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Let go of the separate version of who we think we are...
Harada Roshi

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There are many ways to live the Dharma: as monk, as lay practitioner, householder, in relationship, marriage, with a family and as solitary recluse or hermit. I have largely been practicing the latter for the past 10 years. At times I miss having a sangha. Do you perceive pitfalls to hermit Zen?

In Zazen you are always sitting alone, yet easily you can fall into certain habits. If you want to experience the quietness of mind, that sitting alone is fine. Yet in order to experience the pure life energy, the joy of being alive, it is helpful to sit with others, exchanging our honest and simple energies. And then adding the question: What am I? What is life ? What is alive here ? My life is not forever, what is death ? When dead, where do we go? It is not enough for us to only look at being alive, but digging deeper, facing the challenges there and receiving the guidance of a true teacher is how best to continue.

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