2020-08-22

Raven 135: True Teaching

Life requires water -- both the kind of life we like and the kind we don't, such as disease-causing bacteria or viruses. Where water is present, there's no telling what will grow, heedless of notions of true and false.

Case
One evening owl asked, "How can you tell whether a teaching is true or false?"
Raven said, "Moss on the rocks dries out when the creek is low."
Owl said, "Good teaching is always wet?"
Raven said, "Sopping."
Verse
Marvin fell in a lake. A man saw him fall in and came to get him out. The man asked him, "How did you come to fall in?" "I did not come to fall in,” said Marvin. "I came to fish.” -Bennett Cerf's Book of Laughs, 1959
The staples of childhood silliness
Taught me early that the world would not always make sense,
That proferred answers might be as unhelpful as big red rock-eaters,
And that giggling was how to manage these affronts.

Only later did I notice how often
I came to fish -- showed up
Intent on some shiny thing --
And fell in to what soaked me through:
Not what I came for.

Case adapted from Robert Aitken; introduction and verse by Meredith GarmonA
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