No Gate Barrier


Super-rationality hides within the paradoxical.

Paradoxicality clings like a faint odor to the super-rational.

Yet the super-rational eludes the paradoxical

and the paradoxical misses the super-rational completely.

Between YES NO is a barrier

which is never been overcome.

Always almost falling over

we catch ourselves at the last moment first.

Between whole and part is a groundless ground

at the point of absolute balance between

all the myriad opposites of creation.

There, a deep silence roars.

There we find our selves

that have wandered lost for eons.

They come together and resonate for a moment

as long as an eternity without ever becoming whole.

Then the mists gather about us once more,

and we pretend to be deluded again.

No Whole. No Fragments.

Non-Dual is never merely One.

Non-Dual is never merely Two.

Yet a deep unity shines out

from between the posts

of the gateless barrier.


Copyright 1997 Kent Palmer. All Rights Reserved. Not for Distribution.



Super-rationality is what is beyond reason but graspable by the heart.

Paradoxicality is when thought reflects on itself, attempting to ground itself endlessly but always failing. Thought in paradoxicality experiences groundlessness.

Super-rationality occurs when thought stops. Paradoxicality occurs when thought tries to turn back on itself in its motion.

Super-rationality leads to reflection. Paradoxicality leads to reflexion. Reflexion means a movement of turning back, like a reflex action. Reflection is a momentary pause in thought during which it receives the meanings and lights that emanate from the void.

Super-rationality is the state that Zen Koans attempt to make us attain that takes us beyond what our reason can grasp without harming the intellect. Paradoxicality is a sickness of cognition but is held up by the Western tradition as the ultimate experience.

Yet super-rationality cannot escape its dual, paradoxicality completely and the same is true of paradoxicality which has super-rationality always hidden within it.

Thought is a mirror and the void of non-thought is a mirror. The difference between super-rationality and paradoxicality depends on knowing which mirror you are looking into. The mirroring of thought is paradoxicality, in it thoughts reflect each other and create the illusion of mutual grounding. The mirroring of the spacetimes of silence between thoughts is the super-rational. It is directly graspable by the heart but not by the mind in motion. It is something that makes sense beyond reason. In this mirror all the thoughts are fragmented and scattered across the universe of the vanishing self. In this mirror we see the meanings and lights that appear directly out of the void.

We must have both thought, or action or perception, and what lies beyond thought when it pauses for a moment in reflection. Reflection without thought is mindlessness approaching the inhuman. Thought without reflection has significance but no meaning. It is superficial. Thought that thinks itself is a sickness of the soul. The balance between thought and reflection is the key. It is precisely in the middle between the thoughts and the stopping of thought that the non-dual ground opens up for us.

Non-duality is a doctrine which holds that super-rationality and paradoxicality are 'not one' and 'not two.' They never become the same thing and they never become completely distinct. Between reason and the paradox is a middle ground that is beyond reason which limits the action of paradoxicality by not allowing the antinomies to conflict yet allows them to intersect. In this middle ground the antinomies are stated but allowed to be simultaneously existing without interfering. When the barrier between the two independent antinomies collapses then we get paradoxicality, which would also state that the conflict of antinomies is the same as the non-conflict between them. This is hubris. Paradoxicality is always a transgression of the natural limits where reason attempts to ground itself in itself. This attempt always fails which accounts for the groundlessness of reason. The super-rational is a groundless ground between words and silence which turns out to be a new and completely different foundation which the Buddha discovered, which is implicit in Taoism and is explicit in Islamic Sufism.