Cactus Spines/ Not ‘not’ just ‘no’

This morning, on the coast in Cape Elizabeth, Maine it’s 30 degrees out.
I pulled back the heavy insulated drapes to let in the mornings light and snagged a potted cactus and sent it tumbling.

Jumping out of the pot, it made a leap for freedom, stones, dirt, pieces of cactus cascading behind files, lamps, down to the carpet.

It’s spines are fine like fiberglass insulation, every touch leaves some embedded in your hand.

After broom and vacuum, repotting and watering, back to normal.
My hands full of little itchy, embedded spines.

It is import to realize that we can not identify ourselves by saying ‘I am this’, ‘I am a….’
Nor can we say ‘I am not this’ or ‘ I am not a….’

All these listings are handy in our day to day world, yet ultimately take us nowhere. And they are very necessary for our life and livelihood.

However, we are simply ‘no’.

We don’t exist in opposition to anything else, or in contrast to anything else.

Like little spines in my fingers, my mind takes every thought and attempts to conjure ‘me’. Big, healthy, manly, literate ‘me’.

Being nothing, ‘no thing’ gives freedom.

It takes tremendous amounts of energy for us to continually sustain our persona, to sustain ‘me’.

It takes us far, far away. Far from being present.

Itchy little spines. I want to scratch my nose. I’ll have to use a q tip!