Kort praatje aan het begin van de intensieve 24-uurszit, 29 – 30 april 2017. In het Engels omdat er ook mensen uit Duitsland waren.
Short talk at the start of the intensive 24-hour sit, 29 – 30 April 2017. In English because there were people from Germany as well.
Short or long
We have 24 hours to sit. It’s only a short time, although of course I shouldn’t say that, short or long. Even one instant of true zazen is invaluable. So let’s do it that way, every instant, every moment. Like Hakuin says in his song of zazen:
Those who try zazen even once, wipe away beginningless crimes.
Maybe not make too much out of that wiping away crimes, but anyway, even if you do it once, truly and fully, it’s already invaluable. And Hakuin goes on:
Much more, those who turn about
And bear witness to self-nature,
Self-nature that is no-nature,
Go far beyond mere doctrine.
That is what this is about! Bearing witness, seeing, your self that is no self. Like the payoff for geen zen: doorzie het zelf – it actually has a double meaning: see through your self, meaning, self falling away completely. And also, see through for yourself. No one else can do it for you. Even you cannot do it. However, each one of us has to see it for him- or herself. It’s right under your feet, right there where you are, always. Never missing.
Drop a brick
It’s crucial to throw yourself into it completely. Imagine dropping a brick down into your belly. Sit solid, right from the start. Keeping it natural, deepen your breathing, focusing on the outbreath. See if you can make it longer, and discover you can make it way longer than you thought. It deepens your zazen. Then, maybe take a few shorter in- and outbreaths. And again a really long one.
Forget everything else. Forget all secondary thoughts and things. If done with focus, you sit. But also the sitting will take care of itself, deepen of itself.
Stand at the edge of the precipice and just drop yourself into that abyss, in total trust.