Yesterday I met with the Abbess of Enpuku-ji , Zengetsu Myokyo. A small Rinzai Zen Center here in downtown Montreal. I have to say that I liked it and her openness and ease of communicating made it feel very comfortable. Along with some basic instruction on sitting Zazen and background info on the Rinzai tradition and her being here, I was able to ask her a question that often percolates in my mind.
Suffering, and the causes, or more specifically the challenges that I have had to face in my life and the life of my children.
''Do children pick their parents ?'' I asked and is there anywhere in Buddhist texts that reference something along those lines. Not coming from a desire to logically place all this in a neat, tidy order but more from the perspective is it just fluke ? or like she replied to me as she felt her teacher would reply ''Probably because you can handle it''
Which is something that my wife and I have often thought about but was interesting to hear it from someone else's perspective.
At any rate even though the neighborhood was lively to put it mildly. The atmosphere inside the Zendo was calming and natural.