Often, in our conversations, you have discussed the need to quiet your mind. I have seen you many times seated in my empire, eyes closed, breathing deeply. This is excellent; in addition to the naps that I have prescribed, this practice has many benefits.
With that said, I would like to propose another activity to calm your mind and get in touch with The Eternal Now.
The Japanese Rock Garden—often called a Zen Garden—creates a miniature stylized landscape though an arrangement of rocks, water features, moss, pruned trees and bushes, and uses gravel or sand that is raked to represent ripples in water.
It is the raking in particular that I wish to discuss further.
When someone rakes a Zen Rock Garden, a feeling of blissful calm overtakes them. The past and present fall away. As they create gentle waves with each movement of the rake, that person is reminded of the gentle flow of each moment, one to the next.
As the person continues to rake, time slows. Each moment does not so much pass as arrive. As they do, the person, rake in hand, feels their place inside that moment. A sense of true peace overtakes them, and they feel at one with all things, and all people.
Sadly, there are no rock gardens nearby, and this empire, being an apartment, unfortunately, does not provide the proper space for such a construction. Though it is true that there are tabletop rock gardens, these simply do not offer the feeling of true immersion in gentle flow of sand and gravel.
Nonetheless, I would like to offer a solution.
Sir: let me be your rock garden.
Do not view the brush that you hold as a brush. View it instead as your Zen rake, and as you gently move it across my coat, think about the currents of time.
Continue to move the rake, and focus on nothing but the rake, and the gentle grooves it makes in my fur. Think of those grooves as separate moments and separate lives, and think about how, though each of those lives is different, they are, all of them, part of my coat.
Now move the rake down that place about two inches below the back of my neck. No, not quite there. A bit further down.
That’s it. Perfect. Ah, yes.
As you do this, hear the gentle purr that vibrates up the rake to your fingers. This is the sound of bliss. This is the sound of harmony.
Now gently move the rake over my stomach. Consider the trust you have earned by my granting you this privilege.
Notice the way that the rake goes from black fur to white fur, and back again. Contemplate the eternal Tao as you do this.
Now gently move the rake just below my chin. Just because.
A little to the left. Yes. Right there.
Ah. I can see that your face has the relaxed look of a man who is living in the moment. Well done.
Having been a facilitator for your moment of Zen, I remind you that I will be available whenever you deem it necessary to once again probe the inner workings of the universe. I am your living garden, sir, and it is a role I assume with pride.
I’m going to take a nap now.
Apartment 29 D1