"Untitled", Emanuela Genesio
Sitting is essentially a simplified space, daily life is an endless move.
It is Charlotte Joko Beck to claim it, in a book that brings a direct voice, without frills, in a zen-flavoured clean black and white.
“Daily Zen” is the most unlikely I have read so far. Maybe that's why I still have not gotten to the last page, even if I've been handling it for many years. A book that denies its writing while respecting it, making it disappear in the moment after the reading.
For someone like me who loves art and moves essentially through it, this is as hard as stone. Finding a way of creating and being just as primitive, necessary, refractory to symbols, self-sufficient is difficult.
"Sitting is essentially a simplified space", says Joko Beck, "daily life is an endless move". Practice, meant as meditation, is a privileged space. We often look out, and everything moves, us included. Meditation is being with what is there, one's own person, including one's own emptiness, including nothingness. It is a concession that human beings may choose to give themselves, cheap, light, potentially overwhelming.
Meditation is already the attitude of conscious serendipity with which one sits, with whom one walks. The experience of our ordinary justifies itself and disappears when we are in contact with not doing, as well as with the most ordinary choices of living. Therefore, the practice is "tremendously difficult": it bares.
It strips us of frills, deprives us of filters, it leads us to the stone. That stone that you meet when you dig without losing sight of the surface. That stone that is the surface. Richard Long, as well as those artists who in the Sixties have made being in the real space the focus of creation, says: "I like simple, practical, emotional, calm, vigorous art. I like the simplicity of walking, the simplicity of the stones ".
Then, I can think of the last novel I read and finished, written by a young Japanese musician. An imperfect book, at times not very incisive, although it contains a rich and clear sentence. It’s a sentence that reminds us why art, just like meditation, is one of the most appropriate means to push oneself into the reality of things: "a style of a luminous and quiet transparency, full of nostalgia; a style that looks sweet, up to a certain point, but is instead full of severity and depth; a style as beautiful as a dream, but certainly like reality " (Miyashita Natsu, A Forest of Sheep and Steel).