Friday, 11 May 2018


217. Again and again in the koans we meet the formula 'I alone' set down as a manifestation of enlightened mind. And yet it sounds nonsensical. Trying to make sense of it philosophers might argue that it is a bald expression of solipsism. Psychologists might see it as evidence of either an inflated ego or a pathological disengagement from reality. Scholars might set it in the context of the Zen literary tradition and discuss it in terms of the doctrine of dependent co-arising. But the Zen practitioner is directed to simply sit with these words or, perhaps better, with the question that they evoke, while focusing on breath and body awareness. And so it is that in zazen the meditator lets go of all philosophical concepts and arguments, all the theorising of the psychologists, and all the discussions of the scholars in order to open a space for the True Self, the 'I ALONE', to manifest itself. 

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