"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?