There are thousands upon thousands of students
who have practised meditation and obtained its fruits.
Do not doubt its possibilities because of the simplicity of the method.
If you can not find the truth right where you are,
where else do you expect to find it?
“The Buddha respected people’s desire to practice in their own faith…. If you enjoy waliking meditation, practice walking meditation. If you enjoy sitting meditation, enjoy sitting meditation. But preserve your Jewish, Christian, or Muslim roots. That is the best way to realize the Buddha’s spirt. If you are cut off from your roots, you cannot be happy.”
Thich Nhat Hanh
The Heart of the Buddha’s Teaching
Teachers open the door, but you must enter by yourself.
A Letter to a Dying Man
Bassui wrote the following letter to one of his disciples who was about to die:
“The essence of your mind is not born, so it will never die. It is not an existance, which is perishable. It is not an emptiness, which is a mere void. It has neither color nor form. It enjoys no pleasures and suffers no pains.
“I know you are very ill. Like a good Zen student, you are facing that sickness squarely. You may not know exactly who is suffering, but question yourself: What is the essence of this mind? Think only of this. You will need no more. Covet nothing. Your end which is endless is as a snowflake dissolving in the pure air.”
We are all but recent leaves on the same old tree of life and if this life has adapted itself to new functions and conditions, it uses the same old basic principles over and over again. There is no real difference between the grass and the man who mows it. ~Albert Szent-Györgyi
Only the idea of self remains
Floating on a sea of cells;
Only heartbeats short of eternity
In breath after breath we dwell.
- Mike Garofalo, Above the Fog
“Zen is not some kind of excitement, but concentration on our usual everyday routine.” - Shunryu Suzuki
The body of man is like a flicker of lightning
existing only to return to Nothingness.
Like the spring growth that shrivels in autumn.
Waste no thought on the process for it has no purpose,
Coming and going like dew.
- Van Hanh, 1018, Vietnamese Buddhist
Translated by W. S. Merwin
“Letting go is the lesson. Letting go is always the lesson. Have you ever noticed how much of our agony is all tied up with craving and loss?”
― Susan Gordon Lydon, The Knitting Sutra: Craft as a Spiritual Practice