And the survey says...?
Why do we start sitting? And what keeps us sitting now.? How important is faith in the beginning of one's practice? What could one possibly wish to attain from this practice? I'm really an interesting specimen. I guess my personality had something to do with my persistence in practice, thanks for that. How often we mistaken the hand for the moon. How are we expected to see the moon right away? Where does this continuous labor of getting on the cushion come from? I don't really know if I would be sitting as often as I do if I didn't have this place. Strange.
Hey Will -- Let me try to answer your survey.
I started sitting after becoming interested in Buddhism, which was something I turned to because I tend to gravitate towards depression. I'm much happier and satisfied with life now. Not to mention I'm living in a better and healthier way too. Not perfect, but on the right path.
Faith, is huge!! Not only in beginning practice but throughout. I'd like to point out the difference in having blind faith for something just because we want it to be true and the informed faith in something because we have tested it and know it to be trustworthy.
What do I wish to attain? Peace of mind, becoming comfortable in my own skill and the gradual process and working towards fulfilling my potential as a human being. I don't know about the whole enlightenment thing, really. The more I think about that concept I feel that enlightenment just may be another another state of mind. I believe some of the Buddhist community places to much emphasis and hope on this. Of what good is attainment in the long run, Isn't it just another thing to become attached to?
Where does this continuous labor of getting on the cushion come from?
For me, spiritually speaking, when I get on the cushion, I feel like I've moved just a little closer to getting somewhere else. As a Zen practitioner, with no actual destination in mind, the idea of that sort of travel is really interesting. And the idea of seeing sitting in one place doing and thinking absolutely nothing as some sort of travel is about as Zen as it gets...
When I was flipping over the religion/philosophy cards as a young man going, "Not that one, not that one, not that one...AHA!", I was struck by the no faith required/ whatcha see is whatcha get aspect of Zen.
A special transmission outside the scriptures;
No dependence upon words and letters;
Direct pointing to the soul of man:
Seeing into one's own nature and attainment of Buddhahood
Bodhidharma, First Patriarch of Zen (4-6 Cent. AD
I am happy with what "sitting" gets me and if that is all that ever comes of it then it won't be considered wasted time but truthfully I would like a taste of the good stuff.
The other thing that keeps me going is being a Dad like Crnknfrtr. I saw my daughter being seduced by the pretty of the anthopomorphic religions. If I am going to point the way for her then in this venue that can only mean living it.