Oak Tree in the Garden

Chao Chou’s “Oak Tree in the Garden” is, like MU, a primary koan, a door that focusses into the world of Zen practice. It emerges as a response to perennial questions: “What is Zen?” “What is the one mind?” It would seem that all the richness of life is right here, back in your own backyard, as the old song put it. 

This case also occasions an opportunity to pay homage to trees, our great brothers and sisters, who protect and teach us.

This teisho, Case 37 of the W’Men Kuan, was given by Maggie Gluek, roshi at Autumn sesshin 2022