Crestone Mountain Zen Center and the astonishign view over the valley
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In the Midst of History

written by
Zentatsu Baker Roshi

Buddhism changes all the time, in some centuries through a creative individual, however, most often, Buddhist change comes through a creative sangha – exploring, applying, and evolving the practice and the crafts of Zen in their lives with others.

Buddhism and Zen develop most subtly through the personal application of the teachings and the crafts of practice.  This is us and you.

Buddhist change has been most fundamental and transformative, when its views and practices develop traction in another culture.  Historically, in East Asian China, Japan, and Korea, Buddhism and Zen have similarly and differently, absorbed aspects of the resident culture and in multiple ways, transformed the resident culture.

Today, Zen Buddhism is not only finding traction in Western Culture and in Western languages, it is simultaneously engaged, and unavoidably, at this unprecedented juncture in history, with developing a globalizable Zen practice, which most likely will be primarily a Lay Secular practice.  A parallel monastic practice may also need to develop new practices and strategies of realization to survive.

Western practitioners are in the midst of a chance – given by History – to traditionally maintain the tradition, or to articulate the tradition in new ways, or perhaps even to reinvent Zen Buddhism.

The unprecedented opportunities, affordances, and potentials of this new global connectivity will change everything.  We don’t know how, but changes are inevitable, and hopefully beneficial.

The Dharma-Sangha in Crestone and Europe both recognize and are incrementally and consciously engaged in this global transformation, which can only be consequentially engaged or consequentially ignored.

Please join us in this All Around Turn Around!

This is now.

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