Welcome to the PZI KALPA Library!

KALPA—Koans And Liberation Project Archive—the online Zen koan library of  Pacific Zen Institute, was conceived as a way of providing a wider circle for today’s far-flung seekers to sit together, to enter the same timeless questions, and to receive the teachings. For access to the entire collection, and for downloadable audio of meditations and talks, join us as a PZI Member.

Visit the KALPA Guide for more info. To get you started, check out curated topics in the dropdown from the menu bar. Explore the PZI koan universe by searching for teachers, topics, koans, or file type—audio, video or text file. Consider the adventure of searching by using a tag.

Enjoy browsing the stacks in the KALPA!
KALPA Admin

Featured KALPA Files

Search the KALPA Library

Zen Koan Meditation Practice

Koan practice is at heart a practice of intimacy with life itself. For over twelve centuries, koans have drawn people bearing urgent inquiries of life, death, beauty, and becoming. The tradition began as a way of carrying the discoveries of those willing to enter these questions together, and evolved into a vivid lineage of awakening encounters, still echoing centuries and continents away.

Quickly—without thinking good or evil,
What was your original face
Before your parents were born?

—Zen Ancestor Huineng’s Original Face Koan

 

Introduction to Koan Practice: John Tarrant on Working with Koans

A koan is a piece of old wisdom in a very concise form. I think of it as a vial of ancient light that has been passed down to us. It’s the same light that was in the heart of the teacher who invented the koan. Read on 

Image above – Tang dynasty scholar, Xuangzhong carrying scrolls on his back.
Image below: John Tarrant Roshi December 2020.

PZI Teacher Archives

New to the Library

Text May 19, 2022

SUTRA: Torei Zenji’s Bodhisattvas’ Vow

PZI Cantor & Musicians

When I regard the true nature of all things and all living creatures, I find them to be the sacred forms of the Tathagatha’s never-failing essence

241 Words
Video May 18, 2022

VIDEO: Refuge vs Creating the Self with Tess Beasley

Allison Atwill, Jesse Cardin, Tess Beasley

Tess Beasley tells a story reflecting on the creation of the self vs the vast field that the precepts live in. April 27, 2021. 3 minutes.

3' 6"
Video May 18, 2022

VIDEO: Refuge – Creating the Self vs Refuge – Jesse Cardin Comments

Allison Atwill, Jesse Cardin, Tess Beasley

Jess Cardin tells a story about making rock candy. Reflecting on the creation of the self vs the vast field that the precepts live in. April 27, 2021. 3 minutes.

4' 11"
Video May 17, 2022

VIDEO: Refuge – How the Precepts Arrive in Your Life

Allison Atwill

Allison Atwill talks about the way your awakening arrives – in the specific form for you among all other possibilities. The creation of the self blocks the vast field that the precepts live in. April 27, 2021. 3 minutes.

5' 10"
Video May 17, 2022
3' 35"