An Excerpt from Jim Conrad's
NATURALIST NEWSLETTER
of April 8, 2012
issued from the woods a few miles east of Natchez, Mississippi, USA

PIGNUT TEACHING


It's worth thinking about how the Pignut species expresses itself differently in different places (polymorphism), and the way it intergrades with other species and frequently hybridizes with them. For, it's something the Universal Creative Spirit does, and as such the situation offers itself as a natural pattern or paradigm.

The paradigm is worth paying attention to if we believe, as I do, that when we harmonize our lives with natural patterns our lives resonate with senses of fulfillment, wellbeing, and "happiness." In my own life, trying to identify and harmonize with these patterns is precisely what my spiritual quest is all about.

Pignut taxonomy teaches this: That most entities the mind can grasp do have distinct identities, but also there are robust and beautiful but ambiguous and imprecise things -- things that are neither this nor that. There are things like snapshots of intermediate stages of evolution moving toward undetermined destinies. There are things like existential experiments the Creator conducts that may or may not succeed. In this Universe, on this Earth, in this dimension we humans inhabit, ambiguity and imprecision have their places, their beauties, and their meanings, exactly as does a vibrantly sunlight-charged, fast-photosynthesizing Pignut of undeterminable affinities and classification.

Maybe this is the insight that Zen masters rejoice in.

On a Mississippi spring morning softened with honeysuckle fragrance, charmed with treefrog trillings, birdcalls and wind-rustle in green leaves, on a morning with soft, moist gentleness in the air, this human mind of mine -- this transient node in the evolving network of human minds interconnected and intermingling on an ever-changing physical stage as well as in blossoming cyberspace -- sees the Pignut, stands long regarding the Pignut, loves the Pignut, touches the Pignut and exults that on such an evanescent spring morning this ambiguously defined, electrochemical/electromagnetic mind/body/spirit entity can actually touch imprecise Pignut-essence.

At this exact moment with this exact Pignut, with exactly me, that's the teaching. Facebook Icon.