Hōkō Karnegis

‘There’s no distinction to be made between ordinary mind and awakened mind. We don’t have to try to find it. When we stop looking for awakened mind outside of this moment and outside of ourselves, we see that it is vast and limitless. Then we see that there is no actual right or wrong about […]

Suzuki Roshi

‘Even if you sit alone in the zendo, you are helping others.’ (from the Suzuki Roshi archives) I have been spending a little time dipping in and out of the archives, and this line jumped out at me. I often hear – and perhaps most often at Tassajara, which feels most remote from the ‘outside world’ […]

Brad Warner

‘Every time you get lost in some train of thought, your posture will change according to that train of thought. So when you notice that you’ve been thinking about something during zazen, check your posture. You’ll see that something has gone astray. Maybe your shoulders are rising up. Maybe your head is tilted at a […]

Everything Is Burning

As anyone who lives locally knows, the Bay Area is sitting under a cloud of smoke at the moment. I was working in the Presidio last week, and as we looked out of the windows at lunchtime on Thursday and saw the change in the light, word went round that there was a big fire; […]


Before the birth of mother and father, One solid circle; Even Shakyamuni didn’t understand it – How could Kasyapa transmit it? (quoted in the Book of Serenity)

The Tenth Grave Precept

I vow not to disparage the Three Treasures. (Zen Center) Experience the intimacy of things. Do not defile the Three Treasures. (Zen Mountain Monastery) To expound the dharma with this body is foremost. The virtue returns to the ocean of reality. It is unfathomable; we just accept it with respect and gratitude. (Dogen’s commentary) — This […]

Tetsugen Bernie Glassman

I was sad to read that Tetsugen Bernie Glassman had died. His role in the expansion of American zen, especially into the realms of social action, was of great importance, and will outlive him. I was reminded of that recently when I re-read Instructions to the Cook, with its mix of the practical and the traditional. He […]