Let me share a story with you
Allow me to start the conversation through a story especially as daughter loves stories:
A long time ago in India, a group of disciples (monks) were watching their master make chapatis. The master would take a small portion of dough and roll it out using a rolling pin. Then he would place it on a hot griddle (pan) and proceed to cook both sides of the chapati. As it cooked he would smile and say, “Perfect.”
The disciples were puzzled. Each of the chapatis was a different shape, some of them were burnt around the edges, and none were perfectly round. Finally, one of the disciples said, “Master, how can these chapatis be perfect? Chapatis are supposed to be round, and they are not supposed to be burned!”
The master took the last chapati of the griddle and handed it to the young disciple. The chapati was more oval than round, and it was burned around the edges. “Perfect,” he repeated.
Is the world perfect or imperfect?
It occurs to me that you and I hold an idealised picture of how things are supposed to be. In our everyday lives, you and I constantly attempt to fix reality. We want it to fit into our concept of “perfection”. How does this leave us? If you are like me then it tends to leave you disappointed, frustrated, annoyed , ungrateful, joyless and exhausted.
Is it possible that the world is neither perfect nor imperfect? Is it possible that the world simply is and as such it is beyond any labels we choose to apply to it – including the label “it”?
It occurs to me that the world, the universe, works the way that it works. It unfolds as it unfolds. It dances to the tune that it dances to. It occurs to me that the world is indifferent to our ideals, conceptions, and preferences as regards what should be and what should not be. Just consider the weather!
Which begs the question, “Which stand is more powerful: the world is perfect just as it is and as it is not, or that the world is imperfect?” That is to say, is the stand of the master more powerful than the disciples or vice versa?
It occurs to me that, perhaps, the more profound question is this one, “What would be our experience of living if we dropped all labels and simply worked with reality just as it is and just as it is not?” Is it possible that our experience of living would be transformed?