by Rev. Koshin Schomberg

Onwards and Upwards

Both your life and your body deserve love and respect for it is by their agency that Truth is practiced and the Buddha's power exhibited: the seed of all Buddhist activity, and of all Buddhahood, is the true practice of Preceptual Truth.

--Great Master Dogen in Shushogi ("What is Truly Meant by Training and Enlightenment")

The Precious Vessel

The physical body is the vessel of the Water of the Spirit and the reservoir of our karmic inheritance, which is also our potential for enlightenment.

How to Grow a Lotus Blossom contains many references to the body and to the bodily experience of the Water of the Spirit. This is a theme that Rev. Master explored in more detail in her later teachings. These later explanations are adumbrated in Plate LXVI of the second edition of How to Grow a Lotus Blossom. It should be noted that while Rev. Master went into more detail in later explanations, her understanding of the spiritual role and significance of the body was thoroughly established in the great kensho in 1976-77 that is described in How to Grow a Lotus Blossom.

Nowhere in human life is the fundamental unity of body, mind and spirit more clearly exemplified than in the practice of Serene Reflection (shikan taza) meditation, the chief physical feature of which is the combination of a naturally upright spine with a deeply relaxed abdomen. We have made a series of short instructional videos in order to help people learn to meditate correctly. Getting the posture right makes a huge difference! There is a link to these videos among the links provided at the bottom of this page.

Inexhaustible Riches

Every time I open How to Grow a Lotus Blossom I have the feeling that I am coming to its teachings for the first time. I am now concluding these Reflections, and once again I have that sense of wonder: How to Grow a Lotus Blossom contains an inexhaustible wealth of teaching.

How to Grow a Lotus Blossom provides practical advice that I have found again and again to be helpful in a way that no other advice is helpful for me. I continue to need that help, and so the teachings in this book continue to resonate in my heart and in my experience.

Just before the Buddha died, He told His disciples to make the Dharma Itself their teacher. Rev. Master died twenty years ago, and still her teaching guides and sustains me. Of course, there is much that I do not understand. That is alright, for the Truth appears naturally, responding to all need. I may not always be attuned to It, but It never fails to be attuned to my need--and the need of every being in all realms, all worlds, all times.

The experiences that Rev. Master describes in How to Grow a Lotus Blossom are her experiences. Yet the vast wealth of teaching in this book is for all beings. I hope that these Reflections have helped--or will help--at least one other human being to come to a better appreciation of the spiritual riches that are to be found in How to Grow a Lotus Blossom.

What Next?

When I began these essays, I had not written anything for many years, though during those years I gave hundreds of Dharma talks. I will continue to do some writing, which will be published under a new "Related Writings" heading on this website. I have just begun writing these essays. There is a link at the bottom of this page.

Meanwhile, all of the essays and poems that have been published to date on this website will be published soon as an e-book. And we are considering the possibility of doing a limited paperback printing as well.

And so the adventure into the unknown continues! I would like to express my gratitude to those who have advised me of typos and other errors. Finally, to all who have read any or all of these essays, I would like to say, "Thank you!" from the bottom of my heart.


Click here to go to Rev. Master Koshin Schomberg's video Introduction to Serene Reflection Meditation


Click here to go to Related Writings


Click here to return to the Table of Contents of Book One: How to Grow a Lotus Blossom: Reflections



Click here to go to Table of Contents of Book Two: How to Grow a Lotus Blossom: Reflections in a Disciple's Life

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