At Home in Precariousness (Online event)

14 September 2021
  • Day:Tuesday
  • Time:7.00PM - 8.30PM AEST
  • No of Sessions:1
  • Duration:90 minutes
  • Organising Entity:Buddhist Library
  • Event Speaker:Dr Susan Murphy, Zen Roshi
  • or (02) 9519 6054
  • Location:Buddhist Library
  • Attendance Mode:Zoom Only Event
  • Contribution:By donation
  • The whole world is living at present in the thick of two horizonless realities: global heating, and pandemic.  How does a person committed to the Way of awakening respond to this complex and demanding time?  What would it be like to willingly turn towards and actively choose uncertainty, as the very ground of our lives?
    Once, a monk asked the very old and venerable Zhaozhou, in 9th century China, ‘Do enlightened teachers ever fall into Hell?’  
    Zhaouzhou replied, “I’ll be the first to go there.’
    The monk protested, ‘But you’re an enlightened teacher! Why would you fall into hell?”
    Zhaozhou replied, ‘If I didn’t fall into hell, how could I help you?
    We will meditate together with this and one or two other Zen koans and explore them openly together, in order to discover some of the surprising and transforming ways in which difficulty, fear and uncertainty can be turned around to discover more clearly the path of liberation and awakening that lies right through the middle of every moment of this life.


    Teacher profile

    Dr Susan Murphy, Zen Roshi, is the founding teacher of  Zen Open Circle  in Sydney. She is in a lay lineage that draws Soto and Rinzai (koan) style of practice together, with a special interest in the way Zen and Indigenous Australian sense of “care for country” come together.

    Susan is a writer, freelance radio producer, and film writer and director. She directs the annual Buddhist Film Festival in Sydney, established in 2003, and teaches a postgraduate course in Chan/Zen Buddhism for the Masters in Applied Buddhist Studies at Nan Tien Institute in Wollongong.

    She is the author of Upside Down Zen, Minding the Earth, Mending the World: Zen and the Art of Planetary Crisis, and Red Thread Zen: Humanly Entangled in Emptiness. Currently she is writing a book commissioned by Shambhala, titled ‘A Fire Runs Through All Things’, taking crisis as the invitation into Zen koan mind.


    All Sessions are by Donation (Dana) to the Buddhist Library. All donations to the Buddhist Library of $2 and over are tax deductible.

    Dana is the traditional practice of generosity, the extending of one’s goodwill, which is fundamental to Buddhism and other spiritual traditions. The dana you give helps to maintain the Library and allows it to offer more teachings on the Dhamma so that others may benefit in the future. It is up to each person to determine the amount of dana they’d like to offer. We understand that this is a difficult time financially for many, and people will give what they can. An appropriate dana can’t be prescribed but requires sensitivity to its intent and to the individual’s own situation, as well as awareness of the cost of organising events and supporting teachers who spread the Dhamma.