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Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Practice and Emptiness


If we understand zazen and our practice we can begin to get acquainted with ourselves, and how our troublesome emotions wreak havoc with our lives. If we really practice then very slowly, over the years, strength develops. At times this is a horrendous process. If anyone tells you differently they are not telling you about real meditation. Real meditation is by no means a flowery, blissful process. But if we really do it in time we begin to know what it is we’re after; we begin to see who we are. So I want you to appreciate your practice and really do it. Practice is not a trimming on your life. Practice is the foundation. If that’s not there nothing else will be there. So let’s keep clarifying what our practice is at this moment. And who knows, some of us might even find ourselves in a relationship that works---one that has a very, very different base. It is up to us to create that abase. So let’s just do that.

Charlotte Joko Beck
Retired Zen Master at the San Diego Zen Centre


There is the idea of emptiness and there is the experience of emptiness. Conceptual emptiness is the intellectual understanding that all phenomena are transient and therefore lack fixed and enduring reality. This is not experiential emptiness, which can only come directly from practice.

Master Sheng Yen..The Method of No Method

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