Suzuki Roshi

‘Whatever the teaching may be: the teaching confronts each. In accordance with the circumstances, the teaching has absolute value; and to accord with the circumstances the teaching should have an infinite number of forms. Buddhism in its pure and formless form is given to us in samadhi or zazen when we are ready to accept […]

Hongzhi

‘In wholeness take one step.’ (Cultivating the Empty Field) Just like yesterday’s post, this reminds me of a koan – in this case, one of the translations of Yunmen’s response in the Blue Cliff Record (case 14): ‘Preaching facing oneness.’ For a long time I stuck with the other answer to the question (the question itself is a relatively stock […]

Kobun Chino

‘You don’t go anywhere from kensho. Seeking to know yourself ends, and time starts. The future doesn’t exist in the future, and the past hasn’t gone yet. Your ordinary dualistic knowledge of everything ends. But you don’t dwell in such a realization. After the second or third moment, you discover you are still a person, […]

The Energy of the Repeated Gesture

Back in the days of the first blog I wrote, whenever I was going to be away for a while, I would preload posts, either linking back to previous posts, or sharing various themed photographs – mostly of Tassajara. As I prepared to go to England for a month, I was wondering what to plan. I […]

Yuishun

Why, it’s but the motion of eyes and brows! And here I’ve been seeking it far and wide. Awakened at last, I find the moon Above the pines, the river surging high.

This Drifting, Wandering Life

September seems to be slipping by quickly, and the last few mornings have felt autumnal, with chill in the air, even as it warms in the middle of the day. I am running around trying to take care of last-minute things before flying to England for a month-long visit. It will be colder there, for […]

Dogen

‘Dogen drew a circle in the air with his whisk, held up the whisk, and said: If I hold this up, you call it buddhas appearing in the world. If I put it down, you call it the ancestral teacher coming from the west. If I draw a circle, you call it what is protected and […]

Sekkei Harada

‘When you think, your whole body from your head to your toes is thinking, and that is all. But we have the idea that there is some “mind” inside of us that is operating and creating thought. For that reason, we believe that “I” and the thoughts that arise in “me” are something separate. But […]