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Saturday, February 25, 2006

Sekiso’s Step Off the Top of the Pole

Discussion of this well known koan:

"Sekiso says, “How do you step from the top of a hundred-foot pole?” This is an interesting foil to what we might assume to be the the traditional understanding of Zen: this moment, this place, no other step, no place to go. This koan asks us to turn it further. The “hundred-foot pole” is in one sense the position of awakening to oneness, of awakening to that view in which there is nothing excluded, nothing outside. It’s the position of no thing, of nothing special. Remember the impact of seeing the first photographs taken of Earth from outer space? Suddenly, our globe didn’t divide into distinct countries and individuals in quite the same way. Geography was transformed, made magic: the world was one bright jewel."


Blogger Ed said...

My experience has been that this is a much easier starting koan for beginners than Mu. I think it is a shame that it doesn't appear until many other koans. Solving it gives a big leg up on working on Mu. If fact, they are not all that much different.

10:51 PM  

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