120partingwords

Case

Seisen Fletcher was angered upon reading the Buddha’s statement that his allowing women to ordain would put Buddhism back 500 years. She went to Maezumi Roshi to ask him about it. After a few moments he said: “Well, it was worth it.”

Commentary

Taizan Maezumi Roshi (1931–1995) studied in and transmitted three teaching streams: the Soto Zen lineage of his father, the Rinzai Zen lineage of Koryu Osaka Roshi, and the Harada- Yasutani blend of Soto and Rinzai in which koan training is emphasized. He founded the Zen Center of Los Angeles in 1967 and had many disciples. He ordained Seisen Fletcher, who received dharma transmission from Tetsugen Glassman (a successor to Maezumi Roshi) in 1998.

Dare we comment on our ancestor’s statements? Why not? The Buddha is alive today. What is your prediction? How many years are left?

Verse

Backwards or Forwards
Years or Kalpas
Gain or Blame
Anger or Joy
Two Buddhas meet
2500 years later
Speaking in a strange language
On the other side of the globe

To listen to Michael Wenger read “It Was Worth It,” click the audio link below.

Audio

Temple
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