Zhuangzi Dreamed He Was a Butterfly

KOAN:

Once Zhuangzi dreamt he was a butterfly, a butterfly flitting gaily about. He knew nothing about Zhuangzi. Then suddenly he awoke and he was at once solidly and unmistakably himself, Zhuangzi. But he didn’t know whether he was a man who dreamt he was a butterfly or was a butterfly dreaming he was a man. Surely there’s a difference between Zhuangzi and a butterfly. This is what we call the transformation of things.

—from The Zhuangzi, a Daoist text (authored by Master Zhuang)

Text July 13, 2021

Solstice, Juneteenth, a Butterfly Flies Up!

John Tarrant

Even a time of torpor, or a time when plans come apart, or we thought the culture was going in one way and it’s going in another—we rely on the spaciousness, we rely on not what we’ve planned and schemed, but we rely on what’s been opened up in our hearts. Transcript from the PZI Zen Online recording from Sunday, June 21, 2020.

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