‘One day when Dongshan and a monk were washing their bowls, they saw two crows fighting over a frog. The monk asked, ‘Why does it always have to be like that?’ Dongshan replied, ‘It’s only for your benefit, honored one.’

~ Pacific Zen Miscellaneous Koans

We are worthy, even if we do not appreciate it. War and refugees, drought and fire, friction and personal relationships. All of these things, they are all for our benefit. Forget the ugly things. Most of the time we cannot even fully appreciate the beautiful: a sunrise, crickets chirping at night, or baby’s heavy diaper.

Taizan Maezumi wrote in Appreciate Your Life: ‘We don’t see that our life right here, right now, is nirvana. Maybe we think that nirvana is something very beautiful, something unattainable. We always think that nirvana is something very different from our own life. But we must really understand that nirvana is right here, right now.’

In giving a talk a couple of weeks ago, I was feeling awash in the beauty of the interconnected-ness of the world and at the end said ‘We don’t deserve it.’ I could not have been more wrong. Even if we do not appreciate it, we still deserve it. We are worthy, even though we may not think so, and sometimes I may not think so; ‘not deserving it’ is all for our benefit.

Party on Garth!

Hanging out with Alice Cooper: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nRCTc6stICc