Are We Having Fun, Yet?

Are you having fun, yet?

Ma keeps asking me that. I tell her how the writing is going, she asks me if I’m having fun doing it. I tell her about the tsunami of home repair, she asks if I’m having fun. I tell her about having the wrong leg amputated leading to becoming a double amputee, and she asks if I’m having fun.

Am I having fun?

Well, no.

*blinks* But I’m writing. So I’m having fun.

Nope.

*boggles* But–

–I feel good when I write
–and feel good after I’ve written
–and think about what I want to write
–and even like to read what I write
–it’s always fun, so–

–why am I not having fun?

Here’s where I take a deep breath, so that I can sigh dramatically and enumerate the infinite progression of drear that makes it impossible for anyone of sanity, taste, and responsibility (oh, that word) to enjoy his life. Afterward, I can lean heavily on the table and, sadly, note that I would be having fun, if.

Oh, how sad.

Let us roll back time to last week, because I never begin where I ought.

Last Wednesday, I went to a zendo and took instruction is sitting. I suspected, from a variety of hints in my behaviors, that I would be fairly good at it. In fact, I was. In nothing flat, my head was empty of anything but the passive awareness of gravity, my breath, the texture of the wall in front of me…quiet. Afterwards, there was discourse on Dharma and it’s ways.

In this discourse, zazen was characterized over and over as “just doing one thing.” Leaving, I felt comfortable and happy and relaxed. Calm. Clear. I’m unlikely to become a follower of the Eightfold Path; I like desire, I enjoy sensuality, and, if there is infinite rebirth for those who Just Don’t Get It, I want it. How unenlightened. But. I clearly got much from the zendo. What?

Well, duh, I wasn’t doing anything else. I wasn’t writing, wasn’t taking care of anyone, wasn’t cleaning or cooking or repairing or anything at all. Just sitting. When I began to think, I stopped and attended to the sitting. All the rest could happen later without bothering with it just then.

I did. One thing. Only.

When I write, I think about auto repair. When I’m working on auto repair, I think about what’s to do at work tomorrow. At work, I list the myriad things that Must Be Done at not-work. Even when I take time to rest, I do so while pondering things that are not-resting.

I do. Many Things. And am unhappy doing so.

Am I having fun, yet? I did, at the zendo. I did, for about 36 hours after, in the afterglow.

Why is writing at the carrels working for me? Because there is nothing else to attend to, there. I am doing One Thing.

And I’ve enjoyed it.

*forehead slap*

So. There it is, a fairly monumental thing that I’ve not noticed. I even understand why I didn’t notice. Now that I have, I shall try something new, without weeks of moaning and analyzing.

I’ll just do whatever I’m doing.

And that’s all.

22 thoughts on “Are We Having Fun, Yet?”

  1. You ever hear of that Japanese monk and poet named Ikkyu who would eat meat all the time and go to whorehouses? I think he may have viewed the sex there as a form of meditation.

      1. Meat-eating is always – ALWAYS – a sublimation of sexual impulses. His enjoyment of a good flank steak just showed that he had a deep love of the vagina.

        Kind of makes you wonder about men clustered ’round the grill, adoringly slipping bratwurst after bratwurst into the crease of submissively opened buns.

  2. one… thing?

    I don’t think it is physically or genetically possible for me to think upon only ONE thing… at least not for more than a few…

    …OOH butterfly!

    …Stupid ADD.

      1. The only time I can think about one thing and one thing only is when I am all hot-and bothered and wanna get a nice rumble in the sack going…

        actually to be honest, there is this ability in all people with ADD… something akin to a hyper-attention. It is basically exactly what you are talking about, complete concentration on one thing and one thing only. Generally it comes off as a bad thing, (Kid watching TV and mom calls him for dinner, kid seems to ignore type thing), but in other cases when excited or interested in something good, that hyper-attention is amazing.

        The only problem is it seems to be completely controlled by stimulation, so say I want to do the laundry, there is no way to channel that hyper-attention that I am aware of, so that the laundry gets done without distraction and generally in my case something that stimulates my brain, like WoW, gets in the way before the laundry ever gets started.

        I’m rambling again…
        …Now where did I put that butterfly?

  3. Thank you, big brother, for giving me a remembrance of dharma and calm, still places in the head and heart.

    Every best, still thought towards you and your singular endeavours.

    Yeah, I’m back. Hello.

  4. Wow. I wonder if I’m a natural zensai (I made that word up!).

    If I were a little kid today I believe I would be diagnosed with Ausbergers (don’t want to look up the spelling) Syndrome and undoubtedly treated for it some how. I’m glad they didn’t catch me.

    Carrel away!

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