The Focus of Attention on Where I Am, Excluding Nothing

Be like a person who has ‘died the great death’; after your breath is cut off, then you come back to life.

(“Zen Letters- Teachings of Yuanwu”, trans. Cleary brothers pg 84)

I have this experience often when I sit (my breath is “cut off”), particularly in the transition from exhalation to inhalation, and the focus of attention on the movement of breath itself doesn’t necessarily help. The focus of attention on where I am, excluding nothing, seems to help.

Fundamentally, this great light is there with each and every person right where they stand— empty clear through, spiritually aware, all-pervasive, it is called ‘the scenery of the fundamental ground’.

(Ibid, pg 85- italics added)

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