Posted inDogen, Henry's Messages

Message from Henry: It’s Not About You

February 21, 2017

Of all the adventures, the greatest is the one that begins with letting go of the self.

Brief excerpt from Yamada Koun’s talks on the Shinjinmei…

Dogen wrote the following waka poem:

I hear water dripping from the eaves:
Since there is no mind,
That dripping is my self!

If I believe that the mind has some substance I am mistaken. Mind is empty. Here Dôgen hears the sound of rain dripping from the eaves, and realizes that the mind has no substance. That is, he realizes that the sound of the dripping water is himself.

*****

Of all the adventures, the greatest is the one that begins with letting go of the self.

*****

It’s not about you.

It’s about them: everyone else, the other beings. All living things.

Buddha taught the “middle way,” meaning we neither indulge nor mortify ourselves. We take care of ourselves, we keep warm, dry, well-nourished, and we take care of our minds and hearts, through our sitting practice and training. We don’t want to get overwhelmed or burned out. But beyond that, none of it is about us. Even within that, none of it is about us.

What relief. And what a motivating thing that is, to discover for ourselves: something really worth living for.

Message from Henry is from our February 21, 2017 newsletter.
Image: Leave, by Hartwig HKD, CC by-ND 2.0, from Flickr.com

 

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