The exhaustion and effort of “making a me” often brings people to Zen. In retreat, we begin to see the contours of the self that causes us to suffer. From a talk in Summer Sesshin, June 16, 2022. 7 minutes.
Tess reads Tony Hoagland’s poem, “The Question,” on creation and loosening of the self, during her talk in Summer Sesshin, June 15, 2022. 3 minutes.
Rocks come to everyone’s aid at a gathering, bringing enchantment and connection. From a talk in Summer Sesshin, June 15, 2022. 5 minutes.
Tess talks about how koans ferret out our strategies for making a me, from a dharma talk in Summer Sesshin, June 15, 2022. 2 minutes.
No being has ever fallen out of the samadhi of Buddha nature. Being in the life you have is your samadhi. Recorded at Summer Sesshin on June 14, 2022. 4 minutes.
“Mostly, if a method for achieving happiness is not successful, people think something like, She should have loved me more. Or, I wasn’t trying hard enough. Or, I wasn’t holding my mouth right. Whether the needle on the blame meter points to yourself or to others, that particular machine will always seem to be malfunctioning. You try to do the method better, rather than looking at whether the method works. So let’s look at the method.”
Turning your thoughts upside down is almost always progress, especially with conflicts that seem old and full of certainty. Article by John Tarrant published in Lion’s Roar magazine June 9, 2009.
Those who have used koans have described them as a poetic technology for bringing about awakening, a painful but effective gate into the consciousness of the Buddha, an easy method of integrating awakening into everyday life, the most frustrating thing they have ever done, an appalling waste of time, a tyranny perpetrated by Zen masters… Well, you get the idea — about koans, opinions differ. Article by John Tarrant published in Shambhala Sun magazine, May 1 2003.