I was at a full-day zazenkai yesterday and the dharma talk caused me to reflect:
There is the courage of the soldier, and the courage of the mother holding the child. There's the courage of the father and the farmer and doctor - the everyday courage of facing things.
There is the courage of zazen - and it takes a lot of courage - to still still and be alone with whatever comes up - watching it go by - and letting it go. There are times when I want to get up and run away screaming - but I sit in place. There re times when tears stream from my eyes - like yesterday - and I found the strength to sit.
The courage of zazen - it is there for us - sitting together throughout time and space. Thank you for practicing with us, with one another, with me. I used to be a solitary sitter - alone with my fears, delusions, and narrative. Now I sit with others - it is very powerful, and it encourages me to show up on days and at times when I would rather be distracted and hide in my fears.
I am only now discovering how powerful it is to sit in a Sangha - it enriches one's own practice and there are times when in turn we are really "there" for someone else who is struggling or having difficulty in practice or in life. When we take a vow to "end suffering" our act of zazen is a realization of that vow.