Killing Time

"Killing Time" 11 of 200 from Robert Aitken's book Miniatures of a Zen Master.

In this miniature we have Yamamoto Roshi reading aloud from the crime blotter of a newspaper as he admonishes his students to not be killing time. He'd say "There is no murder worse than killing time."

This reminds me of my sweeties love of pursuing the obituaries. Obits' along with the crime blotter can be used as a reminder   "there is no murder worse than killing time."

There is work to do. Work requires energy. If we don't do the work, it won't get done. Zen is not about being lazy even though it can look like that from the outside. A bunch of sitters facing the wall, hour after hour. Yamamoto points to how even here this precious opportunity shouldn't be wasted.

I am happy. Happy to be writing here. I want to be careful and clear enough that a reader who does not have this book can still get a bit of the flavor. I also want to be respectful of Robert Aitken Roshi's writings. I feel it is important I not quote the book much at all. Any confusion or errors on this blog are mine alone and the result of my misunderstand and delusion.

I want to encourage you to get the book. It is really sweet and warm. Robert is retired now and is being supported by his community and sangha. Think of a book purchase as a small way of supporting him financially and if so moved, there is a "Financial Support" link on his blog.