Talk by Soten “Pain as Koan”
Senior student Soten Neil Theise discusses ways in which he has coped with his own acute or chronic physical pain. Master Yunmen said: "Every day is a good day." So did Neil's mom in her elder years when she had her "share of aches and pains." How can every day be a good day if there's constant pain? Are there Zen ways to work with pain? Can focused attention alleviate pain? Can we change our relationship to pain and explore how it might illuminate our lives? Is it even possible to "pass" this koan...?