Tuesday, 6 October 2009
Meditation and Cats
This video is "Simon's Cat". there are three episodes on Youtube, all worth a look.
I thought of this today when meditating, although I was trying hard not to think of anything. My good resolve was shattered because Haku, the cat we have somehow inherited by a process I won't bore you with now, decided to join me. I was the only one in the house and she was lonely. But more, than that, she is fascinated by meditation and prayer. She knows what to do when people are asleep or when they are sitting quietly with a vacant lap. When they are in this other state, she is intrigued and tries to investgate. She pokes. She sniffs. She bats. She sharpens claws on my woollen cloak. She tries to get a response: any response, and in so doing acts (very well might I add) the part of the Zen master testing his students' resolve by stalking among them with a big whacking stick. And then, she purrs and settles down still beside me; not asleep but still. The meditating cat.
I think she has the drop on me as far as progress towards enlightenment goes, because I suspect she may be there already. No, seriously. She is an innocent. She hasn't fallen yet. She may butcher birds and gain great pleasure from their slow deaths and she may scratch my sofa and drag me from my holy pastimes, but she is an innocent. She has not eaten from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil , and never will. She is completely present in the now, and, I suspect, completely present to the ground of her being; and as Meister Eckhart might say, her ground is God's ground. She is not obscured by ego because her little brain is not capable of producing an ego. She enjoys the state that I once enjoyed, in the first few months of my earthly life, and to which I suspect, the long pilgrimage of this earthly life is designed to lead me back. Of course she doesn't know this; she's not up to that, or much else by way of knowledge, but she is up to recognising when someone is praying. And she seems to approve.