The Zazen Yojinki, written by 14th century Japanese master Keizan Jokin, covers the fundamental aspects of zazen, the form of Zen meditation.
Category: Japanese Texts
Hakuin’s Song of Zazen
Hakuin's Song of Zazen is an encapsulation of the merits of meditation, in which he encourages the student to focus on the immediate experience of presence.
Fukanzazengi – Universally Recommended Instructions for Zazen
The Fukanzazenki is a 13th century Japanese text that provides the most fundamental instructions for Zen meditation, including details on the ideal environment and posture for practice.
Bankei and the Unborn
17th century Zen master Bankei on the Unborn, the unconditioned mind that comes up spontaneously and is fundamental to every person, without exception.
“When you release it, it fills your hand; when you speak it fills your mouth” – Dogen’s Bendowa
Last week we published the Jijuyu Zanmai, which is the second part of the first half of Master Dogen's Bendowa, the first text to be written in casual Japanese to explain the Zen Dogen had learned in China under Master Rujing. This text is the very first part of the Bendowa that precedes the Jijuyu… Continue reading “When you release it, it fills your hand; when you speak it fills your mouth” – Dogen’s Bendowa
Jijuyu Zanmai – Master Dogen’s Self-Receiving and Employing Samadhi
The Jijuyu Zanmai is the second section of the first part of Dogen's Bendowa - 'The Endeavor of the Way' and concerns the experience of zazen itself. The whole text of the Bendowa is held in high esteem as being Dogen's best and most comprehensible explanation of his understanding of Zen and the Dharma. There are… Continue reading Jijuyu Zanmai – Master Dogen’s Self-Receiving and Employing Samadhi
Master Daito’s Original Face
Daito Kokushi (also known as Myocho Shuho) was a monk born in Japan just a generation or so after Dogen's death and is widely celebrated in the Rinzai tradition. The founder of Daitoku-ji monastery - which still stands today - Daito is best known for the (probably apocryphal) tale of his decision to shun institutional… Continue reading Master Daito’s Original Face
When One Can Know What is the Truth of the Heart
The most effective religious or philosophical texts are the ones that transcend time and culture and get to the core of the human situation which is timeless, no matter where and when in the world we live. Daikaku Zenji (Chinese name - Lanxi Daolong) was a monk and master who traveled from his birthplace in Western China… Continue reading When One Can Know What is the Truth of the Heart
Hakuin on Enlightenment – Never Ask Your Teachers to Explain
The experience of kensho or enlightenment is a subject that a lot of teachers prefer to distance themselves from talking about, as words put limits on the experience. Master Hakuin, however, was not one to shy away from such a challenge, and often tried to describe his own spiritual exploits to his students. He uses… Continue reading Hakuin on Enlightenment – Never Ask Your Teachers to Explain
Dogen – Remember That You Are Alive Only Today In This Moment
In a world where a certain kind of intellectualism is valued over many other human capacities, it's easy to feel inferior to those we perceive to be smarter than ourselves and to imagine that the things that we do not understand with our intellect will somehow hold us back from a more profound experience of… Continue reading Dogen – Remember That You Are Alive Only Today In This Moment