a solitary brightness


There is a solitary brightness without fixed shape or form.

It knows how to listen to the Dharma,

it knows how to understand the Dharma,
it knows how to teach the Dharma.

That solitary brightness is you.

— Lin Chi, Zen master (ninth century)

today I attended a mindfulness retreat in Ojai with the amazing Gael Belden and Peggy Rowe who practice in the tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh. this poem, or koan, by Zen Master Lin Chi was the resounding teaching of the day.

as we sat in quiet meditation Gael spoke Lin Chi’s words aloud. while listening, an ancient and mysterious place within me was touched.

the place where I know I have a body—a form.
where I know I am not a body—no form.
where I am intimate with a magical, mystical, divine energy pulsing through me.
where I am both listening and speaking, giving and receiving.
where I am both student and teacher.
where I am both creating and created.

this place is always available to me. because it IS me. the solitary brightness IS me. and, it is also each and every one of us. I am not unique in my brightness.

the big insight for me, is to allow it…to remember it…to call on it…

after the retreat I went on a hike. it was dusk and the sun shined bright through the pre-rainstorm sky. nature’s reminder. a solitary brightness. ♥

1 comment on “a solitary brightness

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: