Awakening: the real experience is a one-off, but it never ends.
It’s worth following this path because it offers a means, a way, a vehicle and a safe space for letting go of everything. Afterwards it picks us up and shows us how to live and practice endlessly, beyond the letting go.
To let go in the thorough way it allows changes things for the better. Not only that, the path toward such a fulcrum-point is strewn with blessings all the way. As we proceed we discover more and more causes for gratitude, for humility – and reasons that kindness is in the end the only thing that matters.
Zen: one attitude is: “Hey this is great, let’s do this, I like this.”
Another attitude is: “Please instruct me, train me, help me to become clearer and more helpful and at peace.”
We may think somehow the first attitude is stronger and better, but the tradition disagrees. When Unmon was a student and master Bokushu asked him what he wanted, Unmon said: “Please help me, I’m not clear about myself.” When Huiko approached Bodhidharma in his cave he said: “Your disciple’s mind is not at rest, please give it peace.”
Zen has to follow the second approach. The training, over and over again, must come first: the induction, the surrender, the humility. In the end nothing good and true comes without their having come first.