Furuya Sensei posted this to his Daily Message on March 4, 2004. I found it inspirational. I hope that others might too. I would like to have a mindset like the hishaku where nothing is special and live my life with the "everyday mind."
Hei-Jo-Shin: Everyday Mind
Calligraphy by Shibayama Zenkei, Zen priest.
This is a very popular phrase in Zen and the Japanese arts and is what is aspired to as the epitome or ideal mental state. "Everyday mind" implies to our modern minds as "nothing special," but in Zen, nothing special means "everything is special." As everything is special, everything becomes equal in value and position and therefore, once again, nothing is special.
In this respect, it is not to pick and choose or take this and that in our lives and make it something what we deem of lesser value or importance, but to take the total whole of our lives, leaving nothing behind, and taking it one more step to a higher level. . . . .
As in the tea ceremony - the ideal is the water ladle called "hishaku" which can be used freely between hot and cold water without discriminating between the two. . . its "universal" state makes it universally important and useful. . . . . this is what is known in Zen as "freedom."
In Zen, discrimination is not particularly wrong or condemned, it is only in our discriminating mind that we are so restricted and limited as we swing back and forth from one side of the scale to the other. . . . .