Ultimately nothing exists. Science thinks matter ultimately exists - but experience shows that it doesn't. And ideas - what are they beyond thoughts about experience? What are ideas exacly? What are words - what is anything?

So try to catch that essence of the universe and it seems like you can't do it. In fact experience shows the ultimate essence of the universe is both infinitely describable, yet indescribable!

The Tao Te Ching says it best..

“Those who know do not speak. Those who speak do not know.” - Lao Tzu

But at the end of the day we're alive and we can't help but speak, define and create things. Especially as Lao Tzu demonstrates; about the ultimate essence of the universe. That's why it's good instead to make statements such as 'Quality exists and is the ultimate source of everything', because we can't help but speak and so it's best if we define things as best we can.

Yes, it's true that we can deny that Quality exists and deny that it's something we know before we speak about or define, and many do - but this is dishonest. You can't get out of bed in the morning without deciding that it's better to do so.

And so instead, if we're being honest; it's best that everything we do and say is in alignment with this ultimate essence of the universe.

But how do we best do this? How do we best experience and become intimately acquainted with this ultimately indescribable essence of the universe? How best do we make it an intrinsic part of our every day lives and so live in accordance with it?

To answer that I point to Zazen and the instructional video above.

By dramatically simplifying our actions to the point where we 'just sit' we are able to experience this essence. With no distractions and no thoughts to hide what is right in front of us all the time in each and every moment - we can experience and become acquainted with what Zen calls the 'original self' and the Metaphysics of Quality ultimately calls 'Dynamic Quality'.

But to sit for this reason, or for any of the increasing number of reasons why meditation is good for you also is actually wrong. Because if I sit for these or any reason I'm not 'just sitting' but actively doing something for a reason..

And this is why the best answer to why I sit is silence, the statement that 'Zazen is useless', and the daily ding of a meditation bell.


Some great news for the week is that there looks to be a great Zen in the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance documentary in the works. See above a clip of an interview with David Buchanan who I've spoken with many times online over the years.

David has an unparalleled understanding of the Metaphysics of Quality - particularly around how it relates to the philosophical tradition of american pragmatism. I'm sure with his involvement (no matter how small) the quality of this documentary will be greatly increased!

I believe the creators are currently looking for funding which you can do whilst they travel the route of the book - here.

Best of luck to them and hopefully this will kick off some well needed - renewed interest in Pirsig's original book.

"An idol, that's what this doll was. It was a genuine religious idol of an abandoned religion of one. It had all those formidable characteristics that idols always have. That's what spooked him. Once they've been ritualized and adored, these idols change in value. You can no more throw them away casually than you can throw an old church statue on the dump.

He wondered what they actually did with old abandoned church statues. Did they have a desanctification ceremony of some sort? "

Robert Pirsig - Lila

It's good to take care for the objects around you and dispose of them in the same caring manner you possesed whilst they were valuable to have around.

The Japanese appear to uniquely appreciate this within their modern culture. Such an appreciation is supported by the Metaphysics of Quality.

If there was anything in particular that 'primed' me to understand Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance and Lila aside from being raised the thoughtful, caring person I am. It would be a movie called 'Fight Club'.

For me, watching as a youthful Westerner - the ideas of Chuck Palahniuk were a revelation. Here was the idea that rather than finding freedom by running away from something, it could be found right here in front you.

Such thinking is supported by the MOQ and shown to be one of the two types of freedom discussed in the book Lila. That is; the freedom to be found running away from something which we're commonly used to, and the less commonly known freedom found by working through the pain of something right in front of you.

This was a freedom of the East which I knew little about - and now that I practice Zazen - still know nothing about it! :-)

"In the West progress seems to proceed by a series of spasms of alternating freedom and ritual. A revolution of freedom against old rituals produces a new order, which soon becomes another old ritual for the next generation to revolt against, on and on. In the Orient there are plenty of conflicts but historically this particular kind of conflict has not been as dominant. Phaedrus thought it was because dharma includes both static and Dynamic Quality without contradiction."

Robert Pirsig - Lila.