The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive

November 5, 2017

~  submergence < > sound < > mountain radio < > emergence~

don't get anyone upset when speaking to other people, saying
things like a green mountain can't walk (can't get up and walk)
and an eastern mountain can't travel on water. when you don't
understand anything, when your understanding is beginner's
understanding, you doubt everything, the phrase 'green mountains
are walking' means nothing to you. when your studies are just
beginning, you're troubled by everything, by 'flowing mountains'
and 'radio' for example, you have uneasy dreams at night, your
face is shallow and troubled. you don't even know that water
flows, that air flows, that rocks and mountains flow, that the
radio sings everywhere, your drown in your understanding, drown
in everything. for mountains are mountains and alive like the
dust you walk in, everything is a mountain and a mountain is
everything. there's understanding and not understanding, there's
listening and not listening, and not listening listening,
everything forms everything else, nothing forms everything,
buddhas are formed everywhere, buddha appear just like that,
there wasn't anything before, there was everything.

when you don't know, speaking is painful whatever you say,
nothing negates mountains moving here and there, walking
everywhere, crossing water and valleys, even skies where radio
is there above and below. your views are pools among them, and
they support you when you are right, and when you are wrong you
can't hear the difference, you can't see the difference. nothing
and everything is knowing and knowledge and there is no
knowledge here, aren't you amazing, sesshu's mountains flowing
like radio, you don't need sesshu, you don't need flowing
mountains, you don't need radio. such mountains aren't
understood by everyone, one moment to the next, they're walking
among radio. we'll talk about mountains here, we'll say nothing,
it's just a word, this mountain, holding everything together,
one word or another, why not a word, why not silence. they move
and flow like radio, these mountains. they give birth, they're
just there, they move, they're flowing, open your eyes, there
are buddhas all around you, there are mountains and valleys,
there's radio all about, open your eyes, your ears, open your
mouth, silently speak, speak silence, listen.

paraphrasing from dogen's sansuikyo

"For their other foreign-language broadcasts the Nazis have a
strange assortment of hired Balkanites, Dutch, Scandinavians,
Spaniards, Arabs, and Hindus. Once in a great while one of these
speakers turns out to be 'unreliable.' Such a one was the
Yugoslav speaker who began his broadcast the other night:
'Ladies and gentlemen, what you are about to hear from Berlin
tonight is a lot of nonsense, a pack of lies, and if you have
any sense, you will turn your dials.' He got no further, for
there are 'checkers' sitting listening at the Propaganda
Ministry at the other end of town. The last seen of the fellow
was when the S.S. guards carted him off to jail."

- from William Shirer, Berlin Diary, 1941

(thanks to paul thayer's Steal This CodeArt, 2017)


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