From This Too Is Love by Jay Edson -- Jesus Vs. The Bhuddha
But to return to the issue of my Buddhahood, how it that someone who has achieved Samadhi is in a state, metaphorically speaking, of being about to shit in his pants? This requires a description of my inner space. I told you some time ago about my room and e yard, etc — my outer space. But I have not yet told you about my inner space. If I do not tell you everything, how shall I be able to attach any hope to these words — words that I send out much in the same spirit as an astronomer beeps out signals, hoping to encounter a fellow insomniac somewhere in the vast sleep of space, a consciousness with which to overcome the loneliness?
My inner space then. Picture a vast landscape of war and tribulation. Ben Hur streaks around an oval track in a deadly chariot race. Creatures from Jurassic Park roam the countryside popping citizens into their bloody maws, relishing them one by one, as casually as you might help yourself to a bunch of chocolate-covered cherries. The star ship Enterprise hovers overhead threateningly and is threatened in its turn by an approaching armada of ships under the diabolical command of Darth Vader. Pterodactyls imported from the Lost Continent share the skies with space ships while subterraneously ‘It’ lurks in the sewers ready to ooze its way up throughout the nasty-stuff pipes to grab the ass of any Mama, Daddy or kiddy who might be trying to take a dump. ‘It’ shares its dark world with ‘Them’ — huge ants transformed by an atomic accident into creatures that threaten all human life on this earth. The creature from the Black Lagoon hovers in the swampy depths while Jaws patrols the clear waters of the Oceans. All of this is not to mention Frankenstein’s monster, Gollem, or The Terminator. The surface of the earth, the sky, and the subterranean domains, both watery and dry, are ubiquitously occupied by horrors — some that have been named, others that slip the mind, and still others yet to be discovered. One has collected a good many creepy-crawlies, technologies gone awry, and things that go bump in the night by the time one is middle aged. Meanwhile, Charlton Heston trudges up Mt Sinai to seek salvation from such a world, or at least a better deal, but down in the valley his constituency is already addressing itself to the performance of some serious debauchery. It does not look hopeful. One is tempted to cast one’s lot with Charlton Heston’s faithless constituency.
But look. There is some
thing that might easily escape your notice in this inner landscape. In the very center sits a little brown Buddha. “The center?” you might ask. “What center? The center from what point of view?” Good questions. “The center,” I say, “from all points of view. That’s the magic of the little Buddha.” And as you look at him, he grows larger and larger. Bigger than ‘It’. Faster than a star ship. More powerful than The Terminator. His peace and compassion becomes the light by which the entire panorama is illumined and by which this chaos becomes bearable. And because this is the Bodhisattva, He/She does not retreat into the heavens, but remains here at the center of this bedlam, this struggle to the death between the natural world and civilization — the Bodhisattva remains at the center, at all centers, untouched. Yea, though Ben Hur run over me with his chariot, Darth Vader zap me with his ray, though a tyrannosaurus grind me in its teeth, or ‘It’ grabs my ass, I will fear no harm. There are fountains within, and a quiet place that remains untouched. The terrorist who has captured me may place my left testicle in the vise and begin to tighten the screws … ah … but I have gone too far here. I overstep myself. I don’t recall that the terrorist was a part of my inner landscape, so let’s just leave him out of this. At the center is the Bodhisattva. That’s the main point to keep in mind.