Breathing from the Belly: Tanden, a Great Rolling Ball

A friend recently asked me to help clarify the tanden, also known as lower Dantien. This is a big subject.  I have written about it before here. I will try to briefly convey a sense of what it is like to feel the tanden, develop the tanden in sitting and everyday life, and what it…

Letting the Body Fully Express

Doing internal energy work throughout the day can be really simple.  We can ask ourselves, “How is my body trying to fully express itself energetically right now?” Our bodies are like kinked hoses, and we are kinked where we are mentally and emotionally stuck.  Allowing the body to fully express this energy means learning to…

Zen Dad

Some folks have pointed out to me that I often write glowingly of my time in the Monastery, but they’d like to hear about my time now as a father and husband and householder. I am very grateful for the time living in the monastery in my twenties.  It was like having a huge blank…

Spiritual Pirates

There seems to be a feeling among some practitioners who have never lived in a monastery or Zen center, that it is some kind of cloistered, strange place, where socially awkward people go to be alone and get away from society. That society is one thing and the temple is separate. I thought this as…

Intuition is Becoming What is Happening

I wanted to write a bit about intuition.  And through that explain how becoming what is happening right now is a way to live in a much more connected way. Why are some people more intuitive than others?  How can we be more intuitive in our daily lives?  And how can a certain orientation to…

Engaging with Our Own Process: Finding Our True Home

Each of us has our own personal unique way of practicing and engaging in our internal process.  We all have our own style of discovering our entryway into truly experiencing reality.  In this blog post I am attempting to shed light and give permission to anyone feeling a bit lost in his/her internal world.  It…

Excerpts from a Paper : The Koan of SourcePoint.

Originally posted on January 11, 2018 AT SOGENJI SERVING ZENZAI WITH SHODO HARADA ROSHI, C. 2005 Below are a few excerpts from a paper I am writing about how doing traditional Japanese monastic koan work relates to my current life doing SourcePoint Therapy.  I will publish the entire article once it is formally published in…

Practical Tips: Does It Have a Direction?

  I’ve been in a few workshops again recently, and it is very common to have one or two people having really intense internal issues.  The workshops often bring these issues out more intensely than in our normal life.  And this is a real gift.  Often the language used to describe working with this type…

Zen as Primordial Dance Training

  Zen for me was like encountering some carnal primordial dance training.  The whole life was a choreographed dance.  We came to the training, confused, awkward, couldn’t get ourselves going in one direction. We were scattered, lost.  And then we’d see someone wash their bowls, and it was like the world turned to flame.  To…

Musings on Sourcepoint: Birth of the Heart Sutra

O Shariputra, form does not differ from emptiness, emptiness does not differ from form. That which is form is emptiness, that which is emptiness form. The same is true of feelings, perceptions, impulses, consciousness. From Prajna Paramita Hridaya Sutra (The Heart Sutra)  Where does energy end and form begin?  What are these bodies?  Why do…

Bob Dylan, Folk Songs, Koans, and the Transmission of Art

Today I was listening to Bob Dylan’s lecture to the Nobel foundation (it is a requirement for all winners to give a lecture), hearing him talk about his formative time as an artist, playing music in small venues and on the streets to tiny crowds.  That time shaped his artistic vision, and I was struck…