What primarily concerns me is the necessity for a student to learn to be as awake as possible in each moment. Otherwise it can seem as if the point of practice is to have breakthroughs. The usefulness of these openings exists only if they clarify life and our ability to live it and serve it. But until mind and body - usually through years of patient practice - cease to want an ego-centered life, the openings and their teachings cannot [must not] be distorted into ego successes. Only when mind and body are mostly free of reactivity can a true understanding of what life is become possible - not through a momentary breakthrough, but through an open and compassionate living of life.
--Charlotte Joko Beck, from "Life's Not a Problem" (Summer 1998)
Non-striving is a sticking point in my own practice right now. It's hard to just sit without trying to attain something, whether it be kensho or stress reduction or getting assigned a first koan or what.
("Ceasing to want an ego-centered life" plus mendel equals lots of work to do.)