A traditional Zen story of an interaction between a Zen ancestor and a student, meant to convey a subtle aspect of Zen understanding and practice. Koans are often used by Zen students as a point of contemplation or inquiry, particularly in Rinzai.
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- 3 - Zazen (Seated Meditation) Part 1: What Zazen Is and How to Do ItZazen, seated meditation, is the central practice of the Zen school of Buddhism. This episode is about what zazen is and why we do it. I also give you instructions for how to do zazen, including physical posture and what to "do" with your mind. After listening, you'll have everything you need to give zazen a try.
- Glossary: Rinzai
- 25 – Work as Spiritual Practice According to Dogen's “Instructions to the Cook” – Part 1Zen demands that we engage our everyday activities, particularly work, as spiritual practice. Few writings describe Zen work practice as well as Zen master Dogen’s “Tenzokyokun,” or “Instructions to the Tenzo” (a tenzo being the head cook in a monastery), so I’ll use this short text to frame my presentation. Although the Tenzokyokun describes the work of a specialized role within a Zen monastery, its teachings about taking care, serving others, appreciating everything, and becoming one with your work are relevant to everyone, no matter what their work or life circumstances.
- 24 – Deepen Your Zazen by Not Getting Stuck in Satisfaction or DissatisfactionIt's tempting, particularly in Mahayana Buddhism, to get stuck in a kind of superficial satisfaction with your zazen and practice. Of course, it's possible to get stuck in dissatisfaction as well. In this episode I walk you through four steps to deepen your zazen by using your dissatisfaction as guide for your efforts. I also compare zazen to walking on a tightrope - the instructions are simple, but actually doing it is challenging and requires experience, effort, and attention.
- Glossary: Hongzhi Zhengjue