Tao-ch’uan

When you’re happy, I’m not When you’re sad, I’m not A crane thinks of flying north or south A swallow thinks of its old nest Autumn moon and spring flower thoughts never end You only need to know yourself right now.

Suzuki Roshi

‘Zen student is not, you know, so expressive, you know. Mostly they keep silent. They do not walk so fast. They don’t act so actively, you know. You know, they have some– something, you know– something different, anyway. Especially when you sit for so long time, you yourself feel you changed a lot. You feel, […]

Gudo Nishijima

‘The true meaning of emptiness in Buddhism has been misunderstood for so many years as nothingness, or void. But if we have understood that Buddhism is a realistic philosophy, it is impossible for us to understand emptiness like that. In Buddhism emptiness is just “as it is.” A cup is a cup. A cup never […]

Hui-neng

‘On the best of paths there are no impure dharmas to avoid, not are there any pure dharmas to seek. There are no beings to liberate, nor is there any nirvana to realize. There are no thoughts about liberating beings, nor are there thoughts about not liberating beings. This is the best of paths.’ (Commentary […]

Jenny Odell

‘Practices of attention and curiosity are inherently open-ended, oriented toward something outside of ourselves. Through attention and curiosity, we can suspend our tendency toward instrumental understanding – seeing things or people one-dimensionally as the products of their functions – and instead sit with the unfathomable fact of their existence, which opens up toward us but […]

Coming Home

So today marks the twenty-year anniversary of my arrival in San Francisco. I packed up my mostly happy life in London (see here), and flew in with two bags, and a bicycle in a box. I was in love, and happy to be starting a new phase of life – which also included living at […]

Norman Fischer

‘Consciousness is inherently tragic because its operation involves basic separation: to be conscious of something, I have to be separate from it. To hear a bird, I have to be a distance away from it. To see the sky, I have to be other than the sky. So consciousness is alienation, and alienation brings with […]