Jody Hojin Kimmel, Sensei
Zen Mountain Monastery, 07/19/2020
“Who are you?” asked the caterpillar.
“I don’t know,” replied Alice.
Aren’t we all a little like Alice, especially in this looking glass time? One moment we feel larger, the next moment we can feel quite small. It’s all so uncertain, but certainty is what we crave, and at times what others expect of us. Spiritual inquiry, through zazen and other practices, provide us with opportunities to become intimate with and work through our discomfort with uncertainty, our resistance to change. This tale from Lewis Carroll, also appears in the Mountains and Rivers Order’s in-house koan collection, “Koans on the Way of Reality.” As Hojin Sensei makes clear, the wisdom of the caterpillar is our own inner voice, challenging us to wake up to our life, to wake up to the Way.