I have a new friend in Queens, NY. Actually, I have only one friend in Queens. Moo Aha, the nun at Kak Hwang Zen Center. She asked if I’ve “done” the “three questions.” I’d never heard of them, so I asked. They are as follows:
- Who are you?
- Where do you come from?
- Where do you go when you die?
She said the answer is the same for all three questions.
I pondered this for a while and the one thing that came to mind was, “Everything.” Who am I? That answer came to me when I pondered the question, “What part of me am I solely responsible for?” In response to this question, my mind was blank. Blank as in the same blank I’d experience if someone asked me, “What’s the third largest city in Namibia.” The human brain is very quick to know what it doesn’t know. I am solely responsible for nothing of myself. I then had a deeper understanding of Thich Nhat Hanh’s, “Interbeing.” I inter-be with everything. If I inter-be with everything, that’s where I come from, and that’s where I go when I die.
Fast forward to the day after I return from the east coast and am chatting with Thay Kozen, my teacher. He said he had a feeling I’d understood, “my original face.” Is it possible that my contemplating these, “three questions” and Thay Kozen’s feeling that I’d understood, “my original face” are related? If so, is that a coincidence? Hmmm…