Posted inHenry's Messages, Koans, Meditations

Message from Henry: Essential Unnecessary Work

November 20, 2018

Zazen…that place where nothing needs to be done…

The great majority of our practice in the early years will not touch on awakening. It will be the daily, hourly, momentary commitment to try to be more aware of the present moment, to see our unhelpful tendencies, to feel the energies that drive our lives, and so on.

Only once we taste awakening itself do we see how unnecessary all this “work” has been. Yet at the same time, had it not been for all this work in our practice, we would never have realized that it was unnecessary.


Zazen: it’s about coming to that place where nothing needs to be done, and we are aware that nothing needs to be done.

This is not a blanket ontological assertion – just a description of the state, the mental condition, at the heart of meditation.


One koan to wake up. Six hundred to grow up.


Message from Henry is from our November 19, 2018 Newsletter
Image: Columbines by Bru-n0, CC0 Public Domain from

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