Monday, August 31, 2009

a ritual sign

palms together, gassho, hapchang, what is the meaning of this humble yet profound action? presence– is just a state of mind. observance– is just seeing true nature. nurturance– is just embracing our own mortality. joy– is merely letting go of ideas. what is this grace? where does it function and what is it that results? my idea has nothing to do with the beautiful expression whose expectations have gone beyond all that a mortal could ever imagine!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

some want to be Zen Masters

*Please see the notes on this picture at the bottom of this post. some want to be Zen Masters; they should try to be good carpenters. some want to be world honored sages; they should try to be good mechanics. some want to be saints— they should try to be good clerical help. the true master is a carpenter. the true sage is a mechanic. the true saint is a clerk. if you want a zen stick, I will take it from you. if you don’t want a zen stick. just pay attention and the truth will appear. * I came accross this photo on the internet and it so much reminded me of Zen Master Su Bong (Subong Sonsa) also known as Mu Deung Sunim as well as See Hoy Liao. There is a conversation in "Dropping Ashes on the Buddha" with See Hoy and Seung Sahn (Sungsan) about his practicing with three of the four Zen Masters in the Photo. It appears as 'Kongan Blues' on page 42 of that book. See Hoy is very confused at this time and tells Sungsan to go Fuck Himself. Many years later See Hoy became the First Zen Master to be sanctioned by Sungsan. Unfortunatley he died at the age of 50 during a koan interview with a student in Hong Kong. This snapshot contains a great history and brings dead words to life. Here is a simple Zen Practitioner who came to fruition and his veritable pantheon of Zen Masters who would lead him in the right direction. This photo contains four Zen masters: Dr. Thich Thien-An in the rear at the front of the procession, walking behind Dr. Ananda, a very sweet man who died of a massive heart attack two years after this photo was taken; walking side-by-side, Seung Sahn Soen Sa and Maezumi Roshi; Kimura Roshi, an unassuming Zen master if there ever were one, brought up the rear. See Hoy was practicing with Kimura Roshi, Dr. Thien-an and Sungsan Sonsa, how amazing!

Saturday, August 15, 2009


what images do we have about life and love? what pictures exist in our minds when we are conversing with a friend? can we separate the metaphors from the presence of the exchange? this is the paradox of this life that is thrust upon us at birth, how do we perceive the presence without the residue of bygone experience and misrepresented memories of a forlorn past? black characters on a white backround, Sheila Chandra chants ‘waiting’ in the melodic tones of grace.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Boundless Way Sesshin

the winding path
leading upwards to
the Zendo,
as gravel and rocks
yield beneath footsteps.
a gentle rhythmic cadence
echoes against the hills
a symphony of crickets
harmonize with chirps and coo's
a still forest pond
reflects tall reeds
and age old trees
ducks quack and peck
at the ground
while mosquitoes feast
on my hands and head
the breeze from atop the
hill cools the light sweat
on my skin.
the sound of the han
reverberates in the valleys.
a silent presence pervades
this meeting of seekers
only to flow into
this unfolding presence
of constantly changing eternity.