Mirror of Zen Blog

We’re Back / Big Mistake

“Opening your mouth is already a big mistake,” Zen Master Seung Sahn used to tell us. Why? Because any attempt to describe “it”, to communicate the Great Important Thing of this existence, anything about the world itself, inevitably falls far short of true expression. You say that the color filling the circle in the graphic below is black, and the lettering inside it is white? Really? You think that the letters in this paragraph are black?

Mistake! The colors “black” and “white” do NOT, in reality, even EXIST. (And neither does “red”, or “yellow”, or “blue”: just ask any neuroscientist or physicist or astronomer. We say, “The sky is blue.” But the sky also never said, “I am blue.” Big mistake!

Opening your mouth is already a big mistake.

This blog is a huge mistake. But we live by mistakes. Often it is our greatest mistakes that have caused us to improve our lives or optimize our behavior.

This blog is just one long-term meditation practitioner’s sincere efforts to use the mistakes of this world — and the mistakes of his own totally mistaken life filled to the brim with mistakes — to optimize the practice of those who might benefit. In Chinese medicine, it is said, “For a ‘heat’ sickness, use ‘hot’-medicine; for a ‘cold’ sickness, we use ‘cold’-medicine.”

For a mistaken existence — “Being born is already a mistake,” my Teacher would often say — we can sometimes use “mistake”-medicine. This blog is itself a mistake, and it is so overfull of mistakes that it is impossible to estimate. But if your eyes are spending time online, on your phone or your laptop — BIG MISTAKE! — then perhaps you might find here some mistaken-words which are actually intended to guide your mistake to a deeper place of looking: to the Great Question inside. War, religion, avoidable forms of suffering, global challenges created by humanity’s sleepwalking to oblivion, the absurdity of this very fleeting, unpredictable existence itself — this blog is a playful mirror for refracting these things back to the only matter that is really necessary: the work of waking up.

Very simple.

Share this on:

Related Posts:

  • 66D5690D-4D2B-4133-8BB4-54535EAC9F66

    One reason is because all the time we say mind mind mind mind mind mind mind mind. 30 years, teaching…

  • IMG_1017

    Why? Because we always need to help people attain True Self, True Nature, nirvana, enlightenment, before-thinking mind, satori, kenshō, true…

  • 829A8D15-6661-4D89-B28F-2A4F2A01468A

    “When the lambs is lost in the mountain, he said. They is cry. Sometime come the mother. Sometime the wolf.”…