The comments section has been the most interesting part of the blog this week. I have been chewing on Daigan's comment, and the ones that followed, and trying to come up with a response beyond what I wrote in the original post. Of course Lou was right, he usually was. I had my own experience of this living here in 2005. I would much rather have been still living at Tassajara, but I had been sent back to the city to sort out important aspects of my life, which I had no inclination to do, and which didn't really get resolved for another two or three years. I was fukaten, the number two person in the kitchen, and devoted all my energies to doing that job as well as I could without taking my own displeasure out on the crew, and to sitting every day. I had a lot of opinions about the standard of practice at City Center compared with Tassajara, and the only two things that worked for me around that were trying to stay focused on my own practice, and looking to those people around me whose practice did inspire me - Lou being one of those, naturally. At that time I was wanting to become a priest, and heard more than once a version of the line Chris mentioned, "If you want to become a priest, act like a priest".
The comments on Thursday's post were humbling; Stephen's words and stories illustrate exactly why we love the Coadys, and I was deeply moved by the anonymous comment. To respond to that I can only quote the words from the last part of the Full Moon Ceremony, which we did again this morning; I have mentioned the first part before, but the rest of the paragraph illuminates the point: "To expound the dharma with this body is foremost. The virtue returns to the ocean of reality. It is unfathomable, we just accept it with respect and gratitude".