John Tarrant and PZI Teachers welcome us and speak the koan into the vessel of sesshin. Heads of Practice Chris Gaffney and Jan Brogan say welcoming words. John speaks about the power of silence, and tending the mystery together in the Winter Temple. Closing words from Jon Joseph. Music from Michael Wilding, Cantor Amaryllis Fletcher, and Jordan McConnell. As recorded on February 1, 2022.
It’s easy to forget to be curious, and to grab an off-the-shelf knowledge, something like “This is awful.” Not reaching for off-the-shelf understandings, though, is an important skill.
Transmission happens when we let our hearts open. It comes from a free heart. Babies are transmission devices! Taking up the koan you are given—a little temple to live in. Koans do what they do without consulting anyone. The work reveals a wonderful quality, of the world coming to meet us. The great lesson: It’s not outside of you, and you can’t legislate your own enlightenment! 4 Vows: Jordan McConnell. As recorded March 21, 2021.
How does the bodhisattva of compassion use all those hands and eyes? How do I express Guanyin? How is Guanyin showing up in my life? John Tarrant’s afternoon meditation & talk, Part 2 of this two-session Dragons of the Blue Cliff 1-Day Retreat. In the PZI Digital Temple, as recorded June 6, 2021.
We’ve been in a long monastic retreat during this pandemic. Time has slowed. We are opening up gradually now to the world, as more people are vaccinated. We realize we are not going back to anything. The time is changing. We’re all stepping off into the mysterious. Musician: Jordan McConnell. PZI Zen Online: Sunday talk as recorded May 23, 2021.
Australia’s ancient forests were burning in September 2020. In the face of unfathomable loss John Tarrant writes, “It’s too early to despair, it’s always too early to despair. The world itself is a mystery school and teaches us what it needs. It gives us impossible tasks and impossible journeys, and all we can say is that we love the world without knowing outcomes, because it is the only world we have, and because we never do know outcomes.” Article for Lion’s Roar magazine, published September 14, 2020.
PZI Zen Online Audio: Jesse talks about the creative practice of koan work and finding (writing) a song, following the breadcrumbs of insight, allowing the uncertainty. Everything moves toward “birth with the Stone Woman.” He tells the Maralung koan about a Song Man who finds and finally remembers his song. Includes snippets of the song Jesse is writing. As recorded May 27, 2020.
John Tarrant, Roshi, Director of PZI and author, talks about the mystery of meditation as he first experienced it in the ancient forests of Queensland; about transformation on the ancient koan path we follow, and the evolution of Pacific Zen Institute as a community, and koan school with a new online resource center, the KALPA (Koans and Liberation Project Archive) Library. Your support helps produce PZI’s ongoing retreats and dharma talks, John’s writing projects, and spreads the teachings. 8 minutes. January 2019