Monday, September 17, 2012

E-mail to E-mail Transmisson

Over at Full Contact Enlightenment is a great post on dharma relationships on the internet. Inspiring! 
About 80% of my teacher-student relationship happens online, while I pursue very traditional Soto Zen training. It’s like this: My teacher, Kosho, leads the Austin Zen Center in Texas, but trains his students where he trained, Zen Center in California (Green Gulch, City Center, and Tassajara). This a requirement for ordination. So, I see him about once every 3 months, and we e-mail once a week. We would skype, but our internet is weak out on the farm.
This e-mail to e-mail transmission of the dharma has been criticized as lacking the nuance of a hossu, a fist, or a staff (body language). However, I have a couple years worth of questions asked and answered, there for reference, in addition to listening to his dharma talks as many times as I need to.
In addition to this relationship is my extended sangha in the blogosphere. The Dalai Grandma has seen me through many phases. Dangerous Harvests, too. Wild Fox Zen, though we have clashed in the past, has bared witness to my practice. At some level, just like my teacher, these people who write these blogs keep the continuum of my practice (our practice!) and they feel as familiar to me as the people I sit next to every morning.

And these people are my elders. Their blogs are well established, and I am but one of hundreds, and they find time respond. I'm full of gratitude for the encouragement, the forgiveness, and the occasional kick in the ass. This is actually the only reason I blog; to connect to a larger world. 


  1. Today a sociologist PhD, who is nevertheless a friend, told me there is ample evidence that the creative process is not finished until the work is shared. Right there is why I keep choosing to blog instead of bending to other more serious forms of writing (and marketing). It is satisfying.....Nondualistically, it seems to me the world always has these people who see the new invention (the telephone! gasp, TV!) as destroying the human spirit and all. So perhaps they have a place in the whole evolution thing. Though actually, I am more of an agnostic on evolution than most people. I believe in the force of accident. As in Andy Warhol becomes famous. lvu (evil online abbreviation that diminishes genuine etc.) Thank you for mentioning me.

  2. Thanks for helping me finish the creative process. You always ask the hard questions, and I really, really appreciate that.