One Month of Letters

My calligraphy brushes are hanging on the brush stand, dry, collecting dust. My shakuhachi is lying in the corner, dry, collecting dust. In the morning I have been too tired and sleepy to get up early and practice Zazen, at night I am not sleeping well, and not enough … all because of reading and writing too much this month.

While working with my former teacher for 13 years I never had time for soaring flights of intellect, every moment was filled with praxis, awareness, doing. Said that, I much enjoy intellectual effort and don’t buy into the construction of some Western scholars based on the mistranslation of

教外別傳   a special transmission outside the teachings
不立文字   not laid down in writing
直指人心   directly pointing to the human heart
見性成佛   seeing one’s nature to become Buddha


Paco de Lucia (1947-2014)

that Zen is an anti-intellectual approach which is totally rejecting reading and writing. Though, as soon as reading and writing starts eating up all the time and energy better spent with practise, it feels like backing the wrong horse.

Today Paco de Lucia, the master of flamenco guitar passed away with just 66 years. While listening now to his wonderful music, I feel sad … life is fragile and short, no time to waste.