I would like to share a conversation I had with Taigu over an amazing dinner in Osaka. We had been enjoying some delicious food and conversation when we arrived at the topic of teachers and their styles. I mentioned how much my wife has been enjoying Jundo's props and detailed explanations. Also, how I have had a connection with Taigu's poetic and direct style of teaching. And, for many years, how I've also enjoyed Daido Loori's confrontational and sometimes enigmatic style. Taigu then explained how all these teachers, and infinitely more; my children, my boss, my friends, my enemies, are all facets of the same jewel. My mind immediately attempted to process this thought and place it in a nice box with a pretty bow on top. Believing the reference of the jewel to be the Dharma, I quickly closed up the box.
But then Taigu continued to elaborate. This jewel, is in fact me. These teachers are reflections of my self. My mind, my perspective, my conditioning. This Dokan reflecting Dokan was mind-shattering. You could say it blew the top off the box. I find it hard to put into words the liberation experienced at this revelation. My likes and dislikes about any of the myriad of teachers in my life being reflections of my self, my ego. Dropping this and accepting their teachings without labels is assuredly a life-long effort, but having the awareness of it I found truly liberating and worth sharing.