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Interdependence Day

Appreciation of Interbeing
by: Thich Nhat Hanh

If you are a poet,
you will see clearly that there is a cloud
floating in this sheet of paper.
Without a cloud there will be no water;
without water the trees cannot grow;
and without trees,
you cannot make paper.
So the cloud is in here.
The existence of this page is dependent
on the existence of a cloud.
Paper and cloud are so close. 

Let us think of other things,
like sunshine.
Sunshine is very important
because the forest cannot grow without sunshine,
and we as humans cannot grow without sunshine.
So the logger needs sunshine in order to cut the tree,
and the tree needs sunshine in order to be a tree.
Therefore, you can see sunshine in this sheet of paper. 

And if you look deeply, with the eyes of a bodhisattva,
with the eyes of those who are awake,
you see not only the cloud and the sunshine in it,
but that everything is here,
the wheat that became the bread for the logger to eat,
the logger’s father–everything is in this sheet of paper… 

This paper is empty of an independent self.
Empty,
in this sense,
means that the paper is full of everything,
the entire cosmos.
The presence of this tiny sheet of paper
proves the presence of the whole cosmos.

Rev. Steve Van Kuiken
July 7, 2019

Text version: Interdependence Day

Audio of sermon: Not available this week

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