As a young sitter, in my teens, I used to think that the beyond expressed at the end of the Heart sutra meant some special treat or experience we could all look forward and expect. One day as a few of us were gathering around the camp fire outside the big Dojo of the Gendronniere in the winter retreat, it was just after Deshimaru roshi s death, in 1982, somebody said how much he was missed. In a solemn and strong voice I uttered something like...we all have to go beyond! An old monk looked at me and said Young fool, you don t have the faintest idea of what beyond means and ...he was right. I felt so small suddenly, my words crumbled to the ground, my hands, my eyes, my shivering skin... my pride vanished facing the big and huge vacant space of my own arrogance and vanity. At the same time, it was a very happy moment.
Of course, the beyond is precisely where we start from. it is where we stand and sit. It is this reality . Raw and full. Ripe and juicy. No need to chase or seek. The treasure chest is alreaday opened, the light shines by itself, practising the great way is to get out of the way. Even if we carry on looking for God, Godo, Buddha, Krishna and co...suchness is always abundant. So Zazen is always sitting itself and sometimes, getting out of the way, not resisisting of chasing anymore, we allow zazen to sit us too. We don t sit to get it, but to let it be expressed and manifested. The words posted lately on various threads of this forum all remind us of this aspect of just sitting. Beginless start, endless path, we start where it all ends!
Taigu ...in between two trains and two classes, but always exactly home.