The Two Tiger Problem: A One-day Retreat with Rachel Boughton Roshi in Seattle
Sunday August 20, 9:30am to 5:00pm
A woman is running from a tiger. She runs through the woods until she gets to the edge of a cliff. The tiger is still behind her, chasing her, so she climbs down a vine. The tiger reaches the top of the cliff and paces back and forth, licking its chops. Midway down the cliff, hanging onto the vine, she sees another tiger below her, pacing back and forth, licking its chops. As she’s hanging there, two mice, one black, one white, come out and start gnawing on the vine. She tries to shoo them away, but they won’t go.
Just then she sees, growing out of the face of the cliff in front of her, a perfect, beautiful strawberry. She picks it and eats it. It’s delicious.
The problem sounds exotic, but when you look at it carefully you realize it’s always true, for all of us. No matter what, there’s always a tiger above and a tiger below, and usually there are mice as well. The interesting thing is that, when we look around, we will also always find a strawberry. What’s the story like for you? How can you live your life taking all these things into account? It may be easier than you think, and full of good humor and definitely never boring.
A koan retreat is a chance to discover for yourself what freedom is like. There will be meditation, conversation, a chance for individual work with the teacher and a delicious potluck lunch, including strawberries.