Contemplating the clouds

This prolonged wet season has allowed me to learn a thing or two from clouds.

They come in many forms: goals are clouds, so are insecurities, expectations and the urge to buy things.  Emotions too – transient things.

Clouds can either be allowed to pass by, or I can grab them, attach myself to them, wreath myself in clouds like a wooly suit of armour.  In the sky, they are the most visible things after all, which makes them highly grabbable; they can often seem like they are the only things there.  A cloud clutched on to changes from a harmless passing thing into a crappy story.

cloudsOne good example of an old cloud of mine was when I held on to the idea that I am not a creative person.  A friend of mine had one – he used to believe he was afraid of heights.  Both of these stuck around until the straightforward work was done to let go of them, at which point they utterly dissipated.  The ‘affliction’ was somehow little more than a choice.

Clouds don’t have to be permanent, but they can be made permanent, because they are real for as long as they are given substance.  And since they are only real for as long as they are clung onto, it makes them all pretty hollow, empty things – not the sort of blocks to build a robust being with.  Careers, opinions, habits – all fluffy bags of bugger all.

The most interesting thing for me that I’m wondering here is, once the clouds have gone by, what is left?  It probably can’t be defined or taught – just experienced, and maybe understood through a process of letting go of things.  Confusingly, if I’ve held onto clouds for too long, there might not be too much there, and much yet to be made.

If I choose, I can give myself the time and the space to explore for myself what it might mean to puff the illusions away.

Posted in Zen moments
One comment on “Contemplating the clouds
  1. Dave Seibert says:

    Chris, I liked you short about clouds. It reminded me of a poem I guess you might cal it I wrote in my journal in March of 2000 I will share with you now. Hope you enjoy.

    The Clouds
    They cling and they spread
    They bounce and roll and spin
    They can seem still and calm
    But possess movement within
    They are the shrouds of the ancient
    They are created only to diminish
    And by diminishing allow others to be. by DaveSeibert 2000

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