Morning again in Montreuil, a new day with cat and tea. Brilliant sun, impeccable blue sky.

Loved reading everyone’s posts from Day I. I want to hear more and more of your stories. Seems I can’t get enough, there’s so much to report. Keep it coming, in English, French, Portuguese, Flemish, German…!

Myself, I can’t stop thinking about a film I saw on Sunday, « The Square. » It raises so many basic questions about our world today and how we live in it. The main character is a curator in a contemporary art museum in Stockholm, which is presenting a new piece of conceptual art called « The Square. » The idea behind the work, he explains, is: « The Square is a sanctuary of trust and caring. Within it we all share equal rights and obligations. » Basically this means that within the artwork’s square (it’s actually a 4-meter-by-4-meter square drawn in the courtyard of the museum), we are all one.

I won’t go into the details of the film here, but this square is an illuminating proposition, pointing to what we are doing in our practice: Aspiring to see the differences (sacred/not scared) and embrace them all (nothing sacred/everything sacred).

We’re getting a taste of that here, following our retreat all together wherever we are, whatever happens in each of our lives at this very moment. We are discovering what we have in common even though every one of our lives is very distinct.

Another question comes up in this film: « How much inhumanity does it take before we access your humanity? » A Zen answer might be: « Not two! » Or, in other words, « Stop dividing people and things up with your thinking mind. »

Today, let’s look at how we divide and separate – me and the homeless person in the street, me and that woman who pushed in front of me in the Métro, me and the beautiful man at the café who I want to see me. When are you « inside » the square? When are you « outside »? What if there was no inside or outside?