Quiet morning here at my desk, except for the rumble of the street-cleaning truck, first ear-splittingly loud and then slowly fading as it makes its way up the avenue. After an initial fright, the cat is finally not bothered, sleeping soundly now on the chair behind me, breathing peacefully in and out. So it goes, the way of all things.

Meanwhile, after sitting, I’m considering how to « formally » start our retreat here. We’ll be using Dogen’s Genjokoan as our thread throughout the week. And a phrase from the introduction to a book of commentaries on Genjokoan seems a good beginning: « Don’t just do something, sit there; don’t just sit there, do something: being and doing as one. » That’s our program for the week (and for the whole of life)!

At the World Cup last night in Moscow, Mexico beat the defending world champion, Germany, 1-0, stunning the football world and causing an « artificial » earthquake in Mexico City as fans there celebrated. That’s the power of joy! The Mexican coach had told his team before the match: « Play for the joy of winning, not the fear of losing. »

So what are your joys and fears today, what is your life today? I hope to read you all here in the « commentaries. » You can write in whatever language you choose — no need to use English just because I do. Write from your heart, from the heart of your very own life today, Monday June 18 2018, in your city, village, country, house, office. Tell us about your day of « being and doing. »

Thanks, and à bientôt.