A drawing by Frederick Franck from his 1973 The Zen of Seeing.

“The purpose of ‘looking’ is to survive, to cope, to manipulate, to discern what is useful, agreeable, or threatening to the Me, what enhances or what diminishes the Me…

“When, on the other hand, I SEE — suddenly I am all eyes, I forget this Me, am liberated from it and dive into the reality of what confronts me, become part of it, participate in it…

“It is in order to really SEE, to SEE ever deeper, ever more intensely, hence to be fully aware and alive, that I draw what the Chinese call ‘The Ten Thousand Things’ around me. Drawing is the discipline by which I constantly rediscover the world” (p5-6).

“Zen raises the ordinariness of The Ten Thousand Things to sacredness and it debunks much that we consider sacrosanct as being ordinary. What we consider supernatural becomes natural, while that which we have always seen as so natural reveals how wondrously supernatural it is” (p112).

“Where there is revelation, explanation becomes superfluous. Curiosity is dissolved in wonder” (p28).

“SEEING/DRAWING is, beyond words and beyond silence, the artist’s response to being alive. Insofar as it has anything to transmit, it transmits a quality of awareness” (p120).

3 Responses to “Franck and the Quality of Awareness”

  1. PolyMathicus Says:

    Someone told me:

    To SEE is to be touched.

  2. Britt Selvitelle Says:

    Much akin to “the little things,” which are more often than not anything but little. A thousand movements blurring our vision.

  3. the dance of Me and Mu « the awakened eye Says:

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