Last week the gentleman asked if zen would make him a better parent. Today, sitting on the same cushion, a man asked why is sitting worth it when other activities seem to be more profitable considering the time involved.
We used to call these teachable moments. Luckily, I was not the teacher. There wasn't time to discuss my ideas of profit, and a quote from the Bible "what shall it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses his soul" would not work since you lose your soul in Zen, discovering that the soul (called "self") does not exist.
The teacher did mention that Zen is not a gaining activity (my words). The problem with saying that "sitting will do this for you" is that if people sit for that benefit they might miss the experience while waiting for the award to come. Doing things for the result never work out too well. And if the result doesn't come, we live the rest of life dressed in bitterness.
Then the teacher said that dana (donations) was important). The next thing I know is that a basket was being passed. That didn't feel good to me, especially at a beginners' class. I think we ought to get drug pushers to teach classes in hooking customers. They give the product away until the customer is hooked... and then they start charging—or so I've heard.
In any case, I politely took the basket and passed it on.
What will next week bring?