The Six Perfections
Thus have I heard, these are the six practices for crossing over:
1. GENEROSITY: Rub yourself on tactile things. Subject-object distinctions collapse. In the wake of your groundlessness, don't do anything except stare at table legs, feet, and the space where the floor meets the bottom of the wall.
2. MORALITY: Good conduct, hissing at pigeons, swatting.
3. PATIENCE: Watch the ceiling fan swirl until you distinguish each individual blade. If you stare at the radiator long enough, a hummingbird comes out.
4. HEROIC EFFORT: Dig in the sand in your litterbox until you find the copy of the Constitution that the White House buried. The vet cannot look inside your mouth unless he sedates you. The movement of the ceiling-fan blades is terrifying -- keep looking.
5. MEDITATION: With each in-breath, you inhale all the squirrels in the neighborhood until every tree is bare. From the divine afflatus of each out-breath comes an endless chain of milk-bottle-cap-rings and leftover yogurt in small, abandoned dishes on the floor. You can chase and eat them after you lick your whole body.
6. WISDOM: Mary is audited by the IRS. The agent makes a house call with his adding machine. Rhoda stops by to borrow a can of wet food, a string of dental floss, and a catnip mouse. No one utters a word, but Rhoda knows the IRS agent is falling in love with Mary but afraid to lick her forehead or rub against her pant leg. When Mary is nervous, she swats.