THE TAO AND ART

Art by Tanya Ziniewicz
Text by Gordon Ziniewicz

 CHAPTER 1


Copyright © 2002 Tanya M. Ziniewicz

The Tao that can be comprehended
is not the eternal Tao itself;
The Name that can be defined
is not the eternal Name itself.
Non-Being is the source of Heaven and Earth,
Being is the mother of all things.

With Non-Being, we see the hidden natures (and origins) of things;
With Being, we see their manifest differences (and fulfillments).
They come from the same reality, but have different names.

Deep and profound, the Tao is the gate that opens to the secrets of the universe.

Commentary:

Concepts of Tao are not the Tao. Hands cannot grasp the sea, and minds cannot grasp the Tao. It is out of reach, yet close at hand. We do not hold it; rather, it holds us. It is broader than the scope of our ideas, yet intimately close to the heart of things.

The name "Tao" is not a name like other names. Names of things are like things they name. They come and go. Names exist for a time and assign places to things that exist for a time.

Definitions distinguish things and set them apart; they show where one thing leaves off and another begins -- boundaries between things, similarities and differences among things. Definitions show the places of things, where they belong in the scheme of things. The mind surveys and makes fences. The mind defines. All talk is about fences, places, and positions.

Names are about times and places. The Tao is eternal and everywhere, yet no-time and no-where. The name Tao points to all and to nothing.

Without non-being, beings would make no sense. The empty makes objects appear. The still lets things move. The quiet allows things to be heard. The endless horizon shows the infinite beauty of changing things. Non-being and being are interdependent -- as the sky reveals the magnificent flight of the hawk, while the hawk suggests the stillness and depth of the sky.

The Tao is a hidden and manifest undivided whole -- seen and unseen, sounding and silent, actual and potential. It is the universe with its elemental forces and all its offspring -- heaven and earth, light and dark, yang and yin.

Tao is the universal Way, Path, and Gate -- the way nature operates, the path the universe follows, the gate between what is not and what is. It is the pivot point of rising and falling, appearing and disappearing, being born and passing away.

It is a hidden, quiet, subtle power -- beyond human words and expressions. Yet, it makes all words and expressions meaningful, as rooted in and arising from their hidden and silent ground. It cannot be defined, but it makes all definition possible.

Tao makes all visible beings wonderful in their diversity -- logical surprises bound to an invisible and fertile source.

Beings arise or are born from non-being. They are not made or produced by creator or craftsmen. They emerge mysteriously from their infinite source of "non-being." They are born from their "womb" of pregnant emptiness. Non-being and being are two sides of the same reality.

The Tao is the gate between non-being and being, as the way non-being bursts into beings, as the way beings decline and return to non-being. Tao is the rhythm of rising and falling, appearing and disappearing. Like the instant between ready to speak and speaking, about to create and creating, soon to be and becoming, the ineffable Tao initiates and embraces all.

Artist's Hands
by Gordon L. Ziniewicz

Artist's hands --
Flesh and bone, they start to move.
Pen on paper -- new things are born.
Each line, each curve, a victory.
Hands can do what gods can't do.

Fools make money.
Hands make worlds.
"Give me more and more."
The hands don't care.
The hands keep moving.
The hands keep drawing.
The hands give birth.

Profit or creation?
Ask the universe.

 

Copyright © 2002 Tanya M. Ziniewicz and Gordon L. Ziniewicz
Email: tzaka@fred.net

 

Art by Tanya Ziniewicz Art by Celeste Ziniewicz