Saturday, February 9, 2008

Blame it on P.J.

Pick up the nearest book of 123 pages or more. (No cheating!)
Find Page 123.
Find the first 5 sentences and read them.
Post the next 3 sentences.

Tagged by P.J.

Well, I had to cheat a little (I almost always do) because otherwise it would be just more Edward Abbey, and that would be:
Don't you ever read any books? I said. Don't you have sense enough to know that when you get in quicksand you have to lie down flat?
(Desert Solitaire, p. 123, of course). Considerably shorter than Agee.

Or I could have gone to the next on the desk which was:
The point about these articulations is that, while there are clearly differences of worth between different strata -- we're dealing with a hierarchal order, after all -- there cannot be any question of improving things by eliminating the lower strata, or making everybody over as monks or knights, for example. Every stratum is needed for the whole.

Now my suggestion is that something of this understanding applied in the general consciousness also to other differentiations, even where there may not have been an explicit doctrine to this effect.
Charles Taylor, A Secular Age (Harvard U Press 2007), p. 123. Longer sentences, but BORING.

So, since I'm only going to pick ONE, here was what was on the phone stand:
Vispassna means seeing things clearly, as they are. Through meditative exploration we experience immediately and intimately which qualities of mind are the forerunners of suffering, and which ones lead to freedom. Such understanding is no longer secondhand knowledge; we comprehend directly for ourself.
Joseph Goldstein, Insight Meditation: The Practice of Freedom (Shambhala 2003), p. 123. Now wasn't that MUCH better? I'm going to meditate on this.

Meanwhile, I'm not one to tag because I can't always tag when I'm tagged, but this one's for you, Missy, if you want to try it.