There are many demons that haunt us in practice, and one of the most insidious is comparing our practice to others, measuring our "progress" in zazen or in koan study. We think that because others are further along than us, we must be doing something wrong or they must be more spiritually advanced. We blame others for our problems when in reality we are the demons we create in our practice. This is actually good news, because if we are the ones causing our suffering, we are the ones who can put an end to it. All of our demons originate from our discriminating mind, and by learning to still our ceaseless comparing and judging, we can enter into the mind's true freedom.
by Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Sensei
Gateless Gate, Case 26:
Two Monastics Roll Up the Blinds