PZI Teacher Archives
What is the way?
The clearly enlightened person falls into a well.
—PZI Miscellaneous Koans, Case 74b
Note: Second of Baling Haojian’s Three Barriers, PZI MK Case 74
The nice thing about falling is it’s already happened, you know? It started already; there’s not much you can do about it. So you’re kind of free, in a way. It’s sort of like being condemned: Knowing you’ll die tomorrow—well, you can do anything you want tonight.
John Tarrant gives a talk on Zhaozhou’s NO: This koan is often offered as a first “gate,” but I think you need to already be in trouble and falling before it’s useful. Life is always offering us that cliff—that door of falling. When you’re falling, you can’t screw it up because actually there’s not a lot you can do. But what you do will be very free and won’t be constrained by the usual. From a recording made in Fall Sesshin 2022.
A complete audio record of talks from PZI’s Live-Online Fall Sesshin 2022, October 4-9, 2022.