PZI Teacher Archives
Wherever you are, just take the role of host, and that place will be a true place.
—PZI Miscellaneous Koans, Case 38d (Record of Linji)
It is the Chan way to understand that the fullness of life resides in us, and the experience of life, whatever it is, is all for you. Our task is to have the life we have.
Meet Great Ancestor Linji: “A nine-colored Phoenix, a thousand-mile horse.” That’s how Linji was described in early Chan times.
Solitude as resting in vastness: taking the role of host everywhere and abiding nowhere. Loneliness—you may even be in the company of others, but something is missing. Allison revisits childhood’s solitude and the solitude of mountain trails. Abiding “somewhere” keeps us out of vastness.
John Tarrant opens Autumn sesshin with the zen koan “Be the Host.” Inviting the listener to take the position of the host, inviting all guests into the home body. Welcome them all, whether an emotional storm of sadness, joy, grief, happiness, despair or laughter. Host this! October 10, 2011.