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Koans are dark to the mind
but radiant to the heart
Description: This talk centers on Case 67, which is taken from the Kegon Sutra. The Buddha says, “Now I see all living beings everywhere, and I see that each of them possesses the wisdom and virtue of Tathagata.” Henry explains the word Tathagata and points to the wonder of practice, which may allow us to see “all living beings everywhere.” In Zen training, we can discover that this is possible. Part of the purpose of being still and cultivating present moment attentiveness is to shed light on the hidden forces in our psyche, described as the three poisons and the five hindrances. (Henry reads an excerpt from Martin Shaw’s book, Snowy Tower, that beautifully articulates the power of these unseen forces.) Eventually, we can begin to enter states of absorption, but these states are not to be confused with an experience of awakening — a “world-overthrowing discovery about our existential situation that turns it all on its head.”