Monthly Archives: May 2011

Sudden action – Haiku #26


Armpit high ferns
a deer hiding in there
’till the dog sees her *)

Shu Jo Mu Hen Sei Gan Do
Sentient beings are numberless, I vow to save them.

Originally in Dutch:
*) Varens oksel hoog
een ree verschuilt zich er in
tot de hond haar ziet

Breathe! – Haiku #25



Clear zazen
Lukewarm scent of pine trees
My breath follows *)

Butsu do mu jo sei gan do
The Buddha way is unsurpassable, I vow to attain it.

Originally in Dutch:
*) Heldere zazen
Lauwwarme geur van dennen
Mijn adem volgt ‘t

The Master Assassin – Haiku #24

I’m struggling with this ‘self’ of mine. What is it? Can’t get my head around it. I notice it sometimes goes missing. Especially in moments that are completely new, unprecedented and unexpected. Moments in which the earth stands still in her rotation and stops orbiting the sun. Moments in which my shadow always falls behind me. Moments in which the moon has no need to be full. Moments in which the water ripples but moves not.

Moments like the one in which I encountered an adder for the first time in my life:

Warm sand, a snake crosses
Something sees; it’s not me
It blossoms, it breaths *)

And then this ‘self’ pops back into position and starts moving the earth around her axis and around the sun and starts longing for a full moon. I can feel the self tie the rope around my neck and slip the knot just a little too tight just by thinking.

Come to think of it, my self is really a master assassin. It opinionates, it thinks and rethinks, it likes and dislikes, it values, it longs, it lacks and it hurts. It kills what’s there and creates a sub reality so cunningly so, that I take it for real. A second adder won’t do the trick, because it will remind me of the first one and my self will compare this adder with that adder and this experience with that experience, completely killing the moment. Killing it. Killing me with it.

Unless I wont let it. If I untie the rope, take it off, lay it aside. Free my neck, free my breath. See the second adder in its own moment. Allow the earth to stop her turning and circling. Allow my shadow to fall behind me regardless of where the light comes from or where I am going. Allow the moon to be absent if she is not here. Allow waves to stand motionless.

Master Assassin, breathe and play that flute!

Originally in Dutch:
Warm zand, een slang kruist
Iets ziet het; ik ben het niet
Het bloeit, het ademt

Silence – Haiku #23


Drops break quietly
Each droplet its own sound
Silence coincides *)

Ho mon mu ryo sei gan gaku
The Dharma’s are boundless, I vow to master them.

Originally in Dutch:
*) Druppels breken zacht
Elke druppel een geluid
Stilte valt samen

What is time?

SunsetWithout being aware of time many of the walks I make with my dog are longer than an hour. It just happens. Just this evening I was going for a short round when daylight disappeared. Almost 2 hours after leaving home, we returned. Walking way over 100km a week, no wonder I’m losing weight.

Yesterday evening I saw a badger, much to my surprise. Today I saw an adder. Saw that earlier too. Small deer and rabbits are everywhere as are many beetles and other insects. With that abundance of life around me and in me, how could I know time passing from being?

After all, what is time?

Bonno mu jin sei gan dan
Delusions are inexhaustible, I vow to put an end to them.

Mother of Pearl – Haiku #22

Mornings thinking of
Kanzeon Mother of Pearl
Evenings thinking of *)

Bonno mu jin sei gan dan
Delusions are inexhaustible, I vow to put an end to them.

Originally in Dutch:
*) ‘s Ochtends denkend aan
Kanzeon Parel Moe’r
‘s Avonds denkend aan

Nothing to it

Last week was the first time after the deception of leaving the Monastery, that I went back there and meditated with the group. Tonight I’ll go again. I’ll change into my meditation clothes, walk 45 minutes and sit with the ones with whom it somehow didn’t work out.
Walking over there last week was somehow painful. At several moments I wanted to turn around and head back home. But the need for a Sangha ? and the need for a teacher were stronger and I continued my walk through the rain. And as I sat silently in my wet clothes, leaving a funny looking mark on the Zabuton ? when I got up, I felt home was exactly were I was. And as I walked home afterwards, I cried.

I have no idea what the struggle is about. I Just don’t want to sit alone all the time. I’m too much of a beginner and need the crowd to hang on to, to help me discipline myself in my training.


So today I got into my sitting clothes for the first time after I left the Monastery. The body has a memory of its own and tells me to quiet down now that it feels my jubon ? on my back and Rakusu ? around my neck. I wear my samu-gi ? jacket and not my robes. Not yet. It might be too awkward to walk back and forth in my robes just for two sits and a Dharma ? talk in between. I don’t mind how other people perceive me, but I have to keep in mind that walking outside in my robes effects the Zen center too. So samu-gi it is.

And now the waiting starts. In half an hour I will start my walk to the Zen center. I’ll sit, walk Kinhin ?, sit again. And then I’ll walk home.

There, nothing to it.