Gesshin Claire Greenwood

‘In my experience, there is a lot of basic trust involved in Buddhist practice. First of all, I trust in my basic potential to wake up. This is a basic, fundamental trust that I touch in with every time I sit down on a meditation cushion. If I didn’t trust that I have capacity and basic goodness, then wouldn’t be doing any of this. Even if, as a famous teacher once said, “Zazen is good for nothing,” I still trust that it’s a good thing to do. Figure that one out. I also trust – or suspect, or hope – that my teachers and my tradition know what they’re talking about. This is a big one. The tradition of Buddhism has been around for a few thousand years, and it’s included some of the most brilliant, dedicated religious figures throughout time all getting together to study, meditate, practice, and debate these issues. So… maybe it has something useful to say, you know? Maybe my limited twenty-nine years of existence on this planet can learn something from the Buddhist practice, which people have been dedicating their entire lives to developing for more than twenty-five hundred years.’ (Bow First, Ask Questions Later)

One of my students has been reading this book, and wanted to discuss a few passages from it in the group. This section, and the surrounding paragraphs, was the basis of a rich conversation this week.

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