Monday, 17 April 2017


107. The personal realization that is confirmed and authenticated in the relationship of master and disciple may bear fruit in a variety of ways. In the case of Mahakashyapa, he was entrusted with a formal teaching role and was commissioned to continue the Buddha's work in that capacity. Teaching, then, was the special service that he was called to perform for the Buddha's sangha. But there are other important ways of rendering service to the sangha. For example, organizing and running a sesshin requires the co-operation of a number of sangha members. We bring our individual gifts and talents to the sangha. None of these gifts are to be looked down on just because they are exercised behind the scenes. Moreover, in the history of Zen there are those who, once they have been confirmed and authenticated by their master, disappear into the mountains, never to be heard of again.

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