be "like two fish that had shared always the same bowl." We are perhaps not quite so elegantly attuned, but it is interesting and lovely to note how simply comfortable we are together.

There was a point in the summer when I could tell who was walking behind me in the zendo. When I would pass someone in robes on a dark path and know who I bowed to without needing to lift my eyes. We learned each other quietly, bodily, in a way more deeply physical than I think most people would expect out of Zen. The whole thing - this tradition, at least; my experience of it, at least - is deeply phsyical. In practice discussion we are asked to locate the feelings we describe - where is it in your body? What does it feel like, physically, to be angry? To be in love? We are asked to ground ourselves in our own physical reality, beginning with the breath. Ending with the breath.

When I enter my body and think of him, I feel solid. There is a falcon-winged flutter of fear, no doubt. And there is a lightness. I know my intentions these days enough to distrust them, but I trust my body. The mind can trick itself, but the body can't lie. In the end it was my body telling me to leave him; it is my body telling me it is right to go back. The heart is at its center, after all.

Besides: in a world such as this, when love is pulling me one way and fear pulls me the other, I know by which I want to live my life.

re: last paragraoph.

too fucking right, mate.

(i had a moment, last week, when i realized a goodly reason why i was diong something was because if i didn't, you, lisa, hannah, etc. would kick my ass.)

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