1) This week we will practice some more with primary source readings. Take the first two sentences of Dōgen’s Genjōkōan: “As all things are buddha-dharma, there is delusion and realization, practice, and birth and death, and there are buddhas and sentient beings. As the myriad things are without an abiding self, there is no delusion, no realization, no buddha, no sentient being, no birth and death.” Try to think about what Dōgen refers to in this relationship between the existence and non-existence of the items in his list? How might this relate to the concept of emptiness? How might it relate to the general category of realization in the Zen tradition? Do not worry about being correct here, but simply try to work through some understanding of these two sentences. Spend about a paragraph.
2) What surprised you about Dōgen’s Tenzo Kyōkun? How does the mundane act of cooking relate to religious experience for Dōgen? Why might he (or his compilers) make no distinction between it and Dōgen doctrinally charged treatises? Can you think of any analogous mundane exercises in your own life that have a particularly “sacred” or transcendent quality for you?