Ask a question,
if you get no response is the question good or is it foolish, is the teacher fooled, or simply too busy to answer. Be careful or you will be trapped deep within the net.
A reflection on Case 52 of the Shobogenzo (Dogen’s True Dharma Eye)
The greatest problem
with our language in the practice of zazen can seem insurmountable.
We are lovers of tenses,
a dozen to choose from, one spawning offspring, time ever important to us.
In zen, on the cushion
there is no past, no future, perfect or otherwise, nor our friend the conditional.
We strive to always be
in the moment, there is now and nothing else, and we ought to strive to never be tense.
Standing in the ordinary
stare out across the great gulf searching for that which is sacred. It seems to dance just beyond the edge of vision. Close your eyes and lift your right foot, place it down. How does it feel to stand amid all that is sacred.
A reflection on Case 39 of the Shobogenzo (Dogen’s True Dharma Eye)
Buddhism, Buddhist, Japan, Koan, meditation, mind, Philosophy, Photography, Poem, Religion, Zen
In the middle of a rouund of zazen
I hear the bells of a nearby church, although I am nearby no church.
Zen teaches you to be present
in each moment, to be immersed in and not witnessing life around you.
The bells break my struggle
to not think, they introduce time again where there should be none.
Just as soon, the bells are silent,
and the silence of 1300 miles away pervades our small zendo,
so just perhaps Zoom, or the ability
to control its transmission, is after all, a mindful Buddhist tool.
from a just planted but barren rice field when I ask you how many grains of rice this harvest will yield you stand silently and we nod in agreement.
A reflection on Case 68 of the Shobogenzo (True Dharma Eye) koans.
As you walk
in search of enlightenment stop at a temple and seek it there.
If you cannot find
a temple, build one.
Look at where you are
and be there in that temple and stop searching, for you are home.
A reflection on Case 4 of the Book of Equanimity
We only see the present as history,
by day history is a matter of minutes, by night of seconds, years or centuries.
There is no future to be seen, only
imagined, the mind writing a story that can never be read, never told.
It is only when we close the eyes
that the present truly exists, independent of the past, free
and the past is merely waves
washing over and around us, and the mind can find freedom.
You may wrap yourself
with all of the sutras, drink dharma with a straw, look carefully for teachers.
You will drown in the conditions
your breath swallowed but unending thoughts.
The answers are always within
teacher is student student is teacher this moment only moment.
A reflection on Case 3 of the Book of Equanimity
When teacher and student
sit face to face, mat to mat, looking deeply one at the other, which is the teacher and which is the student?
You are wrong.
There is no teacher, there is no student, there is only the silence of the moment in which all dharma is made obvious.
A reflection on Case 2 of the Book of Equanimity
then another, another only this one
a world of delusion
yesterday and tomorrow Buddha says Now!
Egrets take flight
we stare awestruck nature pities us