PZI Teacher Archives

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)

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"
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.

6403 Words
Video September 12, 2019
26' 38"
Video August 15, 2019

The Transformation of Things

Allison Atwill

Allison talks about the transformation of things from a story in the Zhuangzi, where Zhuangzi dreamed he was a butterfly. Our plans to become a butterfly are a kind of pressing into ourselves and the world. The flaw is in thinking we have to learn how to transform. Morning dharma talk in Summer Sesshin at Mount Madonna Center, recorded in July 2019.

58' 22"
Video July 22, 2019
14' 30"