One of my favorite mantras is “always be a beginner.” Shunryu Suzuki emphasizes this in his book “Zen Mind Beginner’s Mind.” The goal of meditation or spiritual practice is not to become advanced or to master the practice but to practice being a humble and enthusiastic beginner. Simplicity and sincerity are all I need for each practice and for each challenge of each day. Always be a beginner.
Writer. In the summers, I live and work in the incredible state of Alaska, in the bush community of McCarthy, as the Executive Director of the Wrangell Mountain Center. When not in McCarthy, you'll typically find me in the Santa Cruz Mountains of California, writing and working with local activists. My primary writing project right now is a novel set in remote bush Alaska, of the magical realism genre wherein an earnest and independent young woman finds a mysterious radio belonging to her grandmother, a device that has paranormal bandwidth and a disturbing ability to mess with one's mental stability. View all posts by Jonathan Erdman