Zen (Chan)

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

    The practice of compassion means letting experience in. A Japanese poet, a woman named Izumi who lived in the tenth century, wrote: “Watching the moon at dawn, solitary, mid-sky, I knew myself completely. No part left out.” When we can open to all parts of ourselves and to others in the world, something quite extraordinary happens. We begin to connect with one another. More »
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    Instructions to the Cook Paid Member

    When [13th-century Zen master] Dogen asked the Zen cook in the Chinese temple why he didn’t have his assistants do the hard work of drying mushrooms in the hot sun, the cook said, “I am not other people.” In the same way, we have to realize that this life is the only life we have. It’s ours, right now. If we don’t do the cooking ourselves, we are throwing our life away. “Keep your eyes open,” Dogen instructs. “Wash the rice thoroughly, put it in the pot, light the fire, and cook it. There is an old saying that says, 'See the pot as your own head, see the water as your lifeblood.’” More »
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    Appreciate Your Life Paid Member

    No one can live your life except you. No one can live my life except me. You are responsible. I am responsible. But what is our life? What is our death? More »
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    Living Two Traditions Paid Member

    Gil Fronsdal has been a student of Buddhist practice for more than twenty-five years. He trained in the Soto Zen tradition, receiving dharma transmission in 1995, as well as in the Vipassana—or Insight Meditation—lineages of Theravada Buddhism. Since 1990, Fronsdal has served as resident teacher at the Insight Meditation Center of the Mid-Peninsula in Redwood City, California. Only the second urban Insight Meditation center in America, it is funded entirely by dana contributions. Tricycle Editor-in-Chief James Shaheen interviewed Gil Fronsdal at his center in August 2002. It is unusual for someone to be a teacher of both Zen and Vipassana. Since you started out in the Zen tradition, can you describe how you first came to the practice? More »
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    The Dust Beyond the Cushion Paid Member

    If you sit long enough, your cushion will become an island amid a sea of dust. Thistles will overtake the yard. Things will begin to fall apart. At some point, you’ve got to clean house. The idea of ritual chores is intriguing to some, but for many of us, housekeeping has become work as rut. The thought of picking up a mop or a scrub brush is met with apprehension. This is where work-practice comes in: with the right approach, these daily chores can be done ably, even artfully. As with sitting, the important thing is to begin. More »
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    Straight Ahead: An Interview with John Daido Loori Paid Member

    John Daido Loori is the abbot of Zen Mountain Monastery (ZMM) in Mt. Tremper, New York. He is a Dharma heir of Hakyu Taizan Maesumi Roshi, founder of the White Plum Asanga, and has received transmission in both the Rinzai and Soto lines of Zen. Daido Loori is also founder and director of the Mountain and Rivers Order, an organization of Zen Buddhist temples, practice centers, and sitting groups in the United States and abroad. In addition, he is president of Dharma Communications, which promotes Buddhist teachings through videos, audiotapes, meditation supplies, Mountain Record quarterly, and Internet activities. Under his guidance, ZMM has established a Zen Environmental Studies Center and engages in an array of social action programs for, among others, prisoners, the homeless, and people with AIDS. This interview was conducted in Daido Loori’s office at ZMM, photographs by Stuart Soshin Gray. Interview by Jeff Zaleski. More »