View Full Version : The Cloud of Unknowing

01-26-2007, 08:53 PM
Fourteenth century book, anonymous monk. I tried to find the thread on the Buddhist VOID, but didn't look very hard. I ran across this the other day, and it seems appropos of that question.

"In a word, let this thing deal with you and lead you as it will. Be the tree; let it be the carpenter. Be the house, and let it be the householder who lives there. Be willing to be blind, and give up all longing to know the why and how, for knowing will be more of a hindrance than a help."

Interesting words, especially for times of passage.

01-26-2007, 09:04 PM
there you are

Wild Dingo
01-26-2007, 09:06 PM
Sooooooooo hes basically saying... put yer head up yer to be polite toosh and be ignorant?? :eek: Man talk about blindingly increadible stuff mate real insightfull eh??

01-26-2007, 09:06 PM
Be willing to be blind, and give up all longing to know the why and how, for knowing will be more of a hindrance than a help."
And vote for a conservative party.

Osborne Russell
01-26-2007, 09:14 PM
let this thing deal with you and lead you as it will.

Listen to the voices . . . they're calling you . . .

The difference between this kind of thing and Buddhism is a "thing" apart from you that has a"will" to "lead" you to someplace other than where you are.

MEM and therefore western civ clings to duality as resolutely as the east rejects it.

01-26-2007, 09:53 PM
I just finished a book, a lovely book, about the heart of Eastern mysticism, written by an erudite westerner. Their vaunted lack of duallity isn't there, at least not except in perhaps some ends. The dualism is recognized, as I think it is in this passage, as illusory.

It's one thing to intellectuallize, another to realize. All I know for sure is that I see the union in my mind quite clearly, have for years, but I'm nowhere near realizing it. If duallity fits for now, wear it! Let's hope it can make us kinder to one another.

A root of it all is love. Even if it's only in the intellect, if you can see that there is no other, that you are the same as it, it makes it more difficult to do harm.

And, for the umpteenth time, here's a brief Witman. He saw, and put it in dualist terms.

I mind how once we lay such a transparent summer morning,
How you settled your head athwart my hips and gently turn'd over upon me,
And parted the shirt from my bosom-bone, and plunged your tongue to my bare-stript heart,
And reach'd till you felt my beard, and reach'd till you held my feet.

Swiftly arose and spread around me the peace and knowledge that pass all the argument of the earth,
And I know that the hand of God is the promise of my own,
And I know that the spirit of God is the brother of my own,
And that all the men ever born are also my brothers, and the women my sisters and lovers,
And that a kelson of the creation is love,
And limitless are leaves stiff or drooping in the fields,
And brown ants in the little wells beneath them,
And mossy scabs of the worm fenced heap'd stones, elder, mullein and poke-weed.


Nothing is static. Keep in the movement.

P.S. Stevebaby, and Dingo, this isn't politics.

01-26-2007, 10:24 PM
you see the union in your mind

I've got three kinds of blue cheese in the fridge.

01-26-2007, 10:37 PM
The union, the lack of division, is quite real. I've seen that in my mind. Your blue cheeses can come along. Seeing it, and realizing it, are different matters. It's different things to see it, and to feed the poor; make love in your life instead of strife.

A reckoning is coming. Make your mind and action.

jack grebe
01-26-2007, 10:38 PM
Welcome back Ish:D

01-26-2007, 11:04 PM
the cheese won't go in your mind
it's in the fridge

01-26-2007, 11:10 PM
I'll tell ya what, Lee, you can be the cheese.

01-27-2007, 02:02 PM
Good to see you back, Jack.

I've never read The Cloud of Unknowing, though I've meant to give it a whirl any number of times.


01-27-2007, 04:00 PM
Hi Tom,

I've only read excerpts. It's on the web. That quote has obviously been transliterated into more modern English, which I like if it's done well. Fourteenth century English is okay, if I'm in the mood.

The mystics, of all traditions, are so lovely. They all see the same thing after they've peeled back a veneer or two. I've often thought rounding up the leaders of today's world and locking them in intensive re-education camps for a few months would be in order. Shades of Mao! Yikes! LOL.

Memphis Mike
01-27-2007, 04:45 PM
I'm making spaghetti and meatballs for dinner.

jack grebe
01-27-2007, 05:07 PM
I'm making spaghetti and meatballs for dinner.
is that an invite? Naa, never mind....it would be breakfast till I got there:D

01-27-2007, 05:15 PM
Okay, you can be the spaghetti and meatballs, Mike. I think it's going to argue with Lee the blue cheese, but we'll work it out.

Memphis Mike
01-27-2007, 05:18 PM
Garlic bread and salad with BLUE CHEESE dressing.

01-27-2007, 05:56 PM
On top of spaghetti,
All covered with cheese (bleu).
I lost my poor meatball,
When somebody sneezed.

It rolled off the table,
And onto the floor.
And then my poor meatball.
rolled right out the door.

It rolled through the garden,
and under a bush.
And now my poor meatball,
is nothing but mush.