If you’re practicing the art of Zen along with me for the next few weeks until May 5, you need to know that such matters don’t always unfold peacefully. Sure, you can cross yourself up into the lotus position along a babbling brook and gather the energy of the universe through each cleansing breath. For the rest of us, such quiet moments of reflection come somewhere between the second cup of coffee and the third time through the past performances.
The truth of the matter is enlightenment usually hits you between the eyes with a hypothetical hammer as your handicapping budget becomes lighter, two times over. Learning from the experience in front of us is just as important as the reflection – sometimes hundreds of times over – from a distance. The problem is sometimes it takes us far too long to learn and/or apply what has been learned. Today’s moment of Derby Zen concentrates on the most basic, yet complex feeling of love, as in loving a horse so much you’re blind to other evidence around you spelling the horse’s defeat. With 20 steeds starting from Churchill’s main gate love is probably what you don’t need clouding your wagering judgments.