Saturday, April 29, 2006

The radiance of Gautama's sitting

Near the the great Tofuku-ji, you may find a way to get to the most exquisite place, quiet, a bit like Koto In, huge bamboo poles quietly swinging. The garden represents Mount Shumisen, where the Buddha lives. Of course, Buddha lives where you are. As I do zazen in front of the garden, the thought comes that it is so hard for all of us to let go of fear and hope, and, to let go of letting go itself.
A couple, beautiful young woman wrapped in a kimono and a young fellow in traditional man's clothes sit. They laugh and talk, two loving sparrows perched on the edge of the wooden platform, two children playing a good old game. They are in love, their faces are caressed by a light that doesn't have a material origin. After a long time, they both kneel in front of the altar and join their hands in gassho. I watch and pray with them. Pray? Well, I don't pray, I make the wish of two beloved lives entertwined in this universe. They go. As I am alone, I sing my favorite sutra ( the only one I really know well), the Heart Sutra. Just for them. For you. For me. For nothing.
I take the bus for Sanjusangendo again. One thousand standing images of Kannon. It is said that Kannon can break its form into thirty three reflections to help everybody everywhere. Quite a good metaphor of the work of Kannon in our life, its deeds as we go along without noticing its presence. As I look at the main central sitting Kannon, unfolding a forest of arms with hands holding all sorts of implements and tools and objects ( could be seen as a crazy cartoon character...), as I look at this golden face and closed soft gaze I wonder: Am I watching Kannon, or is it, from the very beginning, that Kannon is watching me? Master Daichi in one of his beautiful poems expresses this truth: wherever you sit, Kannon sits with you, in you, Kannon is... Sitting Zen is the womb and matrix of all Buddhas. This hall, this town, this world are filled with the radiance of Gautama's sitting.


Blogger Michael Tait said...

Expressing the truth we can eat cream cakes, travel in Japan or make a fetish of our zazen. Sightseeing here and there is just the way of Buddhas and ordinary beings, just the way of ordinary Buddhas. Here I am with ericaceous soil today, planting up another maple - sightseeing in this way.

Loving men and women, old kesas and blossoms and letting them pass away as they must is this way. A soft mind is a way as much as the stern master who not bending, is eventually broken by the stiff-necked admonitions he dispenses.

Looking into the heart of Buddhas who travel light and deck themselves in Japanese flowers and Buddhas who fret their obstructions in empty dojos - is there so much difference after all?

Radiant Gautama's light shines in the eyes of young lovers, cunning Pierre pursues the flute and cross Chodo rails at our vanities - everything changes and everything stays the same.

7:02 AM  
Blogger Pierre Turlur said...


Indeed. your voice is such a relief.Everything changes and stays the same. Here we are all with this life and can't figure out why and what for. Chodo Cross is great and my heart is melting in front of Jizo-Kannon-life.

Fucked up student, I follow now life-roshi.

Wrong? sure. And it's OK.

My bows to you, face of the unknown, friend and Dharma brother


Kuma San

9:35 AM  
Blogger anu said...

such amazing pictures,,takes my breath away Pierre :-)

12:28 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home