Audio Library

There are 392 pieces here.

Audio November 30, 2021

Our Own True Lives: Thank You Very Much!

Thanksgiving weekend dharma talk on the many-layered and mysterious qualities of gratitude: aspirational, strategic, innocent, etc. The act of giving is pure —any gift is good. A koan story: A teacher gives a student a yearlong task on feeling gratitude. Music for meditation from Michael Wilding and Jordan McConnell, Cantor Amaryllis Fletcher on violin introducing the Four Vows.

68' 11"
Audio November 23, 2021

On Being the Worst Horse, the One Buddha Loves

John Tarrant

Who wants to be the worst horse? No one. But Buddha loves the worst horse. John Tarrant on worst horse experiences and the merits of not striving to go beyond where we are. If I am the worst horse then my Buddha nature is there. Music from Michael Wilding, Todd Geist sings vows.

68' 11"
Audio November 4, 2021

Zen Luminaries: A Conversation with Peter Hershock hosted by Jon Joseph

Jon Joseph

As recorded Monday, November 1st, 2021, as part of a series of conversations with important Zen (Chan) voices: translators, writers, scholars, and practitioners.

78' 6"
Audio November 3, 2021

Fall Sesshin 2021: The Stone Drenched With Rain – Your Own Awakening

Allison Atwill

Whatever conditions you find yourself in are your own awakening appearing, not something you need to “get over.” This is the key: We can let experience soak us without knowing what will come of it. As recorded Saturday evening, October 23, 2021, at Fall Sesshin.

41' 24"
Audio November 2, 2021

Fall Sesshin 2021: Recipes for Happiness – Santoka’s Life

Tess Beasley

Tess recounts the twists and turns of the life of Taneda Santoka—a perpetually drenched, wandering poet-priest touched deeply by life and the kindness of others. Every breadcrumb in life, every thread is important in the weave. For Santoka to be Santoka, who he actually was was enough. This was the Way, his Way. Dharma talk as recorded Saturday morning on October 23, 2021, at Fall Sesshin.

55' 46"
Audio November 2, 2021

Fall Sesshin 2021: Freely I Watch the Tracks of the Flying Birds

John Tarrant

As recorded on October 22, at PZI Fall Sesshin 2021. Bird tracks and a crane story from long ago in China. Four vows are sung and played by Amaryllis Fletcher & Jordan McConnell. Allison Atwill gives a closing poem.

59' 12"
Audio November 1, 2021

Fall Sesshin 2021: Not Knowing & the Mysterious, Ungraspable World

Eduardo Fuentes

What is the world? Just this! Eduardo Fuentes talks about the beautiful, mysterious lives we lead, and how “don’t-know mind” is hidden inside and underneath names and symbols. As recorded at Fall Sesshin, Friday, October 22, 2021.

49' 40"
Audio November 1, 2021

Fall Sesshin 2021: Mysterious Tasks & Impossible Problems – The Stone

John Tarrant

John Tarrant gives an evening dharma talk on the incalculable value of descent and return. We take up the task set by the ancestors: that’s what we came here for. As recorded in Fall Sesshin, October 21, 2021.

56' 54"
Audio November 1, 2021

Fall Sesshin 2021: Dreams of the Ancestors with Jon Joseph

Jon Joseph

Jon Joseph gives the morning dharma talk about his dreams of the ancestors. A relationship continues beyond death. How is this so? It does not need to be explained, it only asks to be lived. As recorded in Fall Sesshin on Thursday morning, October 21, 2021.

38' 12"
Audio November 1, 2021

Fall Sesshin 2021: Koan Practice or Not? & Going Beyond Form

David Weinstein

David Weinstein gives a morning dharma talk on being captured by the mystery and the koan, “Things are not as they appear, nor are they otherwise,” and on the metamorphosis of Monarchs on his windowsill. Constant change and the constancy of who you are do not contradict each other. As recorded Wednesday, October 20, 2021, in Fall Sesshin.

53' 32"
Audio November 1, 2021

Fall Sesshin 2021: Ikkyu’s Well & The Miscellaneous Koans

John Tarrant

John Tarrant talks about Ikkyu’s “no shadow or form” in his evening dharma talk in Day 2 of Fall Sesshin. Amanda Boughton sings the 4 Boundless vows. As recorded Wednesday, October 20, 2021.

49' 9"
Audio October 31, 2021

Zen & The Art of Meditation Series, Part 3: Befriending Your Own Heart Mind

John Tarrant

Befriending your life, your koan, your own heart mind—not using your meditation for anything: no intention to improve yourself; not getting on board with the mind. Zen & The Art of Meditation, Part lll: October 17, 2021.

75' 12"
Audio October 16, 2021

Zen & The Art of Meditation Series: Part l

John Tarrant

Dharmakaya koans open the body of reality—this is one of those koans: Yunmen’s “What is your light?” The light is always happening, so it is a good thing to notice. In times like these, this koan is one to ally with. Is there an art of meditation? It begins and ends with you. Music from Michael Wilding, Amaryllis Fletcher & Jordan McConnell.

69' 45"
Audio October 15, 2021

What Is My Light?

John Tarrant

A short guided meditation on this BCR koan – What is my light? As recorded October 3, 2021. 3 minutes.

4' 24"
Audio October 8, 2021

Zen Luminaries: A Conversation with Buddhist Translator Thomas Kirchner & Jon Joseph

Jon Joseph

Thomas Kirchner has translated, annotated, and edited great works in our Chan lineage, including Entangling Vines: Zen Koans of the Shumon Kattoshu, The Record of Linji, and more. He is a longtime Zen practitioner, was born in the US, and has lived most of his life in Japan. He joins Jon Joseph for a wide-ranging conversation about his life in Zen.

71' 25"
Audio September 30, 2021

Animal Heart Mind: Readings with John Tarrant

John Tarrant reads poems and haiku from Issa, Walt Whitman, Christopher Smart, William Merwyn and others. From Sunday Talk: The Animal Heart Mind. 12 minutes.

15' 11"
Audio September 30, 2021

Animal Heart Mind

John Tarrant

With all the crises of our time lined up, like a caravan demanding our attention, what if the moments of beauty, friendship and peace are the real, important moments? Animal koans are really about you, and the question, What is it like to have a self? Poem and haiku readings from John, Issa, William Merwynn, Walt Whitman, Christopher Smart, & PZI friends Jeanne Foster and Adam Walsh. Music from Jordan McConnell.

63' 43"
Audio September 28, 2021

Befriending the Dream

Tess Beasley

To befriend the dream, or koan, or your life, is to participate in it and enter its imagery and mood. Befriending begins with a plain attempt to listen, to give it time and patience, drawing no conclusions. Tess Beasley reads from Jungian analyst James Hillman’s “Dreams and the Blood Soul,” during John Tarrant’s Sunday Talk, The Animal Heart Mind, on September 26. Excerpt.

3' 2"
Audio September 24, 2021

Musical Interlude for Passing Through Danger & Demons

Michael Wilding

Michael Wilding’s transportive original composition, an interlude for meditation, on flute. As recorded September 19, 2021.

4' 59"
Audio September 24, 2021

The 4 Boundless Vows, in Harmony

Jon Joseph

A beautiful version of the 4 Boundless Vows for 2 harmonizing voices. It blooms! Thanks to Rose Joseph & her friend Delfine. As recorded during Jon Joseph’s Monday evening talk on September 20th, 2021.

1' 56"
Audio September 23, 2021

More Spells for Passing Through Danger & Demons

John Tarrant

Everyone is assailed by demons right now. Demons have a long history in the culture. If you’ve got demons, you’re alive! But you don’t have to get on board with them. Demons come out of your own heart, just like enlightenment. Tess Beasley reads from James Hillman’s “Dreams & the Blood Soul.” Michelle Riddle & Jon Joseph chant a Zen spell for dispelling demons, the Sho Sai Myo Kichijo Dharani. John reads Keats and Coleridge.

71' 56"
Audio September 13, 2021

Finding the Self, Forgetting the Self – Drifting Toward the Land of the Rakshasas

John Tarrant

We’re in a time that is difficult, but it is our time—and difficulty is not the only thing going on. Creativity is also present, but it is easy to be crazy right now. The old masters understood this situation. September 5, 2021.

77' 23"
Audio September 13, 2021

A Spell for Passing Through Danger

John Tarrant

“You must in the destructive element immerse…” You have to go through it otherwise you can’t have real resolution. Not fleeing the difficulty of things, and orienting yourself to the infinite. “A person on a raft flows on the stream by throwing themselves away.” The importance of the smallest things in the this-is-it dream.

68' 28"
Audio September 10, 2021
77' 59"
Audio September 7, 2021

Meditating with a Tyger at the Summer Lake – Taking the Risk

Allison Atwill, Michelle Riddle, Tess Beasley

Meetings in Zen can feel risky just like meeting a “tyger” or a mountain lion on a footpath. And yet that is the open gate, the place where we become available to the gifts of the universe. When barriers to experience are down, anything can happen. Guishan’s enlightenment did not stop his travels, and a tiger helped him think twice about leaving his monastery.

76' 0"
Audio September 6, 2021

Danxia’s Dream of Light

John Tarrant

Dreams help us to find our way – Danxia on pilgrimage dreamed of a great light. And a diviner asked him a question that changed his life. His practice became a path.

74' 5"
Audio September 2, 2021

Unexpected Gifts, Unexpected Help Along the Way

John Tarrant

What is the gift of the universe? We receive unexpected help when we are “living down a level,” living things before we construct them. Not constantly consulting your “me,” you open to the invitations and gifts that appear; trusting in the Dao.

67' 28"
Audio September 2, 2021

In the Family of Things

John Tarrant

The small self is always trying to hold off the world. But we are really a kind of flow. We feel the warm empathy at the bottom of all things. All things have Buddha nature. Not opposing reality is the beginning of all awakenings.

71' 59"
Audio August 16, 2021

Changing Places with the Night Sky – Make the Mountains Dance!

John Tarrant

Make the Mountains Dance! Enjoy the life you have—side with the wisdom field, side with the koan. All of life is solved already. What do I do next? Keep meditating!

68' 43"
Audio August 10, 2021

Hearing Secret Harmonies: Koans & Dreams

John Tarrant

There is a rhythm in life that we sometimes hear face-to-face—but often it is like a melody playing somewhere and we can’t make it out. Our secret fidelity to what is most important allows us to hear it.

73' 33"