The sea was my first Zen master. I remember as a child walking on the beach and watching it’s changing. The sea in the morning is different from the one in the afternoon, the one when we are going is different from the one when we return on the morning walk. I learned about impermanence and the present moment.
It is not only the sea, the sky, the nature are always showing us that everything changes and how each moment is unique. I started writing this post at the beach, but I came to São Paulo and wondered how to have this relationship with nature here in the city? It may seem difficult, but if you pay attention, there is a piece of sky in the window, a tree in the path. The observation of what is around us, teaches us.
I am in an apartment where I can watch the sun rise. The sky turns orange and little by little the golden ball of the sun appears, bringing light and warmth to start the day, or, if it rains, a thin gray layer appears between the city and my eyes.
“The mountains walk and you must understand the walking of the mountains”. Wrote Master Dogen, founder of Soto Zen, in the Mountains and Rivers Sutra. In another text he talked about how Insentient beings speaks the Dharma.
The indigenous leader Ailton Krenak talks about the sacred mountains “In some regions of the Andes, you find places where the mountains form couples. You have a mother, father, son, a family of mountains that exchange affections, make exchanges. And the people who live in these valleys they have parties for these mountains, they give food, they give gifts, they get gifts from the mountains. “
When I listen to Krenak’s teachings, I realize this respect and this learning relationship with nature, which is what I see in Master Dogen and what I feel when I look at the sea on the beach or the sky in the city. That they are our masters and our relatives. How can we honor this heritage?