Removing the Barrier Between Self and Other

“To study the Buddha Way is to study the self. To study the self is to forget the self. To forget the self is to be actualized by myriad things. When actualized by myriad things, your body and mind as well as the bodies and minds of others drop away. No trace of enlightenment remains,…

Receiving

“Receive.” “Receive”.  “We become like a great mountain”  Over and over the Roshi would tell us this. Many people want to know how to have ease in their bodies. Many of my friends, clients, zen friends.  Someone tells them to put their pelvis in this position and that does not feel good. And so they…

Zen Embodiment’s 5 Most Popular Blog Posts

Thank you for reading my blog!  Below are the all time most popular posts. Breathing from the Belly: Tanden, a Great Rolling Ball Describing Traditional Rinzai Koan Training A great love affair Just standing around Zhan Zhuang, Standing Like a Tree Breaking Through: Sublime and Natural These are not necessarily my favorite. I will do…

The Classical Ideas Podcast Ep 108: Koans with Corey Ichigen Hess

I had a great time talking on the Classical Ideas Podcast again. This time, tackling the elusive, often misunderstood zen koan. Really fun! Please Share it if you like, and support Greg! Thanks! And please leave a comment if you feel moved to! From Greg Soden: Episode #108 with my friend (and returning guest), Corey…

Guidance of the Great Vow

Sentient beings are numberless I vow to liberate them The Head monk walked into the zendo on day six of Osesshin and announced that two planes had just crashed into the World Trade Center. This was on Whidbey Island. On the the right of me was one of my best friends, Chris, who I had…

Walking Emotional Energy Fields

We are walking emotional energy fields. When I came back from Japan, and Teresa was pregnant with Rose, we were living on a little herb farm in a cottage.  Some friends from the monastery were visiting one evening, and we were talking about what was next in our lives.  For me, it was a moment…

Ishin Denshin (Heart to Heart, Mind to Mind)

    Ishin denshin means something like “Communication as if two people have the same mind.”  This concept is a big part of my life, and in this post, I’d like to try to explain a bit about it. How can we become what we are doing more intimately right now?  How can we remove…

Dojo Poems: A few scattered poems from a young monk’s life

Unbearable joy, profound loneliness and sadness.  Liberation!  Wild energy and self reflection.  Some short poems giving a window into what it was like to be a young monk in a Japanese Zen Monastery. bitter cold     winter full moon still erupts my heart — what a relief this state of mind      even suffering is…

Podcast Interview with My Brother on Hess’s Heroes

Here is a podcast interview with my brother. Topics include reasons for going to a Zen Monastery, How Bob Dylan relates to Zen, finding our own practice, how Zen makes us into artists. It was a great time hangin with my big bro. Listen Here! Thanks! Please share it if you like it!

Honesty: Facing Ourselves in Zazen

We can’t do zazen unless we are honest.  Zazen itself teaches us that.  Without honesty, zazen won’t happen. Nothing will move through us, we’ll go to sleep or feel stagnant or sit there lost in thought.   We’ve got to feel what is happening, feel what is coming up.  Actually feel where we are stuck in…