Naropa University 2016 Summer Writing Program

We take our title, Indra’s Net, from the Mahayana Buddhist metaphor for the ever- flickering interconnected existence of all things of our world (human, animalia, plants, robotic), and for how the palpable, yet transient and impermanent realities of these forms bounce off one another like reflecting mirrors. The net and interconnectedness are terms applied to internet practices and pressures, and we will track those lines, but we are also concerned with the more ancient sense of the net of living and dying in which find each other and our selves.

Caught by Indra’s Net, we are always already implicated in each other’s destiny, in the co-arising and interdependence of being. We want to invoke a contemplative awareness in asking: what are the parameters of such a notion? How can this notion provoke us to be alert to our increasingly endangered planet? How can we be mindful of the (forced) migrations that constitute so much of political life now? How can a conscientious awareness of our transience and interdependence sponsor a new care and generosity towards the stranger and our selves? Writing, the body, thought itself––nets of a kind too, texts/textures for sure—how many chords go on simultaneously, or are imbricated in our poems, in our fictions, our performances, in our collaborations? We invoke the mysterious and auspicious value and benefit of being in community together for a month at the Jack Kerouac School.