“Beginner’s Mind”

8 or 9 years ago now, one of my Senseis used to remind us to use ‘beginner’s mind’ in our dojo practice.

Today I finished reading A Chosen Faith, which is an introductory book to the religion that I grew up in and have practiced in my own funny way, during my adult life.  13 of the years of my adult life I was a regular church goer so far.  I was also a church goer as a child – most of the time.  Most of the years I didn’t regularly attend was because I wanted or needed a ride but didn’t get one.  For over a year now, I have been doing ‘online’ practice, plus a retreat and the whole magazine and newsletter deal and had intended to spend the entire Summer working at one of the Summer camps that has middle aged and mature staff – very mixed age group staff, instead of the ones where the old staff members are the 30 year old Directors.

Doing anything to behave like a beginner in a system one has grown up in can help a person learn new things – it might just be aspects of it one never even noticed right alongside other details which one already knows deeply and accurately.  I learned a few things, for sure, and yes, it really did seem like it was written about the religion I grew up in.  Yes, that’s really what its like.

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