That person sitting comfortably in the chair is a man named Kûkai who lived in the 9th century in Japan. He has the om-brella we talked about in Part I (minus its central shaft) positioned above him.
Kûkai is comfortable. He knows just what to do and he acts in the interests of others. What makes him happy and what gives him energy – is when he illuminates the minds of others. This is how he feels vital.
The man standing next to him is a man of color. He could be black, yellow, red or green but here he is blue. His name is Fudô. Of the two Chinese characters that make up his name: fu (不) means ‘not’ and dô (動) means ‘moving’.
Fudô is steadfast and unwavering – he stays the course. Kûkai and Fudô have much in common in that they never turn away from suffering – whether that be their own suffering or the suffering of others.
Fudô’s skin is a cool blue. His determination is fierce but he’s cool. With Fudô stuff gets done. Things can get intense but never out of hand. Fudo is dedication.
There is a red smear of passion behind him. Dedication is passionate – the will to see it through. The purpose of the sword is to cut through the bullshit (delusion) in order to reach clarity.
With clarity there is no confusion. With clarity we know where to direct our intention and ur energies.
One way to understand Fudô is to understand his cool, determined, abiding nature. He is standing on the base of a tree. He IS the tree. His cool abiding nature is precisely the nature of trees.
Fudô, Kûkai and the tree are one and the same. Fudô is the cool, abiding, determined energy that enables you (and Kûkai) to exert focus to be present, to be present with your breath; to be present with the energy of life itself.
Kûkai and Fudô know each other well. They are a dynamic duo whose dual presence helps us to understand that all living beings engage in this abiding, determined dynamic of being. This is what we call ‘natural presence’. It is in the nature of trees, plants and all living beings to be engaged in their determination to exist: to be.
Nature herself is a determined presence.
Human beings reach their highest potential by understanding their own levels of determination, how to direct their determination and where to deploy that determination in ways that secure vitality for all life – ours, others, trees, plants, and the life of our planet herself.