What happens when our utilitarian thinking encounters a practice that leaves everything as it is? Barry Magid March 17th 2018

In the face of suffering our instinctive response is one of self-reproach and then self-improvement. We find fault in ourselves because we're suffering and we create a project that we imagine will eliminate the bad or damaged part of ourselves that has been the source of our suffering. And so we see practice as a means to an end of eliminating that flaw, not seeing that the very solution we propose - the elimination of a flaw - is itself another turning of the wheel of our suffering. But moment after moment, zazen will present the alternative, regardless of what state we come to it in. Like Joshu's bridge, it lets horses cross, it lets asses cross. Anything can sit down in front of the mirror and be reflected.

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