PZI Teacher Archives

poet John Tarrant

Audio October 12, 2023

Zen Arts: Pickles, Poems & Direct Encounter

John Tarrant

Takuan Soho, creator of the renowned golden yellow daikon pickle, was a poet, artist, calligrapher, master of the tea ceremony and Zen priest of Tokai temple—a master of the creative response. The arts of Zen are responses to our meeting whatever circumstances arise—death, war, love, loneliness, natural changes.

40' 0"

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Dharma Theme May 10, 2023

Dharma Theme: Haiku for You

PZI Teachers

Koans and poetry tumble over each other. Old Zen masters used snatches of poetry as koans. Good poetry has an objective quality and is related to koanville in that way. It does not try to persuade or recruit.

566 Words
Video May 4, 2023

Your Thoughts & Feelings Are the Buddha

John Tarrant

There is an inner restlessness in the question, “What is Buddha?” If we look beyond what we think we know of as Buddha, the answer can be anything. A Zen master answered this question with, “dried shit stick!” Nothing is excluded; the jewel can be anywhere. Complete Sunday Zen session, with poems from Li Bai and John Tarrant. April 28, 2023.

63' 16"
Audio May 4, 2023

Your Thoughts & Feelings Are the Buddha

John Tarrant

There is a restlessness in the question, “What is Buddha?” If we look beyond what we think we know of as Buddha, the answer can be anything. A Zen master answered this question with, “dried shit stick!” Nothing is excluded; the jewel can be anywhere. Complete Sunday Zen session, with poems from Li Bai and John Tarrant. April 28, 2023.

63' 17"
Video March 23, 2023

Sickness & Medicine: Healing Is Like Kissing – A Poem

John Tarrant

It’s all medicine, really. Everything has Buddha nature, beauty and value. Healing is the big point of view. John Tarrant reads his poem, Healing Is Like Kissing, written for the dedication of an integrative medicine center. From Sunday Zen on March 5, 2023.

3' 0"
Video February 14, 2023

Great Silence at the Beginning: Shelter for the Homeless Person

Michelle Riddle

In trying hard to find home, Michelle realizes that everything is happening on a deeper level, in great silence. Everything is always coming through—our role is to notice without manipulating the situation. 17-minute excerpt from January Sunday Zen, Part 4.

16' 48"
Audio May 8, 2022

John Tarrant Reads His Poem, Healing Paths

John Tarrant

John Tarrant reads his poem, Healing Paths, composed spontaneously in response to a training exercise with a group of Integrative Medicine doctors. Each practitioner was asked to describe healing, and this “is what came out of me.” Excerpt from Zen & Poetry, a Sunday Talk on May 1st, 2022.

1' 8"
Audio March 12, 2021

Beautiful Blossoms, Everything Changing: Unfavorable Winds Blew the Ship Off Course!

John Tarrant

We travel in the dark and find treasure—the hidden jewels of practice. The difficulty we would like to avoid is the gate. Sappho said, “Enter the way, enter here.” Meditation is the container, the alembic of change. Poems and music during meditation from Michael Wilding. Ryan McCoy sings the vows. PZI Zen Online, as recorded March 7, 2021.

71' 18"
Audio March 8, 2021

Obstacles & Gates: Refuge & the Bodhisattva Path

John Tarrant

Deshan is determined to prove his scholarly certainty. He encounters two teachers who help him see the light. John talks about refuge; What is it? Why take refuge? What is the rakusu? PZI’s approach—working with refuge vows as koans. Zen ultimately rests in mystery and uncertainty. Linji says, “Have confidence in the light always working inside you.” Music with Jordan McConnell. Sunday talk as recorded Feb. 28th, 2021.

73' 21"

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Poem February 26, 2021

The Names and Shapes of Things

John Tarrant

Bandicoots, wombats, and numbats surely do look as you would expect anything with such a name might, and there’s something wondrous about that. Musings and poem on how the world appears from silence, John Tarrant Roshi.

298 Words
Audio February 4, 2021

Handing Things on in the Dark: Friendship

John Tarrant

Zen is about meetings, the courage to meet and be a friend. Even the gnarly bits of friendship are part of it, the mystery of connection. You don’t have to be good at love—better to be in it. In the field of connectedness we discover things we can’t discover on our own. Audio excerpt from Sunday Zen with John Tarrant, Handing Things on in the Dark, PZI Zen Online. As recorded January 31, 2021. 18 minutes.

17' 38"