Katagiri Roshi

‘Consciousness exists only within your living activity. So if you want to understand your human consciousness, you have to do something. That is Zen practice. You practice letting your body and mind go deeper and deeper, back down the twelve links of causation, just passing them by one by one, until finally, at the bottom […]

Katagiri Roshi

‘The human mind doesn’t have its own particular form; it is a state of being that appears only when you do something. That temporary state of being is based on interdependence with all sentient beings, so it is constantly moving and changing. That’s why any psychological explanation is very complicated. If you see that movement […]

Katagiri Roshi

‘Life is constantly springing up. It’s just like spring water coming out of the ground. You receive that energy before your human consciousness appears. That’s why Zen teaching talks about the world prior to the germination of any subtle ideas. In Zen practice we try to receive that energy with full awareness, appreciate it, and […]

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, […]

Katagiri Roshi

‘You don’t know how vast the human world is. Even if you touch it, you don’t know. Human consciousness always tries to know, but fortunately or unfortunately there’s nothing to know. Unfortunately means, the more you try to know it conceptually, the more you cannot know it. Fortunately means, you can train your six consciousnesses […]

Katagiri Roshi

‘When you pay attention to real reality, you see that human knowledge exists right in the middle of change – there is nothing to get a hold of. So finally, human knowledge is empty. But that emptiness is not merely empty; something is moving in there. That something moving is mind itself. Mind doesn’t have […]