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Commentary by Ivan M. Granger
Aren't these riddling, haiku-like proverbs wonderful? I'm not sure they all entirely make sense even, but they bring the mind to a stop in contemplation and happy confusion.
Gathered together, I notice certain themes in these verses: Water keeps appearing, how its flow animates us and sustains us as it does the world. Narcissism and relationship with others. Action and stillness, how stillness underlies action, stillness suggesting something of the eternal. The seeing beyond the surface of reality to its inner depths, seeing the true nature of things. Waking up. And the secret, mysterious self.
Let's just take a look at the opening verse, delightful and arcane:
The eye you see is not
an eye because you see it;
it is an eye because it sees you.
That first verse draws me in immediately. If I really want to find meaning in that first verse, perhaps he is saying that an eye is not an eye because it appears to be so (not "because you see it") but because it sees. Maybe he is suggesting that it is not surface appearance but function and action that reveals the true nature of things. ...But I don't think reading such specific meaning in the verse is as important as simply being knocked cold by it.
Almost every pithy, strange saying stands out to me here. I could highlight them all. Instead, I encourage you to go back and read them slowly, one at a time, let them parade through the back of your thoughts as you go through your day. What are they saying to you
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M. Granger's original poetry, stories and commentaries are Copyright ©
2002 - 2011 by Ivan M. Granger.
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