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Thread: "Fire Monks" by Colleen Morton Busch

  1. #1
    Senior Member Juki's Avatar
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    "Fire Monks" by Colleen Morton Busch

    I recently finished this fine book, a non-fiction retelling of the story of five monks from the San Francisco Zen Center who stayed in the wildnerness to fight a wildfire that threatened the Tassajara monastery during the summer of 2008. The book is outstanding, both as a narrative and as a basic Zen primer, but I do not intend to offer a full review in this post. However, I do recommend that you give it a read if you are so inclined.

    One very short portion of the book intrigued me, and that is what I wish to share with you all. At Tassajara, there is a summer guest program where SFZC offers yoga workshops or poetry and art workshops to guests. One of the poetry workshops featured Jane Hirshfield, a poet and lay Priest, who spoke to the guest about Buddhism. She told them that Buddhism was so simple that it could be reduced to seven words, as follows:

    "Everything changes. Everything is connected. Pay attention." (i.e. Impermanence. Interdependence. Mindfulness.)

    I think this may be a bit of an oversimplification, but in a lovely way. Any thoughts?



    Gassho,
    William

  2. #2
    Thank you. Lovely.

    Gassho, J
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  3. #3
    Friend of Treeleaf Daido's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by William Anderson View Post
    "Everything changes. Everything is connected. Pay attention."
    No more simple or complicated than Buddha, Dharma, Sangha

    Thanks and gassho

    Daido
    Jiken Daido - Unsui at Treeleaf's Brother Sangha, the Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage.

    Do not just accept what I say. Decide for yourself if it rings true for you

  4. #4
    Senior Member Amelia's Avatar
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    I agree, Daido.
    迎 Geika

  5. #5
    Senior Member Genshin's Avatar
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    That's a lovely quote. Thanks for sharing.
    Gassho,
    Matt

  6. #6
    Treeleaf Unsui/Engineer Kyonin's Avatar
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    A nice quote to live by.

    Thanks

    Gassho,

    Kyonin
    Please remember I am only a priest in training. I could be wrong in everything I say. Slap me if needed.

    The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one. Mr. Spock

  7. #7
    Very cool quote. Thank you. But I take offense at the book recommendation; my wife will kill me if I keep buying books. hhahahah

    Gassho,

    Risho

  8. #8
    I might drop in that "everything is connected", yes, but also ...

    ... "everything is everything in the wholiest-holiest most intimate sense".
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  9. #9
    Yes, very nice William, thank you.

    Gassho
    Shingen
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  10. #10
    Lovely quote! I have just ordered Jane Hirshfield's latest volume 'Come, Thief' and am looking forward to it.

    "amid summer trees
    blue boat high on a
    mountain
    its paint scent drying"

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