Intermezzo 12: Sharing and fragility
Sophia: I don’t really want to speak to because I know my head is going to go round trying to find the way to express what I have to say, and I don’t know what to say . . . [begins to gently cry]
What I feel in this moment is like a leaf and it seems that I cannot say any more. I feel very fragile; it’s not a bad feeling but it is a new situation and strange and unknown to me. But I also feel very light.
Mike: I am very familiar with that feeling of fragility. I think it must be there if we are truly making changes because what is known is suddenly changed into some thing not so secure – not quite knowing what it is; all growth meets that moment somewhere.
There are two books that I have found quite useful in Buddhism. One is an essay and is written by somebody who is now a friend of mine. He is a Thai monk, and he is also an abbot and it’s really the story of Buddhism in very simple terms and it is called, ‘Falling Leaves.’ And the other book is written by a guy who could be described as a western philosopher I suppose and his subject is Zen Buddhism, and it’s called, ‘Catching a Feather on a Fan.’ You have to be really gently in tune to let the feather fall on the fan, because as soon as you move fast the feather is blown away.
So when we are going through these changes, we are like a fan observing our psyches which is like a feather; very light and airy and blowing in the wind. We have to make a relationship with the feather and be very mindful of the fan. I like this image very much because there is no attachment; it can blow away at any time. You can easily disturb the relationship if you try too hard, you have to be quite awake and then it is quite a nice image about this work at a deep level.