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Shimmering, standing at the edge

Through the wonders of technology, Roshi Joan Halifax brought the beautiful gift of her presence to Wisdom 2.0 in Tokyo all the way from Dharamsala. She warmly encouraged us to courageously accept living without certainty, answers, or ultimate solutions. As her way of living shows, we can face the darkness, even play there, and also bathe in the light, responding to suffering and sorrow with compassion. Radical uncertainty is facing realities, just as they are and being moved to action.

Roshi Halifax paused at one point and laughed at the irony of talking with certainty about the importance of living with uncertainty, quoting her beloved Bernie Glassman's words: "At least that's what I think." We were reminded that while accepting not knowing we are still called to know what we can, take responsibility, speaking and acting with humility.

This is a powerful time of learning for humans and Roshi Halifax reflected on our theme: "The inner world changes the outer world." She told us that we are doing sacred work, putting our hands in the dirt with an ethos of care, realizing interbeing through service, meeting reality with an open heart. And she left us "shimmering," shining with a soft, wavering light, "standing at the edge" so the boundless horizon becomes visible.

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