Two or three old women came and asked…

Two or three old women came and asked him [Suzuki Shosan] about the essence of Buddhism.

The Master said: “I do not know anything that I can teach you.”

After a while he said suddenly: “You will die, you will die. Never forget the fact of dying…”

From : Death Was His Koan: The Samurai-Zen of Suzuki Shosan By Winston L. King (P.285)

It looks so harmless on a web page

… and in all honesty, that’s pretty much how I felt, one fine spring afternoon, on the back of a motorcycle flying down a highway near Paris.

What happened that day crystallized a whole lot that I’d observed about myself, doing business with the French, and the practical uses of Zen.

And the book is nearing completion . . . ready in early 2015.  So stay tuned.


Daily Ride – From the airport at Bordeaux

Here’s a video of a woman taking a moto taxi from the airport at Bordeaux. Riding through the countryside, enjoying the scenery, arriving in the city, and going on her way. She clearly has made prior arrangements — whereas I came across my pilot in Paris by total chance. I hadn’t been expecting to take a moto taxi at all… but things turned out quite differently for me in the end. This lady is also very laid back, and she doesn’t seem to be in a huge hurry. Of course, this is an advertisement for a moto taxi company, so that’s to be expected. Real life experience takes its own turns. Still, this is a nice few minutes to watch someone ride.

Thus consider that you are always on duty…

…  required to firmly apply your full attention. If you slack off, you’re useless.

Remember such a stable and firm attitude is itself meditation practice. There is no other method of concentration to seek. Buddhism itself is about applying full attention steadily, without being disturbed by external things. Developing a confident attitude that is never pained or vexed or worried or saddened or altered or frightened is called attaining Buddhahood.

Daily Ride – Quick trip down Paris streets on a Gold Wing

Just a quick trip down Paris streets aboard a Gold Wing. It looks like the rider has his rolling carry-on strapped onto the back of the bike, with the wheels showing. And there appears to be a seat back for him to lean against. When I was riding pillion on a Honda ST1300, flying down the highway from CDG to Paris, there was no seat back, and I was a lot less at ease than the guy in this video. Just goes to show how varied the bikes and features and pilots can be, as well as how different the experience can turn out.