Tuesday, 1 May 2018


214. Given the long hours that a Zen practitioner spends doing zazen, it is understandable that some might assume that Zen practice is, in the words of John McRae, 'an individual yogic endeavor of self-purification and progressive advancement toward Buddhahood'. But this is not the case. Zen practice is relational, involving interaction between individuals, between masters and disciples. It is not a matter of individual effort alone but calls for the creative space that opens up between master and disciple in dokusan. Only in the emptiness of this encounter can the individual practitioner come to realize and say with conviction and understanding, 'under the heavens and above the earth I ALONE'.

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