I talked about religion with Claudia. It seems to me that each religion touches some chord in ourselves. The hairy thing is that your character determines whether it resonates with you or not. Discipline, humility, remorse? Christianity! Well, insert whatever terrible simplifications you want to think of right here.
Simplification or not, we talked about Zen, and how I really like it. How it has some aspects to it that fascinate everybody but really strikes people like me: Simplicity, thoughtlessness, to be one with your body, to aim for perfection in all your deeds. We also talked about the corruption of these ideas: When you raise your kids as warriors in such a culture, they will feel Sepuko is the right answer to defeat (an idea I clearly don’t share) – you can’t help but feel so terribly ashamed that death is the only answer you can think of. If that is so, then the Way has truly been corrupted. Which is why you can’t ever put values into words: Words are to easily bent, have too many meanings we don’t intend. The only answer precise enough is your own life. Life as a piece of art, as an answer to the questions of life. An instatiation of the Way.
We also talked about Claudia’s “religion”. Christianity? I didn’t think so. Zen? No way! She wants fun, dance, music, people, mysticism, secrets, double layers, social stuff. When asked to guess, I said “some nature-oriented magic stuff.” She laughed and I think that’s exactly it. The santería stuff in Cuba, for example, fascinated her: The blending of old shamanism, spirits, gods, ritual, dance, and christian saints – dancing and fun, and yet a hidden layer behind it all, the dark shadow of voodoo lingering in the corner of your eyes, all of that is troubling to me – and fascinating for her.