Hopes for Zen in the West

  When Teresa and I first went to Tahoma One Drop and experienced Zen we were so shocked by how good it felt there.  And how unmistakably cool the head monk was.  Teresa was coming directly from college and I was drifting around aimlessly.  I guess I kind of expected the head monk to be…

Moving from the Source: Riffs on True Embodimennt

  These days, my religion is just walking around.  The sutra I’m chanting is this form in space.  I’m not interested in yes or no or smart or dumb. I’m worshiping the light beneath my feet. What is it that is stepping?  Walking?  Standing?  Sitting?  Laying down?  What is it that is holding us up?…

Expressing Something True

It can be extremely helpful if someone acknowledges what we’ve been experiencing in our own internal process or we happen to read or hear someone talk about something which we’ve been experiencing, but no one else seems to understand. It can be a lifesaver. Or at least reading or hearing them talk about some of…

Getting Into the House: Kufu and Zazen

In our training, the Roshi asks us to go into the house.  He says, “Go Straight!” In our zazen, we must find a way in.  We all go up to the door and try to push it open.  It won’t budge.  But the Roshi told us to “Go Straight!”  So we push and push on…

The Most Intense Person in the Room

  For all of you folks out there who are always the most intense person in the room, or are waiting for everyone to notice the subtext, or can feel other people as yourself, or are a walking pressure cooker, or can’t get yourself going in one direction, or you feel like an exposed nerve, or…

Zen’s Long Slow Humbling Healing Process of the Heart.

In Zen, much of the focus is on doing Tanden energy work.  Please see my article on Tanden to learn about it.  The Tanden work is huge and never ending, but with time and experience, it becomes apparent that we are also doing heart energy work, the long healing process of working out our emotional…

How Sanzen Shaped My Way of Doing Bodywork

  “If we open ourselves completely, consciously or unconsciously, we are ready to listen to the voiceless voice of the universe.” – Dainin Katagiri Recently someone asked me what my practice looks like now that I am not doing koan work intensively in the monastery.  This post is a bit of a response to that…

Walking in the Woods

  Desperate to find a way to interact with life, catching glimpses in sports when movement and space seemed to bend, seemed tactile and plastic.  Not knowing my place or how I’d find my way, I longed for something real with which to commit my awareness.  Knowing somehow and yet isolated, I ventured through high…