This Sesshin was Wonderlfully Done

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Rohatsu Day 6


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good morning
day six
can you believe it
yes some people can prefer
it's a beautiful day
this machine at least from my perspective started with such a deep silence right from the very beginning
and i'm not have to say that the servers have been inspired i mean right it from day one they looks like that been working at this free year there are so coordinated
the first day surgeon spoke about flexibility and proficiency
as aspects that get developed and sushi
he also mentioned something about actualizing the fundamental point
and that seemed to raise
questions for people i have the opportunity to speak with people in practice discussion that day
and on
one of the people i spoke with said what is the had exactly actualizing the fundamental point
how does one know when one is actualizing the fundamental point
and the next day know it appeared on the bulletin board for me that said
not from the same person
if you don't mind sharing what are you aiming to get out of session this year
which is on it could be a trick question but i don't think it is
i think it's a slippery question though
i think there is an interesting path to hew between setting an intention and
having a gaining idea or fixed notion you know about what supposed to happen which he then can evaluate your progress against later to see if it actually did
it's fallen
is that better
yeah maybe okay
but it did get oliver got me to thinking about sessions and my experience with sessions and what they are for and i remembered my first session in which was here somewhere in the mid-nineties
hum it was during the period of time when i wish i i sort of thought of myself as somebody who lurked around this place said and actually
i managed to get in the door without ever going through any kind of orientation so
i was clueless throw hunter
and especially at the first machine and
i didn't know anyone i spoke to know one of course is it was the three days to as i remember
and harmonics changing touching my chin there ah
afterwards i i summarize my experience to myself that
that no one knew my name
and that was how i experienced the silence that that's with the silence meant to me and up
fully a half dozen years later in my very first wasted came mine talk i confess that that was my first feeling about the sheen
and biker who is a resident here and priest
for several years after that every time she saw me she will go hello married ray
that's a to prove she knew my name
and then a half a dozen years after that i was a new be sixteen director as being oriented by jake who produced this incredible cheat sheet of directions five pages long you have which i want to talk about a little bit about sir
the underbelly of to sheen
and so i had access to the law the notes of prior to shane directors in the office a kind of true treasure trove of and rosters and there was one roster that i've picked up and here everybody's name on it and then in handwritten on the upper right-hand corner it said probably
mum's underlined and there were three names
and mine was one of them

so i tried to figure out why i was the problem
and i
i think it was because i i at that point i was still in the lurking fit period on
i treated machine as a kind of the way i would a psychological workshop where a lecturer at a library that you could sign up and payer money but nobody would ever billy notice if you showed up
i'm like they didn't know your name and was still on they didn't know your name period well i'm
first of all of course nothing could be further from the truth
and and second hum
it does it brought to mind how fundamental
the relationship is in the practice how
every person is accounted for and known and taken account of plan for considered you know whether you know it or not somebody has thought about where you're sitting what position would be good for you how you get your career skills fold in with the rest of the song
a what days you're here what limitations you have in terms of sitting arrangements i mean these vast things have all been taken into account by someone in this case our our beloved peter has been holding this for us this time
mean i maybe use some know what the inner workings of sixteen or but i thought i would say some things about what my impression what i learned
from being such a director which is that it is this
wonderfully designed choreographed
dance of systems that is centered in this room and this is the main show if he will with schedule and the people who keep it going the g quito the she got the dawn rio and the the dosa is the priests
when you call a group of priests a bevy of priests i don't know
a witch
a p
have a parcel of free
but everything is interrelated and everything ties together and everything that happens in here is supported by something that's going on out there and the other core places i think of it is the kitchen it's the one other place where there's someone all day long there's the kitchen crew there's the
serving crew that intersects briefly there's the dishwashing crew and then the next kitchen crew of comes in that evening and he knows of web
it's like looking at the back side of a grandfather clock what you see these cogs and wheels and they they go on different patterns you don't have a different schedule and yet the schedules have to be coordinated so that the servers on the dishwashers and know when to show up at work meeting and combat
back and so forth
and there are these wonderful points of intersection like one of my favorites is when the serving tray is handed off by the cook to the head server and that you probably know of or maybe don't if you haven't been there there is another service going on in the kitchen
shorter less elaborate and at the end of it the cook passes the offering tray
do the head server and what the reason that i like it is that as a cook i always felt like i just threw my effort to the server and it's their job now it's their food you know you give up whether it's gonna
be okay iron or you try i mean that's that's a that's a work in progress but
mean caring about outcome is the work and process but it is very much one team
hands over the effort
to the other team who then takes it on and that's how the whole thing works
so i'm i guess what i'm saying is that i think that understanding silence my conclusion about holiness understanding silence really depends on relationship it depends on
how we know each other what have we talked to each other when we're not silent
our dharma study all of that works together
it reminds me that it's why i ended up thinking a lot about river trips and rivers i've been on because during that same period of time that i that that i was lurking here i was running rivers a lot and especially i'm pretty much every year of two or three way
a trip down some southwestern mover like the green river and utah or cataract canyon or the grand canyon
and there are a lot of similarities that there are a lot of similarities about being in a lot of things that i've learned doing that about being in a for example in a tribe but being in a group that is not a family not a casual you know ad-hoc meeting not a neighborhood
but a tribe that has a common purpose and a set of principles that guides it and that has each other's back where everyone has one another's back which feels a lot like sushi and to me
and it is where i learned about silence being in the wilderness and floating you know for hours on end watching those canyon walls go by
you begin to vibrate on a different level your nervous system just
have you know i don't know bribes town
without billboards without electronics without any any of that kind of extra noise and in fact when i would come back from those trips i would feel some something akin to culture shock and and determine that it was gonna hang onto that field
going into the rest of my life and it would last about a week
and i did aft after doing that a half a dozen times or more it occurred to me that i needed to do something actually in town that that that gave me that same thing which is actually how i got to be sitting here more i stopped lurking
but i learned many other lessons
from river trips and river running
one of the primary ones is to ah
row the current your n
so let me explain what i mean by that so you're in a raft and the raft is gonna go
in the direction of the current that it's sitting on just that footprint you can have current going other directions all around you but it's the current that you're in the determines where you gonna go
with a little modification if you've got ores than you can stick your or and then change direction
so you have some some a little bit of ability to
grab current that's going in another direction on on either side of you
and the point is usually rapids or fast moving water flowing through obstacles and so your job is to figure out how to dance through them
and be in the right place to pick up the current that's going where you want to go

and one of the ways you go through a a rapid is used you with particularly a big early one is you get out and scout so that means you get out above it and you walked out of the bottom and you look at where you want to end up and then you want back and you say if i want to be here before in order to be there i have to be there
and you sort of chart your course back up to the top and all to enter here that's plenty
an eight or nine times outta ten you got plan b and so you have to be kind of
free and loose with your plan a and let it go and really be with plan b let it be what's happening now that's the other part of
row the water you're in
then there's see which i wouldn't even call a plan is that
crash and burn run that you're just glad to be upright and everybody still in the boat at the bottom and the sun there's some rapids usually their ravage that and with falls like lava falls which gives you a hint that it's automatically a plan b you can have all the planet you want but
something a different is going to happen that you can't predict and you gotta go with it
now i spent a lot of time watching video tapes of people going through gnarly rapids and i noticed over the hours and especially if you watched the same rapid with different people coming out don't you know through the day that that there was there were kind of the the novice one
who's ores and paddles were flailing in their backpedaling and there there's a lot of activity and then there is the person who comes through and does to and moves exactly where they want to go and then to and most exactly where they and everything is fair com
come and i call those books the zen hours
and i aspired to be as an our
and in fact there were times when i really felt like i knew what i was doing well enough that i i had that feeling
there was even one time i i will say
after a very long and very difficult day we the most difficult rapid was last big drop three on cataract canyon
and we'd watched another group come through and they crashed and burned which
dr barr anxiety a lot
but that particular rapid i felt like something even more happened which is by the time i got down to the bottom i didn't feel like i had road i felt like
rowing happened and i think lay different failing which i it's a kind of a touchstone like oh
that's what they mean by her
oh i'm so but then there was the day
at blossom bar rapid which is on the rogue river which is in southern oregon and we are scouting on a rock cause you can't walk down it's too pushy but you can look down
and world air and mr zen rower comes along and does a perfect hands through and i'm saying to myself i'm gonna do that ah wanna do that i want to do that really bad
and we all get into our boats and walter was built one one i'm boat to now the reason i wanted to do this then were really bad is because sitting in the bow of my boat is the vice of it
and i think his son
you are
i didn't remember that apart
i didn't remember that how
no i blocked it out him as to blocked it out
out of that
watch that guy for

misplacement so
oh so i mean the reason i wanted to i wanted to impress the bicep it because i wasn't so sure my zen shops otherwise right but maybe this is the place where i can tap my zen rowing come in so so the rabbit is perceval it's a boulder fields and the biggest boulders that the top is about an rv size thing a small house
and all the river is going toward it and then the right path is to the left them more clear path is to the left i'd ever next action ever seen what was on the hand side and so we pull into the currents and i'm sitting ready to
to the general thing and i owe that i didn't say one thing that you're supposed to do when you're rowing the water you're in is your also was to watch downstream more now when you're going and current usually are sorta sideways to the current because it allows you to better best flexibility so your cyprus the for it there's always a down
stray more so i'm not watching my downstream more and i runs right into iraq
now when that happens the reason you'd watch the downstream was it hits iraq it comes through the warlock and hits you are smashes your thumb or throws you out the vote or something bad happens in this particular case the or came out of the oarlock completely so it's loose in my hand up here when the other ones here and this is the one i really need
need to get around on the left side of that boulder which is what we also call a rap rock
a rap rock is erupt that tends to grab boats and they go up on it and kind of stick and on the river comes in and piles into the boat and the boat just wraps on the rock and in a little bits hours than of rigging in
police and so forth against it's really inconvenient
so here i am the of course my my passengers have no idea whether they're looking ahead and what they're looking at is that we're riding up the pillow right into the ramp rock through our noses are like
and we don't have an think and i'm i'm desperately trying to get the or back into the warlock
and but what happens instead is that we we go to the right side
of the rock which i haven't i have no idea what's down this right side and it usually people don't run it and probably for reason which i don't know what it is
i think what happened is that there was enough there was enough water and their average but what it was is a is a what they call a rock garden
and there was enough water thank god there was enough water so that we actually just ping pong and through
and then we were all upright and in the boat together at the bottom
with my plan in shreds
and my thought about it was i mean my thought is certainly in retrospect aside from my bruised ego was that i wasn't rowing the water i was in my brain was too full of the idea that i had
right i wasn't paying attention and but you can't pay attention when you're ahead is full of the ideas you have it in a mean there's only so much bandwidth
so there is something about gaining idea
if you can drop it actually gives you more flexibility that opens up the possibilities right
so one of the other things that i know what aspects i like to read about 'em
river trips was that you know he would come in the end of the day of rowing and unpack everything and set up camp and there be a crew
making dinner and then someone would inevitably say scenery alert and point and everybody would stop and look at what was happening
and it was a way of saying
look at where in the world we are
like this is why we came became to be with this magnificent thing

mean there's other things about river running that are informative but i think
coming back to the question about what is the fundamental point
mean maybe this is an obvious association but there's a reason why we do this particular to shane at this time of year and it's to celebrate enlightenment
nine am
actualizing the fundamental point ellen web in her she's so ceremony talked about touching big mind
then hose talked about bodhicitta
hum and this morning when i was talking to surgeon he talked about
finding balance in the middle of falling away from balance and continually finding that still point
hassan and his talk talk about enlightenment isn't something added on
it is the thing itself
activity not a performance not trying not trying to be sent our
though here we are in this arc this big boat travelling together
and there is no way out but through
and we have all these moments in their myriad forms which are our version of scenery alerts
ah touching big mind like
now in a robe chat in the morning when all the different voices start out kind of cacophonous and then settle into one pitch some harmonious pitch
the passing of the offering dry

i'm the way you can tell who's walking behind you without seeing her they are
and the way you can find that you're very fine infinitely fine tunable mind
is finding atonement with everyone and everything

so this effort we make
have to surrender to the schedule
to surrender to the positions behold
is in the service of tuning up becoming attuned

and then we turn everything over
return of our effort or service our activity
jerry mentioned in her talk a jumping off the hundred foot pole
i have always been a little bothered by the to spread and actually to never seemed like such a good idea to me
serve samurais and or something
i mean i and i understand the giving over and the letting go i understand that but you could say it in a more grandmotherly mind kind of way i beg to differ
and that is there is nothing to hang onto
and that is not bad news
and that reassurances the grandmotherly my part it's not bad news that there's not anything to hang onto
it's the freedom to respond to any situation without fixed notion
without having to have something happen
i'm and letting arise what arises
you turn yourself over the river and you can count on being floated

so i found this some wonderful transcript of of suzuki roshi talk
from nineteen sixty seven
this machine was wonderfully done
i think this is because
it is because of your body sought for mind
which has to do things for others rather than for yourself
if we have true spirit of true spirit to live in this world there is no problem
but because of are superficial understanding of life we have many problems and suffering of course as long as we live where as long as we have this body it is not possible to get out of suffering
so the point is how to change our suffering into joy of life
true joy of life
so we have to practice laws and just a practice as an as we live in this world without any particular reason why we live in this world
but if we understand that each one of us is a tentative form of the absolute being
whatever we do is the activity of absolute being
which is not possible to be known by us completely
but something which we cannot doubt
it exists but we do not know what it is completely
and this is the origin of our life or source of life
so the purpose of our practice is to get accustomed to live without being attached to many things but this unknown thing
when we find our meaning of life in this way naturally we can help each other
we will love each other
keeping a harmonious way between us and between other beings animate and inanimate
we are all friends
and then i managed to find
the garter that james kenney was referring to when
sojourn was reading from ah eight can rushes book on got us
when i sit with my friends in zazen
i vow with all beings
to touch and receive and and convey the mind of rivers and stars
you wanna say with me
when i sit with my friends in saas then i'll and then you can say after me
when i sit with my friends in san
i vow with all beings
to touch and receive and convey
the mind of rivers and stars

what are your scenery alerts for this machine
what has this machine been like for him
or whatever helps you want to say
i have i
and so happy to see
works and
everything is helping pay for his face everyone's work anyways
sincere dedication and you the process of doing that
or not be prizes of bed like that it is produced a wonderful one thing i i would ask anybody
he can take a look

did you put a hand her



yeah yeah

and his friends
that's yes yes

all the said
even with all of people

it was not
doing and how
and it was interested
with all the activities

it's not like he was gracious
just was wondering



all is

yeah i had fact

he said
monday morning

the idea of
after if an unknown variable yeah
i shouldn't be want to extend
when they said
no really hurt you

sure experience and a and what's the wow you look at something and looked down at a million times before and ascendancy something was burning our lighting candles have been a candle and look at these statues i think we've got those
china and the hair on the buddha's it's just like


isn't there
i have no doubt
yes this

what's start

something happened

the reason
seven series

helps brain
i'm very touched several interesting and nutrition exercise
on the message was
trump's exercise fish lifestyle
he sure
this is not a conventional

i feel the obvious that that home for me with yesterday
yeah offer you this said from either type i felt it was cheaper than a possible it's not about the
in that moment with all of you
i can't help ten camp
something transform

who put a great time
that the i just have to say that was some bar has the highest hundred
thank you for that
a moment that is capital
in surface the center really pissed about these things
if i was under last summer in the smart that i was with
that patterson does only the guy see her down
now you're jealous
everything the one of the things that are seriously review this week is
the color of the foliage on the ground
especially from the country that the one outside of surgeons office window as it has this incredible reds and golds and variations
i noticed that understanding how different stages of their life are still small and betrayed her son
their specific colors and i think about
the changes that were seen his face issues
and how this coming days
fascists this next stage of his journey
so do the chicken serve the support scheme
i just
see like work has recreated it is again
is that fertile land it receives was
if all
well that hundred
when the ground for the next one
and evolve

when people say sending them
still agree
when in

her to
in fact that out
he was afraid of me
one or to continue
interesting question
have enough
i didn't think of i love can continue the
a town
we'll just keep he wouldn't change
the shoes
i'll happen because over

the post ended by it's not

ski so

the obvious
i think she does a good job of taking care of fun she needs to take care of in terms of room physical wellbeing and so i'm sure you'll see her again
okay think we're there