Minister's Post, Fri Feb 25

Dear Ones,

Whether we call them "problems" or "challenges," their presence is a central feature of life. Life is problems/challenges -- one, then another, then another. Or several all at once. A spiritual practice that cultivates spiritual maturity will not solve any of your problems -- except one. It'll solve the problem of thinking that you should have no problems!

Guo Gu has a perspective I commend to you:
"When you encounter a difficulty in your life, an impasse, solve it. If you can solve it, it’s good. If you can’t solve it, it’s still good, as it’s no longer your problem if you can’t solve it. It’s only a problem when you solve it. So when you encounter challenges in life — it’s all good!"
Yours in the faith we share,

Join a Journey Group: http://cucwp.org/journey-groups

I.C.Y.M.I. (In Case You Missed It)

The Feb 20 worship service, "Chimp Lessons":

Here it is, your...
#109: Facing In, Facing Out

Raccoon, a student of Moose Roshi, makes his third appearance. He first appeared in #93, where Raven asked him what Moose Roshi was teaching lately. "The practice of Zen is the perfection of character," he said.

He also appeared in #98, where he prompted a dissertation from Raven on the relation between everyday life and zazen.

Here, however, his question prompts no answer at all -- or an answer presented as a rebuff.

When Raven looks around, is she facing in or facing out? Does your original face face in or face out?

Raccoon visited again from Cedarford and asked, "Why do some Zen groups sit facing into the circle, and some sit facing out?"
Raven looked around and asked, "Any other questions?"
Raccoon sat back and was silent.

Questions to ask for the sake of the answer:
"Which way to Haymarket Street?"
"Have you seen my keys?"
"What's the diagnosis, Doc?"

There's a going involved.

Other questions might be more for the sake of the question:
"What am I aware of?"
"Who hears?"
"What is mind?"

There's a staying involved.

There are also times I ask,
Keen neither on answer nor on question.
I want to hear your voice responding
And be the one who prompted you.
Why is that?
Case by Robert Aitken; introduction and verse by Meredith Garmon

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