Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi
Zen Mountain Monastery, New York, Sunday Morning 08/08/2021
From The Blue Cliff Record, Case 56 – Ch’in Shan’s One Arrowpoint Smashes 3 Barriers
Shugen Roshi chose this koan to coincide with the conclusion to our annual kyudo retreat that ran throughout the week at the Monastery. From the standpoint of the practitioner, the three barriers might be the three poisons: greed, anger and ignorance. Or the three marks of existence: impermanence, suffering, and emptiness of self. It could be whatever seems to be posing a problem. When we insist on maintaining our own delusion, including the delusion of our barriers and our separation from true reality, we need to call forth the master within the barrier. This is the one who truly knows, the archer who is not separate from the target.