tisdag 7 september 2010

The teachings of the Daruma doll...


The thing isn't to do everything right.

In our practice, whoever we are, we can, and will, stray from the path.
No exception, this will happen to everybody.
The thing is that when it happens getting back to the path.
Sometimes we can make it by ourselves.
Sometimes we need help from others.
And it's all ok.
The main thing is getting back, not how you did it, as long as you keep in accord with the precepts..
Much like an Daruma doll, which keeps uprighting itself...

There has been a lot of talks about teachers and others doing this or that or straying from the path in one way or another, but that's just normal.
The thing is not that they strayed, or will stray or...
The thing is what you do about it.

Two zen monks were travelling.They came to a ford of a stream that was running high, and the current was strong and frightening looking. An attractive young lady was standing at the ford, looking nervous. She clearly was afraid to cross, but had an important reason to go. Without a word, the older of the two monks lifted her in his arms and waded across the stream, and placed her safely on the far bank. The younger monk looked shocked at this action, but kept his silence for quite some number of miles as they continued their journey. Finally, he blurted out "You know that it is against the rules of our order to have any contact with women. How could you do that?".
The older monk replied "I put her down when I reached the other side of the river. You, on the other hand, have been carrying her this whole way."

I am not a Zen teacher, just a simple priest, and as such is not to be viewed as an authority of any sort, but today i would like to write a little about one of the things people often hear me saying, "When this happens do this,  when that happens do that" and "It's all good practice."

The first sentence is that you should do one thing at the time, and it's the thing that is right in front of you right now.
Not anywhere else or at any other time.

The second is that it's all good, everything is as it is.
You know it, he knows it, she knows it, i know it.
But sometimes we miss it, and don't see it.
That's when we strayed.
That's when we need to get back on track.
Mind you, i might be saying to get back on track, but that doesn't mean we're off, just that we think we are...

The thing isn't to do everything right.
We all stray and miss the path sometimes, doing things we maybe shouldn't have.
All i ask of you is that when i stray, please lead me back.
It's all good practice.
Thank you for your practice.

May the force be with you.

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