We just sit in the midst
of this contradiction where, although
we aim, we can never perceive hitting the mark.
We just sit in the midst of this contradiction that is
absolutely ridiculous when we think about it with our small mind.
In our zazen, it is precisely at the point where our small, foolish self
remains unsatisfied, or completely bewildered, that immeasurable
natural life beyond the thoughts of that self functions.
It is precisely at the point where we become
completely lost that life operates and
the power of Buddha is
sit earnestly in zazen,
and you will realize that everything
born in this world is ultimately empty,
including oneself and the original face of existence.
All things indeed emerge out of emptiness. This original
formlessness is “Buddha,” and all other similar terms — Buddha-
nature, Buddhahood, Buddha-mind, Awakened One, Patriarch,
God — are merely different expressions for the same
emptiness. Misunderstand this and you
will end up distracted
kodo sawaki roshi
Concentration is not
to try hard to watch something.
In zazen, if you try to look at one spot,
you will be tired in about five minutes. This is
not concentration. Concentration means freedom.
So, your effort should be directed at nothing. You should
be concentrated on nothing. In zazen practice we say that
your mind should be concentrated on your breathing,
but the way to keep your mind concentrated
on your breathing is to forget all about
yourself and just to sit and feel
continue this practice,
eventually you will experience the
true existence which comes
Before the night
is even through, I rise and sit,
watching fireflies. The night air clear as
water, the meditating mind is light as a reed.
The moon outlines trees on the western ridge;
a bell arouses homes up above. There may
be those in the dark who know
just how fine is what
I have found.
verses for the wakeful
and stiff meditation can
make you lose your Original Mind.
A solitary tune by a fisherman, though,
can be an invaluable treasure. Dusk rain
on the river, the moon peeking in and
out of the clouds; elegant beyond
words, he chants his songs
night after night.