Talk on the Gyoji chapter of Dogen’s Shobogenzo (English) & Jam Session, October 30th & 31st 2018
Simply to maintain the practice day by day: only this is the right way to repay our gratitude. The principle here is to maintain the practice so that the life of every day is not neglected, and not wasted on private pursuits. For what reason? [Because] this life of ours is a blessing left over from past maintenance of the practice; it is a great favor bestowed by maintenance of the practice, which we should hasten to repay. How lamentable, how shameful, it would be, to turn skeletons whose life has been realized through a share of the virtue of the Buddhist patriarchs’ maintenance of the practice into the idle playthings of wives and children, to abandon them to the trifling of wives and children, without regret for breaking [precepts] and debasing [pure conduct]. It is out of wrongness and madness that [people] give over their body and life to the demons of fame and profit. Fame and profit are the one great enemy. If we are to assign weight to fame and profit, we should really appreciate fame and profit. Really to appreciate fame and profit means never to entrust to fame and profit, and thereby cause to be destroyed, the body and life that might become a Buddhist patriarch. Appreciation of wives, children, and relatives also should be like this. Do not study fame and profit as phantoms in a dream or flowers in space: study them as they are to living beings. Do not accumulate wrongs and retribution because you have failed to appreciate fame and profit. When the right eyes of learning in practice widely survey all directions, they should be like this.
Even a […]