The Fault Lines of the City

The rains that have filled this winter abated for a couple of days – though they are due to have returned by the time this is published – so I made the most of the clear sky lull by getting outside. Friends and peers in transition have cautioned me to watch out for old bad […]


There is going to be a little more Dogen in the next couple of weeks as I start organising my thoughts around the upcoming workshop in Santa Cruz, and that is how it should be… ‘The Buddha said, “All things are ultimately unbound. There is nowhere that they permanently abide.” Know that even though all […]


‘Students cannot gain enlightenment simply because they retain their preconceptions. Without knowing who taught them these things, they consider the mind to be thought and perceptions, and do not believe it when they are told that the mind is plants and trees. They think of the Buddha as having marvelous distinguishing marks, with radiance shining […]

The Language of Ritual

Now that I am no longer at Zen Center, I start to miss some of the ceremonies I have participated in over the years. I think it is natural for human beings to crave and respond to rituals marking particular stages of life – and death – and there was always something comforting for me […]

The Practice of Patience

Some weeks ago, my best friend from my radio days in London put me in touch with a colleague of his who was coming over to San Francisco to do some filming. Initially she was just after location advice and local knowledge, but then she asked if I knew anyone who had a van and could […]

Suzuki Roshi

‘To exist in big mind is an act of faith, which is different from the usual faith of believing in a particular idea or being. It is to believe that something is supporting us and supporting all our activities including thinking mind and emotional feelings. All these things are supported by something big that has […]