Dogen Sangha Blog


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Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Zazen between heaven and earth

Dear Nishijima-sensei,

What advice would you give regarding zazen practice for someone facing a life-threatening illness? Accepting impermanence is easy to do when one is healthy. But when faced with the ultimate reality, our confidence deserts us and we lose faith in the words that gave us strength. (But they were just words, anyway.)

Yoroshiku onegai shimasu,


Dear Ven Michael Luetchford,

Thank you very much for your question, because recently I was going to send my email to you for listening to your situations today.

As for your question, I think that there is no heaven or no hell in our daily life, and there are only relative tendency of a little better, or a little worse. Therefore if we like to become a little better, we have to selct a way to become a little better. For example if we feel a little thirsty, it might be better for us to drink a bit of cold water as we like, and if we feel cold it might be better for us to wear one more sweater as we like.
Our human life can never be our consideration, or our sense perception, but our life is just a seriese of our actions. Therefore a person, who saves himself, or herself, is just himself, or herself. Following such a principle, I think that we can help ourselves, and it is very important for us to keep ourselves in the balanced state for keeping ourselves active.
We should be free in our action, and so we should be balanced in our autonomic nervous system as a human duty.

That is my too much simple principle of my human life.

With best wishes Gudo Wafu Nishijima


Blogger Michael said...

Dear Nishijima-sensei,

Thank you for your answer. I'm Michael T., not Michael Luetchford, but your answer is appreciated nonetheless.

9:04 PM, July 28, 2007  

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