PZI Teacher Archives
“Form is emptiness, emptiness is form,” says the Heart Sutra.
—Prajnaparamita, the Great Heart Sutra
Images of water are deep in the meditation tradition. There is the notion that water nourishes us and holds us, and that the Dao flows like water and always finds the Way. Whatever blocks the river, the Dao dissolves it or will move around it. That’s the quality of meditation.
John Tarrant and HOP Michelle Riddle close the sesshin, together with the sangha, letting it go into the gone beyond. Timekeeper Todd Geist gives closing thanks. Musician Amanda Boughton sings a celtic ballad and plays mandolin, Cantor Amaryllis Fletcher chants and plays violin for the closing sutras and four boundless vows. Final day of Summer Sesshin, at Santa Sabina, June 19th, 2022.
The bare bones structure of a PZI Funeral Service begins with the koan, “Where do we go when we die?” and includes the Heart Sutra and the Kanzeon Sutra of Endless Life.
Zen Luminaries: Bill Porter (aka Red Pine) joins Jon Joseph Roshi in meditation and conversation on the topics of Heart Sutra, his translation work, and life in Zen. Jordan McConnell sings the Heart Sutra. As recorded December 20, 2021.
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.
The Heart Sutra says, “Form is no other than emptiness, emptiness no other than form. There are no walls in the mind.” We are the world unfolding.
PZI Zen Online: Audio excerpt from Guanyin in the Pavilion Under the August Moon. Sarah Bender Roshi contemplates the call and response of compassionate exchanges. Air as breath of life. Anchored in the Heart Sutra. Dream of a room, barely there, full of gifts for all times and places. As recorded August 23 2020.
The Heart Sutra in the context of its relationship to koans and what koans are. I want to pursue that line a little bit. And the first thing to say about – probably the first attitude people have to koans is that they are a sort of tool, a gadget of some kind, and you use them and you concentrate on them, and you use them – a can opener for the mind
The Heart Sutra, like any koan, contains the universe, and so you have to go in somewhere. I want to go in through the “Mantra of Great Magic.” Even the word “mantra” is, in a certain way, a reference to magic, a sort of portable access to reality that you can carry around with you. And the word “magic” is also used for the word “mantra,” so where we use “mantra” to produce magic, there’s a transformative quality about the mantra so that, when you repeat it, when you keep company with it, you end up in its world.
David Weinstein talks about his internalized mantra-phobia, fourth Chan ancestor Daishin (translates to “the way of faith”), and the parallels between early Chan history and his own practice of chanting mantras and working with koans. A morning dharma talk in Summer Sesshin, June 13, 2018.