If someone asks me about Zen, I inevitably refer to the book, Everyday Zen by Charlotte Joko Beck.
The late Charlotte Joko Beck and her dharma heirs operate The Ordinary Mind School a non-hierarchical organization that uses an adapted Zen practice free from traditional patriarchal trappings with elements of vipassana meditation and the conscious engagement of emotions. Everyday Zen is not achieving some blissful state or cultivating special powers or having happy feelings. Zen practice isn’t about a special place or a special peace, or something other than being with our life just as it is.
I just love the look and peacefulness upon entering the Maui Zen Day Spa.Went in for a couples massage and it was totally relaxing.
If you would like to see a shorter version of his September 2007 presentation, watch this 10-min slide presentation below that Randy did on the Oprah Winfrey show. They give speeches, I haven't seen one, but they certainly have an inspiring story just as Randy. Ichi-nichi issho sums up the emotions of a wonderful day spent in Shinjuku Gyoen and Yoyogi Park, perfectly.
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It is about a simple meditation practice that removes external stimuli so that we are free to experience the most challenging part of reality: ourselves.

It’s one of the hardest things for people to get: that my very difficulties in this very moment are the perfection.
What I see in your blog and in your presentations is the sense for emotions, for sensuality and for the intangible things that surround us. When we are attached to the way we think we should be or the way we think anyone else should be, we can have very little appreciation of life as it is. That seems so simple — except when we substitute for real practice some idea that we should be different or better than we are, or that our lives should be different from the way they are. I did notice that her nails were a little long and I could feel them when she moved her nails a certain way. I had the full body massage and reflexology massage while my wife had the full body massage with facial. Randy, a professor at the prestigious Carnegie Mellon University in the USA, was diagnosed with terminal cancer of the pancreas in the summer of 2006. Besides Randy's story another one that has tocuhed me deeply is the one about the Hoyt Team (father and son).
This morning I was working on a piece about the cherry blossom, which I was lucky enough to see in full bloom during my visit. In August of 2007, Randy was told by the doctors that he had 3-6 months of healthy living left.

And I’m not saying to be passive, not to take action; then you would be trying to hold nirvana as a fixed state. A month after Randy was given just 3-6 months to live, he delivered an inspiring presentation at his university, a presentation that has touched millions of people around the world. There is no implication of ‘doing nothing.’ But deeds done that are born of this understanding are free of anger and judgment.
Our daily life is our story, the actions and the behaviors of our everyday life is the story that can truly inspire others far beyond the ephemeral influence of a single presentation. Randy reminds us that we can choose to live the life —and tell the story — that is truly within us. And this reminds me of a wonderful Martha Graham quote that was featured in The Art of Possibility:Transforming Professional and Personal Life by Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander. Then about a year later I found his website and started reading every word about his battle with cancer.

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