Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The way to wake up.

I am now the recipient of so much kindness, instead of running myself ragged and fattening my ego with compassionate acts. Thank God for Christianity - the lower or no-er the church, the kinder the members seem. Compassion ain't an idea, it's really how it works usually. I know that I am hard work to my long suffering family but from my carers I hear it could be a lot worse.

The more heart there is the better. After all we are Shin (heart/mind or compassionate wisdom). If there are obstacles in our way (the earlier the better usually) work on them with a therapist. Speed bumps are one thing, but walls are another. I remember a Spike Milligan's cartoon-style self portrait carrying a nasty little black bag of depression.
Q: Why didn't he drop it?
A: Because he didn't know what was in it!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Ordinary Mind is the Way.

26th July

"I have spent years trying to forget zen," - Genpo Roshi (not in a public talk). He said this years ago. I have watched his life go through so many stages, never sticking for too long anywhere.

I feel as though something is really lacking in my life if I don't sit for too long. I need a balance. I am on my way back to formal practice. I spent a long time stuck on Master Joshus' "Ordinary Mind is The Way" but I was far away from that.

Monday, July 20, 2009

My Sons' Wedding et Moi

On Saturday, went to Cy's wedding in London. At a victorian registry office with carved wood and stained glass. Afterwards, confetti in the rain. Fabulous evening reception, all fairy lights, muslim and champagne. Live music from classic to folk and jazz. Great to see all my family again. Fascintors bobbing about, all over the place. Oasis fans on the train plus beer. Thank you Michael for bowing out for when you did. What a talant that man had. Head and shoulders above the rest.

For myself the urgency of life and death (Called the Great Matter in Zen) gets stronger and stronger. This heart-mind which is me and everything else only deepens as my Home. I do wish people would stop blowing each other up because of differences in beliefs. We all need our faiths until we don't.

As a teacher once said " Don't ask me about life and death, I don't know"

Do you really know?

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Mid-day thoughts

(6:30 am) Its so easy to press a dharma button. As Joanna once said "And out comes a dharma talk", but i would rather look at whats happening in my life in case it rings any bells for you. Like bereavement it is so easy to talk of letting go, but its got to be gone through. I am lucky I haven't had to drop things. I woke up one day and began discovering bit by bit how much has gone. Now its like one of those cookery programs which give aspiring chefs a bag of random ingredients and ask "well what can you make out of this?"

(12:00pm) Anyway lets talk spirituality for a while. I am a Gen X and ex RC who deeply loves the christian mystics eg. Master Ekhardt whose sermon on poverty caused him to be burnt at the stake for his pains.

I think of Buddha Nature or Big Mind/Big Heart as God, just because I was raised a christian. The churches have all the capacity to go far beyond what they teach the lay people. To be controversial for a moment, Jesus must have suffered acute remorse at the time of his great death (dai-kensho) "I have shown them the wrong path"

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Many thanks

Just want to say many thanks to my daughter Tammy (aka Myoho Sensei) of Zen River holland for helping with putting this blog together and all things I.T.

Sangha is Important

I am missing Zen people. The Sangha is a neccessary part of my life, to keep me feeling alive and to keep going on in my practice. As I get older, more and more is taken away from me. I really do miss the Sangha. I remember my teacher Genpo Roshi saying years ago that Sangha was the greatest of the Three Treasures. I see why from another perspective! It encourages silent resting in the silent resting of my daily life. There is hardly any contact with the market place these days.

I laugh a bit when Help the Aged plastic bags are put through my letterbox. I hope none of the aged put them over their heads!! Probably why I am blogging this.

If you are in a Sangha, keep up your practice. Its the most precious thing you've got.

Love, Genshin Sensei
In Lancashire UK