“Ordinarily, if an average man comes face to face with the nagual the shock would be so great that he would die. The goal of a warrior’s training is not to teach him to hex or to charm, but to prepare his tonal not to crap out ... You call it explaining. I call it a sterile and boring insistence of the tonal to have everything under it’s control. Whenever it doesn’t succeed, there is a moment of bafflement and then the tonal opens itself to death. What a prick! It would rather kill itself than relinquish control. And yet there is very little we can do to change that condition.”
Carlos Castaneda

Tales of Power

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

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Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry Into Values

I feel that so much has been said about this book… and yet most people I mention it too have either not heard about it or only just recall reading it a long time ago. This book was very helpful and inspiring to me. It can be tough reading but that is easy to overcome – simply browse through the parts that you feel are too much for you. I connected with the book and have read it numerous times and each time I am able to dig in deeper in certain parts.

The book is a personal story, a philosophical discussion, about the trap of seeking and about the inevitable yearning to do so. I like it because it inspired me into believing that the trap is there only because of the limitation of the mind and a simple human choice to ignore that limitation. I like it because it is highly reasonable and at the same time highly spiritual – and the two live in harmony side by side. I like it because it does not provide a solution – but it does demonstrate that seeking, regardless of the difficulties it may cause, is a meaningful and worthy path through life – that there probable are not shortcuts.

I carry with me, from the book, the concept of Quality. I have found this to be a clear (though sometimes inexplainable) point of reference for my choices in life and in guiding others. I have found that when I run into religious (and spiritual) contexts, in which I experience resistance, that by simply replacing the concept of “God” with “Quality” I am quickly able to peal away the distractive qualities and experience the core. It is a word with which people like to associate themselves – so it is an excellent tool of communication and bridging.

If you are interested in delving deeper – the book has a sequel called “Lila”:

This entry was posted in Books, Coming Through, Expanding, inside, Quality, What If. You are welcome to read 1 comment and to add yours

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  • By Dear Paul Graham, Attn. Art | iamronen on August 16, 2008 at 7:09 am

    […] most inspiring answer & discussion I know about this comes from Robert Pirsig. His first book Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance explores a concept of Quality. It sheds some interesting light on subject-object […]

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