In the beginning, practice seems to be a matter of personal will, but along the way, it clearly becomes the will of the Dharma. There are limits to your own personal will—from the outset you decide how much you can do, how far you can go, how much strength you have, and you restrict yourself. And in restricting yourself, you start out in your practice already defeated even while you are practicing something which is unrestricted and limitless. The real way to start in practice is by dropping off body and mind. Let go from the beginning. . . . Cast off body and mind; forget about them; throw yourself into the house of Buddha and everything is done by Buddha. 

From Throw Yourself into the House of Buddha: The Life & Zen Teachings of Tangen Harada Roshi by Tangen Harada, translated by Belenda Attaway Yamakawa and edited by Kogen Czarnik. Translation © 2012 by Belenda Attaway Yamakawa. Edited and revised translation © 2023 by Piotr Czarnik. Reprinted in arrangement with Shambhala Publications, Inc.

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