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Thread: Issan Dorsey, One Mountain

  1. #1
    Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage Priest Taigu's Avatar
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    Issan Dorsey, One Mountain

    I just wanted to share with you one of my other biggest inspiration in sitting and the Soto path: Issan Dorsey( sometime in 1933- September 6,1990). He was a gay zen priest and teacher and ex-prostitute, drug addict and female impersonator. He established the Maitri Hospice at Hartford Street Zen Center for people dying of AIDS during the first spread of the epidemics in the 80s. He was not a saint and never pretented to be anything but what he was that was ungraspable, beyong thinking. just ineffable. A f..... up life sitting as a living Buddha. Both and none of them. A traditionnal koan presents two oxes fighting and disappearing as they enter the flowing stream of a large river.Wasn't he smashing as a drag queen?


    Issan had two faces
    but I cannot choose any
    the drag queen in a soapy bath
    or the floating cloud
    neither one nor the other
    will tell you the whole story

    Boddhistvas and destitutes
    are made of the same stuff
    in close embrace
    they dance
    and twirl and turn
    the single flower


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  2. #2

    Re: Issan Dorsey, One Mountain

    Took me a while to see the significance of the first picture. I thought it was some 40's or 50's US film star!

  3. #3

    Re: Issan Dorsey, One Mountain

    Issan was a great teacher.

    A little book about him on order ...

    http://www.amazon.com/Street-Zen-Life-I ... 1569246378

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