My nephew is in the R.O.T.C. program at University of California, San Diego. He is planning to enter the Navy afterwards and possibly be a fighter pilot. Like his grandfather, his time in the service gives him a full ride, an option that makes total sense when money appears to be scarce. My nephew sharedContinue reading “Can a Buddhist Become a Marine?”
We think we exist as some kind of solid independent reality. Funeral ceremonies of loved ones have always served to remind me of the dream-like quality of life. Recently, a beloved aunt of mine passed away. Her husband, children, and grandchildren all eulogized her in a profound way. Her grandchildren played music, sang, and offeredContinue reading “The Web of Life”
In light of yet another round of shootings, this time at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh killing 11, and in the African American community in Jeffersontown, Kentucky killing 2, what is a Buddhist response? How do we make sense of the level of hate that we are witnessing in our country? What shouldContinue reading “The Tree of Life”
“Beyond Mountains are more mountains” is a Haitian saying. This proverb does not only accurately depict the Haitian landscape, but also the inner landscape of our lives. We all have ups and downs, just like the mountains’ slopes. There is no end to the highs and lows of our lives. Haitians know this all tooContinue reading “Haiti is a Great Teacher”
What is the role of silence in Zen?
What or who prevents us from experiencing real inner freedom? Is it our stuff, our relationships, our own perceptions, or perhaps a combination? Daishin shares his own wrestling with these questions.
“Even if you have the highest understanding of mountains as all buddhas’ inconceivable qualities, the truth is not only this. These are conditioned views. This is not the understanding of buddha ancestors, but just looking through a bamboo tube at a corner of the sky.” – Zen Master Dogen Every World Religion has goneContinue reading “We Are Blind”
“I am embarrassed to say this, but I read pretty Zen books for twenty years before I met a teacher.” – Dai-En Bennage Roshi Most of us in the West begin a meditation practice by reading books, through the internet, through apps, or maybe through a teacher-less meditation group. These are all fine waysContinue reading “The Role of the Teacher in Zen”
Be Teachable The sound coming from my teacher’s desk Stiff and inflexible head Softened by Dharma rain only One dies not by oneself only But with all beings together One learns not by oneself But by the authenticity of another learner This learning goes on IndefinitelyContinue reading “Be Teachable”
Climate changes people. People change climate. The fridge stays on maybe 4/24 in Haiti. Mosquitos bite and sweat on forehead while half asleep in disease. The warmth connects the “I’s” in a way the economy cannot. America? Like frogs basking in a slow cooking pot of cold water. Too comfortable to change bullet proof glassContinue reading “Ayiti and America”