More preparations – checked the bike’s brake pads given I’ve done over five thousand kilometres so far this year, and immediately jumped online to order a new set. Surprisingly the rear are more worn out than the front pads. The brakes take a hammering on roads such as when descending towards the coast on the Kings Highway, there are several kilometres where I could actually smell burnt brake pads and got off and walked the bike down some of steepest sections. First time I ever had to walk down a hill.
Nearly ready to shove off.
More stuff to think about from the old samurai Miyamoto Musashi. From his “Book of Five Rings” nine principals to try to follow.
1. Do not think dishonestly.
2. The Way is in training.
3. Become acquainted with every art.
4. Know the Ways of all professions.
5. Distinguish between gain and loss in worldly matters.
6. Develop intuitive judgement and understanding for everything.
7. Perceive those things which cannot be seen.
8. Pay attention even to trifles.
9. Do nothing which is of no use.
It would probably surprise Musashi that on the back of Sydney buses he is represented as a sort of fantasy warrior. Prime of life, mean-looking beefcake – “I slice you like a Hungarian salami”. The important section of his book, the fifth titled “Book of the Void” has little to do with cutting off heads and disemboweling opponents. It is Zen, and in the edition I have, is only a page and a half in which he states that the Void is of course nothing, and is not included in human knowledge.
Why is that so important? Because it indicates that this man claimed to a be a never-defeated samurai, was in agreement with the medieval Christian friar and mystic, Master Eckhart who in his famous sermons spoke of the “God beyond God”, and the “nothingness of God”. I understand that as meaning that ‘God’ as believed to exist outside of ‘creation’, and who is like a king with unlimited power sitting on a throne, is a human construct. Had Musashi and Eckhart ever talked over a few beer in a pub, they would have found they arrived at a similar conclusion. Eckhart had his influences. it has to said, as did Musashi who was, I’d guess, familiar with the teachings of master Dogen. What Musashi called ‘the Void’ and that reality of “God beyond God” is one and the same, and given our human limitations, it is impossible for us to wrap our minds around this reality.
Musashi goes on to say that, “by knowing what exists, we can know what does not exist”. “Not exist” because and again it is beyond human ability to comprehend, and so as far as humans are concerned, “God”, “the Void” cannot exist. There is no slap-on-the-forehead moment and running naked down the street yelling, “Eureka! I found God!”.
We can, if we put pride aside, observe that the Void, God, does exist by simple things such as observing a mother cat care for her kittens just as does a human mother, well at least most mothers. Everywhere you look, you find Love and what Teilhard de Chardin called “Love Energy”. The binding force of the Universe, that God is Love and Love is God, and God, as the Void, is nothing other than Love.
A friend with whom over the years I’ve had long discussions on this subject sent me this recently. It’s a letter Albert Einstein sent to his daughter, Lieserl.
. found this on facebook and it strongly resonated with your theory, so i thought i’d pass it along:
“In the late 1980s, Lieserl, the daughter of the famous genius, donated 1,400 letters, written by Einstein, to the Hebrew University, with orders not to publish their contents until two decades after his death. This is one of them, for Lieserl Einstein.
…”When I proposed the theory of relativity, very few understood me, and what I will reveal now to transmit to mankind will also collide with the misunderstanding and prejudice in the world.
I ask you to guard the letters as long as necessary, years, decades, until society is advanced enough to accept what I will explain below.
There is an extremely powerful force that, so far, science has not found a formal explanation to. It is a force that includes and governs all others, and is even behind any phenomenon operating in the universe and has not yet been identified by us.
This universal force is LOVE.
When scientists looked for a unified theory of the universe they forgot the most powerful unseen force.
Love is Light, that enlightens those who give and receive it.
Love is gravity, because it makes some people feel attracted to others.
Love is power, because it multiplies the best we have, and allows humanity not to be extinguished in their blind selfishness. Love unfolds and reveals.
For love we live and die.
Love is God and God is Love.
This force explains everything and gives meaning to life. This is the variable that we have ignored for too long, maybe because we are afraid of love because it is the only energy in the universe that man has not learned to drive at will.
To give visibility to love, I made a simple substitution in my most famous equation.
If instead of E = mc2, we accept that the energy to heal the world can be obtained through love multiplied by the speed of light squared, we arrive at the conclusion that love is the most powerful force there is, because it has no limits.
After the failure of humanity in the use and control of the other forces of the universe that have turned against us, it is urgent that we nourish ourselves with another kind of energy…
If we want our species to survive, if we are to find meaning in life, if we want to save the world and every sentient being that inhabits it, love is the one and only answer.
Perhaps we are not yet ready to make a bomb of love, a device powerful enough to entirely destroy the hate, selfishness and greed that devastate the planet.
However, each individual carries within them a small but powerful generator of love whose energy is waiting to be released.
When we learn to give and receive this universal energy, dear Lieserl, we will have affirmed that love conquers all, is able to transcend everything and anything, because love is the quintessence of life.
I deeply regret not having been able to express what is in my heart, which has quietly beaten for you all my life. Maybe it’s too late to apologize, but as time is relative, I need to tell you that I love you and thanks to you I have reached the ultimate answer! “.
Your father Albert Einstein”
To be honest, it is of course not my theory, as my friend writes, but rather arriving at the same conclusion based on lived experience, importantly including time as a street kid, which was a great vantage point from which to observe what exists and deduce what does not as far as humans can know.
Have no fear.