Zen (Chan)

The meditation (dhyana) school originating in China that emphasizes "mind-to-mind transmission"
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    Ambivalent Zen Paid Member

    Roshi wears his Yankee cap to breakfast, doesn’t remove it even after we sit down. He has a large collection of hats, but he has worn this one exclusively since I bought it for him last week at Yankee Stadium. Slightly self-conscious about his shaved head, he never goes out without a hat, but the Yankee cap has the added advantage of making him look, if not like an American, at least at home in the culture. Like any Zen master, he aims to walk the streets as if invisible, attract no attention, leave no trace of himself in anyone’s mind. The robes he wears in the zendo are seldom worn outside it. He favors flannel shirts and khaki pants, Saucony running shoes, a Yankee jacket in the fall and, when the weather turns, a parka and a black woolen watch cap purchased through the L. L. Bean catalogue. In addition to hats, he collects watches and seems to wear a different one every day. More »
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    Daughters of the Wind Paid Member

    EVERY YEAR around the spring equinox, the prevailing westerly winds begin to gust, battering the California coast just a scant half-mile from Green Gulch Farm. These westerlies are a swollen river of air moving across the face of the Pacific, blowing shoreline sand into long drifts and heaving spindrift spume against the dark bulk of the March headlands. More »
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    Raven's Edge Paid Member

    IN MEDITATION PRACTICE, as in the garden, often the best learning happens at the edge of what you know, where the sorceress hills at the back of your brain go stone dark and you push through onto new ground. “Not wholly in the busy world, nor quite beyond it,” observed the poet Alfred, Lord Tennyson of the garden. This is the landscape I happened upon this winter, standing in the last Green Gulch field before the ocean, when a flock of ravens dismantled my notion of what it takes to make a garden. More »
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    Of Samurai and Sisterhood Paid Member

    Alexis: Many of us came into Buddhism at the same time that we came into feminism, at least the three of us, and so we were wondering for you, how these two isms, Buddhism and feminism, are complementary and how are they contradictory? I find them complementary, and it’s probably because my personal and academic interests in feminism have been about the self and the formation of gender. I teach a course called “The Construction and Deconstruction of Gender,” which almost sounds like a course on Buddhism—in both cases it seems to me that the practice is about letting go of the labels and identities that limit us. I’m not sure I have ever found feminism and Buddhism in conflict. Because I see any feminist issue—like any issue ever, anywhere in the universe—as a Zen issue. More »
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    The Fertile Soil of Sangha Paid Member

    TWO THOUSAND five hundred years ago, Shakyamuni Buddha proclaimed that the next Buddha will be named Maitreya, the “Buddha of Love.” I think Maitreya Buddha may be a community and not just an individual. A good community is needed to help us resist the unwholesome ways of our time. Mindful living protects us and helps us go in the direction of peace. With the support of friends in the practice, peace has a chance. More »
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    Simply Stop Paid Member

    “As I see it, there isn’t so much to do. Just be ordinary—put on your robes, eat your food, and pass the time doing nothing.” —Master Linji, Teaching 18 IN MASTER LINJI’S TIME, some Buddhist terms were used so often they became meaningless. People chewed on terms like “liberation” and “enlightenment” until they lost their power. It’s no different today. People use words that tire our ears. We hear the words “freedom” and “security” on talk radio, television, and in the newspaper so often that they’ve lost their effectiveness or their meaning has been distorted. When words are overused, even the most beautiful words can lose their true meaning. For example, the word “love” is a wonderful word. When we like to eat hamburger, we say, “I love hamburger.” So what’s left for the meaning of the word “love”? More »