Thursday, September 11, 2014

The Better Enso Leaves a Gap

While browsing facebook I stumbled on a wall with a post with this picture. An enso. More commonly done with an ink brush. Most ensos have a small gap. Not all. The post I stumbled upon invited a poem or a proverb to be added, so I guess that woke up my muse after a long work day.

Because of the clean line on the vibrant background I saw the enso for the first time as a line, rather than a circle, and the following thoughts came tumbling out. I don't know if this is a unique perspective or not. I've never read up on the 'meaning of the enso'. I only know that I have always thought of the enso as circle rather than a line.

I now see the enso as a simplified metaphor of duality and individuality. Regarding individuality - I might feel like I am unique because of this shell that defines me, this body, or even my self-concepts, but in reality I am connected to the whole universe (via that little gap in the circle), and even more, I am the same stuff as the universal. The only think that defines me is the tenuous line that makes the limit I declare of myself. Regarding duality - If I see the circle not as forming a new thing, but really just a line within what was already there (imagine a string dropped on the ground that almost touches its tail). How can I say "in" or "out". The "in" is part of the all and the "out" is part of the all. I *can* say "in" or "out" based on my choice/my judgement (represented by the line), but in the enso picture it is clear how meaningless the distinction is.

Thanks to Sunyata Purnamadah whose wall I had stumbled on.