Lesson: As you have seen, the practice of zazen reveals and affirms you yourself as the wholeness of life. When you do zazen, you may approach it as “I am doing zazen.” If you were to extend the meaning of zazen to this approach, you would be trying to make yourself into the wholeness of life. This kind of effort is extra: you are already whole. Zazen is zazening you. Every day, allow zazen to work on you. In this way, wholeness affirms itself as you.
Practice for today: Reflect on your approach to zazen, on your approach to practice. If your approach is to make yourself whole, raise the view of “already whole.” What is shifting for you?
Thank you again for your posts, what a treasure you all are. Thank you Roshi for bringing us together in a novel way.
My first immediate reaction to this morning’s topic was “I’m fine, what about you?” followed by an image of the zendo at ZCLA. This took my reflection on the following path: I’m miss sitting with others, the special energy that is present in sesshin or even a Sunday morning group practice, all in the same vessel, connected I don’t know how but it’s always palpable. I miss sitting with others. I miss chanting!
This led me to reflect that although I zazen alone most of the time it doesn’t happen in isolation. For me meditation is intertwined with morals (precepts), lovingkindness, compassion, art, dharma study, life practice. This wholesomeness we’ve been examining, this original ‘state of mind’ (state of mine?) is shared. Because the teachings are vast and multifaceted and experiental, whatever piece of dharma I come in contact with is meshed with the sitting practice and it goes around and around.
Through this wider approach and work my life is whole (not perfectly wholesome i tell you!). With the right effort, and other 8 fold path items, the fruits of meditation often grow here and there. Everything together brings positive transformation and it’s somehow contagious. Just like a big generous smile! (yawning too!) Happiness is the fruits of all this and translates in joy, increased generosity and applied compassion. I’m always amazed to see how we can make others happy by just being happy first. We sometimes mirror each other. If not feeling very happy I try the smile approach, it does work even if it involves smiling alone! It’s not been easy but that’s part of my journey!
My own 2 eurocents.
Bows to you all
PS: I was showing this piece to my students the other day and I realized it was relevant to this group (the song might be loud for some): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YVZ_pA5dL9I