Tuesday quartet, Eliot.

Picture 6

Mindfulness is Buddhist meditation, and Buddhist meditation is nihilism, abnegation, without pleasure, passion or desire. It is not that through Christ we have crucified our passions, it is that we pretend they don’t exist, and that there is no existential terror.

There is. Passage III, East Coker contains this bit of reportage.

Or as, when an underground train, in the tube, stops too long between stations
And the conversation rises and slowly fades into silence
And you see behind every face the mental emptiness deepen
Leaving only the growing terror of nothing to think about;

Then the poet begins to preach. There is nothing new, you do not know everything. You were created, for this time: for this space. Accept this. For we take nothing from this life but our salvation.

Or damnation.

East Coker III

You say I am repeating
Something I have said before. I shall say it again.
Shall I say it again? In order to arrive there,
To arrive where you are, to get from where you are not,
You must go by a way wherein there is no ecstasy.
In order to arrive at what you do not know
You must go by a way which is the way of ignorance.
In order to possess what you do not possess
You must go by the way of dispossession.
In order to arrive at what you are not
You must go through the way in which you are not.
And what you do not know is the only thing you know
And what you own is what you do not own
And where you are is where you are not.

T.S. Eliot, 1941

The Balance here (note Eliot is writing as a American during a death struggle for the British Empire and England) is not our experience, it is Christ. For working out our salvation is akin to wandering in a maze, during a fog: completely lost.