Wednesday, January 30, 2013



It’s been a few days now, back from our 7-Day “Bare Bones” Sesshin (retreat).  As usual, I came home with more than I left with.   Besides sitting with my ongoing PZi curriculum koans, Teacher John Tarrant offered three other koans to be worked with as a triptych.  I shall be using two of these here later on.  It’s always  a special feeling to have a koan reveal one of the Steps to me and even more fun to share this with others on our Friday evening discussions.

Hakuin Ekaku:  Praise Song For Meditation

If this way moves you

the first time you hear it,

and you simply follow it,

endless blessings come to you.

There’s always a table present with the donation box, various books for sale, notices, sign-up lists and free handouts.  It was at this table where I noticed one of the other participants reading the handout I made for 12 & Zen.  Since we are supposed to hold a quiet setting, I didn’t say anything at the time…and maybe he was just casually perusing.

Early in the retreat in the interview room, David told me that there was a person here who noticed the hand-out who seemed very interested in what we are offering... and this person might be getting in touch with me.  It was not until the very last day, after the closing ceremony that we finally met.   His enthusiasm for the 12 Steps was apparent.  And the idea of mixing in koans with his practice brightened the smile on his face. 

He’s from Canada and already I’m having fantasies of how 12 & Zen is spreading globally.  Then again, he could begin a 12 & Zen project in his home town, any of you could do the same.  I have to remember that all I’m doing is laying down a concept and a loose framework.  Sure, I can put things out on the internet and advertise on a local bulletin board;  but I’ve got to remember that the koans are doing the work here.

The 12 Steps
and Zen koans
are what sustain me.

Sustain:  give support, nourish, buoy up, sustenance…

We are doing good work here.

Bill K 

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