To aid you in
your work, this story from Reb Anderson and Susan Moon’s book, Warm
Smiles from Cold Mountains,
comes to mind:
Kishizawa Ian, Suzuki Roshi’s second teacher, was a young monk, he was
sitting in meditation on a rainy day and heard the sound of a distant
waterfall. Then the wooden han was struck. He went to his teacher (maybe
Oka Sotan) and asked, “What is the place where the sound of the rain, the
waterfall, and the han meet?”
His teacher replied, “True eternity still flows.”
And then he asked, “What is this true eternity that still flows?”
“It is like a bright mirror, permanently smooth,” said his teacher.
“Is there anything beyond this?” asked the young monk.
“Yes,” responded his teacher.
“What is beyond this?” inquired the young monk.
And his teacher replied, “Break the mirror. Come, and I’ll meet you.”
Kishizaza Ian Roshi was a dharma brother of Sawaki Kodo and Hashimoto Eko.
Together they trained with Oka Sotan, a very important Soto Zen teacher
and Dogen scholar in the early 20th Century, and the three went on to
revitalize Soto Zen. This is flavorless talk and is how people of the Zen
way thaw – Rinzai, Soto, Minnesotan, Japanese, whatever.