The Wisdom Podcast: John Tarrant on Uncertainty and Insight

An audio recording of a conversation on The Wisdom Podcast featuring Zen teacher John Tarrant Roshi. He and host Daniel Aitken speak about one of John’s favorite topics: Zen koans.

Beautiful Blossoms, Everything Changing: Refuge & the Bodhisattva Path

Deshan is determined to prove his scholarly certainty. He encounters 2 teachers who help him see the light. John talks about refuge; What is it? Why take it? Working with the vows as koans. Zen rests in mystery and uncertainty. Linji: Have confidence in the light always working inside you. Music from Jordan McConnell. As recorded Feb. 28th, 2021.

The Ink Dark Moon: Love Is the Mess of the World

Our Q’s & A’s of love and Zen. Turning toward everything, even what doesn’t fit with our description of reality. We long to be seen as we truly are and are equally terrified of being found. Nothing is excluded—what your heart longs for is in your life now! PZI Zen Online audio excerpt recorded Feb. 14, 2021.

The Ink Dark Moon: Calling Myself Beloved

Allison Atwill explores cases against life and love, the ways we block the universe’s gifts—and how we “abide somewhere” by clinging to lack. Or, we hang on to what we have like Deshan and his commentaries. We want to be included, “to feel beloved on earth.” Where is love in Zen? Included! Audio excerpt from The Ink Dark Moon. As recorded Feb. 14 2021, PZI Zen Online.

Friendship – A Thing of Special Wonder

John Tarrant on encouraging friendship with the world—koans, trees, people. How we interact with friends, from the heart. We listen to each other. We don’t have to make them anything other than what they are. Poems, stories, comments. Complete session as recorded Jan 24 2021, PZI Zen Online.

Audio: The Firstness of Things & A Face in the Dark with John Tarrant

PZI Zen Online: Handing Things On in the Dark. The dark silent time of this year has lasted for 9 months, in COVID. “The whole meaning of your life is in the current matter happening now.” No explaining it. “To be deeply in Zen is to be deeply in how to express it.” The first vaccines are here. The mysterious freedoms of this time, welcoming the new year, and a tour of the deep thick dark of midnight. As recorded Jan 3 2021.

Audio: A Winter Tale with the Guanyins

PZI Zen Online: Four Women Zen Teachers of PZI tell a Winter Tale, the story of a vast moment that interrupted a battle in the middle of World War I. The Guanyins Allison Atwill, Tess Beasley, Sarah Bender & Michelle Riddle share the telling and teaching with meditation, poetry and reflection. Jordan McConnell on guitar. As recorded Dec 27 2020.

Audio: The Journey Into Awakening – The Most Marvelous Thing with John Tarrant

PZI Zen Online: “What is the most marvelous thing, a matter of special worth?” a student asks Baizhang. “Sitting alone on Mt. Courage Peak,” he answers. The importance of an imaginative response to any time of change. The wisdom of an indigenous storyteller who embodies a much longer timeline of radical earth changes. Music by Michael Wilding posted separately. As recorded Dec 13 2020.

Audio: The Journey Into Awakening – Kindnesses In Your Wild Temple with John Tarrant

PZI Zen Online: Why do people go to wild places to find their true nature? The wild is here, right now, in your own wild temple. Anything can happen in the wildness of now. The Universe is so rich in destinations that you are always already at one! The beauty of joining in meditation in difficult times. With music from Jordan McConnell, Amaryllis Fletcher. As recorded Nov 29 2020

Audio Excerpt: Story of An Impossible Task with John Tarrant

PZI Zen Online: The Journey Into Awakening – John Tarrant tells a koan story in which a woman gets a task that seems impossible and which she must practice without fail for a year. As recorded Sunday Nov 22 2020. 17 minutes.

Audio Excerpt: The Ballad of Tam Lin – On the Banks of the Ghost River, John Tarrant Reads

PZI Zen Online: John Reads the Ballad of Tam Lin, in which a brave girl helps her lover, caught in the Faery Queens’s caterhaugh (boggy fen), transform. As recorded on retreat, Oct 31 2020. 13 minutes.

PZI Dharma Theme: Zen Tuesdays – Immensity is Tapping

PZI Zen Online: Four Guanyins reappear online for Zen Tuesdays. They marvel at the immensity in all things from various perspectives. Drawing inspiration from Jane Hirshfield’s poem “Tree,” The Doors’ “Light My Fire,” a golden crowned sparrow, a remarkable brother’s life and more. Excerpts and complete audio sessions. As recorded Oct 2020.

PZI Dharma Theme: Fall Sesshin 2020 – Dharma Talks, Ceremonies & Audio Excerpts

PZI Zen Online: Gathering in the Valley of Our Time – All talks, music, sutras and excerpts included. As recorded Oct 1-4 2020.

Audio Excerpt: What is Your Light? Part 4 – Opening the Dream

PZI Zen Online- Audio Excerpt – John Tarrant opens the dream with the koan: ‘What is your Light?’. Huangbo’s insights on Buddha Nature as ‘calm mysterious joy’, and also touches on the frequent call and response in koan practice and ‘the silent bond in which all things are you and your family’. Recorded Sept. 27 2020 12 minutes.

Audio: Setting Endless Heartache to Rest with John Tarrrant

PZI Zen Online – Meditation, the vessel in difficult times. Our in upheaval from Covid quarantine and riots over racism. Chan took on difficult times with stories and Zen’s encounter with Daoism & ‘The Chuang Tzu’ with strange characters like ‘crooked carriage’ and his friends. Who’s hearing? Who’s concerned about the world? Who’s sad? We are in it together so let’s vow first to: ‘Set endless heartache to rest!’ Koans & stories are ‘ancient vials of life’ to help now. As recorded May 31 2020

Audio: What is Your Light? The Smallest Things – with John Tarrant Roshi

PZI Zen Online: Hanging Lanterns at the Gates of the Autumn Temple. You have your own light. Life and hard times of an apple tree. Marking Ruth Bader Ginsberg’s passing. Music: Michael Wilding, Amaryllis Fletcher, Jordan Mc Connell. As recorded Sept 20 2020.

Audio: What is Your Light? Hanging Lanterns at the Gates of the Autumn Temple – with John Tarrant

PZI Zen Online: Orange skies, unhealthy air, Apocalypse week in CA and the west. The old agreements are fragile: Climate change a long gathering storm, fire a consequence. Having a practice – the simplest thing – a conversation with the vastness. Being lost is an opportunity – as old attitudes fall away. Musicians Amaryllis Fletcher, Cantor & Jordan McConnell. As recorded Sept 13 2020

Audio: Fiery, Radiant Guanyin in the Pavilion Under the August Moon – Allison Atwill Roshi

PZi Zen Online – Fire is an ancient symbol of transformation but also shows itself through Gunayin as the inner radiance of all things. Every appearance has its own brightness. The koan: The great temple fire of Kinkakuji in which everything was burned and yet nothing was destroyed. One of the 100 Samurai Koans. As recorded – Michael Wilding on flute. Aug 30, 2020

Archive of Sundays from All 4 Guanyins in the Pavilion Under the August Moon

PZI Zen Online Archive of all Guanyin Audio recordings from Sunday August Meditation Sessions & Excerpts Featuring 4 Notable PZI Teachers

Audio: Guanyin’s Breath in the Pavilion of the August Moon – with Sarah Bender Roshi

Audio: PZI Zen Online – Guanyin in the Pavilion Under the August Moon with Sarah Bender Roshi manifesting Guanyin as air with a response to our call. An appropriate response is Guanyin’s territory. Fayan mentions …’the fresh breeze that arises when the great burden is set down.’ Sarah presents her field notes on Guanyin as wind, breath, release, and the Sutra of Endless Life. Michael Wilding on flute, Ryan McCoy on 4 vows, vocals and guitar. As recorded August 23 2020

Audio: Guanyin’s Watery Nature with Tess Beasley

Audio: PZI Zen Online – Guanyin’s watery nature. Water: ‘the softest compound that can overwhelm the hardest’. Compassion dissolves and connects us. A force greater than any striving. Like Buddha at the brink of starvation opening to the offering of milk. The great intimacy & spaciousness of abiding nowhere together. She answers with a new possibility. Michael Wilding on flute, Jordan McConnell vocals & guitar, Amaryllis Fletcher, PZI Cantor on violin. As recorded, Aug.16 2020.

Audio: Guanyin touches the Earth – with Michelle Riddle Sensei

Audio- PZI Zen online & Guanyin in the Pavilion Under the August Moon – with Michelle Riddle Sensei exploring the fall to earth with Layman Pang and his compassionate daughter Ling Zhao. Complete session as recorded August 9 2020. Music by Michael Wilding on Flute, Jordan McConnell on guitar & Amaryllis Fletcher, PZI Cantor on violin.

Audio: Seeing Clearly & Otherwise with Tess Beasley

Audio PZI Zen Online: The strange and convenient mystery of our sight – our vision. A sensory foundation for exploring in our meditation practice. What does seeing clearly entail? Soetie we overlay with our preoccupations and stories of what is happening – these can obscure and also point the way to new findings. Just for you honored one. Tess introduces this sutra and the story of ‘Great Wisdom’ inquiring about enlightenment. As recorded July 7 2020.

Audio: Girl Power – To Wake a Girl from Samadhi? with Sarah Bender Roshi

Audio PZI Zen Online: Sarah Bender Roshi unfolds a beautiful guided koan meditation from GGcase 42. Who is this mysterious girl who keeps company with Shakyamuni? She who can not be wakened except by ‘Delusive Wisdom’ or Momiyo from the underworld? When did she arrive? What is this insistence that wakes us? Waking or not waking, it is all ‘an elegant performance!’ As recorded July 8 2020.

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All our audio files are now downloadable for PZI members! The little cloud link is your friend – if you are a PZI member. Try it out!

Audio: Held By Emptiness – A Well Not Dug

Audio: PZI Zen online – A framework in our practice for relying on emptiness & freedom. Not holding preset views and blessing things beyond approval and disapproval. I am you = emptiness. In Zen we shift to ‘before’ the demons grabbed our ankles. We ‘accord’ with the Dao. As recorded July 19 2020

Audio: Sutra Service in the Blue Dragon Cave’s

Audio: Sesshin sutra service with Cantor Amaryllis Fletcher, Ryan McCoy & Jordan McConnell

Audio: A Guided Meditation Journey Into the Blue Dragon’s Cave

PZI Zen Online: Audio – Journey with John Tarrant Roshi into your personal Blue Dragon’s Cave without an agenda, an expectation or any effort. See what treasures are there.

Audio: I Carry Silence & Light – Muses Amidst Turmoil -Allison Atwill, Roshi

PZI Zen Online: Three threads: Anna Swier’ s poem: ‘There’s a Light in Me’. The light in us ‘wholly unharmed ‘ even in extremes of imprisonment, a place for the Muses to meet us. ‘Terma’ – a Tibetan teaching hidden in physical objects or even concealed in your mind or memory- written in indecipherable Dakini script, to be found by you. Light filled reminders that we are already awake. When we hold light and silence everyone can feel it. It changes the field. As recorded June 16th 2020.

Audio: The Great Turning: Solstice, Juneteenth & A Butterfly Flies up! John Tarrant, Roshi

PZI Zen Online: Solstice and the big wheels turn. Juneteenth celebrations/demonstrations are encouraging. Navigating and feeling the ‘covid bardos’ of long confinement. Has nothing happened ? Maybe all sorts of things are happening? ‘We can’t stay here long’. What is a border? Old injustices are looming. Readings from Slave Narratives, poetry: Li Bai, Alberto Rios, Czeslaw Milosz, As recorded June 21 2020.