the most important thing

Someone once asked Suzuki Roshi, the pioneering Zen teacher from Japan who founded the Zen Center of San Francisco in 1969: “Roshi, what’s the most important thing?” and he answered, “To find out what’s the most important thing.” I think this question of how we live our life, …

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As I think about recent events here in the USA, a line keeps coming up, from a poem by Pablo Neruda: “You can cut all the flowers but you cannot keep spring from coming.” The Republicans in the House just passed a tax bill, about which the Buddhist …

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facts of life

I am often asked why I meditate. Sometimes it’s phrased – What are you trying to accomplish by just sitting on a cushion? Depending on who asks, I answer something like – To clearly see why I suffer, and with that understanding to cultivate peace of mind and …

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letting go

Why is it so hard to meditate regularly? Students usually don’t ask this question in their meditation groups, fearing, perhaps, that they might be the only ones with this concern. I still struggle with having consistent, regular meditation, and I have been at this for 37 years. But …

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Frida Kahlo, Viva La Vida, 1954


Even though it’s not the end of the year yet, Thanksgiving has always been a time of reflection for me. I look back with chagrin at all my failures and aspirations. And I think about our world. We don’t have to look too far to see how much …

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your luminous mind

According to later Buddhist thought, human beings are fundamentally good. This is not just a theory; it’s an unmistakable meditation insight. One could say that meditation is the practice of directly experiencing our essential goodness, our fundamentally healthy and happy mind. If we are fundamentally good, healthy and …

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