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Kyōkan - True Empathy is Enlightenment

Kyōkan (共感)...Intuitive listening...Noticing...Experiencing...In zazen, what is often thought of as "I" quiets down, receding gently without effort.

As we sit in meditation, we plug into the power of stillness and awareness. Zazen grounds us in over 3,000 years of practice and wisdom, focusing our energy. If it works, why fix or change it? Use it and do it!

Attune and attend to the present moment...Allow the curtain of discursive thought to fall away as attention lets go of its hold...Feel what lies beyond the seeming barrier and connect with empathy rather than rejection. To reject is to deny the interconnectedness at the heart of Zen, in my experience.

True empathy, embodied in Zen's beginnings, transcends divisions... in fact when the Dharma eyes is opened aka attention is in conscious contact with Reality as It Truly is... differences and exclusions stop making sense. Empathy as an expression of "Non-dualism," there's no right or left, black or white, American or Japanese, political parties, no so-called "Illegal" humans, us vs them...Just openness and unity, principles placed before thinking minds personality. Kyōkan centers endless appreciation rather than depreciation, inviting and encouraging generosity rather than lack.

Empathy... relating... can be so wholesome, when not directed by ego. By returning to zazen, we reconnect to empathy's quiet source. From this grounded place of witnessing, the "I" can bloom into "we," overflowing with compassion into each new moment.

一We Are the Practice Itself

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