Set the bird’s wings with gold and it will never again soar in the sky.

— Tagore, Stray Birds 231

He who binds to himself a joy
Does the winged life destroy
But he who kisses the joy as it flies
Lives in eternity’s sun rise

— from William Blake’s notebook


Who sends the mind to wander afar? Who first drives life to start on its journey? Who impels us to utter these words?

What cannot be spoken with words, but that whereby words are spoken: Know that alone to be Brahman, the spirit; and not what people here adore.

Kena Upanishad (Mascaró)

The spirit is that which can have no resting place.

Merleau-Ponty (1948, 75)

Ezekiel excoriates false prophets as those who have “not gone up into the gaps.” The gaps are the thing. The gaps are the spirit’s one home, the altitudes and latitudes so dazzlingly spare and clean that the spirit can discover itself for the first time like a once-blind man unbound. The gaps are the clifts in the rock where you cower to see the back parts of God; they are the fissures between mountains and cells the wind lances through, the icy narrowing fjords splitting the cliffs of mystery. Go up into the gaps. If you can find them; they shift and vanish too. Stalk the gaps. Squeak into a gap in the soil, turn, and unlock— more than a maple— a universe. This is how you spend this afternoon, and tomorrow morning, and tomorrow afternoon. Spend the afternoon. You can’t take it with you.

The Annie Dillard Reader (p. 422). HarperCollins. Kindle Edition.

to live in the gap
between the moment that is expiring
and the one that is arising
and empty

— Laurie Anderson, Heart of a Dog

The space between heaven and earth is like a bellows.
The shape changes, but not the form;
The more it moves, the more it yields.

Tao Te Ching 5 (Feng/English)

… and the wind returneth again according to his circuits.

Ecclesiastes 1:6


Open your mouth, always be busy, and life is beyond hope.

Tao Te Ching 52 (Feng/English)

Almost dotty! I must dash!

Humankind is made of haste. I will show you all My signs, so do not try to hurry Me.

Qur’án 21:37 (Cleary)

A large consciousness is idle and spacey; a small consciousness is cramped and circumspect. Big talk is bland and flavorless; petty talk is detailed and fragmented. We sleep and our spirits converge; we awake and our bodies open outward. We give, we receive, we act, we construct: all day long we apply our minds to struggles against one thing or another— struggles unadorned or struggles concealed, but in either case tightly packed one after another without gap. The small fears leave us nervous and depleted; the large fears leave us stunned and blank. Shooting forth like an arrow from a bowstring: such is our presumption when we arbitrate right and wrong. Holding fast as if to sworn oaths: such is our defense of our victories. Worn away as if by autumn and winter: such is our daily dwindling, drowning us in our own activities, unable to turn back. Held fast as if bound by cords, we continue along the same ruts. The mind is left on the verge of death, and nothing can restore its vitality.

— Zhuangzi (Ziporyn 2009, 10)

Are you not danzzling on the age of a vulcano? Siar, I am deed.

Finnegans Wake, 89

He who acts defeats his own purpose; he who grasps loses.

Tao Te Ching 64 (Feng/English)

Procrastinate now!

— anon.

Enough already

You can’t have everything. Where would you put it?

— Steven Wright

To have plenty is to be perplexed.

Tao Te Ching 22 (Chan)

In a consumer society there are inevitably two kinds of slaves: the prisoners of addiction and the prisoners of envy.

— Ivan Illich, Tools for Conviviality (1973), Ch. 3

Anybody that competes with slaves becomes a slave.

— Vonnegut, Player Piano

Every need got an ego to feed.

— Bob Marley

And whoso is saved from his own greed, such are the successful.

Qur’án 64:16 (Pickthall)

A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone.

Thoreau, Walden, chp. 2

There is no greater sin than desire,
No creater curse than discontent,
No greater misfortune than wanting something for oneself.
Therefore he who knows that enough is enough will always have enough.

Tao Te Ching 46 (Feng/English)


The universe is sacred. You cannot improve it.

Daodejing 29 (Feng/English)

There is no changing the nature created by God. That is the right religion, but most of humanity does not know.

Qur’an 30:30 (Cleary)

What if these are two versions of the same proposition, two instances of the same statement?
Can you improve it?


The confusions which occupy us arise when language is like an engine idling, not when it is doing work.

It is not our aim to refine or complete the system of rules for the use of our words in unheard-of ways.

For the clarity we are aiming at is indeed complete clarity. But this simply means that the philosophical problems should completely disappear.

The real discovery is the one that makes me capable of stopping doing philosophy when I want to. —The one that gives philosophy peace, so that it is no longer tormented by questions which bring itself in question. —Instead, we now demonstrate a method, by examples; and the series of examples can be broken off. —Problems are solved (difficulties eliminated), not a single problem.

There is not a philosophical method, though there are indeed methods, like different therapies.

Wittgenstein (PI I.132-3)

Perfect signature

Forget this moment and grow into the next. That is the only way.… So the point on each moment is to forget the point and extend your practice.

— S. Suzuki (2002, 18)

So why, pray, sign anything as long as every word, letter, penstroke, paperspace is a perfect signature of its own?

Leave the letter that never begins to go, find the latter that ever comes to end, written in smoke and blurred by mist and signed of solitude, sealed at night.

The Restored Finnegans Wake, 260

— Dream. On a nonday I sleep. I dreamt of a somday. On a wonday I shall wake.

The Restored Finnegans Wake, 373

— As you sing it it’s a study. That letter selfpenned to one’s other, that neverperfect everplanned!
— This nonday diary, this allnights newseryreel.

The Restored Finnegans Wake, 380

Ring the bells that still can ring.
Forget your perfect offering.
There is a crack          a crack          in everything.
That’s how the light gets in.

— Leonard Cohen, ‘Anthem’