Well, it's almost here! JUKAI JUKAI JUAKI
As I was reading the recent post on instructions for the ceremony, I was struck by a phrase by Jundo hoping that those taking the precepts have defined a meaning for them. My instant reaction was that of "Oh hell... Have I?" and the mental scrambling that followed trying to dig up MY meaning. I went through each precept in my head in a bit of a rush to try to discover that meaning, that extra special nugget that I must have forgotten to unearth because no words were coming to mind as I tried to answer this phrase. I picked up Mind of Clover and started thumbing through, skimming, to find my meaning that I obviously hadn't retrieved from these pages.
Well, no nugget. Nothing to show. And that's how I like it. If I were to have something, I would be farther back than where I started. So, no, I don't have a special meaning for the precepts. I don't have a grand philosophical essay for them. All I have is right now, right from where I am to actual them, from this moment to the next.
I think we expect too much sometimes. That 13 odd weeks will carve these precepts into our bones and beyond; that a year of zazen will be enough to fully actualize this life and then we may move on, permanently enlightened, into the world and if we haven't managed that, we have failed. Maybe this is just me, but I think we are often very hard on ourselves where we shouldn't be and not hard enough where we should.
Just a few of my thoughts, what are yours?