I forgot my bowl again!

Please nobody pick it up,

My lonely little bowl. - Ryōkan

Everyone knows silence is a beautiful thing. Conservatives know it. Liberals know it. People who believe in a literal interpretation of ancient scriptures know it. People who believe in the scientific method know it. Everyone who follows any religion knows it. Even terrorists know it. There is nothing about silence that anyone can argue about. You can’t compare one kind of silence to a different kind of silence. It’s always exactly the same.

I like Zen practice because it’s the best way I know of to enter into deep silence. The posture helps. The atmosphere of a Zen temple helps. The muted colors help. The chanting helps establish the right mood. The incense supplies a scent that seems to trigger the brain to be a little quieter. It’s a pretty good system. It ought to be. Millions of people have worked on it for thousands of years.

I’m sure there are other ways to enter into deep silence. There are probably as many ways to enter silence as there are people and other beings in the universe. There must be literally countless ways to enter deep silence.

But I don’t have time to investigate them all. So I’ve chosen to investigate just one way, which is the Zen way. I’ve modified the tradition a little bit. But that’s OK because the Zen tradition is very flexible. You’re allowed to customize it. That’s the whole point! Anyone who insists there’s just one way to do Zen practice, doesn’t really understand Zen practice. But even that’s OK. Maybe, for some people, an inflexible practice works better than a flexible one. So they should have rigid, inflexible Zen if that’s what they need.” - Brad Warner, Zen and the Art of Rock Guitar

New goal: learn how to build boats at The WoodenBoat School in Brooklin, Maine.

Just remember to keep asking, Where’s the culture pulling everyone?’ Now turn around and walk the other way. Keep walking.” - George Prochnik