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Buddhadharma : Spring 2019
84 BUDDHADHARMA: THE PRACTITIONER'S QUARTERLY working at for the rest of your life, it is. There are other things you could be doing with your time. That’s fine—you just don’t get to say you’re walking a path of liberation. I have no dominion over what anyone does, and maybe my insight is really, really tiny. But I know these things to be true: first, liberation never wants anything other than liberation for all, and second, there is no liberation without collective liberation. There is no other way. I wish there were, because I would like to be 100 per- cent completely free, and I have to wait for you. We have to wait for each other. How do we begin? It’s a path of confusion—in order to undo the confusion you don’t know you have, you first have to be completely confused. Everything you think you know about how things are has to be set aside. To do that, you must acknowledge, with absolute certainty, that you have been completely caught up. You don’t say, Oh, I’ll notice when I’m being an oppressor. Or I’ll notice when I’m being a misogynist. (And this is not specific to men, by the way—you do not have to be in a male body to be a misogynist. That is how deep it is.) I’ll notice when I’m being racist. Of course you won’t. You have to just assume—you have to assume that you are careening through space, a ball of willful ignorance, of wrong knowing. That is the beginning of the path—the moment that you are entirely clear that you know absolutely nothing. That is what the Buddha was about. He said, look at this delusion, look at how it lives in you, how it drives you and motivates you. And yes, grieve. Grieve that you didn’t know any better. You should. It should tear you apart. If you have not laid down on the floor in tears, you have not started your work in the dharma. You should be completely undone. You should come completely apart at least once, asking, Who is this person? You may be doing some really awesome