Tuesday, December 15, 2009

5. Unfailing Recollection

"This is also called keeping right mindfulness; keeping the teachings without loss is called right mindfulness, and also called unfailing recollection.

"Buddha said, 'O monks, if you seek a good companion and seek a good protector and helper, nothing compares to unfailing recollection. Those who have unfailing recollection cannot be invaded by the thieving afflictions. Therefore you should concentrate your thoughts and keep mindful. One who loses mindfulness loses virtues. If one's power of mindfulness is strong, even if one enters among the thieving desires one will not be harmed by them. It is like going to the front lines wearing armor -- then one has nothing to fear.' "

(From "The Eight Awarenesses of Great People," translated by Thomas Cleary in "Shobogenzo: Zen essays by Dogen.")

(Photo: Street art by Ohm, Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Dec. 2009)


  1. Oh man. All those years of smoking marijuana killed this one for me. There are whole swaths of time, like almost the entire decade of my 20's, that I can hardly remember at all.


  2. I'm putting on my cloak of mindfulness as I read this, heading off to Aunt Zelda's funeral.

  3. Reya: I can hardly claim "unfailing recollection" either! In fact, I generally have a horrible memory! :)

    B: RIP Aunt Zelda. :(

  4. stay mindful... nothing to fear...i like it.