Saturday, May 30, 2009

Coping with One's Mistakes

"Coping with One's Mistakes" number 63 of 200 from Robert Aitken's book Miniatures of a Zen Master.

Suzuki Shunryu Roshi said " Being a Zen master means coping with one's mistakes." Replace "Zen master " with woodworker, employee, friend, lover, partner, or any of the other many roles we take up, and this is still kind advise. Coping with one's mistakes is the antidote to pride, to our ego's grasping at what it thinks it knows for sure.

Mistake after mistake, this really is our way. We claim otherwise and suffer the consequences. No one is outside of this mistake upon mistake. Zen practice and realization does not give special dispensation absolving us of our mistakefulness. Why should we think it is different for teachers?

"Life is One Continuous Mistake." - Dogen Zenji

I am really enjoying these miniatures. Each one is like a small morsel of chocolate. Some bitter, some sweet, digested and enjoyed in the moment. Left with nothing to hold onto.

These miniatures are giving me an excuse to reflect and write on Zen each day. How precious is this opportunity? I look forward to this each day. I am thankful for the encouragement I've received from visitors here.

Any error or confusion created by my commentary on Miniatures of a Zen Master
is solely a reflection of my own delusion and ignorance.
Any merit generated by this activity is solely the result of
Aitken Roshi's clear teaching and is dedicated to
all Buddhas and Bodhisattvas throughout space and time.

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