One of the central points of Zen buddhism is intuitive understanding. As a result, words and sentences have no fixed meaning, and logic is often irrelevant. Words have meaning only in relation to who is using them, who they are talking to, and what situation they are used in. Thus, some nodes here at E2 are indeed nonsense; other postings appear to be nonsense at first but this is because the meaning is all between the lines. This is a natural phenomenon; Zen and poetry have gone hand in hand for centuries.

In the end the eternal question is "What is the essence of zen?" When you strip away all of the fat, what is left? This question can only be answered by you, because it is a truth that only you can perceive yourself. What is the heart of the matter to you?

It is a central Zen truth that truth and meaning have existence beyond and independent of words. Words may or may not contain truth. Ultimately the awakening and understanding of our enlightened mind is beyond descriptions possible in words. Words are merely convenient tools or sounds limited by the both the nature of sound itself and the minds of both speaker and listener, or in our case, reader and writer.

Here on E2, we are even more limited; even the audio portion of words is lost, leaving us alone to exchange glimpses of each of our enlightened minds through nothing more than electronic transmissions of words. We each have an unbelievably complex inner understanding of the world around us, and each of us has a unique understanding. In some, this understanding is based on logic and fact; in others, it is based on feeling and emotion.

E2, though, is designed to grow from within just as we are in a spiritual sense. We have the opportunity to personally increase our enlightenment through meditation and experience, and then attempt to share this enlightenment with others through this forum. Unlike many aspects of life, however, we have the opportunity to go back to earlier writings and perspectives and alter them to include new enlightenments.

Zen is answering the most basic questions from within; breaking down the things we know and the things we do not know to an inner understanding of the universe. We share glimpses of this understanding here, and as we grow, we can return to these earlier glimpses and improve upon them and impress our new enlightenment upon them.

I know that my writings here have altered the inner understanding of others; my impressions and attempts to express the inner truths I have discovered have led others to consider the truth in a different way. My inner truths have also been influenced by things I have read here, from the sublime to the ridiculous and everything between.

E2 is amazing in that it incorporates glimpses of the inner truths of so many varied people; riverrun's fictional realities, the beautiful poetry written by so many here, the factual writeups in which people share the beauty of knowledge that others can directly use. Even the daylogs, which give an inner glimpse at people's lives and souls, can influence the questions within and help us all in our inner quest to find Buddha.

For me, and for all of us, noding is an expression of the inner truths one has discovered during life. Your nodes have the potential to grow as you do, and with them the ability to influence the lives and inner truths of others in more ways than can possibly be comprehended. Truly, it is an amazing gift.

To begin to gain a greater understanding, read the nodes of sensei as well as the novel Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig.

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