Shohaku Okumura

‘Even though our day-to-day activity is incomplete, without it there’s no Buddha’s mind, no Buddha’s enlightenment. If we don’t practice, Buddha’s enlightenment ended twenty-five hundred years ago. Because of our incomplete practice, right here at this Dharma position, Buddha’s enlightenment is here. Otherwise Buddha’s enlightenment is only recorded in the sutras.’ (The Mountains and Waters Sutra)

Making Money

I have been in a very good mood the last week or so, and there are two likely reasons, in my mind. First of all, I completed my taxes and found I owed only half of what I had set aside for them. Also, once the showers on Monday had passed through, warm weather set in, […]

Shinshu Roberts

‘Each moment is a fresh moment that we can enact to the best of our ability. Each moment is another birth of continuous practice. This is living being-time. This is the shared being-time between ourselves and all beings. Again, this is not abstract. It must be enacted while we wait in line at the supermarket […]

The Unavoidable Perfection of the Universe

Editing, processing and uploading the Zen Center dharma talks is one of the things I do as I create a livelihood. Sometimes I have to supply a title to the talk, so I listen through for the first five or ten minutes to find a resonant phrase that isn’t just part of the preamble. Very rarely […]

Dogen

‘”It knows without touching things” [from Hongzhi’s Zazenshin]. Knowing, here, of course does not mean perception. For perception is of little measure. It does not mean understanding, for understanding is artificially constructed. Therefore, this knowing is not touching things. And not touching things is real knowing. Such knowing should not be measured as even universal knowledge. It […]

Koun Franz

‘There’s no place you can go that is not your life. You are not currently in a dress rehearsal for a life that’s going to happen only on Friday and Saturday nights, when the curtain goes up. For that reason, I wish that we’d found a word other than “practice” for practice, because of course, […]

Leaving Home, Attaining The Way

I was offering the zazen instruction at Zen Center last Saturday for the first time in a while, and as I was running through some of the things I often say, I remembered that I was coming up to the tenth anniversary of my shukke tokudo, which, like other important ceremonies, had taken place in the Buddha Hall, […]