Thursday, January 1, 2009

Maps me where to go and where not to go.  They provide an extensive look at an area of the world. They give me elevations and approximations of space and objects. Basic routes and modes of travel are outlined and condensed for easy viewing. What would my internal mapping look like. How much elevation does my heart have and what is the quickest route to my liver. What cartographic imagery would represent my anger and anxiety? Could it be referenced horizontally and what are the procedures for obtaining the data? The procedure for gathering information is simple but the act of relaying the information in a way in which other people can read it and perhaps traverse it becomes difficult.  Here is an example of my emotional map. 

Pink- intense feeling of affection
Black- physical suffering or discomfort
Blue-false ideas or beliefs
White-feeling or showing pleasure or contentment
Grey-a strong feeling of wanting to have something or wishing
Red-showing sorrow or regret


  1. How sweet it is to know you in such a different way. You are a perfect manifestation of the mystery- from the beginning- all the way along. How blessed I am to follow your maps from time to time.

  2. from an article in Shambala Sun by John Tarrant. I read it and thought of your post about maps and how he places the whole concept in a larger context.

    "... when the maps that had been given me ran out, I found that the obvious solution was to listen to the koans** (see below). That helped, though it didn't really give me another map... Each one (koan) has something slightly different to offer; it's a way of being in conversation with old masters. It's also helpful to be in conversation with each other. During the Dark Ages, the scholars gathered at places like the University of Paris and began to discuss everything together...people tried to stop them, but they persisted... which led to the rise of science and learning.

    The nature of consciousness is the great human question, and a fresh start tells us something valuable about our capacities. It is well known that the mind makes errors because it's maps get out of date. Consciousness mistakes friends for enemies, confuses its thoughts and reality, starts wars that harm itslef. It can miss what is good for itself, it can miss what is good for everyone. Noticing the provisional nature of our mental maps and purposes might be one of the kindest things we could do for each other and for the planet.

    The Zen task is to open the gates of the world beyond our prejudices. Like the Buddha, we can step away from everything we are certain about. I think that this possibility is the best contribution we can make to healing the flaws in consciousness and helping the world. Unkindness comes out of certainty; when we throw out certainty, we have the bare reality of consciousness, and another name for that is love."

    Maybe this is far out of the range of what you were saying about your personal maps but I see it as more than coincidence at work and wanted to share the connecting pathways of my world with you.

    **koan- a paradoxical anecdote or riddle used in Japanese Zen to demonstrate the inadequacy of logical reasoning and to provoke enlightenment.

  3. Its not far out of range at all.