Today’s message is an excerpt from Henry’s memoir One Blade of Grass describing as aspect of his path of training.
Zen may undermine false assumptions, but its goal is to help us live more helpfully – not in servitude to an imaginary tyrant called “me,” but in the service of others. In the core of “ancestral Zen,” this happens through the collapse of the prior notion of who we are. It’s hard to believe that what is then revealed might be a universal reality that includes all beings, that this could be a palpable and intimate experience rather than a grand idea, but that’s how it is.
It’s because the tradition is about living this reality, rather than posting it as a metaphysics, that Zen training takes so long, and why it is worth grinding through hundreds of koans with a teacher, and then doing so all over again. Nothing matters more than finding that our “real self” is absolutely inclusive. And learning how to live it is the journey of a lifetime.